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Thereâs no doubt about it: we live in an angry society. Signs that anger abounds are all over the place. There is desk rage, road rage, domestic violence, spousal abuse, child abuse, sports rage and most recently spam rage. Anger is a worldwide phenomenon and referrals to anger management programs have exploded since 9/11.
After a stressful day as a computer programmer, Jim pulled into his driveway. The childrenâs toys were scattered on the walkway to the house.
He immediately began noticing slight tension in his muscles and apprehension in his stomach.
Jim, a 42-year old engineer was teaching his eight-year-old son how to fly a radio-controlled airplane. As the airplane was taking off, Jim instructed his son to push the control stick on the radio to the right. He did and the airplane turned to the right.
âDr. Fiore,â my 42 year old married patient (Mary) began, âonce again
my family expects me to host Christmas dinner and I am simply too
exhausted; what should I do?â
Dateline: January 4th. Orange County Anger Management class participants review anger triggers of the week.
Jane, age 23, engaged to be married: âMy boyfriend openly flirts with other women in front of me.â
Jim, age 40, an IT professional: âa work group back East didnât finish their project on time, which made our progress look bad â I blew up!â
Every Holiday season Vicki found herself angry and silently seething at her older sister, Susie, and mother as they were merrily chatting about Susieâs successful life.
Think of your brain as a juke box where most of your records â your reactions to different situations â were recorded well before your reached adolescence. Then, as life goes on and every time someone pushes your button, you automatically play the record that fits each situation.
Eilizabeth, 32, cried during anger management class as she told how one year ago - her 19-month-old girl was permanently brain-damaged as the result of a medical error at the hospital in which she was delivered.
Jim and Mary Jones loved each other deeply, but often went into horrific verbal battles over any number of issues. They would argue and yell for hours, often into the night, leaving both of them exhausted, emotionally disconnected, hurt and resentful toward each other.
Both became so upset they were flooded with negative feelings which prevented their being able to repair the damage, to think rationally, or to problem-solve the issues at hand.
Case #1. Brianna, 32, would get instantly outraged when her ex-husband threatened to file for custody of their two small children. Deciding to respond differently, she bit her tongue, and remained quiet when he began threatening an escalated legal battle.
Unable to get the usual reaction from her, he calmed down and instantly became rational and more reasonable.