Anger came and went in our house until I was 4 years old. Then it moved in and wouldn’t leave.
We all get angry at times, often with the people who are closest to us. But when anger becomes chronic and people begin to feel unsafe, it can wreck a relationship. Often anger runs in families. I grew up with anger and anger became a problem in my own family. Certainly, women get angry as often as men, but male anger can be particularly destructive. I’ve learned to tame the anger dragon and I’d like to teach you how to better handle anger in your own life.
Whether you are a man who becomes angry more than you’d like, a woman who is living with an angry man, or you grew up with anger and know that you still have some healing to do, I’d like to help. I can tell you, being an angry man isn’t good for the man and it isn’t good for his family.
The positive news is that you don’t have to live with an angry dragon in your home. The first step in regaining control is to recognize that the male-anger dragon has moved in with you.
We often aren’t aware of the extent of our anger. Here are ten questions that I’ve found to be strong indicators that anger is a problem for men and their families. Answer true or false to the following:
1. At times I feel like swearing.
2. At times I feel like smashing things.
3. I often can’t understand why I’ve been so irritable and grouchy.
4. I easily become impatient with people.
5. I am often said to be hotheaded and have a short-fuse.
6. I am often annoyed when someone tries to get ahead of me in a line.
7. I have at times had to be rough with people who were rude or annoying.
8. I am often sorry because I am so irritable and grouchy.
9. I can be very stubborn.
10. Sometimes I get so angry and upset, I don’t know what comes over me.
If you’re a man who answered yes to five or more, or a woman who recognizes five or more of these indicators in the man in her life, you may benefit from my upcoming class “How to Live with An Angry Man.”
It seems that men are becoming increasingly angry these days and many people ask me why. Here are some of the reasons I’ve found working with men and their families for more than 40 years now:
1. People are becoming more stressed, and stressed-out men often become angry.
2. Depression is on the rise throughout the world, and depressed men often become irritable and angry.
3. Many of us grew up in homes where men were angry or depressed and we have unhealed wounds from childhood which come out in later anger.
4. Women also suffer from many of these problems. Their own pain, stress, depression, and anger can trigger anger in the men.
5. Men often frighten women without knowing it and when women withdraw or close down, it triggers fear and then anger in men.
6. Women often shame men without knowing it and when a man feels disrespected, he often becomes irritable and angry.
7. Men want to please women and when they feel their woman is unhappy, they often blame themselves. Self-blame often leads to irritability and anger.
8. In most families today, men and women have to work outside the home and work is often stressful, which leads to anger at home.
9. There are more and more people living on a finite planet and we all feel the stress of crowding that can lead to anger.
10. In spite of the fact that our standard of living is increasing, we know that humans are living unsustainably and we’re mad as hell about what we’re doing to the Earth.
The comedian Elayne Booser once observed, “When women are depressed, they eat or go shopping. Men invade another country. It’s a whole different way of thinking.”
Fortunately, there are things we can do to tame the anger dragon in spite of the stresses of modern life. In my book best-selling book, “Mr. Mean: Saving Your Relationship From the Irritable Male Syndrome,” I note that Irritable Male Syndrome (IMS) can cause anger to spiral out of control.
I invite your questions and comments. If you’d like to learn more about my upcoming class you can do so here.
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