Caring for angry patients can be a threatening experience Grounded theory research was used to explore female nurses’ reactions and feelings as the recipients of patient anger The data were collected by interviewing nine female registered nurses in two hospitals in south-western Nova Scotia The participants were asked to discuss their feelings and responses to an intense encounter with an angry patient Anger was defined as a multi-dimensional concept with negative cogitations The concept of self-efficacy emerged as the major area of concern for the participants The findings suggest that when the threat to self was high, nurses managed anger situations by disconnecting from the angry patient Low or controllable threats were generally managed by connecting with the angry patient