Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Husband's G.B. 7: Dealing with Feelings.

My wife hates swearing.

She grew up in a family where swearing was part of her culture. My story is slightly different. My parents rarely swore, but my problem was growing up, through one reason or another, that I found it extremely difficult to express negative emotions.

That's changed now. Sort of.

I think as we had each child, I have realised how weak and emotionally unstable I actually am. Many might say to us "well, don't have any more children then if you can't handle them", but as we have had more children I have seen that I can be a very decent father as well, and my heart has room for more children. I cannot blame anyone but me for my behaviour, but I do think some if not most of the issues I have had with feeling out of control are to do with diet. See, what I think many doctors, and even non- medical people tend to misunderstand is that diet can seriously affect mental stability, and as my sweet wife pointed out this morning 'If your bowels are irritated, why wouldn't the rest of you be?' Quite so. In some cases in America, they have even defended killers based on diet.

Look at this link for example:

In another study (and I will find out who did it if you are interested enough to ask), researchers tried changing the diets in prison from high empty calorie, high transfatty, high carb foods to low carb foods, closer to the natural diet. The change was remarkable. Their aggression levels totally changed. Some admitted that they wanted to pick flowers, while others said they considered entering into social work, and there were a few who wanted to play Kum Ba Yah on their guitars and take up interior decorating (no, not really, I just made that up); but the study did show remarkable results on behaviour.

In point of fact I asked my children when we were sitting at the table whether they thought I was more angry with them before we started the diet or after. They all said "before", after a bit of thinking. In the last couple of months I have seen little flashes of calm emerging, and my patience level becoming higher. I do not endorse swearing but often swearing is a shorthand and ineffective way of saying how we really feel. I am studying counselling right now and according to my book there are right ways and wrong ways of adequately expressing anger. For those not studying counselling let me demonstrate:

Wrong way: You little sh@# What the f@*k are you smashing that jar for you idiot!
Right way: I feel angry when you smash my jar, because I've already asked you to look after it.

For men who like words, here are other ones that can describe your feelings:

affronted, annoyed, antagonized, bitter, chafed, choleric, convulsed, cross, displeased, enraged, exacerbated, exasperated, ferocious, fierce, fiery, fuming, furious, galled, hateful, heated, hot, huffy, ill-tempered, impassioned, incensed, indignant, inflamed, infuriated, irascible, irate, ireful, irritable, irritated, maddened, nettled, offended, outraged, piqued, provoked, raging, resentful, riled, sore, splenetic, storming, sulky, sullen, tumultous/tumultuous, turbulent, uptight, vexed, wrathful

Personally I would use the more common ones as you don't want your wife and children laughing at you when you say you feel "nettled", which by the way will make you feel even more nettled at them laughing at you. A better question is "why are you angry?" are you insecure? Are you sad about something? are you overwhelmed? (which was definately the case for me some of the time) or to misquote Kirstie Alley in 'Look Whose Talking' are you "going through a selfish phase right now". Try that one on your wife. Might be fun. (or not!).

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