In recent weeks, when things haven’t gone my way or they don’t occur the way I would like them to, I get angry. It’s OK to get angry sometimes, but it can be over the simplest of issues that may even not have any effect with me. I have addressed this in my outpatient therapy and it is known that my anxiety causes me to fight it, flight from it, and now as I discovered through more research, Pretend or mask. This can pose several challenges with those that care and want to help me or those that I work with and I won’t grow up and fight like a little kid.
Controlling anger is a common issue for autistic individuals such as myself. I have experienced anger for several decades however I’ve never really grown up from when a challenge presents itself and I pout like the little five-year-old boy instead of the 36-year-old mature man that I need to be. If I want to learn and grow in life and be truly independent someday, then I need to learn how to control these issues before they get out of hand before it is too late. I have expressed my fair share of anger clear into adulthood. Now I certainly know that it is wrong and that I have replaced it with loudness and verbal arguments.
We know of the stages of a meltdown but I know I must work on bettering my anger before it gets into that rage stage. When something is unpleasant or I don’t like the outcome of something, I often ruminate about it or have a host of negative thoughts that consist of negative fears that brew for some time. Many times, with prompts from others, they can be subdued and/or refocused. However, when I am home and I am in my own independent state of thinking it can become challenging to subdue the thoughts and refocus to a positive train of thought.
I know that this is a necessary skill that needs to be worked on. It all starts when something doesn’t have the outcome I prefer. It can also occur when I have to do something that don’t particularly care about. Until recent years I was called by my parents a ‘spoiled little brat’ because when I didn’t care for something, I became angry, and regretfully admit that I still do at times. With them even so today it can present itself challenging dialogue when oftentimes all they are trying to do something is to my benefit. I often wonder why they continue to come back. Sometimes I remind myself how grateful I am of both of them and that I also need for them to enjoy their golden years and really address this issue.
I don’t like to see those that care for me discouraged when I am unpleasant, yet the thought is brewing in my head and I know I need to block it. I have been taught a host of skills growing up and know that the ball is in my court and it is a necessary skill to be able to control my anger overall and not act like that ‘spoiled little brat’ at the age of 36. I can be a very invaluable person to so many if I didn’t let my negativity and irrational thoughts get in the way. I also need to remember that being autistic has come a long way in over the two decades since I have been diagnosed and that using coping mechanisms and when accommodations are needed, I need to use those self-advocacy skills and speak up and ask for things when I need them. I also need to embrace my talents and focus on my interests more in order to not deal with idle time so that I do not have the irrational fears appear as heavy as they would by sitting idle.
In the three and a half decades in my life I have grown so much into a mature adult. I know that I need to ‘grow up’ as my therapist says because I haven’t dealt with the irrational fears and the brewing thoughts. The anger has been mostly subdued into a verbal form, but I know that there is room for improvement. By trying to keep out of the negative, brewing mindset of the irrational fears will aid in the toning down more of the anger and I have to realize that some things are indeed a part of life.