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Old 09-01-2013, 12:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Anger and irritability in early recovery


This post is as much for my benefit so as to get it out 'on paper' as it were as anything.

A week sober now - into day eight in fact. I am sleeping a lot and eating well and generally beginning to feel pretty good after a few days worth of withdrawal. However I was out walking my dogs this morning and passed a place I had a little run-in with someone a couple of months ago. I was walking in an area where I have done for five years or so when one day a teacher challenges me and says the ground is part of school property and I'm not allowed to walk there. It probably is but there are no fences or signs and most land here in the UK is public. So I tell her I have walked here for years and go on my way.

This morning as I walked past the same place I ran through the scenario I had that day and suddenly felt almost murderous towards the person in question! I ran through the whole thing in my head and how I would verbally tear her to shreds if she dared do such a thing again..etc.

I am a very gentle and un-aggressive person by nature, so this was way out of character. The day has actually been full of suppressed rages. It isn't fair to express them to those around me so I don't but it has battered my head a bit!

Anyone else go through anything similar?
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Old 09-01-2013, 12:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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have had rages when I was drinking totally uncontrolled . I hope they don't get worse now im on day 2. try breathing deeply when you feel the rage I could do that when I was sober. hope you feel better tomorrow
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Old 09-01-2013, 12:27 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hi Mentium, congratulations on day 8. Great!! Yes I did have alot of anger. I think frustration turns into anger at some point. So I would call it extreme frustration. Your body is going thru so much. It's an internal battle. This will definitely get better. When toxins have gotten out of you. And good healthy food and water are in you. I believe this. I found hard, sweaty physical exercise to help the most. Try urge surfing, google it, this should help.
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Old 09-01-2013, 01:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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This was a massive problem for me early on Mentium. So much so that I spent more time looking up anger management than I did alcoholism in the first month or so. I thought I might murder someone at work and I kept out of everyone else's way, though I did get into a few arguments with family. To be honest I think they were all really on edge around me because I was so temperamental. I'll be honest and say that side of me has always been there and it goes hand in hand with addictive behaviour, having a sense of entitlement and being a complete control freak. It seemed to be such a physical thing though, a part of withdrawal, because it left and things calmed down (almost too calm for a while). It is a massive adjustment getting sober and I think we go through a whole range of exaggerated emotions. Just remember you don't have to act the way you feel, and hopefully that will help avoid any serious run ins

Btw that is the cutest dog ever
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I didn't notice it so much when I went off the alcohol because I was just too depressed at first. It is like that with giving up the nicotine. Things that happened years ago suddenly I am very angry about. It all seems to center around work people. It sucks. I am sure it is normal but I can't wait for it to be over.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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'Anger' is popularly considered one of the five stages of grief, first hypothesized by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. The list has been expanded to six or seven since her early formulation.

Some of us find it useful to frame early sobriety as a mourning process, having separated from what for many became the most important part of their lives.

Google "stages of grief" to get a more comprehensive understanding of the grieving process.
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Old 07-09-2016, 04:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
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In very early sobriety, our brains are trying to recalibrate. Irritability is actually a big part of detox (which you are on the other side of.)

In long stretches of sobriety, I have learned it abates. When I was on Day 3, I went apeshit on my husband for folding towels incorrectly. That happened.
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Old 07-09-2016, 04:22 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Definitely experienced explosive rage and out of control anger in my first week. It was quite frightening, I'm not an angry person usually. It passed though as the chemicals rebalanced. I'm bathed in a loving glow at the moment, that's always nice while it lasts
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Old 07-09-2016, 04:33 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yep anger irritability and rage are par for the course in the first few weeks months

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Old 07-09-2016, 05:48 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I certainly struggled with anger in the first couple of months (not all the time, really don't want to scare anybody, also I'm sure lots of people don't have anger for this long).
I rationalise mine this way - lots of anger supressed in my drinking, take the drink away, it's free to surface. I guess folk who had not drank for so long had learned to deal with their emotions in a healthier way, I had to start from scratch.
I agree with the post about exercise, works for me. Also the anger has really subsided, early days are not a sign of things to come, stick with it, it's really really worth it.
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Old 07-09-2016, 07:06 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I can completely relate to the feelings of anger and even straight-up rage! I've been a total menace on the roads (verbally) and people who annoy me anyway, such as my husband, are constant targets. It's gotten a little better (day 42 now) but it still surfaces every now and then. You're not alone.
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Old 07-09-2016, 08:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I say give this video four minutes and decide if you want to hear the rest: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ar-L41QMYCM
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Old 07-09-2016, 09:05 AM   #13 (permalink)
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This resonates with me also. When I drank, it was easy to drink anger away and forget about it. Without the drink, I had to feel everything I was feeling and learn to cope with it in a healthy manner. It honestly has taken me a couple of years to really manage my emotions. At first I didn't do it so well and I expressed my anger and it backfired in my face. Now, I've mellowed out a bit and am better at it. It's about learning new coping skills in sobriety.
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Old 07-10-2016, 09:02 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Lol many of us abnormal drinkers don't do sociable, we do holy jihad armageddon warfare against perceived slights and offenses of every kind, real or imagined, and way out of proportion. It isn't Mary the schoolkids elected unhappy dog poop patrol, she seems rather to contain every principality and power of darkness against whose self righteous bigoted authority and conspired power we nobly rail all warfare and hellfire... mostly internally, but some always spills out, and makes daily life with us and by ourselves tedious to IMpossible to miserable Defiance - the outstanding characteristic of many an alcoholic. You don't tell me what to do.

We drink to drown it all out one day, then drink to go sht disturb the next...many such conflicts live way below the level of consciousness.

AAs have been showing me some very very simple 'flimsy reed' tools to quiet the stormy emotions, set my relations in more stable workable balance. When with a will i do decide to try them, since i desperately need to find peace, they are changing my perspectives, gradually peeling my eyes open to so many things i never knew nothing of, all those mysterious things i could never quite put my finger on, for example, the rights, privileges and well being of others! who it seems i have discounted my entire life, unless i could benefit somehow.

They say that anger is poison for us. I get spurts every day, and now peer to see exactly what is behind them. Fascinating. Oh they also observe self-restraint is top priority for us...top priority. Cheers! Let the pooch poop at midnight! Lol
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