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How do I stop being so angry?

I seem to have got myself in a rut where my base operating level is fury and it just escalates from there at the merest hint of provocation

I don’t know if part of it is a defence mechanism – so much easier to be angry and on the defensive than as needy and vulnerable as I really feel. I seem to spend most of the time feeling as if I want to cry (I sat and bawled my eyes out in bed last night but it doesn’t take much to start my eyes stinging and the feeling that I might just collapse into a watery mess) – angry is easier, less likely to destroy my professional façade and the myth that I am coping

But is it normal to so angry about everything?

I’m angry that I’m working so so hard and getting so little recognition for it – little recognition at work and little at home. I feel as if I am working myself into a frazzle and nobody sees the toll it is taking on me. I’m angry that simple things at home, like laundry and dinner being ready, don’t get done, that I’m expected to do those things when I get home from work and that I’m made to feel that I’m being unreasonable when I get upset that the boring home chores don’t get done, that things sit and aren’t dealt with until I get around to doing them

I’m angry that my entire life is time pressured, that I am creating an environment where everyone else has options and flexibility and can wake up in the mornings and do what they want and I don’t have those choices. I’m angry that my choices are restricted and nobody has said that they understand how this might make me feel or even considered that this might not be right for me

I’m angry at my career having stalled whilst others bound on ahead – angry that I am not a member of the boys club and therefore not one of the group that are looked after and nurtured, angry that others are taking credit for work I’ve been doing, angry that I am still the exception to the rule and that I am supposed to change who I am and how I do things rather than others adapting to me being slightly different

I’m angry that I don’t have career options any more – that I am supposed to be grateful for having any job at all and just suck it all up. That I don’t have any chance to explore other options which might be a bit more risky because we need me to keep on earning and providing security

I’m angry that school seems to be blissfully unaware of the wider economic situation – surely we aren’t alone that we’ve decided to prioritise education over other things and that we don’t have masses of money to cover endless requests for charity donations and eye-wateringly expensive events? I’m angry that I’m going to have to say I’ve mixed up our diary to avoid going to an evening that will end up costing hundreds of pounds when surely putting on something that expensive is just conspicuous consumption and we can’t be the only people in this boat?

I’m angry that so many friends are announcing pregnancies (it is that time of year after all when there is a tidal wave of announcements) and that we won’t ever be doing that again – that it appears to be over, that there might be options if I wasn’t so stressed, over worked and if we went back through all the medical shenanigans again but those routes are now closed and I need to move on. I’m angry that I’m being forced to move on when I just don’t want to

I’m angry that my train service is rubbish – that I haven’t had a seat on many journeys lately. I’m angry that little delays here and there end up creating endless stress and nobody seems to accept that sorry doesn’t really do much to help with that. I’m angry about selfish commuters and being elbowed out of the way for the last seat

I’m angry that I’m still having to de-ice the car to get to work whilst our garage remains full of building things because sorting it out is far down the list of jobs and me not getting any more chilblains from chipping away at ice isn’t a priority

I’m angry that the house appears to be falling down around our ears – the inside of a chimney has fallen down, the windows are rotting away and it feels like we are right back at it becoming a money pit again. Surely after all we’ve done to it over the last 6 years it could at least make an effort

I’m angry about the politicians and the fact that the economy is getting worse not better and there is no end in sight – I’m angry that those at the top of the tree are merrily carrying on as usual whilst the rest of us worry about the real consequences of their policies

I’m angry and I just don’t know how to stop or even how to use this rage to change some of these things

How do I stop being like this? What can I do? What is the answer?

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19 Comments

  1. I used to feel like that. Then I went on medication for anxiety for a little while and am now ok. Vitamin D tablets, fish oil capsules, letting the housework slide for a few days and just cuddling with the husband in the evenings should help as well :) And of course once this spring actually arrives, I’m sure your mood will brighten up as well. Sorry if not the most useful comment but I do know how it feels and I do know it won’t last forever. Just hang in there until it passes :)

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    • Think I need to look into vitamin D – suspect that a lack of sunlight isn’t helping much and the lack of exercise isn’t good, hopefully back running come the weekend if all goes well

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  2. I have a post in draft entitled righteous anger. I can’t find the internal balance required to write it coherently.

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    • I’m sorry Jax – at least we aren’t alone in being incoherent with rage I guess

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  3. Wish I could give you an answer on how to deal with this. I would suggest talking to someone but I know that a) it’s yet more money that none of us have right now and b)when would you find the time. I do remember feeling like this myself. I know that’s not much help but wanted you to know you’re not alone. x

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  4. I feel like this too except the reason is that I’m ill and can’t seem to do anything about it. I just want to get on with my life and I feel like I’m being thwarted at every turn.

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  5. I get this. I do. Life just seems so hard lately & just when I think I’m clawing my way out of a rut, the universe flings more shit in my direction. Hopefully more sunshine & warmer temps will help.

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  6. I read your article and resonated with all your feelings, and I wonder when the angry phase will be over. For me, it’s because I’m tired, tired to the core (I have a 3 year old), not the sort of tired a good night’s sleep sorts out, but tiredness spanning 3 years, and when I’m tired my anger bursts out. I spoke to a dad the other day and he said it was only when his kids became teenagers and started sleeping in more, that he too could get more sleep, and then he realised just how tired he’d been in the previous years. I think there’s many of us feeling angry but I don’t think it’s that serious to need to worry about it. Anger has it’s place and it’s better expressed than suppressed.

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  7. I love your honesty. Life’s full of things that drain our energy. My husband’s job is insecure and I’ve just lost mine because they wouldn’t work around my need to be a mother and an employee. It’s heartbreaking at times. Give yourself some love first for a change, everyone else will be ok.

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  8. Small consolation but I too am filled with internal rage even about the smallest most pathetic things. I nearly committed murder in the supermarket the other day when a till was opened for some middle aged twat whilst I was allowed to stand at the back of the queue with screaming kids. Well, you’ve seen my personal facebook updates. Rage, its all the rage you know! Take care H. XX

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  9. Me too. It comes and goes for me – had a seething (always worse than the screaming kind, I feel) row with B on Sunday morning about how stretched I feel all the time, and how angry that makes me. But now I feel ok. Utterly exhausted but ok.

    And I think exhaustion comes into it. That and worry and the constant chasing of your tail and the endless effort that goes into everything and the fear that at the end of the day if you don’t pick up the pieces no one else will.

    And I don’t know how to resolve it, but I do empathise. I really do. And I’m not even juggling half the job you are.

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  10. Oh muddling I am so with you on loads of these things. But have decided being angry takes up too much energy. So I just took a leaf out of your book and compartmentalise. Family is family, work is work and life is just a combination of the two with a few additional things. The one thing that really changed my life was a new job and discovering yoga. Whilst I have no time for yoga it worked so well for me when I needed it the most (note to self must find time for yoga). Look, life goes on, bigger is 5 don’t waste your time being angry. Spring is around the corner (it must be) and life will seem so much better. X

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  11. oh yes. Don’t stop, the world needs a right angry kick in the bottom.
    You know that stress and not feeling in control of your life causes anger? So as long as one is constantly pressurised and stressed it’s a perfectly normal reaction. Not particularly good for you long term, but better to let it out than simmer.
    I totally and utterly empathise, I feel very much like this too although I’m getting better at not letting myself get too stressed out and just telling myself if I don’t manage a/b/c, nobody is going to die so it’s not THAT important.

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  12. At the risk of sounding like my therapist (started having therapy after suffered from anxiety post baby), anger is just fear apparently. It’s easier to feel angry than afraid so we roll with those feelings. No idea obviously if that applies to you but are you maybe stressed and overwhelmed and it’s all making you p****ed off? Either way, sending much empathy xx

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  13. I know this probably sounds ridiculous, but are you making one of your crochet wonders at the mo? Whenever you are, your posts are an oasis of calm to me. Hugs, and sending much love.

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  14. In my own experience, anger often comes with exhaustion, stress and feeling desperately taken for granted. I had a HUGE meltdown last week as we’re really unsettled, moving depends on husband getting a new job, the laundry hadn’t been put on, the dishes were dumped in the sink, I was coming to the end of a 75 hour working week and, yet again, packing for our family trip away fell to me and me alone. I snapped. Sometimes snapping is all you can do. People need to see you snap to understand that you’re not just a never-ending pot of giving and giving and giving. That’s how things work in our house anyway. Sometimes snapping is healthy.

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  15. Hi Hannah,
    this is the first post i read on your blog and i was really struck by it. It helps to get things off your chest. I can totally relate. You feel like you’re the only one who has to keep going, keep doing stuff, and everyone else is oblivious to it. When I get really angry or down, I often think this – can I change things? if yes, do it. if not, i need to learn to accept them. Breathe deeply, stay in the moment and try to identify with your self rather than your thoughts. easier said than done of course!! Good luck!! I agree that once Spring actually arrives things will be better… x

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  16. I’m sat here so angry it’s actually starting to affect me physically. It’s all turned inwards on myself because I feel so out of control of my life, in a slightly different way to you, I don’t even want to bore you with the details but it’s been going on for 6 months now and I can’t take much more and tried to fix it but just made it all worse and I wake up so down and angry I can’t see the point in anything anymore and I’ve no energy to be pro active. My anger is poisoning me. I am a shadow of the person I was a year ago. I hope things change for you I really do x

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    • I’m so sorry – I really hope things change and start to get better for you

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