At times I have issues with anger. I can get angry over everything and nothing. Once I feel angry I actively seek out and want to start up fights, usually with whoever happens to be close to me. Often this meant my husband T, as he have been the closest one to me for a very long time now. In the beginning I didn’t understand this, I was angry, what was so strange about that? Everyone are angry sometime. But I often had an excuse (yeah an excuse, that’s what it was) that “let” me be angry and that “justified” my feelings. What infuriated me was that T was so cool and logic about it, he always solved whatever issue I had and that made me even more angry. For the first years of our relationship he thought this was who I was. Later he said “I loved you all the same, even if you happened to be mean at times. All the times I got the real you was worth it”.
But around the same time that I got diagnosed it dawned upon us, sometimes I’m reasonably angry and have well grounded reasons for it but sometimes it stems from something else. To borrow his words “It’s like you’re a different person sometimes” and to be honest.. I probably am. Once I was started on medicines though, T started noticing that this side didn’t come as often. It’s still there sometimes, but not as often and slowly I’ve learned the difference of “bipolar angry” and just plain angry. It also took time before I could put words on the feeling and try to explain it to someone. But I tried and tried again, I hated the way I behaved and was more angry with myself in the end then with anyone else when I couldn’t control it.
But what do you do when you know your mood will always swing like this? That it doesn’t matter if you nail it that one time, it will always return in different disguises and make you feel disgusted afterwards?
You learn to cope, or at least that what I did. I’ve learned that I will get angry, there’s nothing I can do about it, and my mood will swing back and forth. But once I feel so pissed off I want to tear off someone’s head and kick it around like a football, I force myself to take a time-out. I distance myself from anyone in my vicinity and actually let myself be as angry as I want. I let myself ravage in my anger and blow myself up to such proportions in my own mind that I probably look like a hot air balloon. But I only allow myself this for a minute or two. Then I force myself to quell it and seek positives in the situation even if it appears pitch black in my mind and I want to puke bile. And usually it works, even if I still feel pissed off, I have usually gotten some distance to my feelings and the situation so that I can handle it.
But sometimes, when I’m having a particularly hard/frustrating day, I say it like it is to T. “I’m angry today but I have no reason to be so please, be gentle with me”. Because for some reason he’s still with me and knows that when I tell him I’m angry, the usual banter we both enjoy must be put on pause. And still, through all the shit this disorder have caused, he manages to see through it.