Anger is a widely misunderstood emotion. Some have maligned it as an evil in itself. But it’s one of our most basic emotions. Nature put it there for good reason. We become riled to mobilize ourselves into action to remove a threat to our welfare. But just as being too frequently or intensely anxious can be problematic, being chronically or excessively angry can also cause trouble.
The interrelationship between substance use and character is often complex and poses many challenges for providing the right kind of help.
Programs that employ CBT principles have a good chance of doing some good. They at least have a better chance than those programs that operate from the traditional misguided perspective that abusers are wounded, love-hungry, insecure, self-esteem-deficient individuals, out of touch with their feelings, lacking in communication skills, and who simply know no other way to cope. But even some of the better CBT-based programs have some disturbing weaknesses. That’s partly because they often focus so heavily on the person’s thinking patterns and attitudes and not directly or intensely enough on their typical behavior patterns. It’s also because the prevailing but erroneous perspective guiding their structure is that anger is always the main precipitant of aggressive behavior.
Human aggression is most often manifested in the unscrupulous and undisciplined will to power.
By nature aggression that is covertly expressed is hard to detect, especially when you don’t know what to look for.
Individuals with aggressive personality styles are usually already in the aggressive mode long before they ever become angry.
The most important thing for anyone to accept is that the disturbed character’s behaviors are his (or her) problems to address through appropriate guidance and dedicated self-correction.