Daniel, according to his father, had always been an easy-going, laid back kid. Until recently, that is. “I have no idea what’s gotten into him but he’s a different person, and not in a good way. He’s angry literally all of the time. He gets mad when I wake him up for school in the morning and it’s just downhill from there. He’s gotten into fights with classmates and been suspended from school twice this year.” Despite asking his son frequently, why he felt so angry, Daniel didn’t have an answer for his dad. The cause of his anger would eventually come out in therapy but it took some time. Daniel eventually revealed some significant abuse by a trusted adult in his life that had taken place about a year prior to our first meeting. The abuse had stopped but the damage it left in its wake was intense.
Sometimes anger in teens has a clear cause and sometimes it doesn’t. In Daniel’s case, it certainly did. Through talk therapy, he was able to identify his emotions, understand them and eventually process them in a healthy way. His therapist worked hard to gain Daniel’s trust and eventually he would tell me, “I think I would have probably been arrested for some crazy, violent behavior by now if she hadn’t shown me the way out of my anger.” A small dose of medication helped Daniel regulate his anger while he was working through therapy. Eventually he was able to stop the medication and see his therapist on an as needed basis only.
What WellPsyche Patients Are Saying
“I was angry at the world. I wanted to scream and scream and scream but instead I just got mad at everyone and everything around me. My friends understood better than my family but eventually, they got tired of me as well. I felt all alone. In therapy, I learned how to let go of my anger and feel calmer.”
Jenna, age 16
“Our son was becoming more and more angry which is why we reached out for help. We didn’t know what to do and we were afraid he was going to hurt someone. It’s a terrible feeling to feel like you can’t help your kid. I’ve struggled with anger issues most of my life so I did understand to a point but his anger was so all consuming, it honestly terrified me. I don’t think I’ve ever been that angry. Anyways, therapy and medication helped him more than I ever thought was possible. In fact, I was so impressed with the results that I started seeing someone myself. Our home is a lot more peaceful now, for sure.”