Psychology and Cognitive Sciences

Open journal

ISSN 2380-727X

Feeling Angry at Coronavirus Disease 2019

Ines E. Vigil*

Ines E. Vigil, MPsych, Clincal Psychologist, Pontificia Universidad Catolica Argentina, Bueno Aires, Argentina; E-mail:


We have been dealing with a lot of stress around the world due to the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) outbreak during 2020 until now.

Many changes affecting our daily routines, so many new routines have become normal. We all have faced the continued need to adjust to new ways of doing everyday tasks. All these changes in our normality have an impact on us. According to the meaning we give ourselves about it, we will feel certain emotions. As a result of that, or those emotions, we will behave.

It is quite common to see people behave angrily with this COVID-19 outbreak. Anger is just one emotion. A frequent one. To feel anger is an emotion; to behave angrily is a choice. The increase of domestic violence rates, the rise in the number of people consulting psychologists, counselors, and now on medication, just show part of the impact this pandemic has had among humans and the difficulties many have had in handling their anger.

As humans, one way to evolve, to face difficulties has been gathering as societies. Lockdown logically affects our social interaction. With isolation, this tool is not available. So, with social distancing, we will need to adjust. We will have an impact and give a meaning, an explanation, to this isolation. Each one will have a different one according to our personal experiences. If we blame ourselves, if we consider ourselves guilty, we might feel anger.

As humans, another tool we have used to evolve has been our ability to prevent. Preventing has been a way that has made us feel under control and safe. This world crisis has challenged all known ways to prevent it. It has threatened us in ways we could not even imagine. So, again, the unexpected impact us. Each one of us will give it a meaning according to the way we have handled the unpredictable difficulties in our lives before. As a result, we will have different emotions. During the COVID-19 outbreak, we have found many feelings of fear. When we cannot handle fear, we might feel frustrated and as a result, we feel anger.

Grief, loss, has also been very present during the COVID-19 outbreak. Losing jobs, losing sense of normality and of course, mainly, losing loved ones. Again, each one of us will give loss a meaning according to our own prior experiences of grief and loss.

According to what I have said before. Many might be feeling anger during these times. It is important to understand that if we are experiencing anger, we must try to unwrap the meaning inside of us and see, what does this anger mean, where does this anger comes from, and see what we can do about it.

The main issue with anger is that it affects our body in many ways. It increases adrenaline and other chemicals into the bloodstream which causes the heart to pump faster, raises the blood pressure, tenses the muscles, causes dry mouth, and upsets the stomach. Anger also affects our ability to love, to work, and live pleasantly, we need to work on the meaning that causes it.

Remember, we cannot change what is happening, but we can work on the explanation we give ourselves about if, and as a result, we might even be feeling different. Anger is a sign of our distress and a display of our suffering. To feel anger is an emotion. To be angry is a choice.


1. Balbi J. Terapia Cognitiva posracionalista: Conversaciones con Vittorio Guidano. [In: Spanish]. Buenos Aires, Argentina: Psicolibro Ediciones; 2018.

2. Beck JS. Terapia Cognitiva: Conceptos Básicos y Profundización. [In: Spanish]. Buenos Aires, Argentina: Gedisa Ediciones; 2018.

3. Fisch R. Training in the Brief Therapy Model. New York, USA: Guilford Press; 1994.


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