I've discovered that anger -- real anger -- is a very rare emotion for me. Specifically, it's something that has only cropped up twice in my specific memory (I believe I've had a precedent for this set during the year I was on Ritalin, though I'm not certain... not fun days, those). The first was some two months ago, perhaps. I'm not sure of the exact timing, and I don't want to be. I feel anger very deeply, when it comes along... mostly I cope with difficulty via depression or sadness, but very rarely I'll feel anger as the response. This first time, I felt real anger towards my father. I felt (and I stand by this in retrospect) he maligned both me (acceptable; I already think of myself as plenty of a screwup where his expectations are concerned) and Melody (not acceptable; his claims were completely one-sided and biased against her, for no reason I could nor can discern, and essentially painted her as some kind of irresponsible vagrant who would just fail at any and every endeavor).
When I went to speak with him about an unrelated but already sensitive and emotionally raw concern, I heard him speaking with my mother about my and Melody's future together. I was already hurt and having difficulty, but hearing what he said about her was... It was too much. I trembled with pain and anger and rage and possibly even hatred (though I don't know if it's fair of me to go so far as to say that) and walked, or thudded rather, down the stairs to speak with him. I warned him as best I could with my voice barely in control that I wasn't thinking clearly, because I wasn't and I knew it, and then did my best to express my concerns and emotional injuries in a fair way. I don't think I did all that well, but at the same time I cannot imagine a situation where his response to my words was justified. He took a few moments in shock that I would stand up to him in the specific way that I did, and then wasted no time once he'd collected himself in just utterly ripping me apart. He tore into me like I've never seen nor experienced, and the very first thing he said was "Where in the h*** do you get the balls to talk to me like that?" So that gives you an idea of how bad it was. I just stood and took it as long as I could, then advised him in a decreasingly stable voice that I wouldn't listen to him speak to me that way any longer, and left.
And boy, did I leave. I stormed up the stairs and out of the door, not even sparing Melody a look, simply because I couldn't handle the possibility of my fury hurting her. I went outside, walked to the tree in our parkway, and sat down to try and avoid just leaving -- after all, if I just took off in an arbitrary direction, Melody wouldn't have known where I was and might have been hurt by the worry over my safety. Yes, I was concerned about that at the time. It took me most of the rest of the night to calm down even to the point of functioning at all, and the entire rest of the week to actually speak to my dad again. I still haven't really forgiven him for that fully, partly because on some level I don't think I really believe he's sorry for it. Mostly because there are some things I just am not yet able to forgive, no matter how little good it does me to keep it that way.
The second time I referred to, and I suppose the one I'd prefer talking about less, was tonight. And all of the past day.
This time I didn't do anything dumb and speak up about it, because this time I had the sense to realize the consequences of speaking my mind before I actually did it for once. I'm sure this is going to wind up just eating me up all the more over time if it isn't handled, but at the same time I know I couldn't have handled the situation properly if I had spoken when it really should have been said.
I guess part of the problem is that I just don't know any real ways of coping with this yet. I just keep taking it for granted that it just never happens and acting on that, because other than those two instances, it never has, to my recollection at least. The fact is, this is really scaring me, that I am capable of feeling this, and all the more because I don't know how to take the edge off it enough to deal with the problem without causing very serious harm.
This seems as though it may require some growth. How unfortunate.