My Anger Is Out Of Control
So, here is my problem: I have extreme "blind rage". I fly into these fits that I can't even control and often black out from being so angry. I usually don't remember the things I've done or said.
I went off on my boyfriend of two years one time after I found out he had 2 other women over. I knew he wasn't doing anything sexual with them, but my anger consumed me.
I ended up knocking him out and the police came. By the time the police had gotten there, I was sitting on the curb, calm as ever. I got charged with 3 felonies including burglary 1, assault 2 and unlawful use of a weapon.
I served 2 weeks in jail and am now on 24 month court probation. I was also referred to anger management classes which I have yet to enroll in due to lack of money to pay the fee.
I have tried different techniques such as deep breathing, counting to ten, walking away from the situation, going for a drive, going to the gym, etc. But nothing seems to work and I continue to replay the scenario over and over in my mind until the anger builds up again and I want to just kill someone.
I am looking for a few suggestions on what I can do to control myself until I can get enrolled in my classes, and also while I am taking them.
PS- I am a 20 year old female.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hi Becky, and thanks for telling your story here. You have built up some very strong energy behind your anger, and it is good that you want to do something about it. You don't want it to ruin your whole life, which it can.
Try these approaches, and see if it helps:
1) Come up with a mental picture of your anger. Amplify it, making it larger than life, and keep searching for an image until you have a clear picture in your mind.
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.
5) Next, do the journaling exercises on this page, to give your anger someplace to go on a regular daily basis. You probably have some unresolved and/or unaddressed emotional trauma from your past, based on what you've told me about your anger episodes and violence, and this journaling will help with that also.
6) Then, use these imagery processes for emotional healing, which will give you a chance to "go back" to your past experiences in your mind and bring healing and resolution.
These are tools, Becky. Like any tools, they are useless if you don't use them. And, like any tools, the more you use them the better you will get at it, and the more you will benefit.
Believe in yourself--the part of you that wants to have a life. Believe in your good heart, your courage to face your anger head-on and transform it into something useful.
You can do this. You are a strong young woman. Use that strength to face the goodness in your hear and soul.
My very best to you,