Angry partner, remorseful...sometimes

Postby FreeBeez83 » Sat Sep 30, 2017 7:25 am

Hi all,

I am more and more worried about the anger management issues of my partner and would like to get some advices. We are both in our mid thirties and started dating a year ago.

Here is a recent example of the issue. While she was outside our home and I was inside, I heard her squealing. As a devoted knight ready to rescue my damsel in distress, I ran outside. I found her on the porch with her typical pre-anger outburst facial expression. She had accidentally dropped a crate with books on the lawn. It was rainy and I started collecting the books. She said coldly "don't collect the books". I said warmly "I am gonna collect them babe or they gonna be spoiled" and started executing. She then started screaming angrily at me "STOOOP!!!WHY DON'T YOU f***ing LISTEN TO ME". I finished collecting the books, went back inside the house while she followed me still screaming "YOU f***ing SPOILED OUR EVENING, WHY DO YOU NEED TO ALWAYS DO THIS KIND OF THINGS TO ME!!! I HATE YOU" and so on.

In the past, I tried shouting back, reasoning her, ignoring her, going away...with these approaches, the outburst continues for the whole night. Teasing her sometimes cuts short the outbreak but on other occasions worsens the situation. The most reliable way I found to reduce the duration of her rage is to stay calm and warm-hearted (at least try to appear as such), tell her that I do not condone this kind of behavior but that I want to understand what makes her so angry and listen patiently. After typically 10 minutes of yelling, accusing me of all misery on this planet, she starts crying, sobbing that she does not want to be like that, that I am gonna leave her and she sometimes tries to hurt herself. I prevent that, stay close, comfort her and the outburst ends after about 10 extra minutes. Afterwards, she sometimes apologizes, we often make love and the story ends here. She is lovely till the next outburst.

Her anger is not only directed at me. Every little (from my point of view) frustration in her life brings her to that state. I am however the only one witnessing the crying-self harming state. I guess it would be ok if it was happening from time to time. But this occurs 3-4 times a week. She clearly suffers a lot from her outbursts. Seeing her like that so often makes me feeling like a sh**. On top of that, the emotional blows she throws at me occasionally hit me hard, even if she later apologizes.

I am now wondering if the apparently calm attitude I struggle to maintain during her outbursts is appropriate. On one hand, it is clearly an effective way to make her coming down faster from her angry mood. On the other hand, I feel I give her a signal that it is not such a big deal to behave like that. I thought that letting the angry little girl in her express herself and feel accepted would help the situation. But I now have my doubts. Am I on the contrary encouraging childish and abusive behaviour from her side?

What's your opinion? If people with anger management issues, specifically women, read that thread, can you advise what kind of attitude of your partner helped you going out of the anger cycle?
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#1

Postby Leo Volont » Sat Sep 30, 2017 10:43 am

Hi Mr. Freebeez,

Welcome to the Forum. It is rare that an Anger Victim writes in, which surprises me, since a great deal of the pain and burden imposed by Anger falls upon those who are on the receiving end of it.

First let me say that I think your manner of dealing with your partner’s Anger is exemplary. Most people are dragged into becoming angry themselves. Being calm is what you are supposed to be. Being calm offers a good example to the Angry Person and is also the best means for pursuing De-escalation. You would be amazed at how many people can’t shout at a calm voice. But you wonder whether by reacting in such a mild mannered way that you are signaling that you consider the overall situation to be trivial or relatively inconsequential. Well, a civilized person has no choice but to act in a civilized manner, so regarding your steady and calm demeanor, you really don’t have much wiggle room. But what DOES show that you consider the matter relatively unimportant is your staying to tolerate it. She herself has signaled that she really believes you would be sensible to leave her. The only reason she fears that you will leave her is that she would leave you if you behaved the same way toward her (it is the inverse of the Golden Rule, that people expect others to do what they would do themselves. So when she says she is afraid you would leave her, it is to say that she would leave you. I believe she must be very puzzled as to what keeps you around.

Perhaps to show her that this Anger thing really is important to you, you might suggest that your patience with her is not infinite. Perhaps you could suggest that she write into this Forum and seek out some Anger Management advice and that she goes wherever that might lead her.

And it does appear that she has a very severe case of None Rage Anger. It is good that she does not go into Rages, because they are characterized by a lot of property damage and betoken the possibility of violence. None Rage Anger is mostly yelling and screaming, cussing and swearing. What amazes me is the frequency that you mention – 3 or 4 times a week. That is a lot! Usually an Anger Episode creates a lot of mental turmoil and anguish. The reason many people seek help with their Anger is not so much because of the Anger Episodes themselves – the Outbursts and Blow Ups, which are typically of short duration, but because of the Mental Turmoil that follows – the none-stop internal dialogue about “what I should have said” and all the self-justifications mixed with guilty recriminations. It is not uncommon to miss a night’s sleep over it. And such Mental Anguish, though it steadily weakens over time, still asserts its presence even after 3 days. In Anger Management it is called the “leaky bucket” Effect – that the Anger and Anguish simply gets spent over time. But if your partner is blowing up 3 or 4 times a week, then, well, do the Math. She is not giving herself time to ever recover back down to baseline. If she can’t manage to stay calm for 4 days in a row, then she has likely forgotten who she Really is. Yes, between Blowups she may seem ‘normal’ to you, but remember, you have probably forgotten by now how she used to be (if she was ever calm for more than 3 or 4 days). What needs to be understood that within 3 days of an Anger Episode an Angry Person is still processing. The behavior might appear normal, but just under the surface the mind is still preoccupied with the blow up and its mental and emotional aftermath.

She is in her mid-thirties and so I would not suspect early adult onset bipolar syndrome or whatever they call it nowadays. Her body chemistry should be sort of stable. But anger as periodically chronic as hers might suggest a visit to the doctor who could evaluate her for some kind of an imbalance which would adversely affect her impulse control. Who knows, if might also be the result of some brain trauma – a car accident or a fall might have done some damage. Yes, the brain heals in time and even creates new brain cells to replace damaged ones, but it is a slow process.

Or maybe she is just under a heck of a lot of stress. You did not mention her career. What does she do? Maybe she DOES have impulse control but that she expends it all at Work keeping a lid on it from 9 to 5 so that she doesn’t get fired. And then she comes home and ‘relaxes’. But, no, I really don’t believe that. Emotionally her Anger has her worn into a frazzle and there is no way she would be able to control it at work. I would guess she isn’t working, or at least she works in a setting where there are no Bosses or Co-Workers who could be set upon by her chronic Anger. Back 30 or 40 years ago the Business World had more tolerance for ‘hot heads’ and people ‘blowing off steam’, but now, because of all the lawyers and work place shootings, there is more of a Zero Tolerance atmosphere. People get fired for being Angry. Their Value Added just isn’t worth the perceived Risk of having them around.

It really would be helpful if we had her viewpoint. Her exposition could possibly be very different from your own. It reminds me of the splendid novel “Wuthering Heights” where Emily Bronté tells the story using 3 different narrative ‘voices’ (the servant, the frustrated lover, the traveling stranger) and each tells the same story but in different shades and colors, and so the reader is left wondering what the heck is REALLY going on. After hearing her story I might have more of an idea whether the standard Self Help style Therapies could work with her. It is a possibility, and so she really should write in. If we can help her, even if it takes a while, the sooner she starts then the sooner she can approach a normal calm and peaceful life… or as calm and peaceful as anybody can hope for, without making the inevitable problems of life worse than they need to be by reacting inappropriately to them.

Hmmmm, I am out of ideas. Perhaps if you pick up on this as a conversation, it will lead to some other avenues of thought. I will let you know if anything else pops into my mind. Good luck.
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#2

Postby JuliusFawcett » Sun Oct 01, 2017 5:03 pm

I take the view that I am always trying my best to move my relationships towards more peace, more love and more harmony through the vehicles of forgiveness, acceptance and surrender. And sometimes, enough is enough and I walk away.
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#3

Postby Leo Volont » Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:25 am

JuliusFawcett wrote:I take the view that I am always trying my best to move my relationships towards more peace, more love and more harmony through the vehicles of forgiveness, acceptance and surrender. And sometimes, enough is enough and I walk away.


Wow! Julius, I didn't have you pegged for a "walk away" kind of guy. I guess I had you wrong. You have always been a firm believer in Human Happiness and at the same time you seemed to me to be quixotically determined against all odds to make impossibly miserable situations "happy" by trying to do "all the right things" -- like trying to piss out a forest fire. So I am glad to be now recognizing you as a Happiness Oriented Realist.
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#4

Postby JuliusFawcett » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:21 pm

we all try our best, and sometimes walking away is the best thing to do
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#5

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:08 pm

FreeBeez83 wrote: I prevent that, stay close, comfort her and the outburst ends after about 10 extra minutes. Afterwards, she sometimes apologizes, we often make love and the story ends here.


And this is why the cycle continues. You stay close, comfort her AND OFTEN MAKE LOVE....Why not throw in some shopping and taking her out for some ice cream while you are at it?

In short, stop rewarding negative behavior. She throws a tantrum and gets positive reinforcement. Why the heck would she not throw another tantrum?
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#6

Postby Leo Volont » Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:45 pm

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:
And this is why the cycle continues. You stay close, comfort her AND OFTEN MAKE LOVE....Why not throw in some shopping and taking her out for some ice cream while you are at it?



Oh and if she really flips out and trashes the place -- rips up your family photo album going back 3 generations and smashes your Stradivarius Violin, then that would be a special occasion calling for a weekend trip to New York for Dinner and a Show.
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#7

Postby FreeBeez83 » Tue Oct 03, 2017 9:43 am

Dear Leo,

Thank you very much for your elaborated answer. I am not sure to understand when you mention that I consider the matter as unimportant as I stay to tolerate it. On the opposite, I consider it as very important as it rottens both our lives. Why do I tolerate her behavior? Well, because she has in these situations no real control over her emotions and she suffers from it, I am very attached to her, I want to support her and help her to grow. But to rephrase what I said before, I don't know where is the line between supporting her and encouraging her inappropriate behaviour.

Concerning her job, she is a multirole employee in a kind of nature resort. She cooks, clean and manage some administrative aspects there. The general atmosphere of the place is quite laid back, but she has a lot of responsibilities​, likes things to be well done (overly from my point of view) and puts a lot of pressure on herself. She sometimes becomes angry at customers but more often at other employees. She rarely let the volcano erupt before being alone or with me. She admits herself that most of her work related anger stems from her control freak nature.

You are right, the perception of a situation depends on the viewpoint. I will try to bring her to this forum.

Richard@DecisionSkills, I do not agree with your opinion. Making love is surely not a reward for her tantrum, but rather a way to to regain peace in the couple after she cools down, acknowledges she did not behave properly and accepts she needs to work over it. I believe it also helps her to reduce the emotional aftermath mentioned by Leo.

JuliusFawcett, yes, you may be right. The best thing to do may just be to walk away when things are above my level of acceptance and empathy.
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#8

Postby Leo Volont » Tue Oct 03, 2017 12:19 pm

Hi Freebeez,

Oh! She is employed. In fact she is a Manager! That partially explains why she hasn’t been fired yet. Bosses can get away with stuff an ordinary Worker would be out the door in two seconds for. For instance, you say that she has sometimes shown her anger to the Guests. That’s insane! If one of her Employees were to get mouthy with a Guest, you know what would happen! Then she expresses her anger to her employees. What would she do if she caught one of her employees throwing tantrums and making the other employees’ lives miserable? She’d fire ‘em for ‘hostility in the workplace’. But she lets herself get away with it. You are not the only one suffering from her. She is out of control and she seems to be the boss wherever she goes and so nobody can stand up to stop her.

Now I need to ask about what YOU DO for a living. I hope you have a good job, because if you don’t I would suspect that the primary all powerful reason you put up with that Chronically Angry woman is because she is paying the lion’s share of the bills. Now, yes, these are strange times we live in and people are desperate to find good jobs. They talk about Full Employment but most jobs nowadays pay only a fraction of what people were making 30 years ago. You can have a full time job and still be poor. So I understand that you could be very interested in keeping a comfortable roof over your head. Of course, if you are financially independent, then I can only say that you are almost entirely too kind and considerate. Just think of all the People who suffer under her who wish… who pray… that you would have a word with her.

Anyway, I think you would be doing HER a favor if you Risked her displeasure by insisting that she write in to This Forum. There are some Tried and True therapies for mitigating Anger, and we could put her on track to an eventual transformation. She does not need to be a raging harpy forever. And any improvement in her life would be a great improvement in yours. You have shown your loyalty. But if she kept up her Angry Behavior at the same pace, it would eventually wear you out – either your health would eventually give out or your own temper would begin to turn for the worse. So see what you can do. Let me know if I can be of any help. Good luck M. Freebeez.
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#9

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:22 pm

FreeBeez83 wrote:Richard@DecisionSkills, I do not agree with your opinion. Making love is surely not a reward for her tantrum, but rather a way to to regain peace in the couple after she cools down, acknowledges she did not behave properly and accepts she needs to work over it. I believe it also helps her to reduce the emotional aftermath mentioned by Leo.


Of course you don't. It is why you are in here asking for advice, saying you don't know where to draw the line. She is having tantrums 3-4 times a week and you are swooping in to be the knight that rewards her for her behavior. You think making love is surely not a reward, well it sure as hell ain't a punishment.

If you had a child throwing a tantrum several times a week, would you buy them ice cream after the child cools down and then say it is surely not a reward, but a way to regain peace in the relationship after your child throws a fit?

Oh, but she is not a child? She had a tantrum over books falling on a lawn. It is happening 3-4 times a week. You are dating a person with the maturity of a child and giving her rewards for her behavior.

Disagree all you like, but disagreeing doesn't change the fact you are rewarding her behavior and there are definitely no negative consequences for her behaviors.
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#10

Postby Leo Volont » Wed Oct 04, 2017 3:47 am

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:
FreeBeez83 wrote:Richard@DecisionSkills, I do not agree with your opinion. Making love is surely not a reward for her tantrum, but rather a way to to regain peace in the couple after she cools down, acknowledges she did not behave properly and accepts she needs to work over it. I believe it also helps her to reduce the emotional aftermath mentioned by Leo.


Of course you don't. It is why you are in here asking for advice, saying you don't know where to draw the line. She is having tantrums 3-4 times a week and you are swooping in to be the knight that rewards her for her behavior. You think making love is surely not a reward, well it sure as hell ain't a punishment.

If you had a child throwing a tantrum several times a week, would you buy them ice cream after the child cools down and then say it is surely not a reward, but a way to regain peace in the relationship after your child throws a fit?

Oh, but she is not a child? She had a tantrum over books falling on a lawn. It is happening 3-4 times a week. You are dating a person with the maturity of a child and giving her rewards for her behavior.

Disagree all you like, but disagreeing doesn't change the fact you are rewarding her behavior and there are definitely no negative consequences for her behaviors.


Hi Richard,

Your Insight and Discernment always amaze me... mostly in the sense that I wonder why I didn't think of it.

But in this case, until M. Freebeez gets back to us to report on his own financial standing, I would suspect that he is kind of stuck with trying to bolster up this disaster of a relationship because of its material benefits. Its not much different from the thousands of marriages that hold together because 'power couples' need each other to pay off huge mortgages (where the marriages typically end in divorce as soon as there is the first hint of positive equity.... usually the women pounce on this Realization first, particularly as the Courts traditionally go in the direction of ordering a positive liquidity flow going in the direction from the boys and to the girls, in the form of either alimony or child support). If men really want to stay married they need to take out 2nd Mortgages before there is any positive equity in order to keep the house in permanent debt so that the wives will continue to see their husbands as necessary to their own financial interests. But in this case with M. Freebeez we may be talking about something akin to the Gigolo-Client dynamic. Hmmmm, just the name "Freebeez" kind of suggests a kind of a 'free loading' situation, doesn't it? Anyway, in such relationships the poor Gigolo has got to perform or he is out on the street. Of course, for every one 'professional' Gigolo there must be dozens of situational ad hoc 'gigolos', that is, men who simply ended up in relationships which would be extremely difficult, in the practical sense, or even very painful to walk away from. I myself almost got caught up in such an affair. My sense of caution forced me to resist the temptation. Living with a Good Income would have been addictive, and I knew I would rather be Poor but Free. But at the time I DID have a job I could live on which gave me the power of Choice. Many man don't have the same option. It reminds me of a joke that goes around in musician circles: "What do you call a Guitar Player who breaks up with his Girlfriend?" ....... "Homeless".
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#11

Postby Leo Volont » Wed Oct 04, 2017 3:54 am

clowninsauce wrote:SHE HAS BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER by the sounds of it my friend and its hell to live with Ive done it for 14 years and they don't change it gets worse just be nice as possible and go


they use that diagnosis to push pharmaceuticals. Everybody that goes a psychiatrist nowadays is diagnosed with BPD because the drug companies 'split the take' with the prescribing shrinks. Oh, wait, that may be overly cynical. There is another reason to diagnose BPD, and that is because the Shrinks really do feel that the BPD drugs would help and that the only way they can put through the Insurance Paperwork is to write in BPD in the Diagnosis block.

anyway, my point is that BPD is so Universally Diagnosed that one could assume that EVERYBODY nowadays has BPD, and as in the case of all Universals, it becomes meaningless. Its like all Frogs being Green. If a Frog has a problem, you need to deal with it somehow besides blaming it on its color.
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#12

Postby FreeBeez83 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 9:51 am

Leo, your extrapolations are going a bit far...
gigolo-client dynamics :shock: . I was somewhat not very inspired for finding an username. And I saw a promotional coupon entitled Freebeez lying on the pavement that day... Concerning my professional situation, I quit my engineering job some time ago to travel and find new directions for my life. I met that lady on my path and started living with her in between my getaways. I am financially independent through my savings and a burgeoning online business.

I feel embarrassed that my posts have portrayed her as such an horrible person. I was in resentment mode when I wrote my first post. The episode I described had just happened and I have to admit that I exaggerated the frequency of the extreme outbursts. While she scold me 3-4 times a week for trivial matters, and I am very (maybe over) sensitive to it, the violent blows up occur once a week or two. When not stressed or angry, she is a lovely woman with whom I can openly talk about everything. She also gives me a lot of tenderness and amazing sex. That's why I stay with her. Despite her controling behavior and angry temperament, she is also very appreciated at her job. She manages some aspects of the resort but does not have direct authority on other employees. When there has been a fight with another employee and she has cooled down, she is open to discuss the matter and find a solution.

Richard, the mental anguish and guilt she experienced during or after her outbursts is already a negative consequence of her behavior. I believe she suffers from some kind of psychological disorder (who doesn't in the end) and feel uncomfortable adding a punishment of top of that. Gonna try to meet a councillor or therapist, best thing to do.

Leo, can you advise some books that could help me and her?
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#13

Postby Leo Volont » Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:01 pm

Dear M. Freebeez,

I am so embarrassed. I am ashamed of myself for getting you so far wrong. I let my imagination run away with itself. I am so glad, and appreciative that you are not absolutely furious with me. And, yes, I should have factored in the likelihood that you yourself would not be able to write entirely coolly and objectively so soon after an Episode. I am used to the Angry Person’s end of an Anger exchange, which isn’t pleasant since it is often so filled with guilt and remorse. But I need to remember that being Attacked isn’t much fun either, especially if the Angry Person doing the attacking strikes at one’s weak and vulnerable points, and if you are intimate with somebody and have any vulnerabilities at all, they will eventually learn all about them. But, overall, you were remarkably calm. That is why Richard and I believed the utter factuality of your story, and Richard is a great deal more level headed and discerning than I am. Well, this is a case we can all learn from.

Oh, yes, of course I can recommend some books, but first, now that I know that your Lady Friend is not so drastically disordered, maybe a “Quick Fix” idea would go a long way toward keeping her under control. You see, people who have ordinary none-destructive, none-violent Anger, that is, yelling and screaming tantrums, blow-ups, cussing and swearing, letting loose bitter and sarcastic comments, and all that kind of thing, well, it is all made significantly worse by Adrenaline, the ‘Fight-Flight-Freeze’ endocrinal secretion.

Adrenaline is very useful in Life and Death Emergencies where physical strength and second nature agilities are called for. Indeed, some sports people and martial artists practice with their adrenaline so as to condition themselves to remain emotionally neutral while letting the Adrenaline increase their strength and reaction time. While under the influence of a strong Adrenaline Rush time seems to slow down, and this is because the Mind is Speeding Up, effectively putting more Awareness Points into every space of actual Time, making it seem that time is just creeping by. So sometimes the perception of an Angry Person in an Adrenaline Fired Rage is like being in slow motion… as though it takes forever to throw the chair through the window when in actually they just snatched it up and tossed it like it was a small stick. That is often why Raging people are unresponsive to Oral Commands. They simply do not understand that anything is being said, since it is coming at them so seemingly slowed down. But you can imagine how beneficial this would be in sports or martial arts, once you got used to the condition. Oh, and if the Adrenaline isn’t too intense, that is, normal Stress Adrenaline, it actually helps some Test Takers, as it seems to give them more thought time, or rather more thought ‘moments’ to answer the questions.

Oh, and Adrenaline is a great multiplier of physical strength. All those stories you heard of mothers lifting cars off their babies are absolutely true. Oh, that is another reason to NEVER get in a fight with an Angry Woman. Her Adrenaline may make her more than your equal in physical strength, and her quicker reflexes and sharpened sense of agility would be very difficult to counter by any other means then covering up and hoping she tires out before she kills you.

But most the time Adrenaline does way more harm than good. In Evolution it was intended to help us fight off lions and bears and jump quickly away from striking snakes. In Relationships, at the Workplace and in Social Situations, Adrenaline is usually misdirected into counterproductive confrontations and hostility.

One of the things that make Adrenaline so difficult to deal with is that it seems to come on so suddenly. People speak of Blowing Up instantly and without any warning whatsoever. This really isn’t true. It does take Adrenaline about 3 to 5 seconds to ramp up. In Ronald Potter-Efron’s book, “The Angry Brain” (recommended) he speaks of subconscious components of the brain which respond to subconscious cues and perceptual signals by starting the production of Adrenaline at the same time that they pass along the ‘Alert’ message to the Conscious Cognitive components of the Brain. So we become consciously aware of an ‘Alarming’ Situation about 3 seconds after the adrenaline had already started pumping. But by this time there is SO MUCH Adrenaline that unless we are Sports Trained to deal with it, it will throw us typically into a Blow Up – an Anger Episode.

But Luckily there is a Physiological Sign that we can use to pick up on an Adrenaline Release even before we Consciously KNOW that we are Angry. It seems that almost as soon as the Adrenaline starts Pumping the Jaw Muscles Tighten (it seems that the Jaw Muscles are at the nexus between the Brain and the arteries running from the adrenal glands). We might notice that our Teeth Clench. One lady who wrote in says that she can’t get angry without first locking her mouth shut. At this point ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS SIMPLY RELAX YOUR JAW MUSCLES… OPEN YOUR MOUTH. This Intentional Relaxation of what you know to be an Adrenaline Signal tells the Body’s Adrenal System that it was operating on a False Alarm. Apparently Primitive People knew all about this. For instance, they would be standing around their huts when suddenly the tribe’s stupid dog would come running by. Out of the corner of the eye it would look like a charging wolf or lion and the Adrenaline would start up, but after just a glance the truth would be known and the person would instantly unclench the teeth and take a deep Open Mouthed Relaxing breath.

So, tell your Lady Friend about Adrenaline. Tell her that right before she gets Nasty she will notice that her teeth will clench, or at least she will notice that she seems to need to set her teeth to Anger. She only has to catch this reflex the very mille-second that it happens and relax. It might take practice. To practice with Adrenaline, well, I used to think I would need to stab myself with a pin, but it turns out that all you need to do is take a pin and Seriously Intend to stab yourself with it, and you will feel your jaw muscles tighten up. Then Relax. You don’t have a second to waste. Even with the Sports and Martial Artists that USE Adrenaline, they still have a great deal of discomfort “winding down” afterwards. They say Bruce Lee died from all the Downers he used to have to take to bring himself down from his Adrenaline Rushes. A lot of Sports Guys get drunk. Its famous how cops and soldiers get drunk.

Anyway, this Adrenaline Catch and Relax Technique really works. Many Posters have commented favorably about it. I myself use it all the time. You see, I have 4 cats, and I used to be an Angry Person. So while I love all my kitties, sometimes they are annoying and I feel my jaw muscles tighten, but INSTANTANEOUSLY I relax and catch the warning and then I can be deliberately Considerate about the naughty kitties… whatever they are doing, they don’t mean to be bothersome, and mostly they do what they do out of affection for me.

Now, about books. Peter Favaro’s book “Anger Management” is complete and well organized… almost too well organized. If you read it many times, as you are supposed to, a lot of the structural narrative starts to get on your nerves. But that is nit-picking. It is a great Anger Management book. But the Best Anger Management Author out there is Ronald Potter-Efron. He’s written a number of Anger Self Help Books. I already mentioned the one about Anger from the Physiological Standpoint, “the Angry Brain”, but there are many more. They are all listed by that Big Online Book Retailer Dot Com. Read the book descriptions and the Reviews to see which ones you would like to start with.

Now, Reading Anger Management Books is GREAT Therapy. But only if you do it Every Day. If you read a chapter a day, then your HEAD will Always Be In the Game. Many Angry People have a few good weeks and then forget that they are Angry and then fall into a Trap or get Triggered by something they should have known to watch out for. By reading a chapter a day, you will not so easily be caught off guard. Also, after a year or two of that, well, you become something of an Anger Expert. Also, your Insight into Anger Psychology begins to spread out to other aspects of your Life. You find that if you can Deal with Anger, there are a host of Other Things you can deal with too.

Hmmmm, this is turning into a book in itself. Let me know what you think.
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#14

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:28 pm

FreeBeez83 wrote: Richard, the mental anguish and guilt she experienced during or after her outbursts is already a negative consequence of her behavior. I believe she suffers from some kind of psychological disorder (who doesn't in the end) and feel uncomfortable adding a punishment of top of that.


As to everyone having some kind of psychological disorder. No, they don't. Most people are actually normal, but there exists an unfortunate huge flaw in the medical system, where a bunch of jackholes (psychologists) have found it to benefit their professional careers, both financially and in their social value in the community to create more and more "psychological disorders" that they can then treat.

For example, Homosexuality was listed as a psychological disorder. Now it is not listed as a psychological disorder. How does that happen? Because a bunch theses well intentioned jackholes that consider themselves experts meet on a regular basis and decide amongst themselves what is a disorder. They modify the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). It started with around 100 disorders. A few decades later and were up to close to 400. Like WTH is generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)? It is the catchall diagnosis for anyone that says they get anxious sometimes. Well who the hell doesn't get anxious sometimes? Why are French kids less ADHD than American kids? Because of an actual disorder or because the psychological community has gone bonkers with labeling every behavior as a potential disorder? Caffeine addiction is now a disorder. So yes, pretty much anyone who would like to be diagnosed with a disorder can peruse the DSM and find themselves in need of mental care.

Anyway, enough of my short little rant on the unfortunate state of affairs in the medical community and back to your situation. Her "feeling bad" is not a consequence that modifies her behavior. In other words, you feel sorry for her because she "feels bad" and you consider her "feeling bad" to be a negative consequence. Yet it is not a consequence that actually results in any change to her behavior, why? Why doesn't her feeling bad modify her behavior? BECAUSE a knight in shining armor comes in and says, "there, there pumpkin, don't feel sad anymore you wounded thing, let me wipe those tears away. All good? Let's make love."

It also doesn't modify her behavior, because she has been throwing tantrums and "feeling bad" for years. She has become habituated to the "feeling bad" and the tantrums continue as she has had no real negative consequences that have been to any significant degree where she says, "Hmm, that really sucked, I didn't get my tears wiped away and there was no love making, I don't want that to happen again, maybe I really do need to change how I handle things."

It isn't necessarily about punishment. She is an adult. Disorder or not, she is responsible for her behavior. There is NO excuse for her behavior, but she has you to enable and even reward her behavior. You asked in your first post where you should draw the line, but I think you were not being honest with yourself. There is no line she can cross. You see her as a victim, a patient not responsible for her behavior.

You are an enabler. I'm sure the DSM might label your knight in shining armor as codependent or some version of Florence Nightingale syndrome. Have you ever considered your mental disorder is not healthy for her to be around?
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