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acknowledging anger

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by futuredancer, Aug 23, 2016.

  1. futuredancer

    futuredancer Peer Supporter

    Why is it so hard to acknowledge anger? I ve been journalling everyday (except the SEP rest days)... I get to see where the anger is but I still don´t feel it as an emotion. I have a rational grasp of it but no emotional access to it... I have been able to use everyday situations that made me angry as an outlet to feel some slight anger (which provided great relief), but I cannot feel the "fundamental" rage associated to past events. Any advice?
    Bodhigirl likes this.
  2. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy New Member

    I have the same problem. Some of the things I'm upset about are really big life issues for me. However, it is rare that I can actually get myself to feel how angry I really am. Something that has been working occasionally for me. Yelling in my head, yelling out loud, reminding myself it's ok to feel anger. Now and then I'll get a genuine rush of real emotion and it seems to be very therapeutic. Perhaps decades of effort trying to put those kinds of thoughts out of my head is something that will take time to work through.
  3. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    Do you ever have dreams of anger and rage? Sometimes that shows me a glimpse of how crazy our unconscious mind is. In a few dreams I was very powerful. Sometimes I even beat someone up. Or I am super fast and can run away.
  4. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy New Member

    I almost never remember my dreams. Occasionally I can remember fearful dreams, but my guess is that there's an element of rage in those too (angry that life puts frightening demands on us). When my headaches were really bad, they usually started at night so my assumption is that a dream would bring up something in my subconscious and the pain would set in.
  5. Bodhigirl

    Bodhigirl Well known member

    I searched "anger" this afternoon because my morning was consumed by it; combined with tremendous fear.
    The first few years I was in recovery, I heard about rage but never felt it. I learned that it was often associated with a sense of shame. I also seldom felt that. I knew it, I got it intellectually, but not viscerally. It seems it was buried with the fascia of my pelvic floor, my deltoids, gluteals.
    It took years of meditation and curiosity. It took patience. I took a long-term relationship that unearthed things about me that living alone had not brought to the surface.
    Just keep doing the work. I promise the rage will arise. Somehow, the unconscious has to trust us to be stable enough to feel it. It has given us physical symptoms out of the conviction that we were unable to handle our more fiery and dark emotions.
    As we stay on the path of recovering from TMS, the internal platform for containing our emotions grows stronger and more trusting of our capability to feel and not be completely overwhelmed. Remember, the ego resides in the unconscious and it is committed to avoiding emotional pain and keeping us "okay".
    It has to be convinced, time and again, that we are able to "bring on the emotions" and really feel what it is to be human.
    Pia likes this.
  6. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Wonderful post, Bodhigirl!

    I want to address this question, with some suggestions. Yes, anger is threatening to who we think we are, based on conditioning. Anger is particularly threatening to the self-image of TMSrs who tend to see themselves as "good and in control."

    The recordings on the TMS Recovery Program are a good intro to what it is like to explore anger with a skilled helper. It can help a lot to have coaching/counseling/support. Some in these fields can support you in this, others cannot.

    A friend told me today that she enjoys rageful screaming when she is in the car. The automobile can be a very soundproof environment to express yourself. Having privacy is important. Expressing out in nature can be helpful. Nature can "take our energy."

    Part of the way a helper invokes more experience is by prompting with words. You can do the same thing yourself in a safe place. Write out some statements which begin to "play" with anger. "I am so angry at you for not letting me be myself, Mom. Back off!!" etc. If you start yelling some of these things most likely one of two things will happen: There will be a natural willingness and energy to keep going and feel what you're saying, or the Inner Critic will arrive and try to shut you down. If the Inner Critic arrives, then you have more information about what blocks you from feeling/expressing. The messages about why it is not OK to feel anger become more apparent.

    As Bodhigirl suggests, it is a process, futuredancer, and your continued practice, and your intention open the way. Just asking yourself to feel more allows less repression/suppression, in my opinion. Also, Dr. Sarno said that he only saw one patient express the primal rage which he posited is behind much of the TMS. He said "use your imagination" to discover what the emotions might be, based on your knowledge of the situation. So, while an expression of your anger might bring relief, it might be best to not get attached to the idea that this must happen in order to get relief. Good luck!

    Andy B
  7. futuredancer

    futuredancer Peer Supporter

    Guys, I have been away from the forum the last few weeks but since this post got comments yesterday, I read them and would like to add something to this thread. One thing that I found out was really helpful (though I did not do it for TMS) was the theather lessons I have been taking recently. It felt really good to "interpret" rage and other raw emotions. Even thought the stories were not my own, i guess in a way you access your own emotional registry and vent things you are not even aware of. I would recommend it to people who don't find it easy to single out what is really bothering them as a way to experience rage and the like.

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