Couples Anger Management
WHEN ANGER BECOMES THE #1 PROBLEM
Intimate relationships can be a fertile ground for dysfunctional anger. Love relationships often create unrealistic expectations for how our partner or spouse should make us feel, on one hand, and what kinds of behaviors will be tolerated or forgiven, on the other.
Dysfunctional patterns of anger from earlier relationships or one's family of origin may get automatically repeated. External sources of stress, psychological issues, or dysfunctional habits can result in anger that deeply damages an intimate relationship.
Sometimes anger gets so out of control that regular counseling cannot take place and we have to focus exclusively on Couples Anger Management therapy.
ADMITTING AN ANGER PROBLEM EXISTS
The first step in anger management is admitting that it has gotten out of control and is having a negative impact on your life. It also requires a willingness to change your old, destructive way of responding to situations, and a commitment to responding in more positive, life-enhancing ways. You may never be able to completely rid yourself of the things or people that enrage you, but you can learn to control your reactions.
LEARNING NEW WAYS TO DEAL WITH ANGER
Couple treatment for problematic anger involves:
Developing a better understanding of what anger really is and how it developed in your life and in your relationship.
Understanding the symptoms of anger in your relationship and breaking down the symptoms into physical signs (fast heartbeat, sweaty palms…), mental signs (confusion, concentration problems…), and behavioral signs (pacing, swearing…).
Identify where in your body you are experiencing the anger (burning in the chest, knot in the stomach…).
Developing a rating scale that you can use in real time when angry. This helps you keep perspective on what is happening to you.
Learn a set of anger management tools (how to walk away, breathing techniques, distraction strategies, identifying primary emotions, exercise…).
Keeping an anger diary.
Creating and committing to an anger management plan for you as a couple.
Once the anger is brought under control, we can address the emotions that underlie anger, such as fear, betrayal, abandonment and hurt. You will feel tremendous relief and a sense of accomplishment once you gain positive control over your anger. I would love to help you achieve this.
Books: The Anger Control Workbook, The Anger Workbook (Christian approach), and The Dance of Anger