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Aggression as an Adult

Open Discussions About Child Abuse

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Aggression as an Adult

Postby AnnieOymous » Sat Jun 03, 2017 7:25 am

I like to rant. This makes me feel better. I've been going to therapy for a few months now, on meds for depression and anxiety for about a month. I have a new therapist who simultaneously seems to be better and working for me but also pushing me out of my comfort zone (as she should, in my opinion) and somewhat unsettling me because she reminds me a bit of my abuser (authoritative older woman).

But for the most part things have been working out pretty well. I don't notice outright that the medication is some sort of miracle drug or anything, but normalcy is creeping into my life in the same silent way depression did. I have been laughing so much more that I feel like a giddy schoolgirl at a slumber party.

But tonight, my god, some stuff has started crawling out of the woodwork. The underlying theme one could say is aggression, just rage, which feeds into what I'd describe as hyper vigilance.

I came home from hanging out with friends and having a blast, laughing, laughing, laughing. Actually experiencing a reprieve from being depressed. As soon as I get in the door I'm just ... gobsmacked with this weird mood. Angry, sad. I'm tired, I try to go to bed but the emotion won't be ignored. I have chores I should do, but the emotion absorbs all motivation and energy for itself. I have things I'd like to do, but won't let myself because I should be doing the chores or going to bed.

So instead I end up just festering in this mood for two hours. You know, its not even sad. Its just teary, and I don't know how to explain that. My face feels pissed, my eyes feel teary. Just silent, rage/tears. A big black hole in my stomach opened up and demanded to watch a youtube video of someone kicking the crap out of an abuser in the defense of a child before it would let my mind sleep. Very specific, this void in me. It imagined one, but demanded to watch a real one. I wanted to see an adult beat the snot out of another adult trying to hit a child, or I wouldn't be satisfied.

So I spent two hours watching abuse PSAs on youtube and anger crying in an obsessive fit. I saw some over exaggerated anime videos that just made me more mad because they weren't the realistic, primal, frantic kind of fighting my brain craved. I saw the clip from the original Spider-man that reminds me of how my brain feels all the time, slowing things down, being aware of every paper airplane, ever person, ever bead of sweat, every sound, every fly, looking for danger. I watched videos of high school kids slapping at each other like the children they are and was more enraged than ever, finding myself wanting to hear the sound of the fists making contact, then wanting to feel that. To feel all of it, the pain that comes with a fight, the sounds, the quick thinking and moving. I wanted to feed that part of my brain that is ALWAYS looking for some sort of disaster, but never gets one.

I am not usually an aggressive person. But that part of my brain is always hungry for an emergency, something to deal with, waiting for the next explosion, looking for the fight, and it never has anything to sink its teeth into but my own time and energy and sleep and mental health. Tonight it just boiled and boiled and boiled. To the point that I started fantasizing about joining a kick boxing group or something just to get my fix.

I /WANT/ to punch something or someone. I /WANT/ to feel that pain again. And that is so messed up and twisted and backwards and I can't describe it to normal people without sounding like a lunatic for breakfast cereal. Just...ugh.

Does anyone else get these fits of aggression?
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Re: Aggression as an Adult

Postby Terry E. » Sat Jun 03, 2017 8:42 am

Okay there is a lot there. I am glad your therapist is working out. I have never had one or used any drugs to help my issues, so I cannot say whether your current medications are having any such influence.

Okay that is the disclaimer.

I have at times had an anger build up at inappropriate times. There was always something that triggered it. I have learned to look back over that day and keep looking until I find it. Resolve to do something, or just understand that this is what has p@#sed me off. Knowing the issue I can again find inner peace and move on. Did something p@#s you off ??

Remember anger is often borne by frustration.

Some of the members here have found some sort of vigorous sporting activity helps them burn off cortisol and makes their life more balanced. I remember MIck was sexually abused and she became rather good at Judo. I lift weights. Heavy weights, won a masters world powerliftimg title a few years ago, a far cry from the helpless young child I once was.

So yeah maybe something like a martial arts class may help.

I wish you luck. We can make changes that are very helpful to us, but as you know there is no magic bullet.

Take care.
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Re: Aggression as an Adult

Postby Cookie42 » Wed Jul 26, 2017 9:15 am

hey there i get what you mean i am so angry amost of the time. I am angry at myself for not doing anything and puttong my self into situations. Angry that no one helped me. Angry at my dad for what he did. Angry at the world. So much anger!
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Re: Aggression as an Adult

Postby Terry E. » Thu Jul 27, 2017 3:13 am

A great part of my anger was and maybe still is, that every one took the easy option and did nothing. So many people in so many ways, neighbors, teachers, relatives could have done something, maybe some tried I don't know, but I also know that many threw me under the bus, because " I was a wrong kid" ..

I remember in my twenties thinking I will show you all. I will not be defined by my childhood, as so many people had done previously. Long slow process but I succeeded. Still angry, but also now happy, if that does not sound too strange.

Take care.
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Re: Aggression as an Adult

Postby avatar123 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:04 am

So Annie, just a thought, in addition to what others have said here. One of the impacts of depression (and perhaps a purpose?) is that it holds your emotions inside, and in check. Everything feels very subdued. Not entirely a bad thing, when you have a lot of justified anger.

If you recently made some progress that allowed you to laugh and release a little happiness, that's a lifting of depression, but it also could release other negative emotions as well. The fact that you were out and having fun, then came "home" to your problems (both literally and figuratively), could have set you up for a release of anger.

I've noticed this effect before, in myself and in others. I've known people who were really happy to have company and be out with others, but when dropping them off, they would begin to get upset or to cry. It seems odd unless you've had that level of depression that results from abuse, then it makes perfect sense.

Anyway, my point is that this might actually be a consequence of progress, you just weren't expecting it or prepared for it. You probably couldn't and shouldn't try to stop that release, but it might not seem so devastating if you recognize it for what it is, and that ultimately it's leading forward.

I also think if you shared this with your therapist, she might understand and be able to offer some help in being better prepared to handle it. You are going feel to negative emotions along with the positive. Every survivor does, it's just part of it, unfortunately. Learning to manage it better can make it a little easier.
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Re: Aggression as an Adult

Postby quietgirl2538 » Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:55 pm

When I got to a point of realization that I had been wronged or abused, whichever is most easiest to understand to others as some people don't seem to understand "abused" very well. I was wronged in many ways and I would sit and think on it for a long time and that mood took over. I couldn't get out of that zone. I felt very angry instead of hurt. I used to cry a lot and feel like I was hurt and I felt that I did something wrong and maybe if I changed the way I did things, maybe, perhaps, my mom would be happy with me and stop being so mean to me. Sadly, it didn't make any difference. That is how I remember it. That it didn't make any difference. Even as an adult I tried to process these moods or feelings about my past and right now I feel a slight drop in my mood like I feel a sadness over how things were. It's like bringing up the past still upsets me. I still get mad at her even though I thought I had forgiven her and moved on. I find myself still mad. I can sort of understand. Usually I try to listen to music and let myself try to move away and change my mood. Not trying to escape it, but to feel something different and sort of "change the topic" kind of thing.
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