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Do I Need Help?

by Sindy
(Rhode Island)

Hi Dr. DeFoore. My name is Sindy, and I'm 16 years old. All my life I have been very friendly. I always keep my anger to myself. I have always been very respectful.

I have always loved to make my mother proud of me and she always has been. Whenever I would do something wrong and she got disappointed, I have hated myself. Whenever I would get angry, I always kept it to myself and whenever it would be too much, so that i exploded I would cry.

A few months ago I realized that when ever I would get mad I would pick fights with the people I love most. A month ago all the anger I had inside me exploded. And this time it wasn't with tears. I got so mad I physically hurt myself.

After this I don't hide my anger any longer. I feel like I can't. I explode automatically, hitting and throwing things. I'm writing this because a few minutes ago I got very upset and threw my cell phone. I broke my phone and my TV because of my anger.

I told my mom that for the last month I get mad easily. I constantly want to fight my friends--mostly the guys. I'm taking kick boxing to see if I could let my anger out that way. That works, but I feel it's not enough.

I'm really starting to scare myself and I don't know what to do. I'm also getting depressed at random moments.

Can you please write back and tell me what you think I should do? Should I talk to my doctor? Please, please write back.

Thank you.

Response from Dr. DeFoore

Hello Sindy, and thanks for telling your story on this site. There are very good reasons for your anger, and you need to find out what they are. Right now, it sounds to me like you don't know why you get as angry as you do, and I know that can be upsetting.

I'm wondering if perhaps something happened to you in the past, that is causing you to have these extreme anger reactions. I have no way of knowing, of course, but maybe you can find out.

Here is what I recommend:

1) Do the three writing exercises described on this page. That will help you get in touch with the past events that might be underlying your anger, express your anger in a safe way, and shift your mind to a more positive perspective.

2) If you feel that it is right for you, try these imagery processes for emotional healing, regarding any past trauma that you may have experienced.

I know you're 16 years old, Sindy, but I can tell that you are a mature, smart and healthy girl. It's important that you begin taking responsibility for your emotions now. It will help you for the rest of your life. Do the exercises I have recommended, and it will definitely help you.

You might want to talk to your doctor about what is going on. S/he will be very likely to recommend medication, and sometimes that helps--and sometimes it doesn't. You have to be the one to decide on that.

Believe in yourself, Sindy. You can do anything you set your mind to.

My very best to you,

Dr. DeFoore

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