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#61 Old 04-28-2008, 08:40 PM
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...Jealousy is something that seems so acceptable in society, yet personally I associate it with abuse, control, and insecurity. ...



I agree completely with this. I didn't before - because I had never really though about it until hub and I started talking about it. These are things I think about often. A friend of mine and I were talking about this the other night, as we were talking about polyamory and commune living and bisexuality in a hetero relationship.... It's all really interesting and an excellent topic for discussion among people who are genuinely interested in analyzing why they feel the way they do.
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#62 Old 04-29-2008, 01:45 AM
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Someone who is inclined to lie about their sexual activities would probably also lie about who they were sleeping with if they were "allowed" to sleep with more than one. I don't think going non-monogamous would help with that one. If you can't trust someone, you can't trust them.



That's probably true. I don't think I could be in a polyamorous relationship, actually, unless I didn't care very much about that person. I'm not at all suggesting people with multiple partners don't care about each other, but for me the only way for me to not feel jealousy is if I don't care about someone in a romantic way. And in that case what's the point of having a relationship at all?



ETA: I think there's a difference between feelings of jealousy and reacting with jealousy. I think it's normal to feel a little jealous if an attractive woman flirts with my partner, but screaming at her and punching her in the face is kind of an overkill reaction. I think jealousy is not a bad thing, in certain situations, so long as it does not affect your behaviour in a negative way.

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#63 Old 04-29-2008, 09:29 PM
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I think it's normal to feel a little jealous if an attractive woman flirts with my partner



I must be in the minority, but I don't feel jealous at all if my partner was flirting/being flirted with. In fact, it makes me feel pretty 'proud' ... he's an attractive man, so why wouldn't women be flirting with him? The idea of him being with another women sexually also doesn't bother me. It's rather exciting, imo. I love seeing the boy happy and if he can receive things (not just sex, btw) from other people that make him happy, it makes me happy and it's a positive thing.



The only way I'd be angry about it is if I were lied to and/or he was doing things that we, as life partners, had agreed against doing. I don't take to being lied to well. I don't think it matters how many inidividuals are in a relationship, as long as communication, trust and honesty are valued.
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#64 Old 04-30-2008, 06:16 AM
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I do understand the feeling of jealousy, I guess my "gauge" for it is just set really different. I don't feel a thing when my bf checks out another women, this is also partly because, well I probably noticed her 10 minutes ago and have already fully undressed her in my mind. I have felt jealousy when my boyfriend has been with other women, but like you said I make serious efforts to not let that feeling take over.



When I said that you can't let the jealousy feeling take over, I should have made it clear that I was mostly referring to the irrational kind of jealousy that produces controlling and abusive behaviour at the mere thought of your partner talking to or having attention payed to them by the opposite sex..... for example, you might try to keep them away from situations where that might happen.



However, if you are feeling jealousy over your partner having sex with other women, that's quite a different thing. That's a situation where it's quite appropriate to have a response of jealousy.



If you recognize that you feel jealous you should really go with it IMO, and not try to push the feeling away. I find lots of people do that because they feel they should give an impression of being super well-adjusted, rather than admitting how they really feel and then having to risk appearing insecure/possessive/maladjusted to their partner or anyone else around them.



Anytime we try to deny feelings that we really feel, it ends up coming back to biting us in the arse in some way later on down the track.









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What I don't understand is why jealousy would keep you from wanting an open/poly relationship? There are plenty of reason one might not want one, but that seems to be the most common response, and the one that makes the least sense to me.



It makes perfect sense to me and most other people I know who stick to monogamous relationships. I can't see why you would need me to point it out because you should really be able to work that one out for yourself, I would've thought.
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#65 Old 04-30-2008, 08:29 AM
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I must be in the minority, but I don't feel jealous at all if my partner was flirting/being flirted with. In fact, it makes me feel pretty 'proud' ... he's an attractive man, so why wouldn't women be flirting with him? The idea of him being with another women sexually also doesn't bother me. It's rather exciting, imo. I love seeing the boy happy and if he can receive things (not just sex, btw) from other people that make him happy, it makes me happy and it's a positive thing.



Nice post - I think that's really what it's all about. Loving someone so much that you truely just want them to be happy, and they feel the same about you, and whatever gets you there is a good thing.



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However, if you are feeling jealousy over your partner having sex with other women, that's quite a different thing. That's a situation where it's quite appropriate to have a response of jealousy.



Is it? Why? I see that this is obvious to you, but not so much to me. Also I would not say that I push the feelings away, I deal with them and talk them out. A feeling is just a feeling, some are pleasant, some aren't.



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Anytime we try to deny feelings that we really feel, it ends up coming back to biting us in the arse in some way later on down the track.



The funny thing is that I think to be monogamous, my partner and I would be forced to deny our feelings. If I said I didn't want to sleep with the cute bartender that would be lying about an attraction I felt to him. All these feelings would just be locked inside, building and unable to be expressed. I would be fantasizing and building up my crushes in my head. Wondering what it would be like.



I'd rather get over my jealousy than every person I'm ever attracted to.



To me this is obvious, I could limit positive emotions (love, attraction) and relationships to protect myself from (I think irrational) feelings like jealousy, or I could learn to deal with certain uncomfortable feelings, and my boyfriend and I can both be free to experience any relationship we desire.
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#66 Old 04-30-2008, 08:38 AM
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I dunno. I think some rein on our feelings can be a positive thing. If not I'd go postal on the morning train. Man, I can't count the amount of times I've felt like wreaking a bit of havoc on the 5am express to Sydney. We can't do everything we feel.

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#67 Old 04-30-2008, 09:48 AM
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I felt like it and I really wanted to are different statements entirely.



Last night I was hungry and felt like making a huge bowl of ramen and chowing down on some oreos. I would have felt like crap afterwards and wished I hadn't.



That was not what I really wanted, I really wanted something nutritious to tide me over till morning. Toast with hummus and a couple olives made a way better snack.



In the end though, I was hungry and really wanted to eat. Not eating would have made me very grumpy and uncomfortable. My bf didn't want to get me food, so I could either get something myself, or find someone else to bring me food.



It's not like just because you're in an open relationship, you sleep with whoever, whenever you get the urge. I didn't act like that when I was single, and now that I have my bf... if I get umm hungry, well he's normally quite happy to cook for me. We both just like a little variety in our diet.
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#68 Old 04-30-2008, 09:57 AM
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Is it? Why? I see that this is obvious to you, but not so much to me.







If you feel jealousy over your partner having sex with someone else, it is an appropriate and natural emotion to be feeling because it's a significant event.



However, if you can get past the jealousy by rationalizing that it's important to his happiness which in turn is important to you, and you feel very comfortable with him doing this and find yourself never thinking about it again, then that's great.



But, you said you were confused about the whole jealousy thing, as if you were feeling jealous but perhaps feeling as if you shouldn't, because you view it as 'controlling and abusive behaviour'.



I would suggest that if you're having these feelings of jealousy to the point where you feel threatened, angry and find yourself thinking about whether he might leave you for who ever else he's bonking, then to me, that seems like a sign that you're not completely comfortable being in an open relationship. If you were comfortable, I don't think you'd be thinking about this jealousy stuff that much.....the sex with other people would just happen and you'd not give it that much thought afterwards.



This is in no way a criticizm of your lifetstyle at all I want to add, I'm not trying to imply that you shouldn't be in an open relationship, it's just that I'm not completely convinced that you're ok with it.



If you are cool with it though, that's good
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#69 Old 04-30-2008, 10:41 AM
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It's not like just because you're in an open relationship, you sleep with whoever, whenever you get the urge.



I think when you make statements like "my BF and I are free to have relationships with whoever we desire", or you talk about your attraction to random people such as cute bartenders, it can sometimes make it sound like you're going with any urge you happen to get, even though that might not be the case.

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#70 Old 04-30-2008, 11:44 AM
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...

However, if you can get past the jealousy by rationalizing that it's important to his happiness which in turn is important to you, and you feel very comfortable with him doing this and find yourself never thinking about it again, then that's great....



...This is in no way a criticizm of your lifetstyle at all I want to add, I'm not trying to imply that you shouldn't be in an open relationship, it's just that I'm not completely convinced that you're ok with it.



If you are cool with it though, that's good



Thanks, I thought your posts were helpful, not attacking - a lot of my confusion about jealousy is not about my own, but about his. I do have a ton of feelings/ideas I'm trying to figure out and not many people I know in real life are willing to discuss the subject open mindedly.



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I think when you make statements like "my BF and I are free to have relationships with whoever we desire", or you talk about your attraction to random people such as cute bartenders, it can sometimes make it sound like you're going with any urge you happen to get, even though that might not be the case.



Sorry I gave the wrong impression i guess? We are "free to have relationships with whoever" that doesn't mean we are necessarily going about like rabbits with everyone willing. Actually even in monogamous relationships, both parties are free to be with whoever, it's just they have to end the relationship or cheat.



Not that it matters, but it's not random bartenders that I like. It's one very specific bartender who, besides being adorable, also happens to be a friend and a really great guy, who my bf also knows well and trusts.
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#71 Old 04-30-2008, 12:03 PM
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Thanks, I thought your posts were helpful, not attacking - a lot of my confusion about jealousy is not about my own, but about his. I do have a ton of feelings/ideas I'm trying to figure out and not many people I know in real life are willing to discuss the subject open mindedly.



Fair enough....I got the idea from post #54 that you were talking about your jealousy rather than his that's all.
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#72 Old 05-01-2008, 06:45 PM
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....Anytime we try to deny feelings that we really feel, it ends up coming back to biting us in the arse in some way later on down the track......



There is a significant difference, though, between denying valid feelings, and analyzing and working through or discarding invalid feelings. And quite often the feelings we have that seem justified, are 'normal' and accepted are not valid. We feel them naturally, yes, but they may just be pointless and destructive.
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#73 Old 05-01-2008, 06:47 PM
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Not "valid"? I can see an emotion being harmful, destructive or having a negative impact on one's life but not "valid"? That's a pretty damned harsh call to tell someone, even oneself, that emotions are not valid.

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#74 Old 05-01-2008, 06:50 PM
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Bleeblooblah. Ok, you're right - that was not the right word, necessarily..... but - your emotion, and how you feel may be valid, and should be respected, but it doesn't necessarily mean the emotion is reasonable or good or healthy. A bit like a child having a tantrum - or for that matter, an adult having a tantrum. The fact that they are feeling this right now means their feelings are very real, and should be respected - but not necessarily 'valid'. Does that make sense?
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#75 Old 05-01-2008, 06:55 PM
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Not "valid"? I can see an emotion being harmful, destructive or having a negative impact on one's life but not "valid"?



Agreed; emotions should never be treated like they're an error in your personality to be destroyed. If it's a "negative" emotion, it's all about channeling it appropriately; not decrying its existence.



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Anytime we try to deny feelings that we really feel, it ends up coming back to biting us in the arse in some way later on down the track.



Hmm, I've certainly felt a bit of lust many times in my life. If I tried to go after that feeling every time I'd probably have a lot of diseases! We don't have to act on everything we feel! Hell, being "civilized" is all about not acting on a lot of emotions. Rage, for example... I'm sure we all know people (and some of you may be this type) who go insane over minor traffic problems. Would you say it's a good thing for them to act on that rage?
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#76 Old 05-01-2008, 07:06 PM
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Bleeblooblah. Ok, you're right - that was not the right word, necessarily..... but - your emotion, and how you feel may be valid, and should be respected, but it doesn't necessarily mean the emotion is reasonable or good or healthy. A bit like a child having a tantrum - or for that matter, an adult having a tantrum. The fact that they are feeling this right now means their feelings are very real, and should be respected - but not necessarily 'valid'. Does that make sense?



No, the person throwing the tantrum has feelings that are perfectly valid. They were fired from work, their dinner was burnt and the cat shat in the bath. They are expressing their emotions in an unhelpful manner but that does not somehow mean their emotions are invalid and meaningless. There is a reason they feel that way. Bad day, maybe they are not good at dealing with things, maybe they are just plumb crazy. But even people with severe mental and emotional disorders have valid emotions. Dismissing then as not being valid, as not really existing in the same way "good" emotions exist, is an approach that I disagree with.

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#77 Old 05-01-2008, 07:08 PM
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Agreed; emotions should never be treated like they're an error in your personality to be destroyed. If it's a "negative" emotion, it's all about channeling it appropriately; not decrying its existence.....



I think that when you are assessing yourself, it is absolutely fair to consider an emotion a problem. It does sound a bit harsh to say that it's an error in your personality, as that implies that there is something wrong with the way you're constructed...or something. But definitely there are emotions that people have that are problematic, pointless, destructive and dangerous, so therefore 'wrong'. And they need to be fixed, and sometimes eradicated. It's not dramatic, it's not mean or heartless, it's understanding yourself, and working to be a better person instead of glossing over your problems with blammer about 'everything being valid and healthy'.
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#78 Old 05-01-2008, 07:13 PM
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....They were fired from work, their dinner was burnt and the cat shat in the bath. ... Bad day, maybe they are not good at dealing with things, maybe they are just plumb crazy. ....



Right, but feeling rage because the cat shat in the bath or whatever is not reasonable. It's a completely inappropriate feeling. I don't think it's beneficial in any way to have that feeling. We feel it naturally, yes, and I think most of us do feel that from time to time, I sure as hell do, but it doesn't make it 'valid'. I don't propose that you call yourself a fool and launch into denial or distraction, or beat yourself up - but look at it. Figure out what you feel, and why you feel it - which are all valid processes - and then work on - yes - eradicating it.
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#79 Old 05-01-2008, 07:16 PM
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And they need to be fixed, and sometimes eradicated. It's not dramatic, it's not mean or heartless, it's understanding yourself, and working to be a better person instead of glossing over your problems with blammer about 'everything being valid and healthy'.



My post has nothing to do with glossing over emotions; in fact, I encourage people to look at them in greater depth. As I said, they need to be channel constructively. Emotions shouldn't be seen as wrong; it's how you use them. If you're full of anger and sadness and you don't manage them appropriately (in other words, not ignoring them, bottling them up, and such) they can become rage and hatred... then you could hurt someone, or yourself. They need to be used in such a way to be clues, guidance and enhancement of life... A lot of people seem to think of emotions as burdensome and want to get rid of them. I could never advocate eradicating emotions... they're a huge part of who we are as people!



...although I would look pretty good with pointy ears.
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#80 Old 05-01-2008, 07:22 PM
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...... Emotions shouldn't be seen as wrong; it's how you use them. If you're full of anger and sadness and you don't manage them appropriately (in other words, not ignoring them, bottling them up, and such) they can become rage and hatred... .....





I guess I disagree. I think some emotions are wrong. Why keep the feeling but channel it constructively - why not work at it until you can change the emotion itself? Sometimes having the feeling itself is a problem, no? Feeling angry because the cat shat in the bath, or because the food is overcooked, or whatever... how is it beneficial to have that feeling, and what is channeling it constructively? Would it not be a great thing to no longer feel angry in a situation like that instead?
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#81 Old 05-01-2008, 07:28 PM
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I guess I disagree. I think some emotions are wrong. Why keep the feeling but channel it constructively - why not work at it until you can change the emotion itself? Sometimes having the feeling itself is a problem, no? Feeling angry because the cat shat in the bath, or because the food is overcooked, or whatever... how is it beneficial to have that feeling, and what is channeling it constructively? Would it not be a great thing to no longer feel angry in a situation like that instead?



You can't do any of that if you just declare an emotion invalid. You need to own up to the fact you are feeling it and work from there. The emotion is there. It is real. It's coming from somewhere. Work out where it's coming from. If it's not from the cat crap in the bath then where is it from? Is there an issue in your life causing you grief? Maybe you have a chemical imbalance? Declaring emotions to be invalid and just shutting down goes against your other advice of declaring emotions to be valid and working through them.

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#82 Old 05-01-2008, 07:31 PM
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I think there are times where anger may be appropriate - it's still destructive - but that's where dealing with it comes in. It's reasonable to feel angry at a friend who stole your last 10$ that you needed to feed your child. But there are times, and it seems to me that most of the time when we feel anger, that it is inappropriate, and should not be felt for that reason.
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#83 Old 05-01-2008, 07:32 PM
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Feeling rage because of a cat doing that isn't fairly reasonable (I think that's an interesting choice, though, because I'm house sitting for someone and their cat does that)... but it's extremely likely that the rage doesn't just stem from that. People who get angry over many aspects of their life have failed to appropriately deal with that anger. I think that if they had done so, then that rage over the cat wouldn't exist.



I'm just advocating proper use of emotions... if people dealt with their sexuality and frustrations better they wouldn't become rapists. I'd prefer they learn to deal with those issues instead of just destroying them. Okay, so it'd be better if someone was empty inside rather than a rapist; but wouldn't it be even better if they were a well-managed person instead?



I'd be concerned that someone shutting away their emotions isn't going to know how to deal with difficult situations in any other way. Definitely seems like a slippery slope... instead, know what to do when those emotions arise, don't just turn them off.



But, disagreeing is okay
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#84 Old 05-01-2008, 07:33 PM
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You can't do any of that if you just declare an emotion invalid. You need to own up to the fact you are feeling it and work from there. The emotion is there. It is real. It's coming from somewhere. Work out where it's coming from. If it's not from the cat crap in the bath then where is it from? Is there an issue in your life causing you grief? Maybe you have a chemical imbalance? Declaring emotions to be invalid and just shutting down goes against your other advice of declaring emotions to be valid and working through them.



...

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... I don't propose that you call yourself a fool and launch into denial or distraction, or beat yourself up - but look at it. Figure out what you feel, and why you feel it - which are all valid processes - and then work on - yes - eradicating it.

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#85 Old 05-01-2008, 07:33 PM
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Appropriate and valid are very different things. Anger is not always destructive though, otherwise it would have been bred out of us a long time ago. Anger can keep us alive.

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#86 Old 05-01-2008, 07:35 PM
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(multiquotes).





I know, you are arguing both sides of the issue at once.

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#87 Old 05-01-2008, 07:42 PM
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Feeling rage because of a cat doing that isn't fairly reasonable (I think that's an interesting choice, though, because I'm house sitting for someone and their cat does that)... but it's extremely likely that the rage doesn't just stem from that. People who get angry over many aspects of their life have failed to appropriately deal with that anger. I think that if they had done so, then that rage over the cat wouldn't exist.



I'm just advocating proper use of emotions... Okay, so it'd be better if someone was empty inside rather than a rapist; but wouldn't it be even better if they were a well-managed person instead?



I'd be concerned that someone shutting away their emotions isn't going to know how to deal with difficult situations in any other way. Definitely seems like a slippery slope... instead, know what to do when those emotions arise, don't just turn them off.



But, disagreeing is okay



I think you guys are misunderstanding me... To me, 'dealing with your emotion' is understanding why you feel it, and learning not to feel it inappropriately Not denying it, or shutting it down, or ignoring it, or being empty inside....





Quote:
...if people dealt with their sexuality and frustrations better they wouldn't become rapists. I'd prefer they learn to deal with those issues instead of just destroying them. O



So what is dealing with them if it's not learning to not feel them inappropriately?
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#88 Old 05-01-2008, 07:43 PM
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I know, you are arguing both sides of the issue at once.





That's the inside of my head all the time......
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#89 Old 05-01-2008, 07:44 PM
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I think there are times where anger may be appropriate - it's still destructive



Anger is actually seen as a fairly positive emotion in psychology; it's supposed to be used as a cue to identify dislikes, life issues and such. It's a good tool.



Letting it turn into rage tends to be inappropriate; yet in our evolutionary past that's probably saved many a life, and even today! Using rage to overcome fear and being able to stop an attacker, for example, is a good thing.



It's all about how you use it...
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#90 Old 05-01-2008, 07:49 PM
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I disagree - we would be better off identifying what the threat is and using other emotions and our problem solving skills to fix serious problems. The anger itself accomplishes nothing.
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