Understanding Anger

Anger, while often frowned upon in our society as a forbidden emotion, is a natural feeling for humans to experience. We all get mad at times. However, it is of utmost importance to understand what causes your anger and how you can learn to manage it.

What’s the Origin?

Where is your anger coming from? Did your child do something you specifically asked them to avoid? Did your partner resort to a coping mechanism that really hurts you like name-calling or stonewalling? Is your anger justified?

If you think through the situation and you believe your anger is justified, then consider all the emotions this situation makes you feel other than just anger.

Anger Circumvents Sadness

Anger often masks the emotion of sadness. Sometimes, when we are sad or have been hurt multiple times by the same situation, we resort immediately to anger. Instead of directly getting mad, it can be helpful to sit with the hurt. Then, you can take the next step of assertive communication, while avoiding aggressive communication.

Communicate Your Needs Assertively

Instead of yelling at the source of your anger, try framing your feelings in the context where they arose. For example, you can tell your child, “When you repeatedly disobey our rules, we feel disrespected,” while simultaneously instituting harsher punishment. Using cause and effect statements will allow your listener to understand where the emotion of anger is coming from and the consequences.


Anger is a natural emotion that we all experience. When you start feeling yourself getting angry, ask yourself where it’s coming from. Often, anger comes from a feeling of sadness and hurt that has gone unaddressed or repeatedly ignored. Once you have identified the source of the anger, practice communicating your needs assertively. If you fail to directly address the root of your anger, resentment will likely follow. At Valiant Living, our men-only treatment facility in Denver, Colorado, we help men dealing with the difficult emotion of anger. Instead of suppressing this emotion or allowing it to spiral out of control, we hope to teach you the skills to appropriately manage anger. By working with our professionally trained staff, we can help you overcome addiction and co-occurring mental illnesses. Anger is embedded in the fabric of recovery but we can help you unweave the anger from that fabric. For more information on how we can help you, contact us at (303) 952-5035.