Tips for Couples Struggling With Anger Issues

Dear couple who is struggling with anger issues:

This letter is intended for each of you to read frequenly throughout each day. This is the first step in learning to deal with anger that is out of control and destructive.

Anger, is not a bad thing. How you handle anger, and what you do with it, can be bad.....If you deal with it in a constructive manner, it can end up having good results. If you act out destructively, then it will lead to damage.

Initially, your goal is to learn to understand the triggers for your anger. We want to avoid the acting out of anger, and we want to promote your learning from the anger, before it erupts. That's why, (if there is physical abuse), it is imperative that you not live together for now.

The first goal is for you to recognize when anger emotions are arising. As soon as you recognize the emotion, I want you to say: "I need to stop talking with my partner right now." Separate from each other and take time to write.....Make numerous copies of your anger incidence sheet (see below).

1. Rate your anger on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is no anger and 10 is the highest level of anger possible.

2. What am I angry about? Write your thoughts down in one or two sentences.

3. Am I angry because my partner does not hear or understand my point of view? What is it?

4. Do I understand my partner's point of view? What is it?

5. Am I entitled to always get my way?

6. Am I throwing a temper tantrum because I am not getting my way?

7. Am I being overly controlling?

8. What options are availble to me, to deal with my anger? How can I calm my self? Maybe I should take a walk? Exercise? Meditate? Breathe deeply? Write? Call someone to blow off steam?

9. Wait some time, how do I feel now? (rate yourself)

I know this exercise takes time, but it is based on the idea for you to separate and take time to diffuse your emotions, and to think things through.

Wishing you both success,

Dr. Tamara Sofair-Fisch

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