Forget anxiety and burnout. The new mental health issue facing young, professional women is anger. In this week's issue of Grazia, writer Antonia Hoyle admits she's increasingly seeing red...
"Lying in bed last night I was desperate to drift off – and growing increasingly annoyed that I couldn’t. It was past midnight and with every minute that passed I grew more stressed about the prospect of how tired I would be this morning.
But rather than read a book to relax, or make myself a hot drink, I vented my frustration at my unsuspecting husband. ‘You’re taking up too much space,’ I snapped, shoving him so far over to the other side of the bed so hard he woke up and nearly rolled off. ‘How am I supposed to get to sleep when you’re being so selfish?’
If you think I was being unkind, or irrational, you’d be absolutely right. But the truth is that angry outbursts like this are a daily occurrence for me at the moment – which is why I decided to write about it in this week’s Grazia.
While I am, of course, ashamed of my behaviour I have realised over the past few months that I’m by no means alone in having such a short fuse. Whereas last year we worried about burnout and anxiety – and I was more prone to tears than temper tantrums - this year anger is the buzzword that’s all the, er, rage.
It’s jeopardising our health, relationships and careers– and women are most at risk. Experts say that our increasingly frenetic lifestyles our making us more likely to lash out. Women like me are existing on an ‘anger cocktail’ of caffeine and cortisol. Our obsession with social media is throwing a stimulant called dopamine into the mix. The upshot? We’re constantly agitated and flying off the handle at the most innocuous triggers.
Yesterday alone mine included discovering the bank didn’t open until 9.30am, being told a payment I’d arranged online hadn’t processed and having to dawdle at a snail’s pace to pick my daughter up from nursery because the woman on the pavement in front of me was walking SO slowly.
Embarrassing, I know. But at least I’m being honest. And if you’ve ever silently cursed your boyfriend for eating his dinner too loudly, or said ‘for f**** sake’ under your breath when you’re beaten to a parking space, my piece may resonate with you."
The full article appears in this week's issue of Grazia, on sale now.