My Anger Is Hurting My Family And Could Cost Me My Marriage
I am married for 6 years with 2 kids. Recently my husband has moved out because of the marriage problems we have been going through for a while now.
We both knew we needed help such as counseling but never got around to it, until the problems got so bad that we couldn't handle each other any more.
I love my husband very much, but at the time I was so angry with him that I couldn't see that. I was so focused on hurting him for hurting me that I thought it didn't matter if my marriage went down the drain. I was easily frustrated, I blamed him for every little or big thing that would go wrong.
I believe that my anger had contributed a big amount to cause our marriage breakdown. I just couldn't help myself to going back to the past, I would think of all the things my husband did wrong, even when I said I have forgiven him, I would make myself think about the past so I would have an excuse to be very angry.
Then I would feel I have the right to feel the way I feel. I made him think I didn't care for him, and at one point it was my intention.
I just don't want to be so hateful any more, and angry and frustrated, especially towards my husband. I don't want my kids to see that I don't love their father because that is totally wrong. Now my husband doesn't even believe that I can change. I know I can because my marriage and family is the most important thing in my life.
Can you help me manage my anger? I want to face difficult situations without losing control of my mind.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello, and thanks for telling your story here. I congratulate you for taking responsibility for yourself and your anger. That is the first step to change. You can do this.
You're a good person, and that's why you want things to be different.
Start by doing all three of the journaling processes described on this page. That will help you to heal from your past, process your anger in healthy ways, and start shifting your focus in a positive direction.
Also, use these imagery processes for emotional healing to resolve old issues from your past.
It will also help you to do this process to see your anger separately from yourself and take charge of it in a positive way:
1) Come up with a mental picture of your anger. Keep searching for an image until you have a clear picture in your mind. Amplify it, making it larger than life, even if it is cartoon-like. It needs to fully embody your anger, so that it is completely consumed and illustrates exactly how you feel when you're filled with rage.
2) While picturing it in your mind, say this to it: "I can see that you are a part of me. I created you a long time ago, for my protection. If I let you run my life, you will destroy it. I'm not going to try to kill you or make you go away. You have a place here, but you're not going to be in charge any more. I'm taking over, which will keep both of us safe. I know you're strong, but your strength belongs to me, and I choose to use it for good things."
3) Notice how the image responds or changes in your mind while you say these things. Keep working with it in this way until you begin to see a healthy anger image start to emerge. Ultimately, you want to transform it into a loyal ally--that's what happens when your anger is healthy.
4) Every time you start to get angry, picture this image of your anger--keep at it until you can see it clearly. This is called "See It Don't Be It," and it will help you to manage your anger.
You can do this. Your husband will see the good person he loves, when you see the you that you love inside yourself, and become her in everyday life.
My very best to you,