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Desperately Seeking Help

by PJ

I am a married woman with young children. Myself & my husband are having difficulties in our marriage, anywhere from finances to intimacy.

Our problems, believe it or not, started when we were dating. We loved each other so we got married & had kids. It seems to be an ongoing cycle of difficulties for us.

I am a child of an alcoholic which I think may be some of the cause for my mistrust & anger. I grew up watching & hearing my mother & father argue & go through separations. We (my husband & I) were married for 6 months when we got our first separation. He lied about where he went at night. He was going to a strip club & allegedly peeping at women through windows. We were only apart for a week. He went to court for this & got off due to wrongful evidence. But I can't get full trust in him anymore.

Our daughter was only 2 months old when we separated again. This time, it was for about 5 months. The same allegations about window peeping were made by my brother. The only proof he had was that my brother saw him run between 2 houses & the knees on his pants were dirty. When he goes out, even today, I wonder. I've been living a cycle of unemployment & financial problems.

I should mention, I have a disability that affects my fine motor skills & I find it hard to seek employment. Myself & my husband fight almost all the time & I can get very angry. I insult, name calling, cursing, making threats as to divorce, saying I hate you. I don't mean any of these & I feel really bad after these fights.

I wish I could stop these but feel that I have no control. I do feel bad for putting my husband through this, I do love him & want to have a wonderful marriage. My young daughter, not even started school yet, is starting to act out. How do I control my bursts of anger? I read the techniques like deep breathing, but how can you make yourself to stop & breath when you're having a fit of rage?

I am scared, not only for my marriage, but for my kids too, that they will think it's ok to act like this. I am also just scared & I don't even know why. I am taking anti-depressants for anxiety & I see a clinical psychologist with my husband. But we never get down to the details of my uncontrollable anger. I want to stop really bad, my husband don't know how bad. He doesn't think I'm trying. I just don't know how. Please help me to figure out how to be a better person.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello PJ, and thanks for telling your story here. The reason you want to be a better person is that you already are inside. It is the good person inside you who wants to act better, and overcome your anger problems.

One thing to consider is that your husband might have serious problems. The multiple accusations of window peeping are a serious warning sign. I'm saying this because your anger toward him might be coming from these problems which are not fully resolved.

Whatever you do regarding your marriage, however, I can help you with your anger management.

Start by writing about your history of emotional trauma, using the guidelines on this page. This will help you. Write about everything that happened in full detail, and do not share this with anyone--it's only for your healing.

Then use these imagery processes for emotional healing to address each of the painful memories you have written about.

Also begin writing daily about your anger, using the second journaling process. This helps to "get the anger out" so that it is not so active in your mind.

Finally, start looking at the good things in you and your life, using the third positive journaling process. This will help you to shift your mental focus, and it will help you a lot with your anger.

Believe in yourself, PJ. You can have a good life. Do the above exercises, and it will surely help you.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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