1) Are there when you wake up angry for no particular reason? Yes. It’s a symptom of depression, and it took me a long time to recognize it in myself because I’m not used to being an angry person.
2) Do you become snappy at others or short-tempered? Yes. When I’m depressed, I completely avoid high stress situations. Situations that are normally mid- to low-stress for me become high stress, and I do not react well, especially when I was teaching. I yelled at my kids, I made irrational decisions concerning discipline, and was not able to keep my cool.
3) On these “bad” days, do you let others know, in a blatant manner, not to talk to you? I tried to, but when you’re teaching, you don’t get to be a hermit. My students put up with a lot of unacceptably angry behavior, which I greatly regret. Instead, telling my students that I was having a bad day became an excuse. Not every day is bad, unless something is very wrong. If something is very wrong, you need to seek help.
**4) Are you the type of person that:
a) Makes obvious showing of your anger in the way you handle the things around you. ** On my worst days and at my worst times, yes.
b) Tries to control your anger by keeping quiet or no talking much. When I had the emotional resources or control, yes. Other times, I couldn’t.
**c) Other (please state)
- What do you do to alleviate your anger?** When I was in the middle of my last depression, I bottled it up. I slept. I ate. I cried. Finally, after I lost my job, I questioned what was wrong with me, saw my doctor, restarted my SSRI prescription, spent two weeks doing physical labor at my church out in the sunshine, spent extra time with my friends, and saw a counselor who helped me through the worst of it.
What I went through was very much a health crisis, and it convinced me that my physical health and mental health were very closely bound together. It also convinced me to re-evaluate my priorities. My health now comes before my job - no matter how much I love my job, no matter how obligated I feel, no matter how much the bills are piling up, my health comes first.
Since I made that decision, I’ve been a lot less angry.