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Saturday, November 17 , 2018, 3:25 am | Overcast 50º

 
 
 
 
Teenagers

Louise Palanker: Anger Management, Dating Readiness, Walking Away

Question from Ben

Hey, when I’m angry or I’m shouting, I can’t breathe. And I usually don’t get angry, but since last year I have begun getting angry at everything. Every small thing. What to do?

Weezy

That’s a big question and I commend you for reaching out and asking it. This means that you can and you will learn how to manage your anger.

Feeling triggered by every small thing indicates that your tolerance level is at its max. Picture it like a cup of water. It’s full. One more drop of annoyance and you spill.

What can you do to feel more relaxed regularly? Are you getting enough exercise? Enough alone time? Enough peace and quiet? Are you eating well? Are you enjoying enough recreation? Enough time to think and relax and play? What’s going on in your home? Should you be talking to a counselor or a therapist?

When you succumb to a meltdown, you are harming not just the person at whom you are directing your rage but also yourself. It’s just not healthy.

I tend to get angry at things, not people. (Unless it’s the news, but let’s not go there.) It is mostly objects that find themselves on the receiving end of my ire. I think the bedpost can handle my degrading insults after violently impairing the progress of my toe, but when such events unfold I feel overwhelmed by the compulsion to not just yell but to also throw the nearest item.

Hard Lesson Learned: A hairbrush will shatter upon impact with a wall. So, what I have learned to do is pick up a towel and just start slamming it against the bed while screaming. And yes, I do wonder the next day why I am so sore. But however concerned my neighbors are about me, this does actually work.

Once you pass through puberty and establish more control over your surroundings and the course of your life you will feel far less hair-triggered but it is an excellent idea to put coping mechanisms into effect right now. When your anger flares, take two nice deep breaths before reacting in any way. Count to 10 while whispering, "This will pass. This will pass. This will pass." Move away from any person who may be in the line of fire. Walk.

Click here to talk to someone at Teen Line. Make it your goal to learn how you can keep your baseline mood level at a healthier level so that you can better roll with life’s frustrations and better enjoy its joys.

(watchwellcast video)

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Question from Sierra

I dated this guy for six months last year. We ended it on New Year’s Eve. I wanted to continue dating but he wasn’t ready, so it ended. He mentioned he would never feel the same way as I did.

Around June we established a friendship. He seems to act how he used to, but we hung out from time to time. I’m stuck because my feelings will never change.

I’m not sure if I should move on because I can not even express how much this is affecting my school since I’m trying to figure him out. He doesn’t really like to express his feelings. I would rather keep what we have than ruin it from telling him how I feel.

In addition, he would make the effort to hang out with me four to five times a week and at this moment stopped talking and has not reached out to me. Also, I don’t go out of my way to hang out with him and I usually wait until he wants to see me. I enjoy his company and I honestly would say he brings out the best of me.

Do you have any wise advice for me in this kind of situation?

Weezy

I don’t have good news. If this guy wanted to date you, he would be making an effort to do so. Your friendship is out of balance because you want one thing and he wants something else. In order to get over this guy, you will need to completely distance yourself from him.

Right now, while you are interested in him, you are not capable of seeing another person as a potential romantic partner. You are too busy analyzing this guy’s every move and word. He told you his truth six months ago. He was willing to accept your friendship on his terms because he really does like you.

But these are his terms, not yours. And so you remain hopeful and unhappy. You two are not in alignment.

Walk away. If his terms change, he will find you. In the meantime, you have been lost in this guy and you need to go find yourself.

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Question from Sally

Hi. So I am talking to this guy I met, and we’ve been talking for a while. It seems like it’s going good, however I’ve been the one reaching out when we text. Like if it’s been a while, I’ll be the one to be, like, hi! How are you?

Is that a bad thing? Should I wait for him to reach out? Or do I just keep the conversations going? They are never boring conversations so I don’t think it’s boredom. I think it’s just that he doesn’t think about me, aaaannnd that sounded gross. OK, bye.

Weezy

That sounded just fine. We have all been through this type of thing. If you are comfortable being just friends, then reach out when you feel like reaching out. But if you want more than a friendship, then you should exercise more restraint. Let him miss you. Let him work at getting to know you better. Back off for a bit.

When you walk away, one of two things will happen. Either he will come looking for you or you will stop caring.

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Got a question for Weezy? Email her at [email protected] and it may be answered in a subsequent column.

Louise Palanker is a co-founder of Premiere Radio Networks, the author of a semi-autobiographical coming-of-age novel called Journals, a comedian, a filmmaker (click here to view her documentary, Family Band: The Cowsills Story), a teacher and a mentor. She also hosts a weekly video podcast called Things I Found Online, and teaches a free stand-up comedy class for teens at the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are her own.

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