We all know what anger is, we’ve all felt it in its different forms, whether it is mild irritation or full blown rage.
Our bodies’ normal threshold for anger is very low and amounts higher than the threshold are toxic. Based on approach towards anger, I classify people into two categories.
Explosive people express their anger assertively and usually forget about the issues the moment they are out. Implosive people, on the other hand, will usually eat nails before voicing their anger. They just keep silent and ignore it. Let me just tell you that implosive anger is an imploding anger. It is the type most likely to cause us to self-destruct.
If you are implosive, then you don’t tell whomever you are angry with why you’re angry or even that you are angry with them. Maybe because you want to avoid confrontation but then in this case, you should probably forget about the issue, because just acting angry without giving a reason eventually creates confrontation. Or maybe because of pride. Possibly, you may be waiting for the person to come and apologize. This may be an issue if the person is as stubborn as I am. I won’t ever apologize if I haven’t done anything and if I don’t know what I’ve done, then I won’t apologize. Simple. It could even be that you are waiting for that person to somehow figure it out on their own. But you forget the human race is filled with sometimes clueless and oblivious people. So if this is your reason, you might be waiting a long time. Maybe it’s because the anger is baseless, or that the reason is flimsy. In this case, it could be that saying the reason out loud makes it sounds as pathetic as it really is and you want to keep deluding yourself that it’s reasonable. In all cases, we believe in some way that our anger is justified and sometimes it could be, but if we don’t confront the issue, how will we know if it was just a misunderstanding and that we were just jumping to conclusion? We can’t. And in the end, we might just be suffering from anger for no reason.
I’m implosive and so I hardly ever voice out if I’m angry but then if I can’t voice it out, then do I really have a right to be angry? Personally, I don’t think so. And so when I’m angry, if I can’t talk about it then I just let go. I don’t act angry unless I’m ready for a confrontation.
A friend of mine has a similar problem with anger (plus pride which is a double dose of bad). She’s implosive meaning she doesn’t express her anger, but unlike me, she also doesn’t let go. She tries to get back at people indirectly, without telling them why, rather than just voice out the reason that she’s angry. What she doesn’t understand is that she just comes across as childish. As a result, she’s lost many of her friends including me, the trust and respect of the people living with her and around her is a general cloud of loneliness. Seeing her now, this person who is mostly alone and with her face almost always screwed into a frown, it’s almost difficult to believe that she used to laugh a lot. Actually, recently, she’s started to remind me of Heathcliff from wuthering heights and how moody he always was. She tries to hide the anger within her and play it off like it doesn’t exist, especially around neutral people but it shows. It shows in the way she walks, in the way she frowns almost all the time, it shows in the way she snaps at little things, in the way she can’t leave a room without slamming the door. It shows in the way she’s so eager to latch on to people she’s not really close to, in the way her eyes follow the people she’s angry with. It shows.
The worst part is that most of the time, implosive people suffer alone and the person they are angry with is seldom affected. Take the example of my aforementioned friend. The person whom she is angry with (let’s call her X) isn’t even affected; she doesn’t care at all. Even with the several childish stunts my friend does to get even- and they have been many- X is still her usual carefree self. Even when I suggested a confrontation, X didn’t care enough to bother. Mostly, I think she just feels pity for my friend.
See, anger leads to nowhere but the destruction of your mind, especially when left to ferment. It’s not easy to let go. Believe me, I know. I am presently struggling with anger towards another friend of mine, who I recently discovered was childish, vindictive and two-faced. I may be wrong and it may be a misunderstanding or something but what can I do if we’re both implosive? It seems we’ve reached an impasse with neither of us willing to budge. But I can’t let the anger eat at me so I have to let go and forgive.
Forgiveness doesn’t come easily, especially when the anger is justified but it is necessary. Not for the person we are angry with but for our own sanity and peace of mind. And sometimes, we can’t do it on our own, which is why psychologist and psychiatrists are paid very well in the abroad. But over here, the resources we have are good friends, mentors, family…these are completely free and are immensely helpful.
For me, I’ve met some wonderful people who are explosive and who are teaching me to confront issues head on. At the moment, I still can’t initiate a confrontation but I can voice out my anger when the opportunity presents itself. I’m getting there though.
So to whomever this post relates to, don’t let anger ruin every relationship in your life. No matter how we pretend, being friendless sucks. The lone life is awful and we all know it. So rather than pretending to be fine, why not take steps to actually be fine? Why not just let out your anger and then let go of it. I guarantee that you’ll be happier for it.