Is It Normal To Break Things When Angry?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

I’ve been told to have anger management issues and I have been noticing so. The reason is because whenever get angry I completely explode and everything I’ve been holding in suddenly comes out. Situations would be: 1)Having a fight with my boyfriend or jealousy I would feel like physically damaging him AND myself (although I have never done so but I have said very hurtful things); 2)When I am repenting from something and I can’t manage to express it I get angry and become even more vicious taking it out on everybody; 3)If I cannot handle my emotions I get very angry. 4)Whenever I am angry my hands begin to shake nervously and the vains on top of them pop. My anxiety becomes umbearable and I get short of breath, I beggin to cry and get nauseos. As a consequence to all these things I lose control and throw things around breaking them. I wonder if maybe this has to do with my childhood? My father was this way and I could never express my feelings until I would rampage.

A. I would concur with those who believe that you have an anger management problem. Your anger is clearly an issue that needs to be dealt with. You have difficulty controlling your behavior. Though you have not physically harmed another person, you have engaged in verbal abuse. The risk is that you will, in the future, no longer be able to control your physical aggression and will harm someone.

Your anxiety also seems to be out of control. You described being out of breath and feeling nauseous. Those symptoms may be indicative of a panic attack.

You asked whether your behavior could have been learned from your father. The answer is yes. We learn our problem-solving skills from our parents and other role models. The good news is that learned behavior can be replaced with new, more appropriate learned behavior. This typically requires therapy. A therapist can teach you more appropriate and healthier problem-solving skills. Therapy would be the most efficient way to tackle this problem. The find help tab, at the top of this page, can assist you in locating a therapist in your community.

You may also want to consider an anger management support group. Many of those programs can be very effective. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 9 Mar 2012

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2012). Is It Normal To Break Things When Angry?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 23, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/03/09/is-it-normal-to-break-things-when-angry/