As a teenager people called me "intense." I used to be offended by being characterized this way. But upon reflection, I realized that I am an intense person to begin with. When I get angry that intensity is heightened even more. I speak passionately and often in a heated manner. I am truthful but I do not sugarcoat or filter my words. Anger is like truth serum for me, much like when other people get intoxicated and speak their truth without thinking. I am able to speak my mind because I am fueled by rage and adrenaline. I’ve learned to use my voice much more than I did when I was younger. But it’s still a challenge for me and anger propels me forward and helps me to truly express myself.
I’ve heard people say that they "didn’t mean what they said," because they were angry. When I am angry I usually mean what I say, I just don’t say it kindly. I have been working on learning how to control my anger so that I don’t say things that are unkind or malicious. I've found that I do get angry when I feel hurt which is a completely normal human reaction. When I am hurt I lash out in anger and let the person know that they’ve hurt me and sometimes in the process, I might hurt their feelings. My unfiltered words have the ability to impact someone. In fact, they might be hurt or angered by what I say to them when I’m angry.
Because I speak truthfully when I’m angry I wonder about when other people claim that they said things out of anger that were "not true." It makes me think to myself “why did you say it?” One potential reason why someone might say something that they “didn’t mean“ when they were angry is that they wanted to hurt the person that they were angry with and they knew the person's vulnerabilities and chose to use these vulnerabilities against them. This sounds manipulative but it’s actually quite human in nature.
We are angry because we feel hurt and as a result of that try to protect ourselves in one way or another. When I’m angry I express myself to the person I’m angry at if I feel like they will respect my feelings. It has taken me a long time to feel comfortable enough with the emotion of anger to express it all. Sometimes I am fearful to express my anger because I feel like it will not be well received or the person won’t care about my feelings. If I feel comfortable enough to be angry with you it means that we are extremely close.
It’s hard for me to get to a place of anger and it is extremely uncomfortable for me to express those feelings because it takes me to a dark place inside. But I've found that holding anger inside makes me feel even worse. The things that I say when I’m angry are truthful but they have the potential to hurt the people I love. I am trying to manage my anger better and not view it in such a black-and-white way. It’s either that I’m expressing myself fully and in an uncensored manner or I am internalizing my anger because I don’t believe that other person wants to hear what I have to say.
There has to be a middle ground. Because I don’t want to internalize my emotions, but I don’t want to hurt people my harsh words. I am working on a balance between these two ways of expressing anger but I know that it will take time.What about you? How do you express anger? Are you comfortable with it or is anger something that you dread expressing?