What is caregiver anger?
Many caregivers feel angry at some point. They may curse, yell, get irritated, withdraw, or even get physically sick. Caregiver anger usually comes from feeling out of control, overwhelmed, anxious, scared, tired or stressed. As a caregiver you may feel angry that others are not helping enough, or angry at yourself for not doing more. You may feel that the situation is unfair and/or too much.
What can I do about my anger?
Here are some tips for dealing with your anger:
- Get help with caregiving.
- Talk to someone. Try not to hide your feelings. Sharing how you feel helps others understand, and gives them a chance to help.
- Recognize when you’re angry.
- Explore what’s causing the feeling. There may be perfectly good reasons you’re upset.
- Remove yourself from the situation. Take a short break when you need to.
- Find someone that you can talk to about your feelings. This could be a trusted friend or a mental healthcare professional.
- Try to avoid lashing out at others.
- Try putting yourself in the other person's shoes.
- Use your anger to motivate you to take action.
- Find a support group for caregivers.
- Ask friends and family to distract you when you’re angry.
When should I talk to my doctor about my anger?
Call 911 or your health provider immediately if you feel you might harm yourself or someone else.
Also contact your healthcare provider if you:
- Are over-using alcohol or other substance to deal with your feelings
- Have lost your appetite or are over-eating
- Are feeling alienated, hopeless or alone
- Feel like you are losing control (physically or emotionally).
- Begin to treat others poorly
- Feel angry all or most of the time
- Notice that people are avoiding you because of your anger