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THE PSYCHOLOGY OF PERSONALITY DISORDERS
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Author Topic: BPD BEHAVIORS: Anger and Rage  (Read 29857 times)
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« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2009, 07:41:40 PM »

I think it is "diminished executive function" - that part of the thinking process that acts to limit our impulsive reactions for our greater good.  Executive function is what tells us that going ballistic on the boss for a bad performance review might be how we feel, but it is not in our best interest to do so.

People suffering from BPD have a double whammy.  1) they are very sensitive.  2) they have dimished executive control. 

It's very messy.
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« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2009, 08:53:46 PM »

I've wondered about this rage piece--and how or if it fits with my stbxh and BPD.  He isn't a yeller or vocal with his anger, though his body language and looks can turn a room cold.  I have felt raged at by him--in his silent way--though it didn't fit what so many here have shared.

I asked my T this week if she considered my H abusive and without hesitation and nodding, she said yes--his anger was abusive (along with his control and manipulation.)  She saw and felt his quiet anger in a few sessions and said it filled the room and was powerful.   So, rage is not always loud and showy---it can be silent and threatening in a very real sense.   
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« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2009, 09:07:22 PM »

I've wondered about this rage piece--and how or if it fits with my stbxh and BPD.  He isn't a yeller or vocal with his anger, though his body language and looks can turn a room cold.  I have felt raged at by him--in his silent way--though it didn't fit what so many here have shared.

I asked my T this week if she considered my H abusive and without hesitation and nodding, she said yes--his anger was abusive (along with his control and manipulation.)  She saw and felt his quiet anger in a few sessions and said it filled the room and was powerful.   So, rage is not always loud and showy---it can be silent and threatening in a very real sense.   

Yes, the silent anger can be very scary as well. The tension when he was in the house and like that was unbearable. Perhaps because he had the massive violent tear- the-house-apart rages as well. When it's silent anger it's like being locked in a cage with a tiger, that's just sitting there all contained yet malevolent. < sounds a bit dramatic but that's how it feels lol.
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« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2009, 10:56:21 PM »

I'm a non, but had a temper when I was much younger. Hairbrushes and rear view mirrors were my only victims. I took a graduate level management class that introduced me to Zig Ziglar's "Top Performance". Totally changed my life. Took awhile to make the adjustment but I learned to respond differently to triggers in everyday life. A lot of people would call this maturity or emotional evolution. Things don't trigger me the same. People cutting you off in traffic, lost luggage, all handled with almost no visceral reaction. A learning process I think a BPD could never make. We mature. They will be 5 year old tantrum throwers forever.
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« Reply #14 on: April 12, 2009, 04:25:30 AM »

When someone rages (outwardly) there is a clear distinction of what is normal expression of anger and absolute rage.  This is waht i would see during anger and rage:

Anger: Talking quickly, slightly raised voice, flitting between refusing to listen to me and asking me to explain and listening.  Always tried to look like he was being diplomatic, but still had trouble actually listening to me and understanding.  Would, at times end the conversation in a half normal way and say he would speak to me later.  Usually came out of this relatively quickly or could be spoken round in some way.

Rage: Absolutely out of the blue screaming/shouting, calling me extremely nasty things in a really nasty voice, telling me repeatedly how much he wanted me out of his life (usually F*** O** thrown in there) no listening to me whatsoever and i mean, not a single word, simply screaming over me.  At one point he actually screamed a question to a third party who was not actually there!  Crying hysterically, throwing things, hitting himself...  This would go on anywhere from an hour to two hours and sometimes he's stop, then carry on raging at me the next day out of the blue again...he could not be spoken out of this in any way, no matter what i said or did, it was blind rage.
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« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2009, 06:56:05 AM »

Rage is easy to identify when you see it.  It is the BP being held down in a hospital bed by 10 nurses before being tranquilised.

What is inexplicable however is the BP bragging about this afterwards.  What is also inexplicable is the BP not feeling the slightest bit of remorse for the harm done.
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« Reply #16 on: April 12, 2009, 07:04:22 AM »

This topic really caught my eye because everything I had been reading about borderline behavior mentioned 'rage'...and my borderline husband has never really 'yelled' at me, but it's the constant annoyance he displays, the eye rolling, head shaking, and the whining and nagging that  he has displayed ever since I've known him. 

So now I know, that is a type of rage as well.

Thank you for educating me!
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« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2009, 09:20:04 AM »

My understanding is that not all BPD "rage" - many BPD don't throw "tantrums" in terms of outward expression. 

Many internalize it - and they are the ones more likely to self harm or even commit suicide.

It's helpful to remember that there are 256 possible combination of symptoms that can be labeled as BPD.

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« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2009, 11:23:46 AM »

Thanks for this thread! This has been a subject that I have spent a lot of time thinking about. There are a number of good insights here.

I was always amazed at my exuBPDgf's sudden shifts and the intensity of her rage. On another thread there was some discussion on the shift in facial and body expressions just prior to the rages, mine would show these signs, almost like another person had taken over.

Dave said:

Quote
I actually believe that anger and rage and not on the same continuum. In other words, the difference isn't merely one of degree it is qualitative.

Anger is definitely an aggressive emotion that it helps you express your needs and get your way. That can often be very healthy.

Rage on the other hand is aimed at humiliating, hurting and controlling someone. It really has a different flavour to it.

I will add that anger can be a normal response and justifiable when one has been wronged and can help us take action when we might not otherwise. A healthy ego and integrity will help direct it to a positive outcome.

When my exuBPDgf raged it was like someone using a baseball bat to beat me or whomever down, no mercy, or awareness just wanting to leave a bloody mess out of the object of her rage. Rather than a bat her weapon of choice was her voice. There was never any sign after one of these that she felt any remorse or that she was even aware that she had crossed any boundaries. I am guessing that deep down she does know that it is unhealthy but does not know how to deal with it and this in turns helps drive that spiral down deeper into self loathing which makes it easier to go into rages. Very sad.

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« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2009, 12:48:04 PM »

Although I haven't had the experience of 'raging', I was encourage by my xBPD partner to 'try it, it'll feel great'. We were discussing a problem I was having with a colleague at work. From that comment, I learned that she did indeed 'get off' on raging at me, and had no problem with leaving me in pieces.

I am coming from the other side of it, I have lived most of my life never getting angry. I'm serious. After an intensive program I was in, I got in touch with my anger. And man, I've been quick to anger since. I've been stockpiling for year! It was what I needed to get out of the relationship. I became as sick as her, and matched her yelling and meanness in our last few fights. But it felt very ugly, and I was ashamed at what had become of me.

I am now learning about normal anger, and the expression of it  It has been a huge learning experience, but I can say that I can appreciate it when people talk about their anger/rage, all of it.
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