Prompt 23: The Rage and the Fury

Laptop-Screen-RepairPrompt 23. Tell us about a time when you flew into a rage. What is it that made you so incredibly angry?

I once was so angry with my ex that I threw my laptop. I don’t remember what the fight had been about originally. But it was one of those ridiculous fights where I wasn’t fighting with him enough to suit his tastes so he tried to get me to fight with him more. I was so tired of this argument that I got onto my laptop and was trying to do something productive, I don’t remember what, and then he started complaining about that.

My attempt to get away from his constant badgering only caused him to badger me more. Now he could launch into another one of his triads about how I don’t give him my full and undivided attention whenever he’s talking, which he doesn’t do for me anyway, and how rude I am to not want to fight with him when he feels the need to fight. I remember thinking that if he doesn’t want me on my laptop then I won’t use my laptop. So I threw it.

Rage is not an emotion that is really expressed a lot in my family. Although I was born and raised Catholic, we’re very WASP-y. There were never many fights and if there were, some harsh words were expressed and then the two parties would retreat to separate corners to calm down. I wasn’t used to my ex’s never-ending, emotionally-exhausting, completely undeniable need to argue until I was in tears or just gave into whatever he wanted (or both) because I couldn’t do it anymore.

Even though I expressed this fact to my ex, it didn’t stop anything. As from what I saw from his family, raging arguments, screaming, swearing, berating each other, and threatening all kinds of things were commonplace. Even arguments that I wasn’t involved in. People around me arguing makes me uncomfortable, something that I continually pointed out whenever it happened, to no avail. Around his family, there was no end to the rage. When I finally left, I felt relief that all of that was behind me now. Hearing arguing, being fought with, made me so anxious. I couldn’t cope with it on a regular basis.

Sometimes my anxiety got so bad that I was sure I was having a heart attack. I would get dizzy and my hands would shake, I would live in fear of someone causing an argument and try to stay out of everyone’s way for fear of starting one. Even though there was nothing I could do to stop everyone else from arguing with each other.

Rage was a foreign thing for me. But I realized something during the course of that relationship; the way that he expressed it is not the way that I should or need to. I do need to deal with my anger and my feelings of hurt. But I can do that without resorting to the verbally abusive, emotionally fuckery that he and his family loved.

As for the laptop, after I collected it, I found that I had cracked the screen and it was unusable in its current state. I had to pay $80 to replace the screen and lie and say that the dogs knocked it over and that’s how it broke. But it was fixed and I went on to use that laptop for several more years. I have never thrown a laptop before or since, but honestly, I was never again pushed to the point where that thought would have ever occurred to me.