This is my third time through You Bloom, I’m glad you’re with us. Each time I take it, I learn new things. One of the things I haven’t yet learned is how to manage the anger I feel towards my husband. I am four years post D-Day. Although it is said, it took my husband 30 months to get his full disclosure out. His polygraph happened March 2019, and he had a slip in May of this year. I feel overwhelming anger and rage towards him. The damage his choices, both in his betrayal and his disclosure, have caused me is monumental. I’m dealing with severe PTSD. I’m barely functioning despite being in therapy most of these last four years.
He is in recovery and trying to heal, and I believe he wants to save our marriage. I’m learning a lot about healing and implementing as much of it as I can into looking after myself and I still can’t seem to get beyond the anger. I talked about it a lot with my husband and my therapist. I’ve punched a heavy bag and exercise to try to help with it. I’ve journaled until my hands feel might fall off and still, I feel regularly consumed with rage. I know this isn’t good for me or my husband and our marriage. I want to work through it, let it go, whatever, anything to continue to feel like this. I know anger is considered a secondary emotion, and I know that it’s covering is despair. There are times that I can fill that despair and I’ve cried more tears in the last four years than I knew I could. I feel my feelings when they are present themselves and mostly I can manage them, except the anger. How do I deal with the anger I feel towards my husband when I feels like I’ve already tried everything?
It’s been my experience that when individuals work the way you are working, and truly you’re working as hard as you possibly can, but it has been my experience that when individuals are dealing with their kind of anger, that yeah, it’s a second emotion, but I believe it’s a belief. And so if I were working with you one-on-one in my office, I would want to look and explore the belief that you have actually about yourself. Are you angry at yourself?
You see, your husband may be working his thing and part of your anger is a protective part of you. It’s saying never again am I going to accept this or allow this to happen. And I can’t guarantee you’re not going to, so I’m still angry at you, you remind me of this. I think we need to give that part of you a voice so she feels heard, so she feels understood. I don’t want this to be an experience where, I can’t do this, I don’t want to do this. It’s really giving this internal you a voice that says, what is the anger? Let’s talk with her and let’s talk with the anger and that’s what the journaling is about. But ultimately the journaling, I want you to come to a core belief. What have you come to believe about yourself as a result of that experience or those experiences? And that’s what I would want you to write about as you go very specific, what is it that’s enraging me so much? What am I so angry at? Give her a voice, she needs to be heard. And that’s what I would talk with your therapist about is that core belief.
And perhaps, I might do some attachment focused EMDR around that, where you would bring in a safe person, a nurturer, a protector, and have them be with you in that experience or in the anger that you’re feeling in that belief and see what you learn.