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Dealing with Anger in Your Marriage

Christian psychologist, Norman Wright, in his classic book Communication Key to Your Marriage, details four basic ways we can deal with anger. We can repress it, suppress it, express it, or confess it. Let’s take a look at this…

We can repress it. We try hard to deny our anger and ignore our feelings while trying to convince ourselves that we’re not all that mad. This approach is extremely unhealthy to both you and your spouse and will usually lead to disastrous consequences.

We can suppress it. We acknowledge that we’re angry, but we choose not to express it to our spouse. We’re trying in our own power to contain it. We stuff all that emotion into the pit of our stomachs, letting our bodies bear the brunt of all those negative feelings. The problem is, when we don’t deal with our anger openly and honestly, we never resolve it. And that leads to resentment and hostility, both of which are very detrimental to our marriages.

So instead of repressing or suppressing, we want to express it in a constructive mannerToo many of us excel in expressing our anger in destructive ways with passionate, out-of-control attacks on our spouses, yelling, name calling, belittling, undoubtedly doing more harm than good. We need to learn how to reframe our anger into “I statements”. “I’m feeling angry now because I worked hard to have dinner on the table on time, and you weren’t here to enjoy it.”

And finally, the healthiest way of dealing with anger is to confess it. We need to claim our personal responsibility for our feelings of anger. Our spouses don’t make us feel angry. We choose to respond in anger. Acknowledging that this anger is your heart issue lead you to confessing it to God. You can also ask him for the ability to overcome and control your anger.

So if you or your spouse struggle with anger issues or feel some anger management help in your future, contact a good Christian therapist for some help because unresolved anger will lead to that fatal root of bitterness which has ended too many marriages.

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