What is Passive-Aggressiveness?

Have you or a partner noticed indirect hostility? Is there lack of open defiance and instead silent firing of abuse and withdrawal? Yes, this could just be a tell-tale sign that either you or your partner is a passive-aggressive (PA) person. This is a kind of behavior in which the person doesn’t express outright anger with others and often say “Yes” when they mean “No”.

Today, many relationships are bleeding because of this undesirable psychological behavior from partners who rock the union—sometimes to complete heartbreaks and broken families.

How Can You Identify PA in Your Partner?

There are numerous ways a person with this behavior conducts him or herself and these are just a few signs to let you know you have a PA partner.

While you might need a conclusive test to determine if or not your partner has this kind of personality disorder, looking at the signs below may well help you if your partner has this trait.

• Individuals suffer from this behavior do not express their problems, but somewhat expect others to know and do what is right. In some other words, PA’s adopt covert deviant and sabotage to have their way or hit back at their partners.
• They often obstruct whatever things you say or do. They will always be unconsciously angry and tend to transfer their anger on you.
• They fear expressing themselves or about what they feel about you or the things you do.
• These individuals are codependent, and like most of these people, suffer from extreme lack of self-esteem and shame.
• They naturally act to appease and please and counter to have control on virtually everything in a relationship. In a relationship, you could be experiencing abuse, but since your partner exhibits covert hostility, this may lead to constant conflicts, withdrawal and intimacy problems.
• A resentful passive-aggressive partner will deliberately push you to the walls by engaging in things that he or she knows you dislike. Some of the things may include returning home late without notifying you after long hours of socializing, spending too much, and exhibiting unreasonable habits. All these behaviors are an expression of the deeper issues that remain unresolved or not directly explored and that the actions are merely symptomatic of the inner antipathy.

Dealing with Passive Aggressive Behavior

Truth be told, this behavior can drive you nuts and crazy! But you don’t have to bend back and let your heart bleed to death. While it is not easy to change a person who exhibits these personality traits and that since it is difficult for the person to change even if they wanted to change, the only way out is to know how to cope with it and help those people realize why they need to make things work for the good of your relationship. Here is how you can deal with these behavioral traits in a relationship:

• Individuals suffering from this anomaly do not want to reason with you, so simply do not try to win an argument or reason out with them when they are on top of their gear.
• Do not join them in hostility—of course, this is an easy way of justifying what they do
• Try to observe your boundaries, and no matter the push, always hold on.
• Do not get into the mix, instead take a step back and examine your fault, own it but do not accept what is not.
• Do not try to engage in their blame game. This only serves to exacerbate the argument.
• Remember that passive-aggressive behavior is directed to you and is not about you. Understanding this will go a long way in helping you reduce your negative reaction.
• Since men and women with this behavior do not communicate their problems, it is important for the other partner to initiate a discussion and openly engage in a constructive argument to unlock everything around issues. Remember that these individuals are very uncomfortable expressing their fears and even so, the results can be frustrating and enormous to bear.

On the face of it a PA spouse may have numerous other pleasant characters and appear a reasonable person. This may further complicate the situation, and make it difficult to understand their behavior. Remember situation could be bigger than you think or it could be overwhelming to solve it the two of you. If the problem is persistent you need to check on a professional to help you both.