Worried that your anger at your cheating ex-boyfriend is out of control? You could be right. Some psychologists are pushing to categorize bitterness after a traumatic event (such as a breakup or not getting a promotion) as a psychological disorder -- Post-Traumatic Embitterment Disorder
Experts say the condition is a lot like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
, only instead of anxious and afraid, the sufferers are angry as heck and spend all day daydreaming about revenge.Click here
to read more after the jump.Beyond Bummed
While it's normal to be a little depressed
after a breakup -- or any sucky life event, for that matter -- 1 to 2 percent of the population takes their grief a step further, according to a presentation last week at an American Psychiatric Association conference. Embitterment
occurs when people put a lot of emotional energy into something (like a relationship), and then feel completely cheated by life.
While they may not have the pronounced physical and psychological symptoms associated with PTSD and other anxiety disorders, sufferers' intense feelings of anger, injustice and powerlessness affect their ability to function day-to-day. AKA you're so consumed by IMing about your jerk of an ex
that you can't actually do your job or go out and have fun with your friends.
The condition may be a factor in family annihilations
-- when people "snap" and kill their families, often in response to financial or relationship stress.
We've Had It
While those cases are extreme, we know all too well how the pain of a breakup can inspire some irrational behavior. Consider the following real symptoms experienced by Lemondrop editors post-split:
+Subject spends all day researching ways to cut brake lines on old Chevy Lumina, but never acts on it.
+Subject literally does not stop crying for 48 hours.
+Subject burns all of ex's belongings on sidewalk in front of house (holding a Weber grill lid as a safety precaution), frightening away even the police officer who slowed to investigate.
+Subject reads Wikipedia's article on Louisiana Voodoo
all day, every day, dreaming of a way to get a lock of that bastard's hair.
+Subject listens to "I'm Not in Love" by 10cc on repeat for 14 straight hours while drinking Popov and going through ex's Gmail reading cute chats with his new girlfriend.
+Subject sells departed ex's expensive pet lizard for $10.
+Subject buys $400 custom-made leather dress.Tell us!
What do you think? Could embitterment be a legitimate illness? What's the craziest thing you've ever done after a breakup? More stories from Lemondrop and friends:Will Jon and Kate split?How to keep your dignity after a breakupWeird celeb relationship factsFor men -- unlikely advice for meeting chicks