Fighting and arguing can allow us to vent, release tension as well as pent-up emotions. Yelling is not the best way to express ourselves, but in the heat of the moment, it may be healthier, in the long run, to vent a little rather than stuff it. When we suppress our anger, we are denying its presence. Anger denied will surely resurface somewhere else, and you might not be very happy about the aftermath.
When we keep quiet about being disrespected, mistreated or invalidated we stuff down the emotions that are attempting to surface. Emotions are meant to move, rather than be immobilized. Repression creates health issues, sometimes immediately. Over time, repressed anger can become cancerous tumors if left unexpressed. Which is why cancer often resurfaces after chemo and radiation. The underlying emotional issue is still present that caused the problem in the first place.
Anger? What Anger?
Have you ever wondered where the anger comes from? When our boundaries are crossed, we are disrespected or treated as if we don’t matter, our natural response is anger. Anger is a sure sign of crossed boundaries. If you have difficulty setting boundaries, anger is the first thing you feel when someone pushes you over the line. It could be a simple question that you have been asked before, but anger surfaces seemingly out of nowhere. When a particular issue arises again and again, the history of the past degradation or disrespect can really push our buttons. For good reason. We are meant to have healthy boundaries. We are not meant to be doormats for others to wipe their feet on, metaphorically speaking.
Depending on the way we were raised by our role models, we may have been taught by masters of the art of passive-aggressive strategies. Without realizing, we can use the back door poke and run game that children use. “Oh ya, well then …. there! See how you like that Mr. Fancy Pants!” Passive aggressive behavior is covert, secretive and manipulating. Eye contact is avoided. Rather than speaking up for oneself, you may ignore your partner when you are angry with them, turn your back on them in bed, huff, puff and generally act like a child.
Slamming doors and walking away is another way to show that you are angry, without communicating how you feel in a positive way. People who are passive-aggressive tend to avoid conflict and communication. When you ask, “Are you okay?” The answer is usually abrupt, “I’m FINE!”
If you are prone to sinus infections, it is likely that you repress anger, rather than discuss and deal with it. Sinus infections are a result of holding in your words, rather than expressing what is coming up for you, usually with someone close to you. Notice the next time you get a sinus infection: did you have an argument with someone where you did not speak up? Did someone cross a boundary? Were you triggered by something that was said that you did not mention to the other person? When we keep our feelings hidden and suppress them, they have to go somewhere. Thoughts are formulated in the Prefrontal Cortex of the brain, immediately above the sinus cavity. It makes sense that these thoughts slide down, and ferment in the sinus cavity causing a brew that becomes painful.
Once you recognize you have a sinus infection have a conversation with the person quickly that you are angry with. The sooner that you can act and move the energy the better. If you can’t speak with the person involved, do the next best thing: write them an honest letter pouring out your emotions with all the reasons you were upset and angry. There is no need to mail this letter. Burn the letter in a safe place. This releases the energy.
Sounds Far Fetched?
Louise Hay wrote her book, You Can Heal Your Life, over 20 years ago. Millions have used her book and healing mantras to recover from serious illness and ailments. It is part of my healing process.
Often fear is the motivating factor in avoiding conflict. We can be afraid of losing what we have. We can be afraid if we speak up that our partner will not accept us, leave us, or not love us. All of these feelings are motivated by fear. Many women are afraid of men when they yell. This can be because their father raged and yelled to express his anger. When our parents had poor communication and conflict resolution skills the only method for resolution was yelling at one another. Needless to say, little was resolved in this way. Often both parties would retreat to their safe space in anger, fuming for days or even weeks. One person ended up getting the short end of the proverbial stick. Compromise and fair fighting were not often utilized.
There Is No Winning When You Want To Be Right
When we focus on winning an argument, we are losing the relationship war. You may win the argument, but sex, affection, and anything that feels warm and loving may not be experienced by you for quite some time when you win. Competition and winning are not components of a healthy balanced relationship. When you make winning the focus you are making the other person WRONG.
Negotiating and Reviewing
Relationships are not static. They are ever growing and changing. The abler you are to change and allow, the greater chance of success will be. Healthy relationships involve listening and open-hearted communication. Attacking, yelling or condemning the other will not get you what you want. Your partner will stop listening when they feel attacked. Instead, listen to their complaint. Acknowledge, “I hear you saying that you feel that ____________. Mirror back to them what they have told you so that they know you heard them. Then tell them that you are sorry. Resist the temptation to use the “You do that to me all the time!” line. It will shut them down and not get you what you want, which is LOVE.
When you attack another’s viewpoint, they will stop listening. When your partner stops listening, you get nowhere. When your partner is upset, (she) won’t want to have sex with you.
– Listen to the person speaking.
– Acknowledge their complaint. Repeat what they said, “What I hear you saying is_________________.
– I am sorry that you feel this way. I will do my best to not do _____ again. Resist the temptation to say, “Well you do the exact same thing!” Wait 24 hours before you revisit your grievances.
– Ask questions.
– Avoid judgment, sarcasm or criticism.
– Other Illnesses Caused By Suppressed Anger or Resentment
- Cancer (long-standing resentment and hurts)
- Depression (anger you feel you don’t have the right to have.
- Arthritis (feeling unloved, criticism, resentment)
- Abscesses (fermenting thoughts about resentment and even revenge)
- Bad breath, (anger)
- Anger, Sex, And Women
Women seem to have a more difficult time than men overcoming an emotional interaction. Perhaps it is because men frequently communicate more openly than women do with anger. Historically, little boys were allowed to be angry, where girls generally were not. Once an argument is over, men can move on and put it behind them (typically) more easily than women. Women process differently and rehash discussions and conflicts in their minds. They may even have arguments with their significant other in their heads!
Due to our slower processing speed, it is more difficult to get a woman to consider sex after an argument. If we argued with you in the morning, it might be days before we have processed the event enough to feel warm and fuzzy about getting busy with you. In many cases, it is a “HELL NO!”
After An Argument
– Don’t give him the cold shoulder.
– Don’t walk away if he wants to discuss the argument again.
– Don’t keep jabbing him
– Don’t have makeup sex if you don’t feel like it. In fact, make-up sex after an argument is counter-intuitive. It may feel good at the time, but it can program you to fight so that you can have sex. Instead, just have sex!