PTSD Rage Storm
I am at the house I grew up in and I’m in what used to be my grandfather’s room. In the dream my father is living in that room and I am showing him an interchange card (same part numbers in different brands) from an automotive parts warehouse customer and I am explaining the meaning of it to him. He is impressed that I’ve been able to figure the logic out–it was supposed to be a highly complex piece of work, however, presented this way it was made simple to understand.
“A Lot of Power Left in the Storm”
The scene changes to my old place of employment. There is a huge electrical storm heading towards the building. The bottom of the storm is like a huge tornado, which is very wide at the bottom. However, the bottom of it is just packed with unharnessed destructive angry electrical energy and at the top of the funnel regular bolts of lightning strike constantly. I am out in the parking lot watching the storm as it heads in my direction. I can feel the current running through the air – it makes me feel alive.
Another employee, Tom, is out in the lot and he is enjoying the feeling of the electrical current also. I convinced him that perhaps he better come inside because it is getting a bit dangerous out there and he heeds my warning.
Then, we both decide to go back out, but stay under the protection of the overhanging building. I wanted to feel the storm and so did he. The main programmer, Dave, is out there also by a loading dock which goes into the building but a chain link fence separates us.
It is a frightening storm and Disneyland is providing a light show showing the image of Mickey Mouse on the dark clouds using the power from the electrical storm. They are doing it to calm children who are frightened by the storm.
I returned to the building and go upstairs to my small office. My boss comes in and asked for help on a contract he is working on. He appears to be somewhat afraid to leave the contract with me, like he’s afraid I will try to take the deal over. The more detail I get on the account– the more it sounds like a deal he has rustled away from me. The account has four physical locations in different parts of the country and they deal with parts that rely heavily with interchange part numbers. As we started to work on the contract, the president was hiding details like the account name and their physical locations. The more he divulges, the more it looks like it should have been my deal.
The storm knocked out the electricity, the lights went out and we were in the dark. I show the president and VP into a room where the electrical storm is providing enough light that we can continue to work. Bolts of lightening send a continuous stream of soft light through the Venetian blinds. We start to work on the deal and it becomes more obvious the boss has crossed some lines.
Then, my wife calls, she wants to talk me about meeting me with the kids for dinner after work.
My boss, annoyed by the call, stomps out of the room – his usual way of showing his disapproval (really). I let my ex-wife know I had to go and deal with the boss.
Then, I began to lose control of my anger and I start to accuse both the president and vice president of stealing older accounts from me. I go on a complete rampage and start beating them– I am shocked that I am beating the vice president, but intended to show no mercy on the president – “no prisoners here”.
Final Stage of Dream – Incapacitation
At the end, I am at the Chesapeake Bay with my brother. We are in deep water up to our necks as if there has been a flood. I can’t see beneath the water because it is so murky. I fear greatly that there’s a large stingray or shark – some large unnameable creature lurking about –we head towards a small dinghy, but I’m afraid it won’t be large enough to protect us from this creature. We end up getting on some surfboards or paddle boards and are paddling towards a house on the water – approaching a safe zone – but I know I will not be completely safe until we are at the house.
Psychoanalytic Dream Interpretation: PTSD Rage Storm
Much of my anger and rage in me came through the interactions with my father and his PTSD, alcoholism, and his rage. I did manage to work my way through some of this before his death from lung cancer. At the end of his life he was moved into my grandfather’s old room with a hospital bed (hospice)–my grandfather was deceased at this point.
My father was proud of my achievements before his death–I don’t think he thought I would amount to much, but I had moved to California 1980, starting out with nothing: first, I got sober, I managed to put together a successful career, bought a house by the beach in Southern California, having saved a 20% deposit by myself in one year and was married with two children- all by 1984. (Good thing he died before I lost everything.)
Perhaps he is happy about my understanding of the interchange parts – because they might represent other people I am enraged at enough to annihilate – therefore, my rage is not solely focused on him – he is interchangeable with other offenders. My father has not been the focus of my rage for many years – perhaps 20 or more – but the intensity of the force is identical for the new offenders.
Force Behind the PTSD Rage Storm
The PTSD Rage Storm comes– it is a very destructive force. It is the accumulated anger and rage that stretches back to the time when I was small –when my anger had to be suppressed for fear of complete annihilation. Going into the building represents trying to get away for this destructive force by means of therapy, dream work and 12-step programs.
However, I go back outside with friend who was also aware and defiant to the corruption of the company management. I go back outside to reenter the zone of the destructive electrical force to feel the energy of the PTSD Rage Storm – being outside in electrical storms makes me feel more alive – perhaps somewhat like the destructive force that drives cutters to cut themselves or addicts to get high – so they can feel something – feel alive.
So, it is not just a reaction to the event that is presently making me angry, it is the accumulated anger that has built up from all of the injustices that I was unable to handle appropriately at the times they occurred. It is the proverbial tossing a match into a keg of gunpowder.
Trigger to PTSD Rage Storm
Consciously, I did not realize the rage storm was on its way, the night before the dream – I had been working late and then decided to read one of my books dealing with trauma. The book mentioned a husband that had a good relationship with his wife – and it struck a nerve – I instantly flooded with rage that could annihilate. Where was my relationship? Where was my “family”? I began to focus my rage on the guy that had the affair with my ex-wife. I fantasized beating the shit out of him for attending one of the AA meetings I go to.
This Powerful Destructive Forces Gets Played Out in Dream
In the dream, I get the phone call from my wife to have dinner with the kids after work – this was the trigger for the rampage in the dream. When I felt the missing relationship the night before, it became the trigger for the rage fantasy where I annihilate the affair. The fact that we are no longer a family and I do not get to go out to dinner together hit the “kill or annihilate” switch.
This is similar to force that takes over which I mentioned in the dream, “Precarious Journey through the Subconscious” – that when I am dealing with these issues, the ‘winged creatures’, those forces that have the power to carry one away into their negativity and destructiveness can take hold of me. And, it did – it evoked the rage – my mind broke into violent fantasies of destroying – annihilating this jerk. I could not read anymore that night because I had become so agitated – enraged from the PTSD Rage Storm in my head.
PTSD Rage Storm – Into the ‘Kill Room’
Back to the dream – I find a room lite up by the energy of the storm – which is anger – and lead my bosses into it – the “kill room” so to speak.
However, this isn’t all bad. It is doing the work of ‘real’ suffering – in that I realize the rage still needs taming and I have to continue working on it – but I know there is a way through it. The rage has improved over the years – I am able to be constructive during the lulls in the storm. My level of concentration has improved considerably over the years, which in the past was frequented by internal rage storms.
Plus, bringing the topic out into the open takes a lot of power out of the storm. Keeping silent about it allows it to build up into a real-time PTSD Rage Storm.
There is that sense of feeling alive when I am enraged – not exactly like the feeling of being outside in an electrical storm which is positive – but a stronger sense of being powerful in a destructive mode. Perhaps, I get frustrated by the slow pace that “real suffering” seems to require – it does not give me that instant gratification that fantasizing rage makes me feel –a super charged sensation. It seems like it would be much more gratifying to just annihilated the guy (interchangeable) – not to mention more expedient.
My employer(interchangeable) was less than ethical–I used to say that my ex-boss was ethically challenged. In fact, once I wrote the words “Ethically Challenged” on the white board in the main conference room hoping he would get the point.
Cause of the PTSD Rage Storm
Rather than describing past grievances I’d like to focus on the amount or should I say massive amount of rage that still exist from these past resentments. Perhaps I always felt or fear the complete annihilation that I originally experienced with my father, therefore was never able to express or object to the negative events while they were occurring. Basically, I was bullied at work and cheated, and not able to really do anything about it in a constructive way. A couple of times I lost my temper and let the rage out at work, but this never ended up advantageous for me and I never achieved the results I wanted. (But neither did anybody else, because the boss was a psychopath.)
Once when my ex-boss beached a contract on the commission I was supposed to receive while I was going out the door to complete the sale, I instantly lost it and went into a rage. I called the president of the company a “cock sucker” right to his face. Then he acted like he was the one that had the grievance. (The commission would have been close to $30,000, so this was something to ‘sneeze’ about.) But, when events like this generally occur, I dissociate, my affect is not normal – and I do not feel the anger or rage at the time.
I would pretend these infractions were not happening and indirectly approach most situations using passive aggressive tactics.
However, I often planned my revenge in my fantasy world where I would literally beat the shit out of the people that piss me off in my head.
Other current dreams lately have shown a more positive ‘Spark of Life’ force returning, however, this one shows that anger and rage still exist on a massive level. Looks like I have ways to go – plus, psychological growth is not a linear journey it is filled with vicissitudes.
The Flood of Emotions
The dream ends with me being in floodwaters of the Chesapeake Bay with my brother. This brings the rage back to the time when I was young which is why my brother is present. There is great fear that something large and dangerous is under the water, which carries the force of annihilation represented by both the tornado like electrical storm and the unnamed underwater creature. When I was young, this force was my father. I never what would evoke his rage and unleash his PTSD Rage Storm.
The creature under the water is this annihilating force – I know it can destroy me in an instant on one hand – and on the other, I too can instantly annihilate in a rage – and this too is something to fear. Being stuck in deep water in my dreams generally represents being ‘overwhelmed’ by my emotions to the point of being incapacitated, which is the case in the end of the dream. After the rage fantasy while reading, I was no longer able to work – I could not go back to reading. At this point only physical activity can wear off the energy – swimming helps.
In other recent dreams, I have encountered flooding, but maneuverability was still manageable – see dream “Spiritual Archetype”. When I first started therapy in the 1970’s, the flooding was always incapacitating – now the situation varies – usually with some capability of moving forward. In more recent dreams the water has been flowing which I interpret to be a sign the I am becoming more accustomed to handling emotions in general.
The dream is an exact portrayal of what my mind goes through when trying to deal with all this residual anger and rage. When I work on it for a while and things start to go well as represented by my father being proud of me in the beginning of the dream.
Understanding the interchange part numbers and their complex meaning which in reality are not that complex, I believe, also, this represents the dream work I doing. I have figured out some rather complex dreams and been able to present them in an understandable format. And, I probably have surpassed my father’s ability to deal with his own anger and rage before his death. In fact, I don’t think he had a grip on it at all, and he probably would have been impressed by the work I’ve done in this area.- he also underwent psychotherapy.
The scenario of working on the deal that my boss is trying to steal in the dream most likely came from an actual event. The boss had actually stolen a deal from me and then demanded that I give the demonstration for the account because the programmer refused to do it for him. He did not ask for the help from me, he demanded it. I wonder why he felt he had to demand it?
During the demonstration he started to tell the prospects a story of how a pretty amazing deal had been put together by our company at a trade show in Atlantic City, NJ – and that he himself had pulled it off. He was not even at that trade show, and I was the one who pulled the deal off – and he looked right at me while he was doing this to see what my reaction would be.
In the end, he lost the deal and comes in my office expecting me to commiserate with him. This really happened.
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Copy Write @ Very Cool Dreams Company March 30th, 2015
I found a partial of this photo on internet without any identification, later I discovered the complete photo with the photographer’s name.
Rage (often called fury or frenzy) is a feeling of intense, violent, or growing anger. It is sometimes associated with the fight-or-flight response, and is often activated in response to an external cue, such as an event that impacts negatively on the person. The phrase “thrown into a fit of rage” expresses the immediate nature of rage that occurs before deliberation. If left unchecked, rage may lead to violence.
Symptoms and effects
Rage can sometimes lead to a state of mind where the individual experiencing it believes, and often is capable of doing things that may normally seem physically impossible. Those experiencing rage usually feel the effects of high adrenaline levels in the body. This increase in adrenal output raises the physical strength and endurance levels of the person and sharpens their senses, while dulling the sensation of pain. High levels of adrenaline actually impair memory, as brought to light in Gold’s (2014) article. Temporal perspective is also affected: people in a rage have described experiencing events in slow-motion. Time dilation occurs due to the individual becoming hyper aware of the hind brain (the seat of fight or flight). Rational thought and reasoning would inhibit an individual from acting rapidly upon impulse. An older explanation of this “time dilation” effect is that instead of actually slowing our perception of time, high levels of adrenaline increase our ability to recall specific minutiae of an event after it occurs. Since humans gauge time based on the amount of things they can remember, high-adrenaline events such as those experienced during periods of rage seem to unfold more slowly. It is safe to assume that there is truth in both theories.
A person in a state of rage may also lose much of their capacity for rational thought and reasoning, and may act, usually violently, on their impulses to the point that they may attack until they themselves have been incapacitated or the source of their rage has been destroyed. A person in rage may also experience tunnel vision, muffled hearing, increased heart rate, and hyperventilation. Their vision may also become “rose-tinted” (hence “seeing red”). They often focus only on the source of their anger. The large amounts of adrenaline and oxygen in the bloodstream may cause a person’s extremities to shake. Psychiatrists consider rage to be at one end of the spectrum of anger, and annoyance to be at the other side.
Some research suggests that an individual is more susceptible to having feelings of depression and anxiety if he or she experiences rage on a frequent basis. Health complications become much worse if an individual represses feelings of rage. John E. Sarno believes that repressed rage in the subconscious leads to physical ailments. Cardiac stress and hypertension are other health complications that will occur when rage is experienced on a regular basis. Psychopathologies such as depression and Posttraumatic stress disorder regularly present comorbidly with rage.