This post is Grassroots, meaning a reader posted it directly. If you see an issue with it, contact an editor.
If you’d like to post a Grassroots post, click here!

August 24, 2022

IS EVERYONE ANGRY. . . . . is that so bad?

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.

Anger at Hillary Clinton got us, Donald Trump. Anger at Donald Trump got us Joe Biden. Anger at Joe Biden looks like it will give us Donald Trump again.

There is so much anger in our society because it is working. No one wants to stop being angry because, with anger, you can blame the other person for everything that you see that is wrong.

Is anyone here ready to stop being angry at Donald Trump? Is anyone here ready to stop being angry at Joe Biden? Is there anyone here who is ready to stop being angry at their ex? Is there anyone here that has written someone off and is now ready to invite them back?

The reason we have so much anger is that it works! We are using anger to do one of three things. Yes, anger is an emotion; however, it is also a tool we use to manipulate our environment. The three uses of anger are:

  1. To keep people out of our lives forever. Some examples are, “You come around here, and I will get a restraining order and have you thrown in jail.” “Maybe, we should just get a divorce.” “If you leave me, I will kill myself (and you).” You will notice that expressing anger often includes the use of threats. This includes personal and political threats against people that you are angry with.

When confronted with anger, most people assume the worst. “The boss is going to fire me.” “My mate is going to leave me.” “The government is going to fall apart.”

The thought that most often comes to you when confronted with anger is that the other person wants to get rid of you. However, this is the least used purpose of anger. How often have you used anger to get rid of somebody and keep them out of your life forever and ever? For most people, the answer is never.

  1. To manipulate people. Using anger to manipulate someone is far and away the most common use of anger! Bosses use anger to manipulate their employees. Men and women use anger to manipulate each other. Sergeants in the Army use anger to manipulate their recruits. Parents use anger to manipulate their children. And children use anger to manipulate each other.

Most people see manipulation as a bad thing. It is not. Whether manipulation is good or bad depends on your intent. When you scream at your child, “Don’t ride your tricycle in the street,” are you trying to get rid of your child? When you yell at your mate, “We never spend time together,” are you trying to get rid of them and keep them out of your life forever? That may be what they are hearing. If you are going to use anger to manipulate someone, make sure that you are clear about your intent.

  1. To feel better (venting). Using anger to feel better by venting is by far the healthiest and the most constructive way to rid yourself of anger. Venting is expressing anger, not at live objects such as police, children, mates, judges, bosses, friends, neighbors, and animals.

A good time to vent is when you have had a hard day. Unfortunately, many people do not recognize their anger. “I am not angry! I am just upset!!!” One irritation, one frustration, and one upset can soon build up into a real donnybrook of anger that will be expressed in one of the three ways. Confucius said, “To repress a feeling is to give it unlimited power.” Not recognizing what you feel, not accepting, and then lying about being angry make it impossible to find peace with yourself and your world.

Oh No one has ever gone to jail for being angry. How you express your anger will determine if, or how long you spend in prison. Most of us already know from experience how not to express our anger because it escalates and worsens things.

Life is neither good nor evil,

but only a place for good or evil.

Marcus Aurelius 121 A.D.

Feelings are not good or bad,

feelings just are!

So, how do you vent without making things worse? The opposite of love is not hatred or even anger. You will get angriest most at the people you love the most! The opposite of love is indifference, not caring, not giving a damn. People afraid to get angry are telling the ones they love that they are not important!

One of the major sources of anger is when someone does not live up to your expectations. When you get angry at someone, check to see what expectations of yours that person is not living up to. Or are you using your anger to try and manipulate that person into doing what you think they should do?

You do not have to act a fool and yell at everyone because you are angry. You do not have to shut down, stomp away and treat others like they are invisible because you feel rejected and powerless.

There is another way. How would you react if the next time you screwed up and the love of your life yelled at you this way:

I am angry at you because I love you and care about you. If you were not so damn important, I would not get so upset when you did not come home till 3 a.m. I got so scared. I thought something terrible had happened to you. I need to yell at you to get this anger out (vent), so I can feel warm and close and loving to you again, and I do not sit and brood and think, son of a bitch, she did it to me again. I want to get this anger out so I do not stuff my feelings and blow up later.”


The Verbal Rule says that Feelings expressed verbally as strongly as they are felt will reduce in intensity and are free to change. This rule is sometimes called the 15-minute rule. Research has shown that you cannot be yelling, screaming, cursing, angry for more than 15 minutes if someone is listening to you. There are exceptions. 1. If you are trying to manipulate someone with your anger, you can stay angry at them for as long as they do not change to live up to your expectations. 2. You have brain damage. 3. You are using some drug that is affecting your brain.

The problem with anger stems from our belief that anger is “bad”; therefore, it should be repressed and not felt. There is an old Chinese saying, “He who raises his voice first loses.” This is so unhealthy for us, for without the ability to express and listen to anger, our relationship will wither and die.

A longitudinal study by Scott M. Stanley, University of Denver, discovered that the highest divorce rate is in couples where one person gets angry, and the other person shuts down. The second highest divorce rate was in couples where neither person got angry (“We never raise our voice — we never fight.”). The third highest divorce rate was when the couples stood toe to toe and fought it out.

Notice that in all three of these categories, nothing gets solved.

The key to a successful relationship and peace in your life comes down to anger. Are you ready to make friends with your anger? Anger is just like every other feeling that you experience. Your feelings are not good or bad, and you can express your anger in constructive ways (as a function of your love) or change your expectations of yourself and others so that you are no longer experiencing anger. The choice is yours.

You can contact Dr. Downing Ph.D. at:

Email: [email protected]


Leave a Thoughtful Comment

Read 0 comments and reply

Top Contributors Latest

Myron Doc Downing PhD  |  Contribution: 1,810