Anger, Recognition, and Recovery
How do I stop being so angry? Now that I understand what went on in my childhood, I am just so angry. I’m angry at my mother for treating me so cruelly. I’m angry at my father for standing by. I’m angry at my siblings for falling into line and torturing me. I’m angry at my relatives who never spoke up.” — Angie, 42
The question of anger often comes up in messages I get from readers of my book Daughter Detox, understandably so, because while anger can play a temporarily positive role as the daughter begins to really see and understand how her childhood affected her, her continuing anger becomes yet another problem for her to tackle. This is something I remember well; I was an incredibly angry young woman in my 20s, heavily armored, quick to retaliate with a sarcastic or biting quip. In hindsight, it was clearly easier for me to be angry in public than it was to show how afraid and insecure I was. I didn’t connect my angry to my childhood experiences at the time, but I certainly do now.
Because I’m neither a therapist nor a psychologist, the following observations are drawn from research and from interviews and discussions with women who are coming to terms with the effects of their toxic childhoods.