Anger Management

 Couples Counselling Can Help Stop Angry Outbursts

Relationship Counselling Can Help Couples Manage Their Anger

Anger is a Powerful Emotion
Have you ever witnessed someone ‘lose it’; ‘chuck a wobbly’; ‘spit the dummy’?
Perhaps you have your own favourite phrase to describe an angry response but the Australian term:
‘she/ he spat the dummy’ says it all!

Regressing to a childlike tantrum confirms that intellectual intelligence is no match for the powerful emotion of anger.

Uncontrolled anger contains ‘emotional warriors’ and the ‘distorted thinking brigade’!
The verbal abuse that this duo can throw at their target often hits ‘bulls eye’ inflicting emotional wounds that can cut deep into the other person.

In the domestic world, raging anger can sabotage a once loving relationship and all too often lead to separation and divorce.

Managing Anger in a productive way can make life so much easier, calmer and more peaceful.

The Power of Emotions
Frustration, irritation and disappointment are three powerful ‘emotional warriors’ that can attack without warning.  The victim of this verbal abuse may retaliate or keep quiet to avoid an argument, particularly if they fear physical abuse may follow.  Either way, verbal abuse still comes under the category of domestic violence, just as physical abuse does. When a person is tired, drunk, or feeling ill, their tolerance can be lower, but these factors should never be held up as an excuse for a mild irritation escalating into aggressiveness.

Anger is a very powerful emotion and is part of our biological history and our natural ‘fight or flight’ response.  Anger helped mankind in the past to survive but in today’s world its usefulness is limited.  Anger is a warning signal within us that something is wrong and indeed we need to ‘listen’ to that sensation and respond in a way that is helpful, not harmful to others, or to ourselves.

In some instances, anger can energise us, motivate us, particularly if we are passionate about an injustice, but anger needs to be on a ‘tight rein’ as it can soon escalate out of control into aggression. Knowing how to outsmart the anger triggers and take back control of the ‘emotional warriors’ and ‘distorted thinking brigade’ can keep you out of a lot of trouble.

Know Your Anger Triggers
What may cause one person to react angrily to a situation may not bother another person so knowing what factors may trigger an angry response in you and how your body sensations change is a good starting point to you staying in control and avoiding an emotional ‘explosion’.

Do You Know When You Are Becoming Angry?
What changing bodily symptoms are you aware of?
What, or who, has the potential to trigger your level of anger?
What is it about this person, or situation that you are struggling to cope with?
(is it something they say, or do, or is it because you are feeling stressed or worried and your tolerance to general life has plummeted?)
How much do you trust yourself to stay in control and handle the situation calmly?
Have you ever hurt someone when you have been angry or hurt yourself during an angry ‘meltdown’?
Have you ever thrown a mobile phone, thumped a door, or damaged property in some other way?

 Sustained Anger Can Affect Your Health
Reacting angrily to situations can affect your long term health.
Preserve your Health.
Choose Counselling or Hypnotherapy to help you manage your anger in a better way and avoid angry outbursts.
Enjoy living a more peaceful and enjoyable life. 
Health and Happiness to you.

For Help With Anger Management please call:
Elaine Walker
Clinical Hypnotherapist and Specialist Counsellor
9300 6026

Growing Up Divorced – ‘Suitcase Kids’

CHildren growing up with divorceMuch is written about how, and to what degree, children are affected by the separation and ultimately the divorce of their parents. When a relationship is in constant conflict or routine boredom has set in, parents have an agonising decision to make.

The Agonising Decision Facing Parents about Divorce

Some parents believe it’s better to stay together for the sake of the kids while others feel that living in an unhappy marriage is more than they can bear so call it quits and separate. All too often, the decision to separate is not by mutual agreement and one parent is left confused, hurt, and even bitter.

When Parents Separate

It was my attendance at a Family and Marital Therapy Conference at Queensland University many years ago and hearing the term ‘suitcase kids’ used so often that drove home the ‘emotional nail’ of what it can be like for children who are caught up in a life changing situation for which they have no control over.

As I listened to one presenter who was brilliant at taking us into the mind of a child as he outlined the difficulties faced by them, my connection with a child’s world seemed to embrace so much more to the point that I felt their emotional upheaval at a deeper level. What struck a chord with me was how much packing and unpacking some children face on a regular basis and the constant adjustment from one household to another which is made more difficult if the household rules are very different. Their life from now on would be governed by spending a few days with dad and a few days with mum on a regular basis.

Co-parenting

Co-parenting is here to stay and so many children become ‘suitcase’ kids.  I don’t like this term, but it speaks volumes about a child’s experience.  Is the alternative any better – living in one home with ongoing open conflict or live in a home where the conflict has gone ‘underground’ and there is a tense atmosphere?  Understanding a child’s experience and skilful communication between the parents is not an easy task.  To give an example: The following scenario is just the ‘tip of the iceberg’ of what can occur when a parents’ separation is not amicable.

The child (let’s call him John) arrives at dad’s house with suitcase in hand, mum drives away.  John is staying with dad on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night then dad will drop him at school on Monday morning.  It’s been a rush after school to pack his suitcase but then John finds out that he’s forgotten his football boots and can’t go to training the next day without them.  Dad tries to be patient and drives all the way back to mum’s house to pick up the boots. But Mum’s not home yet. They wait outside in the car.  Both are feeling hungry. Time drags on.  Finally, a familiar car appears and pulls into the driveway, out opts mum.  Beneath the cordial greetings is a ‘reservoir of emotion’ ready to explode.  “This is happening too much.  Football boots this week, no shorts last week and last month it was his homework!”  Dad tries to contain himself as he makes a suggestion:  “can you please check John’s case before you bring him over”.  The words are polite but dad couldn’t control the tone in his voice and mum retaliates with:  “And who are you to complain, you dropped him off at school without lunch last week and what about the week before when you……..”
What do you think John learns from this experience?

Skills of Co-Parenting

When a relationship fragments into a jigsaw of human emotion co-parenting demands a whole new set of skills. Confidence, self-esteem, trust and communication are just some areas that parents may struggle with post-separation, or post-divorce. It makes sense that flesh wounds need some ‘first aid’ and time to heal….emotional wounds need their own special ‘first aid’ and time to heal too.