Excel At Life logo
×



Contents

PsychArticles button PsychNotes button PsychApps button PsychAudios button PsychTests button About button
Support Excel At Life's Mission!
Follow
Help Translate
Spread the Word
Make Contribution
Become a fan on Facebook! Follow on twitter for site updates! Follow on Google+ for site updates!
Excel At Life--Dedicated to the Pursuit of Excellence in Life, Relationships, Sports and Career





CBT

Jealousy

Depression

Relationships

Conflict

Self-efficacy

Happiness

Goal-setting

Motivation

Wellness

Sport Psych



POPULAR ARTICLES

Crazy-Makers: Dealing with Passive-Aggressive People

Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

When You Have Been Betrayed

Struggling to Forgive: An Inability to Grieve

Happy Habits: 50 Suggestions

The Secret of Happiness: Let It Find You (But Make the Effort)

Excellence vs. Perfection

Depression is Not Sadness

Conflict in the Workplace

Motivation: Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic

20 Steps to Better Self-Esteem

7 Rules and 8 Methods for Responding to Passive-aggressive People

Promoting Healthy Behavior Change

10 Common Errors in CBT

What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage

Rejection Sensitivity, Irrational Jealousy and Impact on Relationships

For Women Only: How to Have the Relationship of Your Dreams

What to Do When Your Partner's Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Relationship

Making Attributions for a Healthier Attitude

Happiness is An Attitude

Thinking Your Way to a Healthy Weight

Guide to How to Set Achieveable Goals

The Effectiveness of Cognitive-Behavioral Treatment for Anxiety Disorders

Co-Dependency: An Issue of Control

The Pillars of the Self-Concept: Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy

Catastrophe? Or Inconvenience?

POPULAR AUDIOS

Panic Assistance

Motivational Audios

Mindfulness Training

Rational Thinking

Relaxation for Children

Change Yourself--Don't Wait for the World to Change

Loving Kindness Meditation

Self-Esteem Exercise

Meadow Relaxation

Rainy Autumn Morning

Energizing Audios

Quick Stress Relief

Thinking Your Way to a Healthy Weight

Lies You Were Told

Choosing Happiness

Lotus Flower Relaxation

Audio Version of Article: Crazy-Makers: Passive-Aggressive People

Audio Version of Article: Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

Audio Version of Article: Happiness Is An Attitude

All Audio Articles





Kindle Books by Dr. Monica Frank





RECENT ARTICLES

Why You Get Anxious When You Don't Want To

Why People Feel Grief at the Loss of an Abusive Spouse or Parent

“Are You Depressed?”: Understanding Diagnosis and Treatment

15 Coping Statements for Panic and Anxiety

Beyond Tolerating Emotions: Becoming Comfortable with Discomfort

Emotion Training: What is it and How Does it Work?

How You Can Be More Resistant to Workplace Bullying

Are You Passive Aggressive and Want to Change?

When Your Loved One Refuses Help

The Porcupine Effect: Pushing Others Away When You Want to Connect

What if You Considered Other Peoples' Views?

5 Common Microaggressions Against Those With Mental Illness

What to Expect from Mindfulness-based Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (MCBT) When You Have Depression and Anxiety

Does Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Lack Compassion? It Depends Upon the Therapist

When Needs Come Into Conflict

What to Do When Anger Hurts Those You Love

A Brief Primer On the Biology of Stress and How CBT Can Help

50 Tools for Panic and Anxiety

Coping With Change: Psychological Flexibility

Breaking Up is Hard to Do: Ending a Bad Relationship

I'm Depressed. I'm Overwhelmed. Where Do I Start?



NEW AUDIOS

Building Blocks Emotion Training

Hot Springs Relaxation

5 Methods to Managing Anger

Panic Assistance While Driving

Autogenic Relaxation Training

Rainbow Sandbox Mindfulness

Mindfulness Training

Riding a Horse Across the Plains

Cityscape Mindfulness

Change Yourself--Don't Wait for the World to Change

The Great Desert Mindfulness

Tropical Garden Mindfulness

Thinking Your Way to a Healthy Weight

Lies You Were Told

Probability and OCD

Choosing Happiness

Magic Bubbles for Children

Lotus Flower Relaxation

Cloud Castles for Children

Hot Air Balloon Motivation

All Audio Articles


PASSIVE-AGGRESSIVE EXAMPLES

Index

Previous        Next

print
The following is an example from website readers of passive-aggressive encounters they have experienced. Keep in mind that the suggested responses are not personal advice as a full evaluation of the situation is not available. As such, the suggestions may not work in every situation but are to give you an idea of possible ways to respond. Read: Crazy-Makers: Passive-Aggressive People

Confronting a Passive-Aggressive Insult

Question:"You know that you shouldn't eat before bedtime, right?" said by brother-in-law (BIL) to overweight mother of nursing baby while she is eating a snack. Said with a giggle. They don't even know each other well and he is staying in their house for the first time.

Response: Maybe this is just a clueless man, i.e. the last man in the world who doesn't know that a man should never comment on a woman's weight directly or indirectly! However, let's say that he is aware which means that this is a passive-aggressive (PA) insult. He would probably disagree and say "But I was only trying to provide helpful information." Yet, any overweight woman knows that this is a comment on her weight. If his sister-in-law (SIL) was average weight he wouldn't have made such a statement. So the only reason to make this statement is to indicate that his SIL needs to watch her eating habits and lose weight.

> This is a common PA tactic when a person doesn't have the guts to say what they are thinking because they KNOW it would be rude and the other person is likely to become angry. Instead, they guise it as advice so that if they are confronted, they can deny their true intentions. This BIL even added a giggle to it to give himself another out: "I was only kidding."

The question is how to respond to this behavior. In this case, I think a more direct approach would be appropriate:

SIL: "Are you INTENDING to insult me?"

BIL: "No...I was just trying to be helpful."

SIL: "Do you seriously believe that women find it helpful when you comment on their eating habits?"

This is likely to cause him to mumble something and back off. He is also not likely to make a similar mistake again. However, there are other ways to confront him if the SIL is not comfortable with such a direct approach:

SIL: "Why are you telling me this?" This statement puts him on the spot because then he has to refer to the weight as his true intention which he doesn't want to do. As I have addressed elsewhere PA people don't want to be direct as then they have to be responsible for what they say.

BIL: "..uh...eating before bedtime causes weight gain."

This allows the SIL to confront his true intention:

SIL: "So you are commenting on my weight and eating habits?" or "So you are telling me that I'm fat?"

Obviously, there are many approaches to this issue depending upon the personality of the individual and the kind of relationship. The primary goal, however, is to let the PA person know that they will be confronted when they use PA insults. As they are typically trying to avoid direct conflict this approach is likely to reduce the behavior. In this situation since they don't know each other very well, it informs him early in their relationship that she won't tolerate PA behavior.

Previous        Next Example



print

Questions and Comments

All comments and questions require approval so you may not see your submission immediately.

Provide Example of Passive-Aggressive Behavior.  Any comments or information you share may be used for future articles.  However, identifying information will not be used:


Message.  Provide an example of a passive-aggressive encounter you have had so suggestions can be provided on this site regarding how to handle such situations.
NO PERSONAL REPLIES WILL BE PROVIDED.

Enter email address (optional).
Your email address will not be shared or used in any way other than how you specify:



Become a fan on Facebook! Follow on twitter for site updates! Follow on Google+ for site updates!