Anger, anger, more anger

Had an interesting day, yesterday — the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.

“Finished up” the whole experience with a bit of a meltdown at 3 a.m. this morning.

Life goes on, but surely there must be a better way to handle things than letting it get the best of me.

The adventure continues…

Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

7 thoughts on “Anger, anger, more anger”

  1. Just part of life…part of expressing…part of being human and feeling and living fully…part of having a brain injury. I used to be so emotional with great highs…drug like…and terrible lows. Ride the roller coaster and learn some tools to come back to allow you to come back to the center and stay there more often…meditation., visualization, affirmations, thought reframing, journaling, etc…. Be compassionate with yourself then get busy!


  2. BB –

    Anger is a typical reaction after injury – I believe it is related to the brain healing; similar to the tantrums experienced by young children as their brains developed. However it may be that after a certain point it is not necessarily a side effect of healing but rather something else.

    You need to examine this – are you angry in all environments and will all people? Or is your spouse a major factor. This is not a criticism of them or even your relationship – but rather an understanding of the scenarios and initiating factors. Do you lose your cool at work? With friends? If not you know you have at least some level of impulse control that you can tap into. Do you get mad when feeling time pressure – too many things demanding your attention and overwhelming you? Can you sit with your spouse and find a way to agree that they will not mention new tasks when you are under a time pressure? Is it from lack of sleep? And its also important to be honest – are there emotional issues involved – for example there are people in my life who can generate my anger very quickly (and generally these days I don’t get angry quickly) – simply because there are ancient and long standing hot buttons between us. These kinds of flare ups are usually between intimates – family, spouse, kids, business partners etc.

    To address emotionally rooted anger requires that one learn new patterns for communication and practice them religiously until they are more ingrained, as well as understanding triggers and ways to deflect the immediate response.

    If the anger is more common in multiple areas of your life it could still reflect inner feelings that come from years of BI issues – don’t forget that as our brains heal they heal with the patterns that are being formed and so if we are led to feel incapable because of our injuries, the revelatory knowledge that it was BI and not lack of character or ability is not enough – we actually have to retrain our thinking about ourselves. Furthermore BI affects impulse control making it harder to resist the urge to blow up at something when it doesn’t work the way we want or is out of control or frustrates us. Lack of impulse control is one of the more difficult aspect of TBI and can present through a number of ways – anger, talking too much (interrupting), inappropriate behavior, risk taking, etc. It can also lead to suicide when combined with depression. I don’t have any magic answer for impulse control; I believe that mediation helps, exercise helps, enough sleep helps, retraining yourself (when you can) helps, therapy helps, and loving support of friends and family. Its not easy. But the fact that you try is perhaps the most important.


  3. Well, I tried impulse control for hours, but eventually wore out and just lost it. It’s complicated and simple at the same time — I just haven’t been getting enough rest, and I was going away on a business trip that scared the b’geezuz out of me. Intimidated, agitated and tired… meltdown time. Ugh. Better now. Much better. The business trip was a success, and I returned with my career still intact. Good stuff.


  4. Get busy, is right. Too tired, too unstructured, too strung out over whatever it was that was bugging me. Sleep, eat right, take care of myself, keep busy with meaningful work. And apologize. Always apologize and make right what I made wrong.


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