If there’s one thing that I simply cannot stand – read: makes my skin crawl – and yet am also strangely amused by, it’s confrontation.

As a child I would sit in my bedroom and listen to my parents “fight” with each other in the kitchen. The fighting was always verbal in nature, full of expletives, and highly emotional. It scared me, yet at the same time it intrigued me; I suppose the high drama of argument is fascinating.

I now avoid confrontation whenever possible, preferring to step back from the charged emotion of a situation and explore the problem calmly. This is the therapist in me.

And though I now recognize my desire to avoid confrontation, there was once a time when I was completely unaware of how I was dealing, or more appropriately, not dealing with anger.

Anger scares me. The possible damage involved and potential for hurt is what most scares me. All emotion and little consideration may be a thrilling form of catharsis, but the destructive power can be surprising.

But I’m trying to accept that anger is a natural part of the spectrum of emotion, rather than merely a “bad emotion” that should try to be avoided at all costs. And to never express anger, well, that’s just as toxic, isn’t it?

*Image by Barbara Natali from


4 thoughts on “Anger

  1. Yes, anger is scary, but I don`t think it would be good to sanitise human emotion either.Anger is a natural survival response. It allows us to judge our own and others responses to our actions.It keeps us alive.

  2. A very long time ago, before she became stronger than me, I thrashed my sister. I completely lost control and hit her as hard as I could and went on hitting…. it scared me silly. The violence of which I was capable when I lost control frightened me down to my innermost self. I have since lived my life trying not to lose control over my emotions, the only uncontrollable thing I allowed myself being tears. The trouble is, when you control your emotions to such an extent, you lose so many thingsthat are eminently desirable: the ability to love completely, to let yourself fall into an experience and live it completely…. So? So I’m trying to find the balance between too much and not enough control. Even if it means that I, too, am capable of anger, violence, loud words… (actually, I’m becoming quite proficient at the odd attack of screaming hysteria. It proves to be eminently efficient when it comes to dealing with unwanted suitors or unfriendly officials. You wouldn’t believe how fast the former disappear and the latter cooperate when you start screeching…)

  3. Wonderfully thoughtful post, M. I like to use anger as a tool in a way. If I’m paying attention, I can use my anger as a sign that something else is digging at me, either hurt or fear, and it’s a good way to stop, pull back, and try to figure out what’s hurting or scaring me. *IF* I’m paying attention that is. Easier said than done and all that 😉

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