SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Are you quick to anger? Tell me how it feels.

Discussion started on

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region wwa
Hi all,

When I get angry, I'm a slow burn kind of person.  If somebody does something that makes me mad, it takes a while for my anger to build up.  Sometimes I don't even notice I'm angry until after the moment is over.  Then after I resolve a problem, I usually have this period of dissonance when I keep feeling angry even though I feel better. For example, if I talk to the person who made me angry and forgive him and know it's all okay, I still feel all the physical effects of anger for a few minutes after the conversation is over.

My current protagonist is a heart-on-her-sleeve kind of girl, and I'm wondering if the way I write her flashes of anger are realistic.  If there are any quickblooded folks out there, could you describe what anger feels like to you, how it starts and stops, how anger came and went for you when you were maybe 8-10 years old, etc.?  I'm just exploring here, so any and all thoughts on the subject are welcome.

Melissa


#1 - June 13, 2010, 10:28 AM
Twitter: @MelissaKoosmann

I've always been a quick tempered person and now with kids, it's even worse. Let's see if I can remember how it is when I get angry, it's been so long.  :hahaha

Here it goes--Something happens like the kids are doing something I told them repeatedly not to do. I hear them doing it but because it keeps them busy for a quick minute, I let it continue. (Nothing dangerous)

BAM! someone slips followed by fussing and crying.

I storm out of my room of solitude and start yelling like a crazy person, mad at them for doing it and at me for allowing it.
The kids look at me like I'm crazy but then...
I take a deep breath and explain to them that I just don't want them to get hurt. All is well again...until the next time, that is.

To sum it up, I get angry, blow my stack and calm down just as quickly but within that time it feels like my blood pressure shot up through the roof.
#2 - June 13, 2010, 12:57 PM
Unsinkable
A Bond Broken
Cassi da Conch

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • **
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region carolinas
You sound like my sister, and I'm the opposite -- I don't throw things or anything, but when I was a child, I'd crash into the person I was mad at (I was small and hitting didn't accomplish anything), or stomp on a sand-castle or throw water on my sister's head (if I had a bucket of water near me). Charming, eh? I also burst into tears. If I'm really, really upset and that's only happened a few times, I've barfed. It's such a visceral reaction.

Like Writeaway, I try to be calm and ignore shouting and screaming from my kids because they've got to fight their own battles but then there's that unmistakable crash and "real crying" and what I really want to do is box everyone's ears, instead I shout at them, "I told you so!" Then I take care of any cuts or bruises.

I am very much aware of my body temp going up. My ears, face, cheeks all feel hot and since I am prone to migraines, an extreme reaction can actually trigger one, so I try not to be hot-headed and let the chaos around me be ... I've even taken to simply going outside in the backyard if there's too much noise ...

You can have a lot of fun with your chararacter Melissa because hot-headed people don't think about the consequences. They act quickly and usually there's a price to pay and you can get them into hotter and hotter water fairly quickly. But they try so hard to be good, but need to learn self-control.

Vijaya
#3 - June 13, 2010, 01:59 PM
BOUND (Bodach Books, 2018)
TEN EASTER EGGS (Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces

My anger is a flash that is gone as fast as a dog's bark. I generally don't get angry at all and then BOOM! and it's gone. I imagine I'm storing anger in a silo under the ground and once in a while the silo gets crowded and needs to vent - to let a burst out. I've done "anger work" to keep from going postal. I have a futon and a special baseball bat. So, don't worry folks. Every once and a while I get proactive about emptying the silo.
#4 - June 13, 2010, 02:10 PM
Bazooka Joe says, I have the ability to become outstanding in literature.
http://samhranac.blogspot.com/

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
It starts like an electric wire running along my veins and it goes straight to my head, a pressure feeling--brains of too much wet clay in a bone oven. And it's only there for a minute, because my mouth typically flies open to let it all out. Yeah, it's like a pressure cooker whistle/pop thing... :ahh
#5 - June 13, 2010, 03:08 PM
« Last Edit: June 13, 2010, 04:47 PM by Aimee Walker »
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

Oh, we should start a support group for tempers-anonymous!

As everyone else seems to have said, for me it's a very sudden, physical reaction.  When I was little (and sometimes now!) my face would become very flushed, I'd stomp, hit, lash out, cry, scream.  There was no thought process involved until later, when I would feel really guilty or childish.
#6 - June 14, 2010, 01:06 AM
critically-yours.blogspot.com

MaryWitzl

Guest
My husband and youngest daughter have volatile tempers and are quick to lash out (though, thank God, not physically).  My daughter suffers a lot with her temper -- and so do I, vicariously. When she was younger, she could go from 0 to 10 in a split second -- it was scary.

I've asked her how it feels and she says she just goes hot inside. That one minute she's fine, then she hears or sees something enraging and her mouth is off the split second her brain process it. She'll be a real treat if  she ever has her own kids.
#7 - June 14, 2010, 02:30 AM

Member
Poster Plus
Something triggers your brain and it immediately activates your mouth and/or your fingers. I'm basically pretty calm, unless me or mine feel threatened, then I'll go Tasmanian Devil on you.

#8 - June 14, 2010, 05:59 AM
Making metaphors out of molehills for over thirty years.

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region wwa
This is all perfectly what I want to hear, and really fascinating also. I love hearing people who don't work like me describe their feelings. Usually I only get to do this kind of voyeurism briefly in a social setting. It's cool to read so many descriptions all together. Thank you so much!

Vijaya, thanks for the tip. I'm totally having fun with my character. Poor kid just can't help rushing into problems. Plus she exaggerates constantly, which is a trip.
#9 - June 14, 2010, 12:08 PM
Twitter: @MelissaKoosmann

Just had another incident this morning where the article I was a 1/3 of the way done was completely lost. (Don't ask. It's gone!) Let's just say, the printer got the brunt of my frustration. My hand is still smarting. But as usual, after a few choice words, I calmed down  and now I'm back to ground zero.

I also need to add that the frustration is only taken out on inanimate objects before someone goes calling the police on me. :lol

(Does anyone else think this is somewhat therapeutic?  :lmao)
#10 - June 14, 2010, 12:15 PM
Unsinkable
A Bond Broken
Cassi da Conch

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
I always crack up at the scene in Office Space where they go at the printer with a baseball bat. I would so totally do that.
#11 - June 14, 2010, 01:31 PM
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

I always crack up at the scene in Office Space where they go at the printer with a baseball bat. I would so totally do that.
That is valuable therapy - possibly worth far more than a printer.
#12 - June 14, 2010, 01:43 PM
Bazooka Joe says, I have the ability to become outstanding in literature.
http://samhranac.blogspot.com/

I always crack up at the scene in Office Space where they go at the printer with a baseball bat. I would so totally do that.

That's exactly what I was thinking of....
#13 - June 14, 2010, 01:45 PM
Unsinkable
A Bond Broken
Cassi da Conch

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region wwa
My anger is a flash that is gone as fast as a dog's bark. I generally don't get angry at all and then BOOM! and it's gone.

What fills the void in your mood afterward?  If I get angry, the feeling usually colors my mood for a long while, so when I write, I usually write a gradual transition from anger to bad mood and back to normalcy.  But if your anger disappears after you let it out, what do you feel after it's gone?  Do you transition into a bad feeling, like guilt?  Or a good feeling, like you've reset your internal pressure cooker and now you can start over? 
#14 - June 15, 2010, 12:23 AM
Twitter: @MelissaKoosmann

MaryWitzl

Guest
Let's just say, the printer got the brunt of my frustration. (Does anyone else think this is somewhat therapeutic?

This cracked me up -- I do this all the time and I'm just grateful no one is around to witness it (I'm discreet.)

My computer back in Scotland, the printer at work here, and a certain nasty piece of (expletive deleted) food processor I made the mistake of buying, are all in a conspiracy against me and have FELT MY FIST!  My fist has felt them too, but I never let them know it.
#15 - June 15, 2010, 01:12 AM

Member.
Poster Plus
I know the topic is quick to anger but I thought I offer a different view. I'm the exact opposite, it takes effort to anger me, real effort. I work in a place where my patience is tested time and time again, so my temper is not easy to be spark. However, when you do anger me, watch out. With the kids I'm slightly different, my girls know that I will say a warning only three times and at the third strike you are grounded. Hence the reason why the rules of the game at home are very clear. I try to keep cool because the first thing to be unleashed as soon as I get angry is my tongue and trust me that alone will sting. I can be really cruel when I want to and I don't grow hot inside or anything. I'm the type of person that is cold and calculated which sometimes I think it's even worst. 

My husband loves it because I can be a really nice person once, maybe twice, specifically with services but if by the third strike you haven't fix the problem believe someone is hearing me and I ain't being nice this time around.  At one job I got so angry with the Xerox company service that when I called the 9th time (In a week) I was so furious that when they came to fix it there was a note on the service to triple check everything so there wouldn't be a problem. When the service guy said something nasty to one of my co-workers, I jumped in and gave him such a stinging lash out in front of everyone in the office that he never came again to fix the copier.  They started sending someone else, thought I have to say the new guy always fix it on the first try and I never  had to call more than one time for mainly maintenance rather than a serious problem. 
#16 - June 15, 2010, 06:23 AM

What fills the void in your mood afterward?  If I get angry, the feeling usually colors my mood for a long while, so when I write, I usually write a gradual transition from anger to bad mood and back to normalcy.  But if your anger disappears after you let it out, what do you feel after it's gone?  Do you transition into a bad feeling, like guilt?  Or a good feeling, like you've reset your internal pressure cooker and now you can start over? 
May I be perfectly blunt? My anger blasts and then leaves in much the same way as have quick afternoon sex relieves a person. I mean - it's not the best way to go, but the pressure is off and I feel better. The mood that follows is mild contentment, with an underlying feeling that I could better handle thing if I got more involved in the moment and was not so quick to reach the release point, if you catch my drift.
#17 - June 15, 2010, 08:30 AM
Bazooka Joe says, I have the ability to become outstanding in literature.
http://samhranac.blogspot.com/

For me, the aftermath depends. If it's the kids I lost my temper with, then after the explosion I feel guilty and if I feel bad enough, I apologize....but only if I know I'm in the wrong. If the kids clearly did something they shouldn't have, there really is no guilt. (Maybe a little)

As with my lost article yesterday, I blew up, re-arranged the components of the printer with my fist and then blew it off and was back to normal. I was still angry but just did my daily routine until I had forgotten about it. (Not really forgot, more like calmed down.)
#18 - June 15, 2010, 08:38 AM
Unsinkable
A Bond Broken
Cassi da Conch

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
I probably come off as a mental unit because I can blow my top one minute and ask how your day was the next.
#19 - June 15, 2010, 09:10 AM
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • **
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region carolinas
What fills the void in your mood afterward?    

Hugs and apologies usually ensue, but there is definitely that relaxed feeling because all is well, the pressure is gone ...

Vijaya

#20 - June 15, 2010, 09:14 AM
BOUND (Bodach Books, 2018)
TEN EASTER EGGS (Scholastic, 2015)
www.vijayabodach.blogspot.com
Author of over 60 books and 60 magazine pieces

Hot flash anger sufferer, here! As one of my characters describes it, "Tobasco sauce pumps through my veins." Lots of teeth gritting to control the tongue. Several of my children are hot tempered, and then it's gone. They literally will have no idea what they yelled or had a fit about half an hour later. Thankfully, I married the most even-keeled man in the world.

We have lots of anger management talks, and say scriptures like the one on the white board today, "A soft answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger." Prov. 15:1
I always think of Marmee and Jo March and their quick tempers--there are some great descriptions in Little Women of temper flare ups and the resulting consequences/shame.
#21 - June 15, 2010, 01:12 PM

Trench Bunny Caretaker
Member
Poster Plus
I'm the slow burn type too. I can feel the frustration building up and when I just can't take it anymore, BOOM! However, to outsiders, I probably appear to be the type to lose my temper quickly, because I can go from being calm and patient to freaking out almost from one moment to the next. Occassionally, though, I don't notice I'm mad till I blow my top. Afterwards I ALWAYS feel guilty for behaving badly and losing self-control.  :embarrassed2

Dunno if that helps or not, but I thought I'd share anyway.

Rue
#22 - June 15, 2010, 05:17 PM
WIP: ETBs 10687/35000 (30.5%)
WIP: IWWP 12045/35000 (34.4%)

I'm starting to see a pattern. Women feel guilt for getting angry. Men, not so much. I would feel guilt for prolonged anger, or for frightening someone, or for hurting someone (which I never do). But my anger is so fast I mostly surprise people and it's gone before another emotion can kick in. Those that know me shrug it off, or laugh.
#23 - June 16, 2010, 08:27 AM
Bazooka Joe says, I have the ability to become outstanding in literature.
http://samhranac.blogspot.com/

Patrick

Guest
I've always been a gentle person until--SNAP!--  :guns . Now that I'm older, my anger acts less like an on/off switch. Thank goodness!

When I was about 10, a neighbor rang the doorbell and asked if my brother was home. I told him no. "Yes he is," the kid said, and he tried to step into the house. It felt like the big bang happened right between my lungs and my stomach. I pulled my arm back and--WHAP!--sent a mighty slap right across his face! It felt absolutely amazing! My animal self relishes the memory of it, but my higher self deeply regrets it. About 20 minutes after the incident, I started to feel bad about it, but not too bad. I thought he kinda deserved it.
#24 - June 16, 2010, 01:03 PM

DawnP

Guest
I'll tell you about a student in my first grade classroom.
She has the most volatile temper I have ever seen in a child (in 20 years of teaching).  She also shows extreme ADHD behaviors and has a family history of bipolar.  The only support she is getting (of any kind at all, since parents have not cooperated or followed through in finding her diagnosis) is a half hour a week with guidance.
While she has a lot going on, here is how she describes her anger state:
She wants to have self control, but the 'worry' takes over. Her body gets hot and sweaty, her heart is pounding, her muscles feel too tight (whole body), her brain is thinking too fast and that worries her more until she can't take it.  

Since I know exactly what 'worries' her (her schoolwork- perfectionism), I can anticipate and usually help her manage her worry.  Sometimes the change is amazingly quick.  She can be happy as a clam, then suddenly screaming (ear-piercing!) in my face, ripping her work to shreds, throwing things, and bolting.  Because running out of the building is a safety issue, staff is instructed to contain her in a room. She has tried to climb out a window, kick through a wall, and climb furniture to reach a vent.  Often, it is possible to distract her, and she'll go right back to happy instantly.
She is also sweet, loving, a good friend, an absloutely adorable petite little blue-eyed doll with glasses, and has a great imagination.

So here is a quick story that had the staff in stitches (laughing, not literally).  The other day she become angry and ran for the classroom door. Since she was closer than I, she beat me there. I remained calm and walked quickly but nonchalantly behind, grabbed the radio to call the office, and prepared for another 'event'.  Just outside the door she stopped and walked over to her backpack (on hook in hallway).  Clearly she distracted herself, so I pretended to be doing something else while keeping an eye on her.  She reached into her backpack, took out a deodorant, took the cover off, stuck it up her shirt, thoroughly applied it to both pits, put it away, smiled at me, and quietly returned to the classroom.
For the love of God, now I've seen everyhting!
If it helps her stay cool under pressure, I'll buy her a supply to keep at school!
#25 - June 16, 2010, 05:36 PM
« Last Edit: June 16, 2010, 05:46 PM by DawnP »

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
Poor thing, but the deodorant was cute.

That reminds me of a little girl that lived across the street from me a few years ago. I remember giving her and her mother a ride somewhere and having to pull over because she lost in it the back seat and was violently kicking at us and screaming. The thing is, her mother had no license, was an alcoholic, and took pills by the handful per day. I think her rage was long coming and unsurprising. It was so sad, and that's the only reason I ever helped them out, that girl.

With your student having a family history of mental illness, and for her family to basically ignore her behavior from what you've suggested, that's akin (to me) to a form of child abuse. Not to go "issues" on the thread, but wow, very sad in my eyes.
#26 - June 16, 2010, 05:42 PM
« Last Edit: June 16, 2010, 05:48 PM by Aimee Walker »
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

DawnP

Guest
She is definately one I wish I could take home.  Actually, I live a couple houses down the road from her.
The family has finally agreed to some summer in-home support, so I have hopes that will progress to getting her what she needs. 
Her anger, though, certainly has a huge impact on the classroom environment. 
#27 - June 16, 2010, 05:54 PM

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
The thing with mental illness that stinks is, people with it are less capable of helping the people in their families who are also suffering, so it creates that cycle. Outside intervention means so much more in those situations. (Not sure if that applies to her, just throwing it out there)

"She is definitely one I wish I could take home." - And you have a big, beautiful heart.  :bear2
#28 - June 16, 2010, 05:58 PM
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

DawnP

Guest
Thank you Aimee.
Her classmates sure have learned that her anger doesn't 'define' her.  She is well-liked and deservedly so.  She has an amazingly kind, endearing personality. Some days it seems like an impossibly complex thing for these first graders to be learning, since they are also afraid of her. 
#29 - June 16, 2010, 06:04 PM

is kooky.
Member
Poster Plus
Big lesson for such little people. (I can't think of anything else to say that's worth a buck, but I hear ya)
#30 - June 16, 2010, 06:18 PM
"The mind is everything. What you think, you become." ~Buddha   

Blog - http://yarghing.com

Members:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.