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Early childhood influences: “In the beginning is my end” T.S. Elliot

A study done a few years ago indicated early childhood experiences (ACE) says very strongly if they were bad, then  what happens is “Adverse childhood experiences are the main determinant of the health and social well-being of the nation”. In this case they are referring to addiction but the same in many respects applies to anger as well. They are not talking about poverty and social ills but psychological damage.

Early trauma affects brain development so that the ability to handle emotional stuff is almost permanently impaired in key areas in the brain’s limbic system. The unresolved nature of those early childhood experiences mean there is an inability to handle stress which causes the addiction’ the anxiety and anger.

173 ACE pyramid disfunction development






Frequently people in anger management state they had perfect childhoods and  blame their victim. Or they are so full of shame they blame themselves. Or they go in the opposite direction saying they had rotten childhoods which becomes a badge of honour to justify whatever they do. Unfortunately the progression onwards from childhood leads to life of problems. They become cumulative and if nothing is done it leads to a short life.

Often individuals say “I’m not as bad as that” as a way of isolating themselves running away from what they don’t want to look at. However the only person they are selling short is themselves. It may be challenging for someone to look at their life and see how it fits with the pyramid, and learn to pay heed to where they are emotionally vulnerable.

Source: New York Times


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