I have not said these things to friends or to my spouse, not even to my co-worker who really deserves to hear them. Nope, I have said these things to my children. As the words form on my lips and are lashed out by my tongue I immediately regret them. I am helpless, left to stand there, towering over them as I watch my words crash and land on the wide-eyed innocent face of my child. But I’m too angry to show my cards so I stomp away, curl up in a corner and berate myself.
Sometimes my words are so terrible that I have an immediate, physical reaction, trying desperately to scoop them up, wipe them off their shocked faces.
Either way it unfolds the same way; I calm down, explain to my child why I got so angry and make sure he understands his part in all of this, he says sorry, then I say sorry. Then the next morning or a week later I hear my child repeat those same awful words to his sibling.