Passive-aggressive (negativistic) personality disorder – is a pattern of negative attitudes and passive resistance in interpersonal situations.
Do you have people who infuriate you with their indirect behavior? They act without looking you in the eye, with sarcasm or by doing stuff that slightly ambiguously gives them a chance to not take responsibility. It can make you ragefully angry.
You spend your time rehearsing how you’ll tell them off, get back at them or fantasize totally ignoring them. But when the time comes for direct interaction they flip the script, adeptly change subjects or simply just don’t show up.
What’s the solution?
Don’t play with them. Engaging them is their payoff. The drama is reinforcing.
Realize they’ll make you crazy…if you let them. Back up, take care of what you have to–often there’s stuff left in their wake–but forget about addressing them. It doesn’t work.
Behaviorally address things. Stick to you guns when the drama comes but don’t change your behavior. Check your anger. Realize this is them, not you. As you get more skilled at backing away prepare for them to up the emotional drama. Don’t take the carrot.
If you give no drama they will eventually move on to someone who will give it. Don’t hate, don’t seethe. Be strategic.
And while you’re at it examine your own thoughts and demands. Why does what someone does effect you emotionally? Are you looking for their approval, friendship or apology? We all like those things but some people are incapable.
Boundaries and limits are the answer.
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