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cathy
cathy, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1436
Experience:  MS., MS.Ed., 30 years clinical and administrative experience in psychiatry and mental health
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Hi! what would you say is the best way to deal with passive

Resolved Question:

Hi! what would you say is the best way to deal with passive aggressive behavior from people whom you live with who insist on acting stupid when you know they aren't?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  cathy replied 5 years ago.

cathy :

Hi and thanks for writing JA

cathy :

are you there?

cathy :

Hello?

cathy :

hello? are you there?

cathy :

hello?

Customer:

Hi!

cathy :

Well Hi and nice to see you

cathy :

how are you doing today?

Customer:

Sorry I took so long, I'm used to a different type of chat box.

cathy :

oh no problem

cathy :

can you read my posts?

Customer:

Could be much better. Look I really have a hard time with the passive agressive behavior of others and most frequently one person in particular.

cathy :

yes passive aggressive behavior is one of the more irksome behaviors

cathy :

I agree

Customer:

yes I can, Thanks!

cathy :

The thing about the way we feel when we are dealing with someone who is behaving in a passive aggresive way is that we resent being "controlled" which is exactly what the person is trying to do to us

cathy :

that is why it is so aggravating

cathy :

they know full well their behaviors are such as to evoke a negative response from others

cathy :

but they do it anyway so as to "control" the interaction

Customer:

Now when i try to ignore them then they act victimized, when i confront they act victimized, or I get angry and they act victimized, I wish there was a way for me to get them to acknowledge their behavior but that doesen't seem a good prospect.

cathy :

No I dont think they wish to change

cathy :

do you have to work with this person? live with this person?

Customer:

An example: Some one whom I live with likes acting as if he doesen't understand me because his english is limited, but when I tell him that i know full well that he understands me , he spends some VERY good vocabulary telling me how he doesen't understand! then when i point that out to him he just SMILES and denies it and calls me "stupid' loud enough for me to hear of course! What do I do with this type?

cathy :

dont power struggle with him

cathy :

you cannot win this type of manipulation

cathy :

so dont struggle with him at all

cathy :

in fact agree with every thing he says

cathy :

no matter what

Customer:

But then with this type , if i do that, then they accuse me of acting "condescending" (victim)

cathy :

dont be condescending that would be to engage in the struggle

cathy :

just agree

cathy :

neutrally agree with everything

cathy :

nod yes and say a lot of Oh I see

cathy :

I know its hard to do but you will be surprised by how well it can work

cathy :

then there is plan b

cathy :

which is to nice em to death

Customer:

And when I'm accused of being condesending ANYWAY? just deniy it? then we'll have an arguement about whether or not I'm condesending!

cathy :

heck no

cathy :

agree and say I am condescending arent I? how sad for you?

cathy :

just agree and agree

cathy :

its all nonsense accusations on their part and they know it

cathy :

they just wanna get your gears going

cathy :

so take em by surprise next time and agree agree agree

cathy :

agree with everything they say

cathy :

except of course if it is illegal

cathy :

:)

Customer:

O.k. I'll give that a try, but you know, I wish i had the "magic" words to convince them that their behavior is hurtful and self destructive and ..wrong.

cathy :

Oh if you had those magic words I would pay you for them

cathy :

I see a lot of passive aggressive people in my practice and believe it or not

cathy :

not only do they aggravate the heck out of people around them

cathy :

they aggravate the heck out of themselves

cathy :

if you come up with that potion or those words, please let me know?

Customer:

I'll keep that in mind in case I ever come across them!

cathy :

LOL

cathy :

Arent you blessed that you are not the one with the problem?

Customer:

Thank you for the good ear to lean on, I'll take your advise.

cathy :

Yes try this

cathy :

I think it will shock and awe them. They are accustomed to you responding in a certain way and I like catching people like him off guard.

cathy :

and I will be rooting for you all the way

cathy :

take good care now

Customer:

I'll tell you something... I myself used to be this way when I was much younger, but I turned around one day and realized that my life really sucked ass! so I started to get a bit more honest and see things differently. I wish I could show others that realization that took me a while with those "magic words".but I haven't found them yet, sort of like nobody once had them for me...

cathy and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

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