When Anger Hurts Your Relationship : Kim Paleg :
The authors of Couple Skills: Making Your Relationship Work. she has co- authored or co-edited numerous books, including When Anger Hurts and Focal. Examine your relationship to recognize if what I'm saying applies to you, then do Do you feel angry that your loved one is not getting help?. The best science we have on relationships comes from the most intense She bristled and said, “The way you said 'fine,' that kind of hurt my feelings. . The good news is that embracing your wife's anger just a little bit can go a long way.
Although sadness is obviously an aversive experience, the emotion may be functional in leading people to protect both their relationships and the people with whom they have those relationships. Because lost relationships cause painful sadness, people are motivated to behave in ways that protect their relational value in the eyes of those with whom they desire to maintain close relationships.
In extreme cases, particularly momentous or prolonged rejection can contribute to depressive episodes. Of course, depression has many causes, but ostracism, romantic breakups, and other forms of severe or chronic relational devaluation are common precipitators of depression in both adolescents and adults. Not only does rejection contribute to depression, 36 but also people who are already depressed are more sensitive to indications that others do not adequately value having relationships with them 37 and have greater difficulty recovering from rejection.
Rather, anger arises during rejection episodes when people interpret the rejection as unjustified harm. Indeed, anger may be designed to prevent, terminate, or punish specific behaviors that are perceived as an immediate threat.
Hurt feelings, jealousy, loneliness, shame, guilt, social anxiety, and embarrassment occur when people perceive that their relational value to other people is low or in potential jeopardy. Other emotions, such as sadness and anger, may accompany these rejection-related emotions, but are reactions to features of the rejection episode other than low relational value.
As aversive, if not downright painful, as the subjective features of these emotions sometimes are, they nonetheless serve an important function, motivating people to behave in ways that maintain their relational value and protect their interpersonal relationships, alerting them to threats to those relationships, and prompting them to take action when relational problems arise. A person who was unable to experience these emotions would be incapable of managing his or her interpersonal interactions and relationships and would likely experience wholesale rejection.
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Of course, self-perception of one's relational value is sometimes inaccurate, and a good deal of research has examined instances in which people underestimate or overestimate their relational value in other people's eyes. Importantly, like other systems that monitor the environment for threats, the sociometer seems to be biased in the direction of false positives. This bias reflects a functional feature of the system, decreasing the likelihood that people will miss cues that their relational value is low or declining.
However, the downside is that this bias generates unnecessary distress and sometimes leads people to overreact to relatively benign signs that others do not value their relationship as much as they desire. This article has focused on negative emotions that arise from perceived low relational value, but positive emotions also arise from interpersonal events.
People experience intense happiness, if not joy, when they feel admired, appreciated, or deeply loved, and explicit evidence that one has high relational value—such as being accepted into desired groups, forming friendships, and developing other kinds of social bonds—evokes pleasurable feelings as well.
The fact that a large portion of human emotion is devoted to the maintenance of interpersonal connections points to the importance of acceptance and belonging in human affairs.
People are inherently motivated to be valued and accepted by other people, and many of the emotions that they experience reflect these fundamental interpersonal concerns. The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals. John Murray; 2. Evolution of human emotion: Evolutionary psychology and the emotions. The need to belong: Sociometer theory and the pursuit of relational value: Eur Rev Soc Psychol. An fMRI study of social exclusion. The face of rejection: Rejection sensitivity moderates dorsal anterior cingulated cortex activity to disapproving facial expressions.
Neural dynamics of rejection sensitivity. Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci. Decreased ventral anterior cingulate cortex activity is associated with reduced social pain during emotional support.
Neural pathways link social support to attenuated neuroendocrine stress responses. Brain mechanisms underlying state self-esteem. Theory, Research, and Applications in Intimate Relationships. Cambridge University Press; Feeling Hurt in Close Relationships.
The nature of hurt feelings: The causes, phenomenology, and consequences of hurt feelings. J Pers Soc Psychol. Why Jealousy is as Necessary as Love and Sex. Free Press; Sexual and emotional jealousy. The Handbook of Sexuality in Close Relationships. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers; Friendship jealousy in young adolescents: The roles of social withdrawal, peer rejection, and victimization by peers in predicting loneliness and depressed mood in childhood.
Loneliness and peer relations in young children. Relocation and personal well-being among early adolescents. Social and emotional loneliness among divorced and married men and women: Comparing the deficit and cognitive perspectives. Basic Appl Soc Psychol. Are shame, guilt, and embarrassment distinct emotions? J Pers Social Psychol. A functionalist approach to shame and guilt. Social anxiety as an early warning system: Clinical, Developmental, and Social Perspectives. Poise and Peril in Everyday Life.
Guilford Press; Embarrassment as a signal of prosociality. The Role of Affect in Social Cognition. Further exploration of a prototype approach. The role of peer rejection in adolescent depression. Rejection sensitivity and depressive symptoms in women.
Pers Soc Psychol Bull. A social-functionalist account of anger, disgust, and contempt. Interpersonal rejection as a determinant of anger and aggression. Pers Soc Psychol Rev. Reactions to discrimination, stigmatization, ostracism, and other forms of interpersonal rejection: A dynamic, multi-motive model. Rigid social patterning, Dr. Petracek argues, conditions many women to stifle or deny their anger - thus leading to other problems.
Other women experience violent, outwardly focused anger. Building on women's tendency to be more relational than men, this book advocates interactive techniques as a primary method of anger management.
Using a wide range of practical tools, the workbook helps each woman develop her own individualized program. Potter-Efron This major update of the best-selling self-help classic on anger management teaches readers to understand and manage episodes of uncontrolled anger. The book gives clear and concrete direction for things a person can do to begin to bring anger under control.
A Guide for Men: Harbin shows the angry - and miserable - man how to change his life and relationships for the better. This self help book helps men understand their anger by explaining what the specific symptoms of chronic anger are and by showing angry men how their actions negatively affect family, friends, and coworkers.
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It helps men control violent feelings by using simple exercises - developed especially for men - to identify when and why anger occurs and by helping them form new habits to prevent anger before it starts. This renowned classic has transformed the lives of millions of readers. The book teaches women to identify the true sources of their anger and to use anger as a powerful vehicle for creating lasting change.
Peter Bankart This self-help book doesn't seek to help you "manage" anger at all. Rather, it strives to offer you a real cure for anger, one based on deep introspection about the connection you share with other human beings.
The book helps you learn to supplant anger with compassion, reaction with mindfulness, and self importance with self awareness. Beck, the founder of cognitive psychotherapy, focuses in this book on social problems from domestic violence to bigotry, crime and war.
A reflective consideration of the dysfunctional thinking that results in acts ranging from verbal abuse on the personal level to mass murder on the societal level as well as suggestions for remedying these problems.? Kirkus ReviewsHarperPerennial Rage: Potter-Efron Rage can be calmed and controlled with good advice and a practical, effective plan for change.
From renowned anger expert Ronald Potter-Efron, this self help book breaks down rage into four types: In survival rage, anger is triggered by a sense of danger or threat; feelings of helplessness can trigger impotence rage; the third type, abandonment rage, is triggered by a fear of losing a cherished relationship; and shame rage occurs when someone feels very disrespected. Potter-Efron briefly discusses how the brain functions during extreme emotion, and then it turns to the task of helping you stop episodes of rage--right now!
Rage offers no-nonsense, step-by-step anger management tools that really work. She uses "tonglen" - a meditative technique that involves taking in the dark, heavy, negative emotions and sending out an attitude of light, compassionate embrace, a warm spaciousness, in its place.
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Her humane, incisive approach can help any sincere reader learn to relate to fear and pain in new ways that will open their hearts to the richness of life and love.
Robert Nay This practical, engaging, user-friendly self-help guide blends instructive anecdotes and case material with clear suggestions that are based on empirically validated procedures. Nay offers a step-by-step, practical model for what sets off your anger, what happens once you 'lose it,' and what you can do to gain control. With control, anger will no longer have a negative impact on your personal, social, or work relationships. A Workbook of Cognitive Behavioral Techniques Matthew McKay, Patrick Fanning, Martha Davis This self-help book offers a simple and easy to understand discussion of how to use the principles and techniques of cognitive behavioral therapies to help control anxiety, depression, moods and build self-esteem in your life.
Quieting the Storm Within Matthew McKay, Peter Rogers, Judith McKay This self-help book is a complete step-by-step guide to changing habitual anger-generating thoughts while developing healthier, more effective ways of meeting your needs.