Did You Know Passive-Aggressive Behavior Goes Both Ways?

It’s B-S Free Friday. Let’s talk about passive-aggressive behavior.

Passive-aggressive behavior is when someone indirectly expressive negative feelings about a situation instead of just saying how they feel. Often, this is because they are fearful. They’re fearful of losing control, they are insecure, or they have low self-esteem. It could also be a result of dealing with stress, anxiety, or depression. Or maybe it’s simply because they are holding on to negative feelings about a person. Your partner may not intentionally be trying to hurt you, they may be coming from a place where they don’t properly know how to communicate or they’re just afraid to tell you how they really feel.

Passive-aggressive sounds like:

“Why are you getting so upset?”
“No offense, but…”
“You’re too sensitive.”
Slamming doors or cupboards.
Moving things around aggressively.

And guess what? It goes both ways.

We should be able to communicate our needs to each other, so don’t expect your partner to rely on unspoken clues about how you feel.

And don’t respond to unspoken clues.

So how do we handle passive aggression?

Start with ignoring the behavior. If your partner is trying to get a rise out of you, don’t give them the attention.
If they’re saying one thing to you, but doing something else, bring it up to them. Ask them to help you understand why their words and actions conflicted.
Call them out. If they use hurtful words or a sarcastic tone, tell them how you feel and ask them to instead communicate calmly, clearly, and honestly.

Don’t play into the passive-aggressiveness.

Make your partner say what they need.

Make sure you say what you need.

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