Anger in a Relationship – Breaking the Cycle of Destructive
This Page Offers Information for Effective Anger Management Help in Potentially Explosive Emotional Situations
Read an insightful article on being responsible for your emotions, and also find anger management help if
you find anger in a relationship and don’t know what to do.
“We praise a man who feels angry on the right grounds and against the right persons and also in the right
manner at the right moment and for the right length of time.” –Aristotle
What did you learn about anger, growing up?
I learned in childhood, from my immediate role models, that anger was an emotion to be held in as long as
possible, and only expressed in explosions of uncontrollable rage. Because my father was a violent alcoholic,
I learned it was unwise to express anger directly. I learned to suffer silently and turn anger inward, on
myself. I learned to suppress this one emotion above all others, and it has taken most my adult life to learn
how to reverse that pattern without demonstrating anger in a relationship–any relationship where I felt
discounted. Growing up there was no such thing as anger management help, because no one was really conscious
One school of thought I came across seemed to suggest that, if one were just balanced enough, anger would
not need active expression – that it could be channeled through exercise, dance, singing, or focused breath
work. I tried that approach but the situation that triggered the anger was still there, and working to indirectly
diffuse my own feelings seemed to make it more intense the next time.
I also tried being in support groups where I was encouraged to rant and rave, venting my anger with a plastic
bat and pillow, etc. This was great, really great, for releasing physical tensions and might even have kept
me from having a cerebral hemorrhage, but since I knew I would never actually take a bat to the person I
was so angry with, it seemed to fall short of a completed expression. I found anger management information
such as this, didn’t really get to the root of the problem so I tried other things.
Writing letters to the people I was angry with was another useful tool, allowing me to get very clear in my
own mind about how I felt and what I wanted to say to the person. I would often burn the letters, in a ceremony
of release. This, also, was powerful and healing.
All the tools I had learned, for dealing with anger, were useful in my life and allowed me to grow. None of
them had, at that point, allowed me to be able to alter the reactive situations that resulted in anger.
Finally, I began to understand that the reason none of these tools worked to completely heal my imbalance
with anger was that the anger was the second emotion repressed, not the first. It was not primary cause,
but secondary cause. Underneath the anger, the emotion most needing expression was feelings of hurt and/or
fear of loss.
The anger was a wall built around my vulnerability, a necessary defense mechanism of childhood as a way of
dealing with rage which had no safe outlet and, consequently, a necessary motivator in the adulthood on which
that pattern was built. What I had not understood was that the anger was a cry from the hurt part of me,
a cry for recognition and validation, or a cry for comfort and reassurance.
I began to ask myself, when situations made me angry, “What is hurting underneath?” or “What
am I afraid I will lose, if I say how I feel?” At first, I tried to get the other person to validate
my pain, my hurt feelings, or my fear. This usually didn’t work because the real source was in childhood
and not the present situation. After a time, I realized that it had to start with me. I had to be willing
to comfort myself and validate my own feelings.
When I began to turn my attention toward giving myself my own love and acceptance, the anger would lessen.
I would begin to identify root causes, and separate past feelings from current ones. For example, I could
separate feelings about what my father (an abusive alcoholic) may have done or said from what my husband
was doing or saying. Then, I could honestly express my feelings toward the present situation, including my
anger, without it being colored by past experience, and without manipulating the other person into being
responsible for what I was choosing to express.
I learned that suppression of anger doesn’t make it go away. Suppressing anger is like trying to contain fire.
Eventually, the fire burns through and flames up and can devour you at unexpected moments if properly triggered.
So, I learned to discern what was from the now, and what was surfacing from the unexpressed past.
This process of discernment is what I call developing a sense of responsible anger. Responsible anger means
I will be responsible for my own anger, for my own feelings, and for the full expression of those feelings
to a point of clearing, healing and transformative change. I will pay attention to myself, and provide loving
acceptance for whatever I need to feel.
In choosing to express responsible anger, one must agree to keep the focus on oneself and what is being felt,
rather than projecting that anger toward the other person in an attempt to get them to take any kind of action
through energy manipulation. Some of the actions that can be manipulated into expression through anger include
a forced apology, a feeling of guilt in the other person, or just simply a moment of acknowledgement that
is not naturally present but is forced into being by angry insistence. I am certainly not perfected in this
process. It took time to develop a habit of hiding my hurt with anger, then my anger with silent resentment
and depression, so I expect it will take time to learn a new way.
If you are dealing with emotional eruptions surrounding anger issues, look beneath the anger to see what may
be hurting or afraid. Then, look within the hurt or fear, to find the primary cause and to identify any left-over
reactions from past events that may be magnifying or distorting your awareness of the present circumstances.
Comfort, validate and recognize your feelings, allowing yourself full expression of them in a safe way –
alone, in a letter, or shared with an objective friend. Get clear about what may still need to be said, in
the present moment and to the other person involved, to heal any current-time imbalance between the two of
you. And, most important, learn to say what you need to say without any ulterior motive or manipulation.
Let the other person be where they are even if it leaves you temporarily feeling needy. Any response you might
force from them with your anger will not fulfill that empty space more than temporarily, anyway. Say it for
yourself, not for them. Remember that the only person you have the authority to change is yourself.
I believe in full expression of emotion, in a safe environment and with the focused intent of release, as
a way of de-stressing during volatile situations and as a way of clearing the deck, so to speak.
Primal screaming, combined with stomping, swinging the arms, jumping up and down, etc., is a really good way
to flush your auric field so you can think clearly about what it is that has triggered anger in you. In this
way, anger can function as a tool. It can be the energy you need, to force you to deal with a situation that
is not acceptable to you.
Learn to get away, get alone and safe (or with someone who can provide a safe space), and get it out. Then,
after you’ve allowed full expression, pray sincerely to the God of your knowing, giving thanks and asking
for clarity. Then,look again at the situation. When you are not seeing it through a cloud of unexpressed
anger, it may look quite different.
Anger Management Help – The Lift It Up Mantra
I have a special mantra: I lift it up. I say it many times a day. Some days, I say it over and over. Some
days, it is all I seem to say. This mantra has to do with directed energy. I believe that denial and suppression
of feelings only creates a backlog to be dealt with at a later date.
I believe in personal responsibility, and owning what I create. I also believe that it isn’t whether or not
I express negative feelings but the way I choose to express them which determines whether they dissipate
or increase in my life. I came to awareness that this truth had a reality-shifting potential, if I would
apply it to what would be called “negative emotions.” For example, if I am feeling depressed and
I speak out “I feel so depressed,” the energy of those words has been released into my third-dimensional
auric field but it has no power to leave. It saturates me with the truth of my own pronouncement and I sink
However, if I lift it up, by adding the word “God,” it moves beyond the third-dimension and beyond
the laws of same. When I say “God, I feel so depressed,” I have sent the expression of my honest
feeling upward, and connected with a source aspect far larger than my personality self. When I further lift
it up, by consciously releasing it to Godforce, and asking for a transmutation, my auric field is momentarily
free of that energy and I can achieve the first step toward a healing.
This is not an exercise that seemed to work immediately for me. There was the doubt factor to be overcome.
There was also a perverse part of my character that wanted God to feel sorry for me, and that could only
happen if I held on to that about which I was complaining.
Sometimes, I liked the feeling of righteous indignation and was too attached to “being right” to
let go of my anger. Other times, I was too much in the grip of past programming to let go of “the way
it’s always been.” Many times, I simply couldn’t let the other person be where they were but doggedly
persisted in trying to force some kind of apology or acknowledgement from them and, if that didn’t work,
then I wanted them to feel bad so I unconsciously aimed for producing guilt. It took discipline to get myself
to the point where I could hold my intention long enough to actually let go of what I had lifted up. It was
worth the effort because, at that moment, my world changed in a powerful, positive way, and it has never
been the same. This technique works particularly well with anger.
Let’s say you are angry at someone and speak that out as a projection toward them, by saying I
am very angry with you. No matter what it feels like, the reality is that you have engaged in a form
of energy manipulation, designed to cause the other person to act in a different way toward you. (By
the way, “I am very angry with you” is not the same statement as “I am feeling very angry
because of what you said, or did.” It may sound the same, but it is not the same statement nor is
the same level of self-responsibility present in the former as the latter). For example, if you feel
someone is not respecting you and you speak out your feelings to them in anger, that is your personal
energy attempting to manipulate the other person into seeing that they are not being respectful. Usually,
the opposite result is achieved because when the aggressive energy hits the other person, they respond
with even more resistance.
Amazingly, it doesn’t even matter if the words are spoken out loud; just thinking angry thoughts at someone
has the same effect. Yet, it is an incredibly different experience if you add the word “God.” If
I say, God, I am so angry at (fill in the blank), you have lifted it up. The energy doesn’t
go out toward the other person at all. Even better, if you can manage the words to reflect more self-responsibility,
such as “God,” I am feeling so angry because of (fill in the blank), it is even more of a vibrational
shift upward in frequency toward release. Then, if you further set your intent by asking that the anger be
transmuted and delivered back in a form of energy you can utilize for your own healing and understanding,
that is exactly what happens. Ask and ye shall receive. If you remember to do this as
soon as the feelings flare up, it will often happen that a direct confrontation with the other person becomes
Of course, much of this depends on the ego self being willing to let the higher self work it out. There may
be some resistance to lifting up anger to God, some feeling that you shouldn’t feel the anger. To me, this
is pure hogwash programming.
Godforce is big enough to receive any feeling we need to express. The God of my knowing can take and has taken
the rage, the guilt, the shame and the self-hate, fold it into unconditionally loving Spirit arms, and return
it to us transformed.
Never be afraid to bare yourself before Great Spirit. If you can’t speak the truth there, where can it be
spoken? This reminds me of an old gospel song that I hadn’t thought of for quite a while. I sang it while
I was walking around the Medicine Wheel today, lifting the same thing up, over and over. It was my ego’s
struggle with letting go. Then, it came to me to sing that old hymn, or at least what I remembered of it.
“Just as I am, without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me, and that thou bids me come to thee,
Oh, Lamb of God, I come, I come.”
I can stand before my God when I am pitiful, angry, selfish, stubborn, stupid, clueless or blind. Just as
I am – no excuses – I can come boldly before the throne of grace. So can you. What a marvelous privilege.
Lift it up, my Relatives, and let it go.
Another way I utilize this mantra is when I am worrying about something. Again, the difference in expression
makes a definite difference in resolution. If I speak out “I am worried about not having enough money
to (fill in the blank)” it has the effect of drowning my auric field in that very fear frequency. When
I add the word “God” (or Great Spirit, Goddess, etc.) I lift it up. When I say “God, I have
this tremendous worry about not being able to pay this bill, or meet that financial obligation,” I bring
the problem to a higher frequency for resolution. When I further extend my intent by asking Godforce to transmute
the worry, into a direction, action, or surrender to high will, I have lifted it out of the realm of something
I have to do with my ego and into the realm of divine action.
Try the “I lift it up” mantra for a few days. See what happens? I’d love to hear about your experiences,
but only after you’ve gotten to the point where you can hold your intent to a point of release. That’s when
the miracles start. Until then, just keep working at it.
If you suspect that childhood trauma may be playing a part in any adult tendency to use anger inappropriately,
or any inability to express anger, you might benefit from inner child healing work. By giving your inner
child parts room to express, they will feel heard, and loved, which can be quite transformational.
Are You Experiencing Anger in a Relationship?
How to Can Deal With Verbal Aggression: If you remember a time where others made
you feel uncomfortable by the way they spoke or shouted or screamed at you you may greatly benefit from this
You don’t have to be fearful, immobile, or scared when anger and hostility is aimed in your direction. Did
you know you can learn how to deal effectively with verbal aggression no matter if it happens at work, at
home or on the street.
More information on this can be found in our free online health magazine.