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Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder: 10 characteristic features

Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder: 10 characteristic features

May 6, 2021

There are different types of personality disorders, one of them is the passive-aggressive disorder (also called negative personality disorder).

It is characterized because these people resist external requirements, that is, the demands of others , with expressions such as obstructionism, procrastination, stubbornness or forgetfulness, combined with negative and defeatist attitudes.

This type of behavior persists even when it is possible to show a different and more effective behavior. People with this type of personality disorder are manipulative and dependent on others, so they are shown as pessimistic and resentful.


Causes of Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder

The exact causes of this personality disorder are not known with certainty . Although experts say that the origin is in both biological and environmental factors.

Researchers think that people who show passive-aggressive behaviors, usually express them in childhood. The parental style of their parents, family dynamics and other influences of childhood can contribute to the development of this personality disorder . Abuse during this life stage or severe punishment, abuse of psychoactive substances in adolescence or low self-esteem can also encourage the development of passive-aggressive behaviors.


It is important to mention that other psychological health conditions may seem passive-aggressive behavior, so it is necessary to take it into account when making a correct diagnosis of this personality disorder. For example:

  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Stress
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Depression
  • Behavioral disorders
  • Oppositional defiant disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizotypal personality disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Cocaine addiction

Symptoms of Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder

People with this disorder often show a disconnect between what they say and what they do . Their behavior provokes anger from both the people close to them and the strangers.

Symptoms of this disorder include:


  • Criticize or protest frequently about others
  • Being unpleasant or irritable
  • Being forgetful and disrespectful to others
  • To perform tasks insufficiently
  • Act in a hostile or cynical way
  • Act stubbornly
  • Blame others even if it's your fault
  • Complain about being appreciated
  • Show resentment and bad mood
  • Fear the authority
  • Reject suggestions from others

Possible treatments

If you suffer from this disorder, You must be treated as soon as possible as it directly affects your interpersonal relationships . Luckily, it is possible to find help in psychological health professionals. If you think you may be suffering from this disorder, it is necessary that you tell your relatives and your family doctor, so that later you can go to a psychologist specialized in this type of disorders.

The psychotherapist can help you identify the passive-aggressive behaviors you carry out, and thus teach you to get more adaptive behavior and cause you less suffering. The psychologists can help you manage your anger, resentment or the low self-esteem that may be contributing to you suffering this type of personality disorder.

What do I do if I suffer from this disorder? Guidelines and advice

In addition, they can teach effective coping strategies, for example, that you can see the situation objectively and can solve problems in the healthiest way possible. Assertiveness training can also help you to manage passive-aggressive behavior, so that you can express your thoughts and concerns effectively. reduces negative behavior caused by anger and frustration .

But in addition to looking for psychological help, you can also do other things on your own. They are the following:

  • Identify the possible reasons why you behave in this way
  • Think before act
  • Calm yourself before reacting to situations that affect you
  • Be optimistic
  • Be honest with others and express your feelings in a healthy way
  • Be aware of your behavior

How to know if I suffer Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder: 12 keys to detect it

But how to know if you suffer Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder? In addition to people usually do not want to approach you, there are different signs that can help you to detect it.

1. You show sullen

You do not tell the truth openly, with kindness and honesty when they ask you for your opinion or when they ask you to do something for someone.In addition, you usually engage with other people when you want to say no, which causes confusion and conflicts with other individuals.

2. Double face

You seem to be sweet, obedient and nice, but deep down you're resentful, angry and you feel great envy. You live with these two extremes, and this causes the people around you to be confused and angry.

3. Emotional dependence

You are afraid to be alone and be dependent . It is difficult for you to have a direct communication, and, in the face of a couple conflict, you usually express: "I hate you" "Do not leave me." This shell you wear is nothing but insecurity and fear of rejection. distancing people who care about you and those who matter, it usually seems that you do not want support, instead of being open, you close yourself in band and you become impenetrable.

4. You hold others responsible

Frequently you complain that others treat you unfairly . Instead of taking responsibility for what you do wrong, assume it and try to change, you prefer to become the victim. You usually say that others are too hard on you or ask you too much.

5. Procrastination

Procrastinate in a habitual way, especially when you have to do things for others. You always have an excuse why you have not been able to do things. You can even blame others when the culprit is you. So you destroy relationships and lose friendships.

6. You communicate through hints

You do not give direct answers . This is another way that the people you're with can often feel offended. And it is that, instead of giving direct answers, you always send confusing messages about your thoughts, your plans or your intentions.

7. You're in a bad mood

You tend to sulk and pout . You complain that others do not understand you and lack empathy when they expect you to live up to your promises, obligations or duties. Actually, it is you who commit yourself and then you do not comply.

8. Lack of deference towards others

You're late and you're forgetful . One of the reasons why it is difficult for you to establish relationships with others is because you are inconsiderate. So you do not take seriously being respectful of the covenants you carry out. That includes being late when you meet someone.

9. You lie frequently

You invent stories, excuses and lies . You are the master of the direct response evasion, you always have to have a phrase to distract the attention of others when they ask you for explanations. This leads you to tell a story or manipulate the information. You prefer to have everything under control by creating lies.

10. Hide your insecurities

You constantly protect yourself so that nobody knows how afraid you are of being imperfect , dependent or simply human.


How to Identify Passive Aggressive Traits and Behavior (May 2021).


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