Dear Dr. Brilliant Cliché;
I feel angry just about all the time. I’m seventeen and my parents keep treating me like I’m a kid and acting like they are the authority on everything just because they are older. In the meantime, they act like idiots- secretive habits, lying, and bad decisions right and left. But they get to tell me what to do because legally I’m not an adult yet.
OK, so all of that makes me angry and then my parents accuse me of being sullen and withdrawn and now they want to force me to go to therapy. I don’t need therapy. My friend Jim went to therapy and they insisted on putting him on antidepressants and now he’s like a zombie. I just need to get out of this house so that I don’t have to deal with their hypocrisy. My mom drinks and I’m pretty sure my dad is fooling around because he never comes home.
I applied to four colleges and didn’t get accepted at three, now I have my fingers crossed waiting for the last reply. I’ll get a job and figure it all out later if I have to. How do I get out of here without getting my brain screwed with even more? I have nine full months before I reach eighteen.
It is not just the cards we’re dealt but how we play the game that matters. Sometime we get crappy cards. That is nothing we can do anything about. But that handicap can also be used as motivation to learn how not to make the same mistakes. Many teens look at their parent’s lives and say, “holly crap!” But your parents were probably thinking that about their own parents when they were your age. Unless you learn new skills, change your assumptions and let go of the anger, you could end up like they did, with your kids saying the same things about you. The only way to make life better is to live a better life.
Psychiatry today says that addiction and other psychological disorders are all genetics and you’re shit out of luck. I think that’s B.S. Humans learn through role modeling so the skills you currently have will steer you towards your parents’ life. That isn’t genetic, and there are no medications that will fix that. If you want something better, find role models who got it right. Counseling might help if you learn to ask good questions. If you really can’t get beyond your feelings, medication can help you tone them down. Yes, go to college and live there! But don’t drink, drug, or smoke pot as the deck is already stacked against you. According to AA, people, places and things matter. Find people and activities that challenge your mind set, not feed into it. It is not easy to change the script you were born into. It takes courage, humility, integrity, persistence and patience. Good luck. Many fail, but if you keep asking good questions you have a fighting chance. I suggest that you read: Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss. It sums this all up well.
Dr. Brilliant Cliché
Granny says: My sister is always angry. I realize it’s because she has emotional disorders, but at the same time, I don’t like being in the same room with her. I can’t talk with her easily, laugh or make jokers. She jumps on innocent remarks I make and decides I am making jabs at her when in fact I meant nothing of the kind.
The problem with being angry all the time is that it alters the emotional charge in everyone around you. Whether you have a legitimate reason or not, anger is a very destructive emotion to those who carry it. Anger draws other anger, for anger always both invites and seeks a target. The best reason to get your anger under control is because it is going to screw up your life if you don’t and it is going to repel good energy from ever reaching you.
Your parents may be idiots, but Dr. Brilliant is right. They probably started out thinking their own parents were idiots too. Most teenagers do. None of this is significant in the long run. What is important is how you live your own life.
My grandson gets angry and bounces off the walls if he doesn’t go to martial arts classes and play sports. It’s because he is full of energy looking for a good use. I suggest you find a constructive outlet for your energy and leave your parents to ruin their own lives.