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Thread: Anger Towards Past

  1. #1
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    Anger Towards Past

    I've been writing about my life, and it's made me revisit the past. Injustices. Emotionally abusive relationships. Rape even. Parental neglect. Narcissistic parent. And suddenly, I've become so internally anger. Yes I know to visit a therapist- I will. Yes I also know anger can be a positive thing, it means one step towards healing. And yes I know anger is probably repressed hurt.

    What I dont know how to do is cope with it. I live with someone and can't comfortably punch my pillow in private. I'm already writing about it. It's just all consuming. I wasn't ready for this.

    Have you ever had anger towards your past impact your life? I have to be careful even now opening myself to you because sometimes, strangers can be insensitive or imply you should just get over it. I thought I was over it. I'm in my late twenties. this was childhood, high school and some college years.

    I had people belittle me. But boyfriends emotionally abuse me. Yell at me. One raped me at thirteen. I didn't have power over myself or my relationships til my mid-to late twenties. And I'm scared of this anger.

    What would you do?

    Thanks for reading.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    Yes, I've had anger like that. It comes and goes. You have to let it pass through you.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    I used it to do good/better things. Then I started to feel good about myself and others around me (more positive). The most difficult issue with this emotion (anger) is that it cannot be substituted with something else as a quick fix. It takes awhile to unravel. It can be transformed into other thoughts and actions that are equally powerful in emotion. Anger, very deep anger, has to be peeled back in layers. I did it layer by layer and every layer, I tried to transform it into other works and I put it into actions and decisions towards positive growth either for myself or for the ones closest to me. Eventually you will run out of layers but don't be surprised if it takes awhile.

    People are often fearful or embarrassed to talk about anger so you've done a good job recognizing that you're feeling this emotion. You should also try to be watchful of the influences and company around you going forward. Try being a little more aware of different personalities and situations that are not helpful to your long term growth or relevant to you. It won't help healing yourself only to put yourself in the line of fire or in difficult situations that recreate that cycle of pain and anger.

    When the layers run out, you should have a lot of causes around you to be thankful and grateful. Maybe it's new relationships you've cultivated, a new career you've felt inspired to grow, new friendships, interests, hobbies, community work. Speak to your therapist or someone you can trust about how to transform those emotions or you can do more reflection yourself. Don't give up on yourself and keep growing through it, seek ways to develop it into new and different layers.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    Oh yes, I have my fill of bad memories, people wronging me badly, recent bad memories of injustices, bad blood among some relatives / in-laws (even if they don't realize it), bad mistreatment from colleagues, people whom I thought were my friends and my list is endless. I don't think anyone would be human if we weren't bitter and resentful regarding the past. Even if some people seem cool, underneath their veneer people are walking around in a world of hurt and pain everywhere in public and private. You don't know their stories nor will you ever. Life is hard, people are harsh, cruel and it's difficult to survive in this fiercely competitive rat race.

    I'm sorry about the painful burdens you carry. I'm sorry for your horrible violations, too.

    What I do is realize that no matter what, I learn to be grateful for what I can be grateful for. I count my blessings because there are millions of people who have it far worse than I do.

    Pain teaches you compassion because you've been there. Pain teaches you empathy. Use your pain for good. I like to help people. I volunteer at a soup kitchen with a group of people who do the same. We caravan together. We're always together. I volunteer at a local food bank. I visit nursing homes and give the disabled and elderly free manicures. They love it because they're so lonely. I tend to get distracted whenever I help others who are far less fortunate than I am and I help the disadvantaged. It feels very rewarding and suddenly my problems are minuscule compared to theirs.

    If you don't want to do any of that, you can cope by distracting yourself by doing what you enjoy such as exercising daily (great stress reliever), eating smart and less, get involved in hobbies, if you're intellectual go that route, if you like museums go there, if you like animals, spend time with animals (offer to dog walk), take walks with friends, meet for lunch, etc. Get busy instead of dwelling on "woe is me" which is normal with all due respect because I've done the same!

    I always take past pains as wisdom gained and it was not all in vain. For example, take your past pain and use it to become more smarter and intelligent. With past pain, you become a better read and judge of people. You don't trust them easily. You're no longer naive. You learn to protect yourself and you're never at the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people. You learn how to be safe.

    You learn to avoid certain serious mental disorders for which there is no cure such as narcissists, sociopaths, people who engage in gaslighting you and all sorts of weird, strange or dangerous, risky people. You learn discernment. Take your past pain as an education you will never forget. Use painful pasts as wisdom to navigate yourself more shrewdly. It's ok to be calculating as long as it keeps you safe in all dynamics and scenarios. Learn to protect yourself. You wake up and play your cards right from now on. It's your wake up call.

    Life will always throw you curves. You can either be a victim and stew for the rest of your life or triumph over your own battles. That's how I look at it. I know the past continues to haunt you. I'm very sorry. It happens to everyone. Personally, I've found that if I don't give myself time to dwell on negatives, I focus on positives and get busy. When you have too much time on your hands to think about it, it becomes depressing,your burden and ball 'n chain to drag around. I try not to give myself a lot of time to dwell on past bad memories.

    Also, use bad memories to become more shrewd. It's ok to become wary and jaded. I am. Being wary and jaded makes you tread lightly, exercise discernment and discretion. You err on the side of caution and you're more careful with all of your activities and you surround yourself with morally upstanding, normal people. You reject people easily which is commendable because it means you've since grown smarter. Become more selective, picky and choosy. Enforce healthy boundaries. Navigate yourself intelligently. You learn street smarts.

    When my Golden Retriever was alive up until a few months ago, I loved spending time with her. We took daily walks together. She was a great dog. I raised her ever since she was a puppy. She was supremely intelligent, quiet, calm, extremely well behaved, loyal and devoted. I trained her myself and they don't call her man's best friend for nothing. She was a great distraction. Whenever I was with her, I forgot all of my troubles.

    Do you like animals? Would you volunteer to dog walk? Would you volunteer to foster animals? They're very lonely.

    Do you have a close friend? Someone you can meet and take a walk with? Moral support helps.

    I hope you can heal your wounds someday. Hang in there, SarahJay.

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  6. #5
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    Originally Posted by Jibralta
    Yes, I've had anger like that. It comes and goes. You have to let it pass through you.
    Thank you. I guess there's no way out but through.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    You can't change the past. However you can reflect and change things now and in the future. It's that simple.

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    Originally Posted by Rose Mosse
    I used it to do good/better things. Then I started to feel good about myself and others around me (more positive). The most difficult issue with this emotion (anger) is that it cannot be substituted with something else as a quick fix. It takes awhile to unravel. It can be transformed into other thoughts and actions that are equally powerful in emotion. Anger, very deep anger, has to be peeled back in layers. I did it layer by layer and every layer, I tried to transform it into other works and I put it into actions and decisions towards positive growth either for myself or for the ones closest to me. Eventually you will run out of layers but don't be surprised if it takes awhile.

    People are often fearful or embarrassed to talk about anger so you've done a good job recognizing that you're feeling this emotion. You should also try to be watchful of the influences and company around you going forward. Try being a little more aware of different personalities and situations that are not helpful to your long term growth or relevant to you. It won't help healing yourself only to put yourself in the line of fire or in difficult situations that recreate that cycle of pain and anger.

    When the layers run out, you should have a lot of causes around you to be thankful and grateful. Maybe it's new relationships you've cultivated, a new career you've felt inspired to grow, new friendships, interests, hobbies, community work. Speak to your therapist or someone you can trust about how to transform those emotions or you can do more reflection yourself. Don't give up on yourself and keep growing through it, seek ways to develop it into new and different layers.
    yeah, what I've realized is these situations are in the past and I think it's that I never felt or got justice from them. And that can be really hard for anybody to deal with. I'm grateful it's no longer continuing, that I got out of them and the pattern of recurrence. I'm grateful for what I do have now. I just feel a bit like I never stopped to feel what was happening, I white knuckled through the pain, and now that I've been out a while and am writing about my life, revisiting these things is bringing up raw hurt and anger like it happened yesterday. I guess that's the nature of trauma though. I'll even have conversations in my head with better and better arguments against manipulative abusers in fights. But I do have hope. I dont know what will come but I do know I have boundaries, stability now and a voice. That's something.

  9. #8
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    Originally Posted by Wiseman2
    You can't change the past. However you can reflect and change things now and in the future. It's that simple.
    Thank you. That's what I hope to do.

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by Cherylyn
    Oh yes, I have my fill of bad memories, people wronging me badly, recent bad memories of injustices, bad blood among some relatives / in-laws (even if they don't realize it), bad mistreatment from colleagues, people whom I thought were my friends and my list is endless. I don't think anyone would be human if we weren't bitter and resentful regarding the past. Even if some people seem cool, underneath their veneer people are walking around in a world of hurt and pain everywhere in public and private. You don't know their stories nor will you ever. Life is hard, people are harsh, cruel and it's difficult to survive in this fiercely competitive rat race.

    I'm sorry about the painful burdens you carry. I'm sorry for your horrible violations, too.

    What I do is realize that no matter what, I learn to be grateful for what I can be grateful for. I count my blessings because there are millions of people who have it far worse than I do.

    Pain teaches you compassion because you've been there. Pain teaches you empathy. Use your pain for good. I like to help people. I volunteer at a soup kitchen with a group of people who do the same. We caravan together. We're always together. I volunteer at a local food bank. I visit nursing homes and give the disabled and elderly free manicures. They love it because they're so lonely. I tend to get distracted whenever I help others who are far less fortunate than I am and I help the disadvantaged. It feels very rewarding and suddenly my problems are minuscule compared to theirs.

    If you don't want to do any of that, you can cope by distracting yourself by doing what you enjoy such as exercising daily (great stress reliever), eating smart and less, get involved in hobbies, if you're intellectual go that route, if you like museums go there, if you like animals, spend time with animals (offer to dog walk), take walks with friends, meet for lunch, etc. Get busy instead of dwelling on "woe is me" which is normal with all due respect because I've done the same!

    I always take past pains as wisdom gained and it was not all in vain. For example, take your past pain and use it to become more smarter and intelligent. With past pain, you become a better read and judge of people. You don't trust them easily. You're no longer naive. You learn to protect yourself and you're never at the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people. You learn how to be safe.

    You learn to avoid certain serious mental disorders for which there is no cure such as narcissists, sociopaths, people who engage in gaslighting you and all sorts of weird, strange or dangerous, risky people. You learn discernment. Take your past pain as an education you will never forget. Use painful pasts as wisdom to navigate yourself more shrewdly. It's ok to be calculating as long as it keeps you safe in all dynamics and scenarios. Learn to protect yourself. You wake up and play your cards right from now on. It's your wake up call.

    Life will always throw you curves. You can either be a victim and stew for the rest of your life or triumph over your own battles. That's how I look at it. I know the past continues to haunt you. I'm very sorry. It happens to everyone. Personally, I've found that if I don't give myself time to dwell on negatives, I focus on positives and get busy. When you have too much time on your hands to think about it, it becomes depressing,your burden and ball 'n chain to drag around. I try not to give myself a lot of time to dwell on past bad memories.

    Also, use bad memories to become more shrewd. It's ok to become wary and jaded. I am. Being wary and jaded makes you tread lightly, exercise discernment and discretion. You err on the side of caution and you're more careful with all of your activities and you surround yourself with morally upstanding, normal people. You reject people easily which is commendable because it means you've since grown smarter. Become more selective, picky and choosy. Enforce healthy boundaries. Navigate yourself intelligently. You learn street smarts.

    When my Golden Retriever was alive up until a few months ago, I loved spending time with her. We took daily walks together. She was a great dog. I raised her ever since she was a puppy. She was supremely intelligent, quiet, calm, extremely well behaved, loyal and devoted. I trained her myself and they don't call her man's best friend for nothing. She was a great distraction. Whenever I was with her, I forgot all of my troubles.

    Do you like animals? Would you volunteer to dog walk? Would you volunteer to foster animals? They're very lonely.

    Do you have a close friend? Someone you can meet and take a walk with? Moral support helps.

    I hope you can heal your wounds someday. Hang in there, SarahJay.
    Thank you for the effort you put into this post. Very thoughtful. I agree with being thankful. I agree with using it for good. I have friends but none with strong emotional support abilities or some just limited availability. I do have a dog a pekingese that is very high maintenance. lol. And I love taking care of her. I think I'll write to help others through what I have been through. And as for the anger, I just need to feel it. Not judge it. But feel it. Thank it for reminding me what I deserve...

  11. #10
    Platinum Member catfeeder's Avatar
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    One method I use for integrating my 'wounded past' self with my current self is to adopt the role of a counseling adult who speaks with my younger self as I think through your most painful events.

    I find it helpful to ask myself whether I want to view my past through a lens of a victimhood or resilience. When I opt for resilience, I'm able to learn lessons from my past in order to build confidence in my own future judgment as I move forward. A victim mentality wouldn't buy me that, it would just keep me locked in stagnation with the belief that I am always at the mercy of other people's lousy judgment instead of my own.

    So I use my adult voice to coax my younger self through anger to consider some mitigating steps that I've learned since the event, and I comfort myself with forgiveness for not knowing how to take these steps at the time. This frees me from using anger as a wedge to avoid recognizing that I can take responsible steps to avoid similar outcomes in the future.

    This doesn't mean that I blame myself in order to avoid rage at someone else, but rather, I choose to acknowledge my ownership of better life skills today. So when I walk through those moments, my adult mind can 'see' how my anger and fears are driven by the unhealed part of myself that I now own the intelligence to comfort and coax forward.

    For instance, I can identify instances where I was powerless to escape certain interactions--with parents or teachers or school peers--while today I can use my own discretion in screening out people with whom I don't wish to interact.

    Hashing the past is only useful to the degree that I'm willing to enhance my future rather than squelch it. When I can CONSCIOUSLY identify ways that I can forgive my younger self for what I did not know then, I can circumvent an UNconscious loop to keep fearing past harms, because today I DO own the power to recognize harmful situations and abusive people instead of engaging them.

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