Blowing Up For No Reason On Family
(Bryan, Texas, US.)
I'm 13 years old, and I have anger problems. Whenever I get really mad I start yelling and breaking things. Most of the time it's for something really little, like when I have to clean my room and my mom is rushing me.
I start getting mad and I tell her to do it. Then we get into a big fight and I start yelling, breaking things, and saying things that I don't mean. I really hate it because I only do this with my family, when I should respect them more than anything.
I try to do some techniques to help me with my anger, but all that stuff isn't working for me. Any suggestions?
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello Alexandra, and thanks for writing your story on this site. I know a lot of other kids have had this problem, and they will benefit from reading about your situation.
First, I want you to be aware that you have good reasons for being angry, even though you don't know what they are. Let's see if we can figure that part out.
Try writing from your anger--I mean, let it talk. Your anger sort of has a life of its own, and you want to get to know it and what it has to say. The way to do that is to write while you're angry, and just let it be pure anger, nothing nice or reasonable. Let it all flow out onto the paper. See what comes from that, and see if it gives you any insight. Here is a page with full instructions for this and other types of journaling processes that will be helpful to you.
It is possible, Alexandra, that you are angry because of something going on in your family, either past or present. Write about all of the times from your past when you've felt hurt, violated, abandoned or neglected.
Another possibility is that your parents have given you too much power, and they allow you to dominate them with your anger. If you think that's the case, they need to be more firm with you. If it feels right to you, you might suggest that they take a look at this page to see if it could be helpful to them in being the kind of parents you need them to be.
Most important of all, Alexandra, is that you believe in yourself. You're a good person with a good heart, or you wouldn't be trying to get help here. The anger you've been experiencing doesn't match up with who you are inside, and that's why you don't like it. It's not bad, we just have to figure out where it's coming from and then address the cause.
I hope this is helpful to you. If you need any further help, please feel free to write again.
My very best to you,
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