Robyn's Perch

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Anger


Passage

The first three or four months of my transition had me very angry. I don't like being angry...but when people step on my toes, I tell them it hurts...and I tend to tell everyone else about it, too.

Anger is something I have always tried to avoid in my life, to the extent that I would keep quiet about my anger. That's not a healthy situation...you have to let the anger out somewhere.


People still call me "he" or "sir" from time to time. I smile and correct them. If it is repeated, I ask them to reexamine their words. If they still do it, with no sign of regret for the "slip," then I take it as intentional. People who do such things will hear about it...but perhaps not in the way they want... instead of me yelling or screaming, I ask to talk to their supervisor. If I get no apology, I ask for that person's supervisor. I'm prepared to go as high as it takes to get that apology, but I do require it. Supervisors don't like to handle this type of stuff, and it is not me they get angry at, but the people who gave me the crap in the first place. That is my intention.


Getting angry with people just reinforces their feelings about you. That's what I learned. And showing anger leads to more situations in which you will get angry, because there are a lot of people who will use your anger against you.


I was not "successful" in my transition until I learned to let go of the anger...to feel the pain that causes it and to learn to own that pain. It made me a better person, I think.


That doesn't mean that I don't speak out about injustices done to me or anyone else anymore. I just try to do so in a more reasoned tone...to choose my words better and use the words, not volume, to express my anger.


One always has to keep in mind who one's friends are. Getting angry at them isn't a good idea. Just because someone is angry continually doesn't mean hir transition is successful. Sure, s/he may get people to stay out of hir way...to leave hir alone...but angry people don't make friends easily. I don't know about you, but friends are important to me now, in a way they never were before. For some reason, people like me now that I have mellowed. That anger from before is in control, to be used sparingly, like cayenne. Too much of it is not a good thing.


We survive transition by showing everyone what better people we have become.

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People often work from a lack of knowledge. Instead of getting angry with someone that exhibits their ignorance about us, even to the point of being offensive, perhaps sharing some knowledge that we ourselves have would seem a more useful tack. If all everyone does is get angry at that person, his or her opinion of us will not change...perhaps it would deepen into worse feelings.

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