Everyone experiences anger at one point or the other. Some people more intensely and frequently than others. Though anger is one of the most common emotions known to the human race, few people are skilled at reacting to this feeling with complete effectiveness.
Many of us rely on a few specific responses and these responses can turn into constructive or destructive behavior. Recognizing what makes us angry can help us find better ways to cope with this emotion. It’s not whether we get angry, but what we do with our anger that matters.
Successful anger management can mean the difference between marital joy or absolute misery. The success or failure of a marriage may depend on the way a couple copes with their anger.
How to Identify Hidden Anger in Relationships
If marriage partners have any of these signs, you can quickly identify signs of hidden anger emerging:
- Being in denial (ignoring the evidence)
- Peace at any price (i.e., giving in rather than engaging conflict, withdrawal)
- Grievance collecting (keeping track of everything that has happened)
- Passive/aggressive behavior (pouting, sarcasm, stubbornness, procrastination, generating guilt)
- Bigotry (hating another group of people)
- All is well attitude (overly sweet and nice about what is happening)
Anger Can Be Healthy in a Relationship
Anger, like any emotion, is healthy and normal and is present at different times in all relationships. Couples should give each other the right to be angry.
When a spouse notices angry feeling coming on, those angry feelings should be expressed in words, but said calmly and with love.
Couples who effectively manage their anger agree that it is necessary to express and acknowledge it. They agree never to attack in anger even though they share angry feelings. If both partners can express their anger calmly, they will be better able to find out how and why the anger is present in the marriage.
- Admit your anger to your spouse
- Restrain your anger and don’t let it get out of hand by blaming or belittling
- Explain in a very calm manner why you are angry
- Take actions to address the cause of the anger
If anger is handled in this way, using a calm approach to identify the cause of the anger and what can be done about it, couples will find that the anger was based on a misunderstanding or misinterpreted words or deeds.
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