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"Rage" - by Cheryl Taylor


March 1, 2005


The word “Rage”, is a four-letter word, and defined by Merriam Webster’s Dictionary as: violent and uncontrolled anger. 

Rage has also been associated with what is now called Intermittent Explosive Disorder, which is defined by PsychNet-UK.com as several occasions of aggressiveness and impulsivity.  Additionally, Dysphoric Mania, in Bipolar Disorder has been shown to cause episodes of rage. 

Findings also indicate, that Adult AD/HD in a woman can also be a culprit of spawned or triggered rage.  Adult AD/HD, in some cases can be an ingrained personality style, possibly triggered from feelings of “something” being wrong.  These behaviors creating a much less structured environment.  Bringing with it large demands, struggles with careers, a feeling of overwhelmingness, coupled with difficulty of disciplining children, the use of excessive punishment and possibly child abuse, whether mental or physical.  Prioritizing also becoming ever so difficult to sort out in ones mind.  Having a partner who is not AD/HD, seems to be found as a beneficial tool in the lives of those of us stricken with this disorder.  Requiring that the significant other take over any, if not all, discipline handed out, controlling all finances, all of the structure that is certainly needed in everyday life for all living with and around the emotionally enraged individual.  Another problem rage may interject into ones life is known as promiscuity.

Promiscuity being defined as casual and intermittent sexual relations.

Studies have also shown that a lot of individuals with rage have been diagnosed with a dual-diagnosis.  This obviously having a broad spectrum of possibilities for the root of this evil.  These studies having been conducted at the Northern County Psychiatric Association, located in Baltimore, Maryland.

Having said that, here is my experience with Rage and it showing its ugly face and wreaking havoc in my life and the lives of all who were around me.   I knew in my early twenties that I would enter fits from minor situations arising from everyday life that would set me off. My favorite rage episode was what lead me to agree to be med-compliant.  After throwing raw food across my kitchen at my husband, we decided that night that it was time.  I was immediately put through that ringer of try this, try that looking and seeking a drug that would assist me in my desire to make this uncontrollable part of me, vanish.  I learned quickly that a large amount of self-control would be a key role in this hard walk that lay ahead of me just for the safety of myself and my children.  I have been like so many out there who have ended up inflicting not only mental pain and abuse on my children and my husband, but also physical abuse.  After striking my daughter with a wire coat hanger and morphing into a true “Mommy Dearest”, I knew that I was totally out of control.  And for the most part, I had no recollection of most of the episodes that would occur on a almost daily basis.  This became second nature to me.  I wouldn’t know how to feel at the end of a day that did not include rage.  

About three years ago, I made a change in my Psychiatric care, was put with a well educated man who specialized in Bipolar Disorder.  I was, at that time, placed on Trileptal as a last resort.  Within twenty-four hours of my first dose, I felt like a new person.  I was not tired any more, I was able to live what I considered as normal of a life as one Bipolar individual could.  I taught myself much self-control.  I learned to not speak, not to react with the first words that came to my mind, I also used breathing techniques to assist myself in everyday life.  I had to dig hard to find it, but in less than ninety days, the rage was gone.  I was ever so thankful for what my doctor had given back to me.  I continued on the Trileptal for almost three years.  And in the fall of last year, came to realize that the rage was slowly creeping out again.  At that time, I was making a major life style adjustment and connecting with yet another new Psychiatrist.  I was removed from the Trileptal, and told the drug just was non-beneficial to the treatment I so did seek for assistance with my rage.   I was placed on Lamictal and an extremely low dose of Trileptal, yet again.  I thought it would great again.  The feelings of rage continued to creep out of the dark recesses of my mind. 

Once again, I had become the resident authority and most knowledgeable person on cordless phones.  A cordless phone is NEVER safe around me.  A cordless had no fighting chance for survival of more than thirty days at times.  I laugh about my raw chicken episode now, and find that my last abuse of a cordless phone to be the most comical.  I threw a phone down a stairwell in my house.  Shattering the phone into millions of pieces.  Later that night, my twelve year old daughter, who was the victim of the “Mommy Dearest” episode, brought me the phone, in our dust pan, holding up only the battery from within the phone.  She informed me that she thought it was going to be the only salvageable part from that expensive phone I had just destroyed.  It is funny to me now, but at the time, was heart breaking to know that my daughter, once again, was a victim to such violence.  Today she understands Bipolar much better than most of its victims.  Educating herself with the aid of internet research, and asking questions continually.  I am thankful that at such a young age, at least one of my children knows that it isn’t her mother that does these horrible deeds.  Yet in fact, was the illness taking control over my mind.   She has taken it all in stride.  And to this day, is and will always be my best friend.  She has been there for me when I am sure she lay in a great state of fear.  But was always the first to come running to mommy, attempting once more, to save me from myself.

Not very long ago, I again lashed out at another child.  This time, it was a child that will soon who will be a key role in my everyday life.   This was triggered by a derogatory statement that was spoken in my presence, regarding the man that I love.  I immediately exploded without thinking and was in this child’s face, pointing my finger and screaming at the top of my lungs.  This young boy, whom I am sure has never experienced this type of reaction to his behaviors, was totally mortified.  I realized about half way into this fit, what I was doing.  I immediately removed myself from the room, and once again withdrew from everything.  Fearing one more time of the damage that I knew was inevitably on my horizon.  Knowing that it was a trigger within me that had brought my old friend Mr. Rage back to me yet again.  From my bedroom, I heard loud and clear the thoughts that this child now held towards me.   The effects of the fit touched a nerve within him, and causing him to question why I was there, why did he have to take what I now seemed to dish completely at him.   I then sunk into a depression, almost immediately.  Fearing once more that I would not have control of this dark secret that I so desperately wanted to hide.  Not wishing that anyone would ever know of this sinister side of me.  I was devastated that I had shown this to the person that I love the most.   And the fear of loosing yet one more thing in my life that mattered was overwhelming.  This then led me to my first ever suicidal thought.   I now am thankful to what ever power makes me an extremely rapid cycler, there not being enough time for me to react on the feelings of death that seemed to stir from within.   With the help of the only person in my life who promises to never leave me, I realized that I would have to over come this terrible behavior that would certainly destroy me and my life, once again. 

I have lost many things in my life due to RAGE.  These have included, two marriages, three children which I no longer have custody of (by my own free will and concern for the safety of my children), and leaving behind me many glasses, furniture, and any other household items that weren’t nailed down, destroyed.  Breaking enough mirrors to have bad luck for the remainder of my life.  I feel shame for all of these things.  And can only hope that this side of me will once again be gone, that I will be able to benefit, once again from therapy and the use my good friend that I like to call: self-control. 

As for my final thoughts on this matter, I strongly recommend that if you or anyone in your life feels that you may suffer from uncontrollable rage, you could just have an under lying problem that can be brought on by any number of psychological issues that can be possibly treated by medication and therapy.



Research Found At:


Northern County Psychiatric Association  Baltimore, Maryland



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