Anger and depression: how do they relate?

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Robert Maurer

Anger and depression: how do they relate?

Anger and depression are expressions of frustration, discomfort and discomfort with reality. They are the result of an inner malaise. People who always appear angry are probably depressed and vice versa. 

Last update: February 18, 2022

Anger and depression are two realities that often go hand in hand. A person is believed to be depressed when they appear sad, awkward, and more or less locked in their bubble of misfortune. In reality, this is only one side of the depression. This stage can manifest itself in many different ways depending on the character of the individual person.

Studies indicate that people who tend to be angry often are also more vulnerable to depression. More precisely, a link has been found between depression and anger attacks that affect certain people.

Anger and depression share the same trigger: frustration. The latter arises from a desire or an unsatisfied goal. More than the thing not obtained, what causes the malaise is the lack of resources necessary to process that frustration. All this is almost always accompanied by a low opinion of oneself and a past of affective deficiencies.

Anger, depression and the unconscious

From the point of view of the unconscious, anger and depression are part of the same process. It can almost be said that they are equivalent. The difference between the two lies in the subject to which they are directed: While anger is directed towards something external, depression involves the same aggressive but self-directed feelings.

The relationship between anger and depression is perverse, but at the same time harmonic, since they are two complementary manifestations. With anger, particularly when there is an attack or explosion of aggression, destructive attitudes towards the other arise. Offensive words are used, aimed at minimizing or degrading the other person.

In depression the same verbal violence is activated, but this time directed towards oneself. It is equally destructive and can be accompanied by physical and direct acts, real aggression towards oneself. This is the case, for example, of behaviors in which one's integrity is endangered.

A vicious circle

The chain of facts leading to depression tends to start with a frustrated desire. You crave for something that you can't get, and maybe at first you can even get over it. In the long run, however, the feeling of wanting but not being able to give rise to a very deep feeling of frustration.

This also affects the ability to believe in oneself, weakening one's self-esteem. Naturally, if these feelings are not expressed, they will accumulate within us to the point of oppressing us. Up to tear us apart and break something inside us.

At this point, it's easy to turn the feeling into a general aversion to the world. Depending on one's temperament, this annoyance will manifest itself in the form of rejection of what surrounds us. Otherwise, in the tendency to negatively affect others. Often both manifestations come together and occur together.

Listen and understand emotions

Anger and depression are destructive stages, both for those who experience them and for other people. They often lead to unnecessary conflicts and highly emotionally charged situations that distance us from others. In turn, guilt and isolation only fuel frustration, anger and depression.

Getting out of this situation is both easy and complex. It is about learning to listen to the emotions that live in us and giving them the right value. Failure to recognize those feelings and let them speak ends up turning into an overwhelming force which in the long run damages ourselves and others.

If you feel that the feelings of sadness or anger have become a shadow, they invade you and you cannot get rid of them, it is probably time to speak. - or rather, to express - what happens to you.

A professional can help you reinterpret the whirlwind of your emotions, understand why you want what you can't have, ending up blocking you. Without help, anger and depression will get the better of you and your life.

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