Opening Up to Anger

Anger has never been a very strong part of my emotional repertoire. At least not my outward one. Not to say that I didn’t get angry I have just been exceptionally good at anger management. Yet I have practiced this to the point of often feeling I have very little access to my anger. I have often found myself envious of a friend who is able to really tell someone how they feel, throw their anger around a bit, make someone know “you can’t treat me that way!” My energy tends to be more conciliatory or negotiating. I tend to reconcile or move on.

I have certainly had my own struggles with confrontation but I have them and have conquered many of my fears in such things. Yet I still will often choose to simply go my own way rather than get into too heated a conversation — especially if I don’t feel that it will yield useful results in a reasonable amount of time.

However in the past many months I have been in a relationship with someone who is in much greater touch with their anger. This has been shocking, jarring, challenging, and educational. I don’t always agree with their moves into anger but I do appreciate a level of emotional honesty that I don’t always allow myself. There’s a way they allow me to be truly on the pulse of how they feel, even if it is fleeting or seems ‘unreasonable’ to the more constrained and restrained me. There’s a way they are more in the moment. Perhaps a way they are both more ready to cut away the bad as well as create the profoundly good.

Sometimes the bad cannot be reasoned with or negotiated away. Sometimes the good can only be created through the purity of an unhindered expression. Its heart is rarely that of nuance and precision.

There is much to learn from anger and I’m glad to be opening this door.