A whopping 70% of Canadians experience feelings of depression at some point in their lives. It may be a one time event or it may recur when certain stressors arise. We may very well be depressed as a result of an incident that we had no or little control over, such as losing a job, experiencing a break-up, or being abused. These kinds of traumatic events can change our beliefs in the world and in ourselves. We end up with lower self-esteem and a feeling of being stuck. It's harder to see the path we were on.
Anger is a signal to us that we need to pay attention. It's like pain. Without it, we may not notice we have an injury. The presence of anger is telling us we should stop and assess otherwise we may continue to get hurt or we may hurt someone else. The anger may be due to a variety of reasons: It may be that our boundaries are being pushed. Or that our arousal/activation level is too high from too much stress to our system. Your anger is valid and there is a real reason for it. However, it is up to us to use it in a constructive way.
"I believe Jennifer*. I believe Jennifer. I believe Jennifer." Those were the words that came out of the judge's mouth. Tears sprang to my eyes. I was in a court room as a support person, and was with a young woman who had very reluctantly testified about being sexually assaulted. The words uttered by the judge were so powerful. And as we have come to learn, so rare in a court of law.
I like my life. It's hard sometimes. I'm in the stage of my life where I am parenting two young kids. But I've created a life that contains the things that I value most:
You've been through something horrifying. You try to forget it but you are struggling. You avoid things that remind you of it. But it keeps coming back. The quiet moments are the hardest. So you stay busy. You wish for rest. You hope for sleep. But you can't let your guard down.
Arguments can escalate pretty quickly in romantic relationships, as many couples know. In part 1 of this blog post I discuss being aware of when your arousal level is increasing past the point that you can have a productive discussion. Couples who are experts on themselves and each other understand how to set up their discussions for success, rather than failure.
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