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Topic : 08/02 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Number of Replies: 269
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Created on : Thursday, March 29, 2007, 12:45:35 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 04/06/07) Do you know a happy person who, if crossed, will explode in an instant with uncontrollable rage? Intermittent Explosive Disorder may explain why Dr. Phil's guests suddenly lose their temper, break things and even hurt other people. Carrie lives with constant uncertainty. She says her husband, Bob, can be totally calm one minute and be fist-fighting the next. He yells and curses at her, flips off other drivers and hit another man so hard it knocked his eye out; an act of violence that landed him in prison. Where does Bob's anger come from? After Dr. Phil shows Carrie and Bob a video of a previous guest, will Carrie decide to leave the anger prison she's been living in? Then, Traci says her 17-year-old daughter, Melinda, is tearing their family apart. In a matter of seconds, she can go from being a loving daughter and sibling, to throwing blenders and threatening her sister's life, for no apparent reason. Melinda says she's so full of anger that when she gets upset, she feels like she's going to explode. Do her mother and sister deserve the treatment they're getting, or is there something much deeper underlying Melinda's rage? Tell us what you think!

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April 6, 2007, 9:34 am CDT

my own anger

I am 41, with 2 step-children, (ages 33 & 30), and my own daughter, (age 19).  I married for the second time when I was 26 putting together this "brady bunch" family. (not at all like the brady's).  I have been the one who has had a terrible temper and out-bursts!  For no apparent reason!  We've been married 16 years, I had a hysterectomy when I was 30.  I thought my anger problems were do to hormones, but I no longer think that.  I think it's just in me.  I'm wired wrong...or something.  I've fought with my husband and kids with out-bursts that makes no sense at times.  Mostly with my husband, but I've noticed the past couple years it's become so much worse!  We've nearly divorced several times in 16 years over my temper or explosions, but he's hung in there.  My step-daughter has been diagnosed with bi-polar, and multiple personality disorders.  It hasn't been until recently that I've realized I may also have a 'disorder' but it hasn't been diagnosed.  I've been on Paxil, and Xanax, (at one point both at the same time), but I feel like a zombie and looked like one too!  That's no way to live, and it made my husband even more frustrated because I was just existing at that point.  No personality, no nothing!  So...I weaned myself from them.  Now I'm back to me again.  I hate it!  I feel bad for my husband because he's dealing with a daughter who accuses him of being a terrible parent, and then now he has me accusing him of being a terrible husband.  He's not perfect by any means, but none of us are.  As I get older I keep hoping my anger will subside, and I'll let things go that I normally haven't in the past, but I am also afraid it will increase with age.  Soon I'll be an old lady in the nursing home yelling at the staff for no apparent reason, and I won't even know why!  I don't know why I do it now!!  It's like feeling a fire building in me for a few days, then suddenly...I have to take it out on someone!  I'm able to control it for about 5 months at a time, then it hits again.  What a way to live!  For everyone!  Why do I get that rage in me?  Why do I take it out on the ones I love, and the only people here for me?  What is wrong with me?  I don't take estrogen, b/c I'm not completely comfortable with the real results of it yet.  I do take vitamins, and a natural herbal suppliment for menopause.  I am not always this way, just once in a while I need to blow!  But I destroy everything in my path when I do!  Mt. St. Helen!  Then I get to go and apologize to everyone later for hurting them!  I hate this so much!  I don't know where it all comes from!  My family has never had problems like this, so it's not an inherited trait.  WHY AM I LIKE THIS????
 
April 6, 2007, 9:44 am CDT

wow

well unfortunatly i make bob look like a child with anger..it has gotten to the point that my anger and temper has costed me one of the best jobs i have ever had..it has cost me the woman that i would do anything for...i have hurt her two boys (never physically but they say verbal is the worst kind)my ex and me still live together just in seperate parts of the house and she came to me and said i have to watch the doc today..(i always think he is a qwack) well thanks doc ya gone and proved her right again lol..i seen bob today on the show and it just makes me relize that i am in the same boat as him..i drive an eighteen wheeler so my anger gets even worse and i just want to push cars out of my way...so i can relate to every inch of this show today and i have been the same way scince i was a kid going around punching stuff or beatting up people just cause i was mad and it made me feel better...

 

 

 

    i only hope that one day i will be able to get the crap that causes me to lash out and say the hurtfull things i say but never remember out and move forward onto a better life (guys take it from me ok ok and girls,,you cant fix what you dont have control of  unless you can get it under control or seek help...i wish i would have fixed this when i was a kid then i wouldnt be in the state i am in today..alone,bitter and hate the world..get the help when you can dont wait till you lose what you say is important to you because then the dammage is done and sometimes it is to late to fix)

 

good luck to all of my angry people like me i hope you get some help

 

 

 jerry

 
April 6, 2007, 9:49 am CDT

how were you tested?

Quote From: ohdang13

In my case, I have not out grown my ECD or OCD. I am 37 now.   It does sound like your brother has ECD. Without my meds I have very bad impulse control over my mouth.  I would cuss a total stranger out for just looking at me.  Inside my head I knew I was doing wrong and I felt bad for humiliating another human being but, at the same time I was so angry and my mouth seemed to have a mind of its own.  When I was not in a fit of anger I would walk around feeling like the biggest butthead in the world.

 

I have noticed with counciling that certain situations can set off ECD.  My trigger points are stress and anxiety.  I sometimes sufer from social panic attacks...and if for any reason I feel out of my comfort zone when I leave my home...I have to stop and do deep breathing and remind myself that I am in no danger and to get control of myself.

 

For some people with ECD we can have a panic attack that just appears for no reason but, instead of crying and shaking, ECD people will turn violent and angry.  I know for me a panic attack is very scary and to let other people see my fear just intensifies my panic. So, I react with anger. Anger almost turns into a form of a shield.

 

I take my Paxil daily and I do deep breathing exercises daily. But even with all of this I can still loose control. So I carry a bottle of Vistoril everywhere I go. This drug is a very fast acter. I take one and within 5 minutes I can feel it work. This drug immediatly shuts down my anger and suppress the panic attack.

 

I think you should talk to your brothers Dr. and have him put on the Vistoril as needed.  The drug is non-habit forming and only stays in the body for 3 to 4 hours.  Maybe your brothers Dr. can test him for ECD, Anxiety Disorder and Panic attacks. 

 

ECD is a disorder that usually comes with other disorders also. The problem is with the rage and violence issues it is sometimes hard to see the true root to what is triggering the anger.  I would be willing to bet your brother suffers from Anxiety Disorder also. By treating the Anxiety your brother will get his anger under control.

 

I do hope this was helpfull. And if you have any more questions please ask me.  I know how hard it is for a family member to try and be understanding when someone you love is acting so hatefull sometimes.

I'm asking how you were tested for you ECD, or OCD?  I too have problems with anxiety, and maybe they are panic attacks too, but I never thought I was the type of person to feel that way in public.  I usually don't care who's around me then.  I live in a very small town in central U.S. and my best friend is a psychologist.  However...our local dr.'s don't like to give out meds for anxiety, or have tests done for much of anything psychological.  I had to get to the point of complete depression, and have a reason for being that way before they would help me with meds!!!  I then was put on Paxil, and Xanax at the same time.  It was horrible!  My husband looked at me as though I was a zombie, and I guess I truly was!  I weaned myself off of them because I couldn't take not having ANY emotion anymore, and having my family look at me like I was an alien from some other planet!  But...now I'm back to the same old thing!  I build the rage for 5 months at a time, and then I explode!  Yeah...I've kept track of my moments.  I don't have faith in dr.'s anymore, mental or physical.  It isn't hereditary b/c no one in my family has been like this!  It's distroying me, and my marriage.  I've been married 16 years and the poor guy deserves better!  He even says, "When you are calm, you are the sweetest person on earth, but when that other person comes out...I can't believe it!"  Give me your thoughts!  Since you are here telling your story, I'd like your opinion on me!  I hate me!  Please tell me what you think?
 
April 6, 2007, 9:52 am CDT

04/06 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Quote From: nanc83

I am 41, with 2 step-children, (ages 33 & 30), and my own daughter, (age 19).  I married for the second time when I was 26 putting together this "brady bunch" family. (not at all like the brady's).  I have been the one who has had a terrible temper and out-bursts!  For no apparent reason!  We've been married 16 years, I had a hysterectomy when I was 30.  I thought my anger problems were do to hormones, but I no longer think that.  I think it's just in me.  I'm wired wrong...or something.  I've fought with my husband and kids with out-bursts that makes no sense at times.  Mostly with my husband, but I've noticed the past couple years it's become so much worse!  We've nearly divorced several times in 16 years over my temper or explosions, but he's hung in there.  My step-daughter has been diagnosed with bi-polar, and multiple personality disorders.  It hasn't been until recently that I've realized I may also have a 'disorder' but it hasn't been diagnosed.  I've been on Paxil, and Xanax, (at one point both at the same time), but I feel like a zombie and looked like one too!  That's no way to live, and it made my husband even more frustrated because I was just existing at that point.  No personality, no nothing!  So...I weaned myself from them.  Now I'm back to me again.  I hate it!  I feel bad for my husband because he's dealing with a daughter who accuses him of being a terrible parent, and then now he has me accusing him of being a terrible husband.  He's not perfect by any means, but none of us are.  As I get older I keep hoping my anger will subside, and I'll let things go that I normally haven't in the past, but I am also afraid it will increase with age.  Soon I'll be an old lady in the nursing home yelling at the staff for no apparent reason, and I won't even know why!  I don't know why I do it now!!  It's like feeling a fire building in me for a few days, then suddenly...I have to take it out on someone!  I'm able to control it for about 5 months at a time, then it hits again.  What a way to live!  For everyone!  Why do I get that rage in me?  Why do I take it out on the ones I love, and the only people here for me?  What is wrong with me?  I don't take estrogen, b/c I'm not completely comfortable with the real results of it yet.  I do take vitamins, and a natural herbal suppliment for menopause.  I am not always this way, just once in a while I need to blow!  But I destroy everything in my path when I do!  Mt. St. Helen!  Then I get to go and apologize to everyone later for hurting them!  I hate this so much!  I don't know where it all comes from!  My family has never had problems like this, so it's not an inherited trait.  WHY AM I LIKE THIS????

I wanted to respond because I believe you really don't know why you do this.  I am far from an expert, but I do have questions.  When something irritates you, do you mention it before it makes you angry or do you think "it's no big deal.  I can ignore this."?  You mention five month interludes in which you don't do this.  Have you noticed anything else that can point to a pattern?  Sometimes the smallest things can be indicative of a pattern.

 

I'm wondering if you have a more severe version of my own behavior.  I will ignore the little things until they become a huge thing I can't ignore.

 

In any case, I do hope you can solve this because I know you hate it.

 
April 6, 2007, 10:34 am CDT

04/06 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Quote From: nanc83

I am 41, with 2 step-children, (ages 33 & 30), and my own daughter, (age 19).  I married for the second time when I was 26 putting together this "brady bunch" family. (not at all like the brady's).  I have been the one who has had a terrible temper and out-bursts!  For no apparent reason!  We've been married 16 years, I had a hysterectomy when I was 30.  I thought my anger problems were do to hormones, but I no longer think that.  I think it's just in me.  I'm wired wrong...or something.  I've fought with my husband and kids with out-bursts that makes no sense at times.  Mostly with my husband, but I've noticed the past couple years it's become so much worse!  We've nearly divorced several times in 16 years over my temper or explosions, but he's hung in there.  My step-daughter has been diagnosed with bi-polar, and multiple personality disorders.  It hasn't been until recently that I've realized I may also have a 'disorder' but it hasn't been diagnosed.  I've been on Paxil, and Xanax, (at one point both at the same time), but I feel like a zombie and looked like one too!  That's no way to live, and it made my husband even more frustrated because I was just existing at that point.  No personality, no nothing!  So...I weaned myself from them.  Now I'm back to me again.  I hate it!  I feel bad for my husband because he's dealing with a daughter who accuses him of being a terrible parent, and then now he has me accusing him of being a terrible husband.  He's not perfect by any means, but none of us are.  As I get older I keep hoping my anger will subside, and I'll let things go that I normally haven't in the past, but I am also afraid it will increase with age.  Soon I'll be an old lady in the nursing home yelling at the staff for no apparent reason, and I won't even know why!  I don't know why I do it now!!  It's like feeling a fire building in me for a few days, then suddenly...I have to take it out on someone!  I'm able to control it for about 5 months at a time, then it hits again.  What a way to live!  For everyone!  Why do I get that rage in me?  Why do I take it out on the ones I love, and the only people here for me?  What is wrong with me?  I don't take estrogen, b/c I'm not completely comfortable with the real results of it yet.  I do take vitamins, and a natural herbal suppliment for menopause.  I am not always this way, just once in a while I need to blow!  But I destroy everything in my path when I do!  Mt. St. Helen!  Then I get to go and apologize to everyone later for hurting them!  I hate this so much!  I don't know where it all comes from!  My family has never had problems like this, so it's not an inherited trait.  WHY AM I LIKE THIS????

  Hi, my name's Steel, and I found this thread by accident, and as usually happens, I got caught by the pain and hurt and stopped to help, (I'm probably about as useless as you'd expect).

  OK, so let's get the obvious things out of the way, perhaps you haven't thought of them yet?  Anger management, the same thing they make the road rage people take.  When you consider that the two sound VERY similar, unexplained rages with anger being way over the top for what happened or didn't happen, so perhaps those courses could help?

  Meditation.  Now that is a good thing for anyone to learn, you learn a mantra (a word or sentence) that when you say it over and over you feel calmer.  It helps lower stress and gives you an insight into yourself.  And you only have to shave your head and wear orange robes if you want to be a monk  :)

  Thirdly, is there a situation that seems to trigger you?  If there is, avoid it like the plague, make sure other people avoid it too.  Discuss it in a quiet time with your husband and see if he has noticed such a situation.

  Lastly, if nothing at all works, counteract it by being as loving, kind and considerate as possible when you can.  Hug the kids and your hubby, tell them how much they mean to you and how special you think they are, and cook some favourite meals.  It won't take away the anger, but at least everyone will know what they mean to you and understand that this is something you have no control over.

  I hope something I've said helps to take away he pain?

 

  P.S.  A mantra I learnt many years ago goes like this:  (Say each word SLOWLY three times to yourself), Peacefulness, Calmness, Tranquility.  I find myself feeling calmer by the time I reach the third word.

 

  Steel

 

 
April 6, 2007, 10:56 am CDT

04/06 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Quote From: nanc83

I'm asking how you were tested for you ECD, or OCD?  I too have problems with anxiety, and maybe they are panic attacks too, but I never thought I was the type of person to feel that way in public.  I usually don't care who's around me then.  I live in a very small town in central U.S. and my best friend is a psychologist.  However...our local dr.'s don't like to give out meds for anxiety, or have tests done for much of anything psychological.  I had to get to the point of complete depression, and have a reason for being that way before they would help me with meds!!!  I then was put on Paxil, and Xanax at the same time.  It was horrible!  My husband looked at me as though I was a zombie, and I guess I truly was!  I weaned myself off of them because I couldn't take not having ANY emotion anymore, and having my family look at me like I was an alien from some other planet!  But...now I'm back to the same old thing!  I build the rage for 5 months at a time, and then I explode!  Yeah...I've kept track of my moments.  I don't have faith in dr.'s anymore, mental or physical.  It isn't hereditary b/c no one in my family has been like this!  It's distroying me, and my marriage.  I've been married 16 years and the poor guy deserves better!  He even says, "When you are calm, you are the sweetest person on earth, but when that other person comes out...I can't believe it!"  Give me your thoughts!  Since you are here telling your story, I'd like your opinion on me!  I hate me!  Please tell me what you think?

  Don't be hating yourself, that's not a solution it's just another load to carry on your shoulders.  At the very least consider yourself neutral, the good vs the bad balance out.  :)

  We all have bad days, the whole world has been having a bad day for 30 years,  people hate people because of their religion, their sex, their race, their weight, etc, you're not like that, so maybe we should put you above neutral?

  You build the rage for about 5 months and explode.  Now to an old, Aussie bloke that sounds like a clue.  Do you reckon you can explode on something that won't care?  Like stand in the middle of a field and let fly.  Give those damn cows a piece of your mind (but don't milk any for at least a week  :), or how about not letting it build in the first place?  If something annoys you just say straight away "Hey!  That annoys me."  I'm sure that given a choice the people around you might choose that option (and the cows too.)

  I'm making jokes here and there, you might think I'm insensitive, but the truth is it's hard to be angry when you are giggling :)  Another good thing to keep you happy is singing (even badly), try What a wonderful world.  Now that's a song that stops angry in its tracks.

  Failing everything else, the next time you feel like exploding, or have already started, just grab hubby and give him a kiss hat will curl his toes, keep it up until the anger goes, even if he begs.

  Try those things and you just might get the PERMANENT sweetest person award.

 

  Steel

 

 
April 6, 2007, 11:04 am CDT

04/06 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Quote From: flrat69

I wanted to respond because I believe you really don't know why you do this.  I am far from an expert, but I do have questions.  When something irritates you, do you mention it before it makes you angry or do you think "it's no big deal.  I can ignore this."?  You mention five month interludes in which you don't do this.  Have you noticed anything else that can point to a pattern?  Sometimes the smallest things can be indicative of a pattern.

 

I'm wondering if you have a more severe version of my own behavior.  I will ignore the little things until they become a huge thing I can't ignore.

 

In any case, I do hope you can solve this because I know you hate it.

Thank you for the quote.  To answer your questions, yes...I do let things build up, (the small ones), until they just come out with something else.  I try to "pick my battles" when the small things actually come up, and usually I let them go.  I'm a "warm and fuzzy" in the psych world of definitions, and love to see everyone happy, EVEN when I'm very unhappy.  So I let things go that set me off just a little.  I'm usually quiet, and inward, but around the right person, (usually my husband only), I let loose when it boils over!  I've just recently learned to "talk to myself" to get myself out of the mode of getting to that boiling point, but it hasn't been long enough to actually know if it's working or not.  So far I could only tell that a couple times I've kept myself from saying something I'd only regret later.  Not really long enough time yet.  Yes...I...like you...wait until things get huge.  It's really bad then, but what do you do for it?  How do you react when it hits?  I DO SO HATE THE WAY I AM!!!  I normally LOVE everyone!
 
April 6, 2007, 11:11 am CDT

04/06 Explosive Anger and Its Aftermath

Quote From: steel2wolf

  Hi, my name's Steel, and I found this thread by accident, and as usually happens, I got caught by the pain and hurt and stopped to help, (I'm probably about as useless as you'd expect).

  OK, so let's get the obvious things out of the way, perhaps you haven't thought of them yet?  Anger management, the same thing they make the road rage people take.  When you consider that the two sound VERY similar, unexplained rages with anger being way over the top for what happened or didn't happen, so perhaps those courses could help?

  Meditation.  Now that is a good thing for anyone to learn, you learn a mantra (a word or sentence) that when you say it over and over you feel calmer.  It helps lower stress and gives you an insight into yourself.  And you only have to shave your head and wear orange robes if you want to be a monk  :)

  Thirdly, is there a situation that seems to trigger you?  If there is, avoid it like the plague, make sure other people avoid it too.  Discuss it in a quiet time with your husband and see if he has noticed such a situation.

  Lastly, if nothing at all works, counteract it by being as loving, kind and considerate as possible when you can.  Hug the kids and your hubby, tell them how much they mean to you and how special you think they are, and cook some favourite meals.  It won't take away the anger, but at least everyone will know what they mean to you and understand that this is something you have no control over.

  I hope something I've said helps to take away he pain?

 

  P.S.  A mantra I learnt many years ago goes like this:  (Say each word SLOWLY three times to yourself), Peacefulness, Calmness, Tranquility.  I find myself feeling calmer by the time I reach the third word.

 

  Steel

 

Thank you for your input.  You are correct with the mantra idea.  As I stated to the other quote someone left me on this, I have just recently learned to "talk to myself" to get out of the mode of the boil-over!  This has ranged from, "It's not this person's, or that person's fault, it's me, don't take it out on them," to yelling at myself, "Would you just calm down or you'll regret it!!!"  All this in my head.  No wonder why I have headaches huh?  But I do appreciate your input, more than you know.  I don't talk to anyone anymore about this, so it's good to have other views.  Also...I have done exactly as you said to, and made wonderful meals for my family, and worn myself out doing something that I know would make them happy and know I care and love them, but I ruin those times in a blink of an eye when I get mad.  Then I do it all over again.  I hug and kiss everyone too!  So...you're right, maybe that's why my husband has stuck with me this long thru it all...because I do those things to counter what damage I've done.  Maybe???  I don't know...but he's still here, and the family is still a unit for some reason.  I JUST DON'T EVER WANT TO SEE THAT OTHER PERSON I AM EVER AGAIN!!!!  Thank you so much.  I really love having someone on the outside look in and give an opinion!
 
April 6, 2007, 12:22 pm CDT

There Is Hope

Quote From: nanc83

Thank you for the quote.  To answer your questions, yes...I do let things build up, (the small ones), until they just come out with something else.  I try to "pick my battles" when the small things actually come up, and usually I let them go.  I'm a "warm and fuzzy" in the psych world of definitions, and love to see everyone happy, EVEN when I'm very unhappy.  So I let things go that set me off just a little.  I'm usually quiet, and inward, but around the right person, (usually my husband only), I let loose when it boils over!  I've just recently learned to "talk to myself" to get myself out of the mode of getting to that boiling point, but it hasn't been long enough to actually know if it's working or not.  So far I could only tell that a couple times I've kept myself from saying something I'd only regret later.  Not really long enough time yet.  Yes...I...like you...wait until things get huge.  It's really bad then, but what do you do for it?  How do you react when it hits?  I DO SO HATE THE WAY I AM!!!  I normally LOVE everyone!

I will tell you what I have done.  It may or may not work for you, but it's all I know.

 

I learned to express how I felt about the "little things" when they happened.  With my wife's help, I have been able to keep the pot from boiling.  If you want to try this, talk to your husband about it first so he knows what's up.  The idea isn't to fuss about every little thing; it's to mention them.  It's a low key way to learn to improve your communication skills.

 

Let me try an example (fictitious, but with the same method):

My wife might tend to talk over a TV show I like that she doesn't.  That is irritating.  I could do like the past and let it go because it's no big thing.  You know how well that works!  I will let her complete her thought and acknowledge what she has said.  Then I might say something like "I know you don't like this show, but would you mind waiting until a commercial before you talk about something else?  I want to hear what you have to say, but I'd like to finish this first."  I know that doesn't sound like much, but in the process I have let her know she is important and interesting as well as telling her in a non-threatening way that I would appreciate the courtesy.  This works much better for me than six months later bringing it up because something else set me off.

 

Oh well.  I told you I'm no genius.  I hope this helped a little.  There is no quick fix.  It's practice, practice, practice... 

 

 
April 6, 2007, 12:58 pm CDT

Well Done

Quote From: steel2wolf

  Don't be hating yourself, that's not a solution it's just another load to carry on your shoulders.  At the very least consider yourself neutral, the good vs the bad balance out.  :)

  We all have bad days, the whole world has been having a bad day for 30 years,  people hate people because of their religion, their sex, their race, their weight, etc, you're not like that, so maybe we should put you above neutral?

  You build the rage for about 5 months and explode.  Now to an old, Aussie bloke that sounds like a clue.  Do you reckon you can explode on something that won't care?  Like stand in the middle of a field and let fly.  Give those damn cows a piece of your mind (but don't milk any for at least a week  :), or how about not letting it build in the first place?  If something annoys you just say straight away "Hey!  That annoys me."  I'm sure that given a choice the people around you might choose that option (and the cows too.)

  I'm making jokes here and there, you might think I'm insensitive, but the truth is it's hard to be angry when you are giggling :)  Another good thing to keep you happy is singing (even badly), try What a wonderful world.  Now that's a song that stops angry in its tracks.

  Failing everything else, the next time you feel like exploding, or have already started, just grab hubby and give him a kiss hat will curl his toes, keep it up until the anger goes, even if he begs.

  Try those things and you just might get the PERMANENT sweetest person award.

 

  Steel

 

That was a very good and very caring response.  Great job!
 
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