Find Your Voice

by Rusty Fleischer, Program Director –



For several months I was having an ongoing conversation with a potential client.

She was impressed with everything she read on our website and wanted to convince her fiancé that he needed help with his anger issues and should schedule some time with us. In our first conversation I explained to her that from our experience, if you are in a relationship with someone who has an anger issue, you probably have an anger issue also. It was hard for her to hear my words and she went to great efforts to explain how she knows to take a step back when he gets angry. She continued to insist that at some point she will convince him to seek out help.

To make a long story short, over a period of several months, we had similar conversations with the same results. At the end of each conversation, I was always left with an uncomfortable feeling that I couldn’t identify. In a conversation with my partner, Jerry Medol, Director of Anger Alternatives, I shared my discomfort and told him that I could not understand my investment in this woman. In the past I have had conversations with people who were not ready to move forward and I was easily able to let go. With her, I kept hanging on. As I was talking with Jerry, I had an amazing “ah-ha” moment. I realized that I feel personally challenged with women who “can’t find their voice” in a relationship. That was it!

The following day I called her, shared with her my conversation with Jerry and my personal challenge. It must have hit a nerve because the next thing she said to me was “When can I schedule?”

Those words “finding your voice” became a topic of several discussions between Jerry and me. The more we talked about it the more we realized that not only does a self-silencing person, such as this woman, need to find his or her voice, but also the person dealing with reactionary and aggressive behavior needs to find his or her voice. The aggressive and controlling behaviors and the self-silencing are both forms of anger-related behaviors that are not expressing what really needs to be said.

Have you found your voice? Tell me about it.

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