Anger In Communication
Communicating is the means of transmitting or the exchange of information. These types of exchanges usually occur in many different forms or means. Humans communicate both verbally and nonverbally. The term also refers to sharing or to make common and is defined as a process of understanding. (Pearson & Nelson, 2000 p.18). This process is an activity, an exchange, or a set of behaviors.(Pearson & Nelson, 2000 p.170). These processes or exchanges can lead to anger, which may in some cases, produce results of serious consequences.
Anger can be defined as a great feeling of displeasure, wrath, fury, or indignation. Misunderstanding during the exchange of information will create conflicts. These conflicts must be resolved to enable communication in a mundane atmosphere. Disagreements and misunderstandings in communication may result in substantive conflict. These substantive conflict or intrinsic conflicts as defined in human communication, are disagreement over ideas, meanings, issues and other matters, will all lead to communicative anger. (Pearson & Nelson, 2000 p.145).
Anger in our communicating with others can be confrontational. These occurrences may result in physical abuses or mental abuses. The venom of anger rages throughout our society today, regardless of culture or elegance or community standings. Today I will examine the interpersonal communication within my cohabiting relationship. I will discuss the confrontations, the displayed behaviors, the physical attacks, and the reprisals.
For interpersonal relationship to be successful, there must be mutually positive communication present at all time. My relationship is far the opposite and is continuously plagued with confrontations. The underlying reason stems from the very aggressive behavior of my partner. There seems to be no behavioral flexibility in the ability to adapt to new situations and to relate in new ways when necessary. (Pearson, 2000). These adaptations are an integral part of communication in any interpersonal relationships.
In my relationship there seems to be a confrontational attitude each time that we discuss any state of affair that may exist in our daily living. A recent confrontation took place, when she asked to “borrow” a sum of money, which I promptly loaned her until such time as she had requested. The time came when the loan should be repaid, and I asked in a very serene and respectful manner for the money to be repaid. She immediately started to accuse me of being a “cheap SOB” and asked, “Why should I repay you?” I promptly reminded her that it was a loan as she had requested, and that when someone borrows money, normally it needs to be repaid. In all her replies she would become very loud and boisterous, never giving an inch. She would be so close that her breath felt like a puff of strong wind. Whilst at the said time she would be hurling insults, and daring me to collect the funds owed to me. Eventually, to avoid the constant barrage of insults both verbally and nonverbally I would forfeit and inform her, that she was welcome to keep same.
The outrageous behaviors that are displayed by my partner, most times are annoying to me. On one occasion I had to take my car to the shop, and I asked her to pick me up and take me to work on a particular day. Before leaving to drop my car off at the repair shop, I woke her, and informed her to get ready, as she would have to do some extra driving. This will therefore require an early start to avoid us being late for work. I stood at the repair shop and waited for a very lengthy amount of time and had less than ten minutes to get to work, which was 15 miles away. She came and picked me up and started out on the highway. I noticed that the speed she was driving had reached 105 mph. I requested she slowed down in fear of us getting into a terrible accident and being killed.. At this time she promptly pulled the car over and ordered me to get out of her #@emailprotected% car. I promptly did, this was five miles away from my workplace.
With the highly aggressive nature that exists in my relationship, respect seems to be the missing factor. In all communication with my partner, she seems to enjoy these confrontations. She once told me, “It gives her a great feeling of power”. This seems to be a win/win situation for her at all times. Take the case of the lawn that may need to be attended to. Her approach would be “Don’t you see the lawn needs cutting?” I would examine the lawn and suggest a different time period to cut the lawn, because at this time I do not see the need for same to be cut. She would demand that it be cut immediately, and if I refuse, she would attack me both verbally and nonverbally. I would state my point and walk away to avoid the confrontation and the escalation that I most certainly know is imminent. But she would follow with her demands, and eventually on my refusal, I would be physically attacked.
The misunderstandings and failure of communication in our interpersonal relationship has led to stress and has spilled over into my work and has in certain instances affected my work performance. My partner would plan reprisals in order to satisfy her revengeful lack of communication, which stems from her rage and anger. In another occasion she would call me at my job to argue and accuse me of anything that may displeases her. If I do not answer she would promptly leave disparaging messages that whenever I would listen to them would be very upsetting to me. If I refuse to argue on the phone from my work and refuse to answer, she would constantly ring the phone for up to thirty minutes or until she gets an answer. In one occasion I asked my co-worker to take the call and my partner would hurl the same abuses and verbal attacks at her.
I have requested many times for us to sit and try to effectively communicate and iron out our differences in a civil and appropriate manner. During our conversation her voice would be very loud although we are less than six inches apart from each other. I would constantly ask her to lower the tone of her voice. In our discussion I would try to encourage disclosure of all our differences. I would express understanding of her traumatic experiences. She would explain to me of her child’s father leaving her at age 19 with a child to rear by herself with no job and no economic assistance. She would also disclose to me of her own father leaving her with her mom and four children alone to struggle on their own. She would explain to me how she was raped and the trauma she endured from these many experiences. I would show empathy and understanding of her plight and make suggestions. It seems in general, people are reluctant to self-disclose because they do not respect themselves or they do not trust others, or both. (Pearson & Nelson, 2000 pp.168-171). This disclosure although not positive, seems to relive the tension and cut the anger in our communication somewhat.
An interpersonal relationship requires trust and great tolerance. One must bargain and be ready to compromise when solving differences. Many of our communicative behaviors that may have exploded in anger could be from our failure to divulge to our partners information that we may consider to be negative. Defensiveness and being self-centered are causes that lead to destructive relationships. Because of the anger and failure of communication in our relationship I eventually decided to call it quits. But after further discussion I suggested to her if she would seek counseling for her aggressive behaviors, I would be willing to try, and continue if there is improvement. She is now in counseling for the second time thru my company’s counseling program. She seemed to calm down, and her communication has dramatically improved.
We all want to have successful interpersonal relationships. We want to be able to trust others and to self-disclose to them. We must be able to handle conflicts, and to use conflict resolution techniques that are mutually satisfying for all. Controlling our anger will eventually lead us to communicate more effectively. We must ultimately learn that communication is dependent on the interaction between two or more persons, and one person cannot guarantee its success (Pearson & Nelson, 2000 p.178).