Friday, January 21, 2005

Adolescence & Anger

  • Today it is supposed to reach 75F in Dallas. That is ridiculous. We have had no winter at all this year.

  • Okay, I have a confession to make, I took my therapist's request that I write about my adolescence and twisted it slightly so that I understood it better. However, it occurs to me that by doing so, I have managed to avoid writing about what she wanted me to tackle. What she asked for was: what survival value did anger have for Andy when he was an adolescent? This was asked in the context of a discussion about how my anger can rapidly become an all consuming fire and how easily I lose control. My therapist was asserting that there was a reason for my anger, and that reason would not be comfortable to look at. In fact, she said that it would involve stepping into a dark zone.

    I feel like Luke Skywalker in The Empire Strikes Back. Yoda's telling me that I have to go into an area controlled by the dark side and to leave my light saber behind. But I don't want to leave my light saber behind. In the movie, Darth Vader emerges from nowhere and Luke battles him briefly and then strikes Vader in the face with the light saber. Vader's mask disappears to reveal Luke's own face. It is a warning not be be seduced by the dark side.

    The difference is, my Darth Vader is AWOL. The only survival benefit I see to my anger is that it allowed me to direct my depression elsewhere. By directing that anger elsewhere, maybe I did not commit suicide. I don't know. I can't think of any other reason to why my anger might have helped me.

    Between ages nine and fifteen I attended Catholic School Hell. This was an all boys preperatory school in Irving, Texas which focused on math/science. I have a very slight learning disability in math. You figure it out: no chicks, learning disability in math. Let's throw in some priests who believe that the inquistion is still going on and you have a pretty good picture of the school. Those were some pretty miserable years for me, and I acted out a lot. They essentially offered me the chance to leave on my own before I was forced to leave, and one of the factors was my angry behavior.

    After I left, I attended public high school where I was able to join all kinds of activities not offered at this Catholic school: drama, debate, journalism. I was able to find a place to fit in, activities I excelled at. So in the sense that my anger got me kicked out, it was good for me.

    But I am not sure if this is what my therapist wanted...somehow I doubt it. I am not uncomfortable with any of the above and usually Marjorie is spot on with her predictions about what stuff is difficult to work through. I am going to have to think on this...

    On a different subject, looks like the baby will be a girl, at least that is the most likely scenario. So long as the child is healthy...actually, I say that like I have control over it. It really is out of my hands.