PREVIOUS: Ways to React (Part 1)
4. Three TYPES (cont.)
a. Hidden Type (Part 1)
b. Habitually IRRITATED Type
Physically : sometimes part of untreated clinical depression, a side effect of drugs & alcohol abuse, or of some medications. Genetics & family mental illness can also play a part
Psychologically : the underpinning comes from being shamed / neglected / abused as a child, creating deep-seated fear & sense of powerlessness
Our WIC assumes everyone is dangerous, & defends against them by a brittle layer of anger/ rage. Repeated traumatic events, environmental stress & social / religious constrictions also contribute, preventing the sufferer from learning appropriate coping skills
• Chronically angry/ resentful people (including wounded Type As) have years of experiencing disappointment & frustration, leading them to continually expect more of the same, so it doesn’t take much for them to get angry at even small daily stressors.
Chronic resentment is an ego defense, which is keeping track of injuries, from the Latin root : to feel anger over & over again.
The more fragile a person’s sense of Self (missing True Self), the more resentment is needed – more important than accurate info, truth & reason, reinforced by greatly distorted thinking (see list of CDs).
• Their default position is to always assume & look for emotional potholes, resulting in anger. They tend to go through their days looking for a fight, seeing the worst in everyone & every situation. Stuck in a rut, these people are usually very predictable. The need to devalue others to protect themselves inevitably leads to verbal/ emotional abuse, & eventually to contempt & disgust for most relationships
Their toxic attitude keeps people emotionally & physically far away, which repeats the feeling of childhood abandonment. This reinforces their shame & so validates their feeling of un-lovability, which leads to even more anger. They report higher levels of family conflict & less social support – because of the effect their anger has on everyone they deal with.
• cranky, curmudgeonly (Jeff Dunham’s WALTER)
• perpetually cynical, bitter, judgmental, controlling
• dissatisfied with of everything, overly critical & judgmental
• passively resistant, interfering with progress
• Aggressive: overly critical, fault-finding, name-calling, sarcasm, cruelty, prejudice, cynical humor & teasing, flashes of temper or explosive rages
• Assaults: physical harm, verbal rage, slapping, shoving, using a weapon
• Hurtful: malicious gossip, stirring up trouble, stealing, mean pranks
• Rebellious: indirectly challenging or openly defiant
(Questions to ask oneself re. symptoms)
c. EXPLOSIVE rage/ anger Type
This is a behavior disorder expressed by unplanned explosive outbursts, with verbal &/or physical abuse, such as impulsive screaming. The person’s reactions are triggered by relatively unimportant events, out of proportion to the actual situation
However, some people do notice their internal ‘warning signs’ before an outburst, such as tension, mood & energy changes…. but can’t stop themselves from reacting. (Wikipedia)
— Some become anger junkies, who get off on the adrenaline rush of an emotional explosion, which gets reinforced if the barrage lets them get their way, at least in the short-term
• Exploders ignore their hurt & anger for a long time, like a dormant volcano. When they finally erupt, the rage gets projected onto innocent victims (children, animals, the iPhone….) who didn’t cause the original pain – like hot lava, covering everything in sight. It takes a lot to push them over the edge, but when that line is crossed, the earth shakes & everyone runs for cover.
EXP: “If you leave your jacket on the floor one more time, I’m leaving you!”
• The build-up usually comes from:
– long-term frustration about not getting one’s needs met in current situations (a marriage, a job….)
– long-term abuse /abandonment in intimate relationships (from parents, a spouse, s teacher….)
Never taught how to deal with a wide range of hurt – from irritation to assaults – these people habitually swallow it until ‘stuffed’ & then let it out – inappropriately. Because people can’t feel empathy & rage at the same time, the exploder will say & do overly harsh things they later regret.