Q:

I need to get my anger under control

I am constantly arguing with my wife, and always find myself yelling at my children, especially my daughter – who is the oldest of my three children. I grew up with this sort of behaviour, from my father. 

I always promised myself that I would not end up being like him, but I find that I am following that same path. After I have finished yelling, I often find myself feeling sorry for my wife or my children, and often ashamed for doing it. 

I have displayed my anger by punching holes in the walls, which I have done so I don't hit my wife or children, which has proven to be a costly thing to do – as I have then had to fix the holes. 

I know it isn't their fault, nor are they actually the ones to blame. Afterwards I feel guilty and I wish that I hadn't yelled at them.

I have noticed lately, that my children are beginning to act out too, following the same behaviour that I am showing.

My wife is always on my case about it, which I really hate. But I know that's she is right, I need to get myself in check. 

What can I do to stop getting angry all the time? I want to end my current cycle, but I just don't know who to turn to.
What advice can you offer me, so I can get my anger under control, and so I may get my temper under control too? Thank you.

 


A:

Hi thank you for writing in and for being able and brave enough to write asking for help for the issues that you have been able to share.

My friend, I know it's hard. You do not have the tools, skills, language, communication, to make a change on your own.

You are an intelligent man and can see some of the problems and issues that you are dealing with, which is great BUT you don't know how to make it right.

It's good to think ‘I am not going to be like my Dad'. Unfortunately, you don't know what you don't know. All you know is what you have been given from your father or have taken on board from your peers and/or the media.

This has been your learning and awareness to date and again unfortunately this is all you know. And if this is all you know how can YOU make it any better for yourself, your wife and the kids?

Bro you can't.

This is what is so frustrating and no one understands or comprehends, least of all you.

All the violence on the walls etc is that frustration of ‘I don't want to be like Dad but I don't know what else to do'.

My friend I know how you feel, I've been where you are, I feel what you are feeling - the curse of family violence that my Dad and Mum passed down to me that was passed down to them.

I literally thought I was going crazy, no matter what I tried to do to make things better just never worked. I took it out on members of the public, at work, the neighbours, my wife and the kids. Anyone that was in my sights was going to feel the wrath of the frustration.

I did this violence for 38 years with some fatal consequences.

My friend you deserve better and your family deserve a better YOU!

You are good man and good men deserve to be free of all forms of violence.

Please ring our information line on 0800 456 450 find the contact details for the closest stopping violence programme and join it and begin getting the awareness education, tools, skills, language and communication around family violence.

NOW

One option would be for you to move out for a while so there is no more violence in your home. If you cannot move out for a while, you need to make a contract with your wife and children.

The contract is:

When you get mad angry or on the verge of getting violent and want to smash the wall, yell, scream, rant and rave OR the family are in fear of you for whatever type of violence you're perpetrating, your contract with them is that you will take a TIME OUT. Just like in basketball league, rugby...

You agree:
• a time and place to go to cool off
• how long you will leave for and stick to that time
• don't drink 
• don't take drugs or mind altering substances
• don't drive
• don't make contact with anyone unless they are from the stopping violence programme.

On your return the contract is that you will talk about what it is that is making the family scared and/or what is making you angry.

If you still cannot cool off take another timeout.

The family cannot see this violence and abuse again.

To get angry is OK. It's an emotion. To show it with violence and abuse is not OK.

YOU have to start making that change so that your children learn a different way from you to handle getting angry.

Please I cannot write fast enough to want to help you.

Please get back asap.

I want you and your family free from family violence and healed and living a blessed life.

I want to stay in touch through this email.

Vic

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