“I thought I was in a pretty good marriage with occasional arguments until my wife said to me “If the next year of our marriage is as bad as the last year, I’m outta here”.
She felt as if she was always walking on eggshells so as not to set me off. Any time she disagreed with me, I immediately went on the attack and tried to defeat her point of view by almost any means. So when she told me she had taken all she could stand, I took her seriously and decided that I had to do some frank soul searching to find out why I kept losing my temper, so I could not lose the person who meant the most to me in the world”.
As I looked back many of my habitual ways of dealing with the world were driven by anger. I was an aggressive driver, using my horn and my “freeway finger” whenever people weren’t travelling the way I thought they should be. If the mechanic told me something needed fixing on my car, I was sure he was exaggerating for his own financial gain. I thought I had an unusual ability to see through a hypocrite, and since I thought that most people were, I got a lot of practice of seeing through them.”
This is one story of a man who came to me for help in dealing with his anger problem.
As a Psychologist, I’ve seen many of my clients lose their jobs, wives and opportunities because they were simply not able to handle the normal frustrations and disappointments in life.
They argue, they insult and they sulk.
They come to see themselves as ineffective, unlucky, of just plain losers. They don’t admit this to anyone, but deep inside they don’t like themselves. Their anger gets in the way of their ability to be good bosses, good workers and good family men.
For many men who have been charged with serious crimes, such as assault and murder, it is clear that these are not pre-meditated. These men didn’t start out with the intention of hurting others.
They reacted impulsively, and often out of anger. Someone insulted them and they struck back. Situations they could have walked away from became major confrontations because they did not know how to handle themselves other than aggressively. They know their behaviour is stupid and they don’t know why they did what they did.
Domestic violence programs are over run. Our prisons are overcrowded and even our schools are not altogether safe. But men who are angry do have a choice. No-one can change the whole world, but there are many things you can change about the way you see yourself, others and the world, and come to understand what triggers your anger along with learning what other actions you can take to keep yourself and others safe. Your marriage, your job and your happiness depend on it.
Individualised anger management counselling is run by the Hart Centre Australia. We have qualified Psychologists in 60 locations around Australia who can help you become the man you want to be. Phone 1300830552 for more information on Anger management counselling and anger management courses.