When someone crosses that line and does or says something that's the last straw, how do you react? Keep it to yourself? Write a nasty note you never send? Get violent? Cry? Chew the person out? Do you wish your coping mechanism was something different than it is, or is it appropriate even under extreme circumstances?
Honestly, my coping mechanism comes from a lifetime of being the "brainy guy" living in an area where being nerdy or different is not only frowned upon, but collectively punished by people that think very little of themselves. That inferiority complex makes them believe that people that are different, intelligent, curious about the world, or talented in certain ways are mocking or attacking them. So if you do things like read, travel, get good grades, etc., instead of drink, do drugs, and constantly concern yourself with money, celebrities, and things, you are hated and villified.
I'm a natural people watcher, listening to what is said and seeing how people act to learn about them. It's always seemed the best way to make yourself understood or help others to understand each other as well as letting people know that what they say to you, believe, or feel are important things because you are paying attention.
With most people that I really like I know them enough to understand that if they cross a line, and I just rationally inform them of it, they'll understand, withdraw, and probably apologize. With people I'm not very fond of I usually wind up using all I've learned about them and their character to verbally and systematically tear them apart to push them back onto the safe side of the line. If when they are backed into that corner and they get physically violent I react in two different ways: for females I leave, or defend myself from harm by holding them away from attacking me, for males I've been know to return the violence.
As for wishing things were different... I find my coping mechanism very effective but I would prefer to not have to deal with inappropriate, antagonistic behavior at all.
Yeah, when someone crosses the line my first inclination is to rant--give them in excruciating detail the ins and outs of why what they did was wrong. Unfortunately, I tend to be wordy--wordier than is good for me in these situations. It would be better if I could learn to be more concise, because it would pack more punch and possibly not lose people to the "eyes glazing over at a wall of text" phenomenon. I also tend to cry when someone upsets me--if there's nothing I can do and no way to talk to that person. I rant, then I cry if it's more sad than rage-inspiring. I've never been violent, though--that seems to not be in my programming. (Of course, no one has been violent TOWARD me either, so I haven't had to defend myself from it.)