7 Angry Relationship Feelings Decoded & How To Deal With Them
Sometimes I look at my wife's beautiful, sweet face with those dimples and that grin, and I want to throw a chair through the window. Not in a violent way. Just in a destructive stress-relief way. What? Don't act like you've never looked at your partner and felt an angry storm cloud move inside you, lightening and all. It's normal. We're only human after all.
In fact, if you don't have angry relationship feels from time-to-time, you should probably worry. Anger is a natural emotion. Annoyance is a normal byproduct of being around someone for long periods of time. And negative thoughts are more of a coping mechanism (usually) than a sign that you're a budding sociopath.
When I worked with couples as a Domestic Violence Victim Advocate and Planned parenthood Certified Responsible Sexuality Educator, anger was a very common issue that brought about more guilt than anything else. In most cases, the loving couples felt terrible that they sometimes thought terrible things about their beloved. I'm here to tell you to put that worry down.
Sometimes it's really helpful, both in terms of feeling better and in terms of resolving conflict, to take a step back from angry relationships feels and to decode them. These feels below are probably ones you've experienced. Here are some ideas as to what their deeper truth may be.
1. If I Hear You Breathe One More Time, I Will Have A Rage Seizure
This one is of often surprising and alarming, because it can come out of nowhere and make you feel like a bad person. I mean, are you really mad at your partner for breathing? Yes! Do you really want them to stop doing this innocent activity that literally allows them to continue living? I didn't think so. But these feels, as irrational as they are, happen. Ignoring them or feeling guilty about them will help about as much as making your partner actually stop breathing.
What Might Be Happening: You've been in close quarters. A lot. Probably way too long. Too much time together is the perfect storm for annoyances. It might be time to go visit your mom, hang out with a friend, or hide in bed for a few hours with headphones and a good book.
2. Your Stupid Face Is Stupid
Oooh burn. It feels good to be childish sometimes. Especially when your partner is getting on your nerves. It's like the grown up equivalent of getting away with saying a swear word as a kid. You know it was wrong, but it was kind of fun. But alas. You're not a child, so, in the spirit of healthy relationships, you decide to look deeper...
What Might Be Happening: Whenever I look at my partner and I think something dumb and childish like this, it's usually because my feelings are hurt, and I feel like I can't bring it up because it's not worth starting a fight over. Keeping things like this inside just leads to resentments, though, so eventually I cave and tell my partner why I think her stupid face is stupid and I feel better. See if there are some hurt feelings bouncing around inside of you, and try to resolve them.
3. Is It Really That Freaking Difficult To Put Your Clothes Away?
OK, deep breath. You know you sometimes do annoying stuff too. Like leaving your half-empty cups and bottles all over the house. Not that you're not allowed to feel annoyed about this, but, you know, let's put in in perspective. It could be that you're super annoyed or it could be something more. Let's explore.
What Might Be Happening: You might be feeling disrespected. I know it sounds like a stretch, but when you continually tell someone how you feel about something, even if it's laundry, and they continually seem to ignore you, that can make you feel disrespected. It can make you feel like you have to do more than your fair share. It can make you feel like your partner doesn't have the same respect for your shared space. All these feels are totally normal and worth working through, if for no other reason, than to avoid them happening again in the future.
4. I Have Wasted My Life
This one makes me feel kind of sad. But it totally happens. I've seen it happen to happy couples, sad couples, new couples and old couples. It's even happened to me. So what does it mean when you look to your partner and you think (momentarily) that the whole production was just a few years of your life you'll never get back?
What Might Be Happening: More than likely, what these feels point to are unmet needs. There's something missing, and you've been feeling it for long enough to occasionally, even if just jokingly, question your relationship. Ask yourself what those needs are. Do you need more affection? Do you need to work on your friendship? Do you need to restore some of your closeness and intimacy after a big fight? Do you feel misunderstood? Once you figure this out, you can work out a way to get those needs met.
5. If You Love Your Mom So Much Why Don't You Marry Her
Right? Your cooking isn't as good as hers. She folds the sheets in a special way. She gets to hang out with you on your birthday. Why don't you just marry her then! And maybe she's the nicest lady in the world, too. But sometimes you still just wish she, and her precious child, would disappear.
What Might Be Happening: You're jealous. I know. You don't want to hear that. But the way your partner has such love and reverence for their mom, you want them to have that for you. Plus, who wouldn't feel insecure when constantly being compared to a super mom. And since you can't really take the mom out, all you can do it talk to your partner and ask them to try to understand how you feel.
6. I Should Have Been With...
If you get really mad at your partner and you think about how there's another person you should have been with instead, it doesn't necessarily mean that you don't love your partner and that you made the wrong decision. It's likely more of a go-to thought that helps you get through your angry feels. But what else could it mean?
What Might Be Happening: You could have some old feelings that you haven't quite worked through, but more than likely, you're just mad. You've probably been making this other person out to be perfect for years, when in reality, they would be annoying you and making you angry in different ways. In most cases, better to let it go and get another coping mechanism for dealing with your anger. This one has the potential to fester based on an imaginary scenario you've created in your head.
7. I Hate You. And I Love You. But I Totally Hate You.
If I had a dollar for every time I heard someone in a relationship say they've thought this. Or even for all the times I've thought it! Don't worry! It's totally normal to feel like you hate your partner, and to feel guilty about that. The good news is, you can't hate someone unless you really love them, because it takes great love to get under someone's skin that much,.
What Might Be Happening: You're in a relationship, that's what's happening! This happens from time to time, in all relationships. There doesn't even have to be a deep underlying issue. You could just be annoyed in general. But if there is an underlying issue, of course, make sure you guys talk it out.
I hope this makes you feel better, and less like a giant jerk. And remember, your partner probably has the same thoughts about you!