Discussion: Parenting tapping into rage and hurt

I read all the comments on Shandra's question yesterday, and it struck me that I don't think we've ever talked here about how much becoming a parent can crack open all sorts of powerful and negative emotions you thought you had a handle on or didn't even know you had in the first place.

I found that parenting each of my children, especially when they were teeny tiny, tapped into completely different but nasty emotions in me. Not that I felt bad about my children. (Other than the fact that they weren't sleeping, wanted to be held all the time, had robbed me of my identity as a person, etc. etc.--the usual new-mother mindf**k.) On the contrary, it made me wonder how anyone could fail a child when the things children demanded from you were so basic.

Looking back, it's interesting to me that my two kids each tapped into something completely different, and I reacted in different ways to those feelings.

(Are you guys getting frustrated that I'm not being specific? I am, but so many people in my family read Ask Moxie that I just can't be direct. Besides, this is really about you--I'm just trying to start the conversation off.)

How, also, do you deal with these emotions when you can't be open about them with the people who inspired them in you? Besides posting them here, of course. ;-)

I feel like I'm not hitting the ideas and words correctly today, like something about this is off, but I'm hoping you're all getting the essence of what I'm asking: Were you surprised by how angry and sad you could feel about how well you were doing with your own child, and how afraid you were that you might not be able to keep it up? Were you able to turn to the generation above you for help, or was it a second abandonment, even if only in little, around-the-edges ways? Do you think it ended up being healing for you, or do you think it cracked open some things that you're still having problems navigating through?

As usual, to post anonymously, put a fake URL in the URL box, and a fake email in the email box.