Anger and rage have been the most difficult things for me to deal with as I have crawled and walked this path of healing and recovery for the last several years. It took me years to allow myself to feel the anger‚ rage, and hate I had toward the two men who sexually abused me as a boy. I also had a lot of anger toward my dad for his violence‚ alcoholism, and abandonment. At times it literally felt if I allowed myself to feel the anger, I would explode. Like an impacted tooth the size of a quarter being yanked out of a hole in my gum the size of a dime, it felt like it would kill me. Yet‚ I reached a point where I had to let it out because my depression had reached such a high level that it was either deal with it, or basically die.

As a boy, I did not have a good example in how to handle and release anger in a healthy manner. My dad’s rage planted seeds in me that said‚ “If that is how to deal with anger, then I would rather keep it inside.” Without exception, anger and rage turned inward results in depression! The companion of anger-rooted depression is cyclical outbursts of rage that seem to have no explanation or reason. As the years roll by, the stuffed anger compounds‚ then when someone cuts us off in traffic, we have enough anger to run them off the road! Or we become mean to those we love and hurt them physically‚ emotionally‚ relationally‚ spiritually‚ psychologically‚ perhaps even sexually. Or we drift into and choose some form of addictive compulsive behavior to keep the anger inside. I have learned, and am still learning, that having anger/rage is a part of being human. Even more so for those of us who come from backgrounds of divorce‚ alcoholism‚ violence‚ sexual abuse‚ etc. We have a deeper layer and larger tank of anger and rage. We have to deal with it or the anger will eventually be manifested in ways we do not want, and may end up ruining lives and families forever.

Are you an angry person? I’m not talking about just a bad day, but does anger and rage continually rise up within you to the point of yelling at and verbally abusing others‚ breaking things‚ putting holes in walls‚ or fighting? If anger lives this deeply within you, do you know why? The following are some things that have helped me and others get in touch with and work through anger and rage.