One week has passed since my Virginia Summer Institute on Addiction Studies presentation on, “How to deal with Anger Sober” and I am reminded of the human experience-how as one person I can accomplish so little but as a collective, we can accomplish so much. It also reminds us that you are not alone. According to SAMHSA, 21.5 million Americans ages 12 and older were classified with a substance use disorder in the past year.
There were Nurses, Case managers, Therapists and Social Workers just to name a few. The crowd was diverse and I was thrilled. All of us came together on that day to learn how to help an already struggling group of people-those who are suffering from addiction.
We talked about Anger and how when you take away the numbing agent, all that is left the most passionate of all the emotions. Thus, you must deal with the anger. I shared the case of Jack and Jill- a married couple that knows all too well what addiction can do to the family. I constructed the case of Jack and Jill from countless relationships on the brink of divorce when they entered my practice. The case of Jack and Jill is an important one to highlight. If Jill didn’t have the coping skills to deal with Anger (and conflict) before she started drinking, she certainly didn’t acquire them post sobriety, at least not without some serious work.
I ended the way I always end my first session with a new group. We ended by watching a clip of Anger Management. Cliché, I know! But the majority of the over 100 people were laughing and I suppose so was I. This opportunity was truly the highlight of my summer.
Resources on how to deal with anger sober at the presentation were plenty. If you would like to learn tips and tools on this very important subject, read this. And, sign up for our 8-week Anger Management class, here!