Anger Management: Goosefrabba: How do you constructively deal with the anger and resentment that arises as a result of living with Migraine/Headache Disorders?
There are only four clear responses I have to this question…
1) I go to my migraine support forum and discuss the issue at hand- sometimes just knowing others get my frustration helps a great deal. Other times people have useful suggestions to dealing with the source of my aggravation. Or just get the issue I am talking about and can relate and it opens up a deeper discussion on the subject.
2) I blog- Generally speaking when I am angry about something it has to do with the frustrations of living with chronic pain, the stigma of it and how people just do not get the level of suffering we endure on a daily basis while trying to so-called ‘function’…. but that has very little to do with a particular person making some remark or causing me problems in life. So I do a blog post post that is a good blog rant about my frustration as to not unload on any one person or I do a blog post about my frustrations in general, about the stigma in general or about what it is like to cope with this life on a daily basis. It gets it out of my system in a healthy manner and saves me from snapping at people when I should not, although there are cases when those people deserve a good reality check to be honest in how they treat people with chronic pain and apparently informing them of the facts, being polite and telling them of what I am doing isn’t ‘sufficient’ to help them ‘get it’… but most people it really has little to do with what they said but more to do with the pain at that time and the level of frustrating I feel with enduring that pain daily. It is the same with resentment and bitterness… at lack of treatment, doctors and so forth… I get that out in my blog and it calms me down a bit.
3) Creative writing- when it comes to just frustration and this strong resentment that builds up I find I often have to redirect this energy into a completely different direction. Usually I go for creative writing. Lot of emotions can be dumped into creative writing without dwelling on the cause of those emotions, or thinking about those emotions, but it is an outlet nonetheless and a pretty good one since it can relax me quite a bit from a high stress state of say dealing with work or dealing with doctors and nothing is going right and nothing I do seems to affect it.
4) Lack of a good memory- Oddly enough that pain haze that prevents me from remembering clearly certain details of many things, including events and people… also prevents me from remembering the details of things that would cause me to really resent particular people and situations. It is like ‘eternal return of the same’… I know this to be true for a fact because there was one day I was writing about work situations for an awareness post and went back into old posts for specifics… and found old posts about similar cases where I had been treated the same way, with a similar horrible effect on me, over and over again… and in some of those cases I a) forgot the details of it such that I forgot I had reacted so intensely or that it had caused things to get so significantly worse or led to a short term leave of absence or b) if it was far enough back forgotten that it had occurred, like forgotten those work place stigmas or incidents had occurred that early on. And it is this pain haze of a memory that enabled me to work without resentment and bitterness for so long because I’d get through these rough patches or back from a short term leave and carry on one day at a time without keeping a mental tally of these nasty incidents that had really hurt my feelings, or drastically affected my pain, or were very unpleasant or in some cases you had to wonder why the hell I didn’t call HR (which in most of those incidents I ought to have but was too ill informed). Frankly I loath to carry resentment and bitterness so I often choose to forgive and move on… which I think it is just what happens and then I forget which then makes it easier. I don’t think this particularly worked in my favor in this sort of situation to be honest, but nevertheless it is a factor when it comes to resentment isn’t it? Can’t have it if you can’t remember well enough to remember why you should have it.
June 2013, Migraine and Headache Awareness Month, is dedicated to Unmasking the Mystery of Chronic Headache Disorders. The 2013 Migraine and Headache Awareness Month Blog Challenge is a project of FightingHeadacheDisorders.com.