Anger management in a marriage

I am short-tempered and get angry at the slightest provocation. But fortunately there has never been any discord in our five years of martial relationship, because my husband is very level-headed and saves any sticky situation from getting worse,” says Shruti, a home-maker.

“Excessive anger is one of the major reasons for marital dispute and it definitely helps if one of the partners tries to stay calm during a heated argument. Anger is a powerful emotion that can affect the happiness of marriage, if not controlled,” says relationship expert Mahima Mathur.

“There’s no dearths of issues between couples to fight about. What is important is that partners learn to respect each other,” Mahima further adds. Anger in relationships is very common and there could be an array of reasons to fuel your anger. Yet there are always ways in which you can avoid conflict with your partner. It is imperative to recognise and understand the causes that can trigger bouts of anger. So what are the usual reasons that can push you over edge and what are the ways to handle anger, we explore…

Sexual dissatisfaction
“Our frequency of sex has drastically dropped after the birth our eight-month-old son. My husband keeps cribbing over it and we often end up fighting the issue. I fear if this situation continues for long, he might look for options outside our marriage to fulfill his sexual desires,” exhorts Garima Chauhan, a web designer.

Expert Tip : “Absence of sex can often lead to dissatisfaction amongst partners. It even has the potential to land your marriage in rough waters. It is very important to communicate your feelings of sexual inadequacy to your partner frankly. Together try and explore the reasons that may be putting your partner off sex. If need be, consult an expert in the matter,” Mahima says.

Suspicion of Infedility
Mandeep Singh is banker married to his girlfriend of five years, Shriya who works for an event management company. Things were going smooth between the two of them, until Shriya started coming home very late from work. “I noticed that she was returning home late regularly. I started suspecting her, because I was getting unsatisfactory answers for her late comings. As a result I started yelling at her, blaming her of betrayal.”

Expert Tip : “Be careful while flinging insults at your partner. Insults whether justified or not have a way of creating disaster and causing friction in a relationship. Take time to identify what’s bothering you and put your thoughts together in a descriptive manner which will be easy for your partner to understand,” suggests Anu Goel, a relationship expert.

Swati Rana, a marketing executive says, “Juggling too many tasks simultaneously leaves me stressed out and irritated. I get annoyed easily if things are not working in my favour. If I have had a bad day at work, its aftermath is bound to affect my personal life. There are days when I return from work and start loosing it at my husband.”

Expert Tip : “Job dissatisfaction, low self esteem, the pressure of bringing up kids all add to one’s stress levels, leading to an eruption of emotions. Always ask yourself why are you angry and how is it hurting you? Then, step by step try to work with the very same emotions that evoke anger. You can look for options like yoga and meditation to de-stress yourself,” Mahima adds.

Digging up old skeletons
“I was honest enough to share my past with my husband before we got married. But my honest confession worked to my disadvantage, because in the years to follow, my partner kept bringing up my past whenever we fought to provoke me further,” shares Reshmi Pillai, a primary school teacher.

Expert tip : “Anger in relationships can also be caused by a spouse bringing up old issues and reviving old wounds. You need to burry the past to make your present perfect. The best way to go about this is by first describing the behaviour that bothers you and the consequences that the behaviour has on you,” explains Anu.

Money stressor
Vibhav works with ICICI bank bringing home a fat pay cheque. But he tries to control how much money Neha, his wife spends. “Even though we have more money to secure ourselves for the future, Vaibhav is constantly worrying that there won’t be enough money, and often gets angry when we go out shopping and I intend to buy. His controlling behaviour about monetary matters causes frequent conflicts between us,” confesses Neha.

Expert Tip : “Set common priorities and stick to them to avoid conflict over money. When both people move out of control or resistance, it restores compassion and intimacy, even when money is limited,” says Mahima.

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