passive aggressive turn aggressive?

“Have you known passive aggressive behavior to turn aggressive?”

This is a question asked in a comment left on my blog.  (You can see the entire comment on this post.)

My short answer is, no.

But, what do you mean by aggressive?

Has my husband ever hit me or pushed me or been physically abusive?  No.  He never has.

My mom has been married to a passive aggressive man almost as long as I have, and her husband also has never been physically abusive to her.   But he does yell at her.

Now, occasionally, my husband will slam a door, or slam the dishes around a little in the kitchen, or toss and turn in bed or “huff” and be jerky in his movements.  And that is a little more “aggressive” than his usual extremely passive self.

To look for a further answer to the question, I went to the book “Living With the Passive Aggressive Man,” by Scott Wetzler, which seems to be the most well-known source of information about passive aggressive behavior.  Here are a few quotes which would indicate that a passive aggressive man is probably not going to attack you physically.  Of course, neither I, nor anybody else, can say definitely what somebody will or won’t do.

“…passive-aggressive fathers are not likely to beat their children.”

“Many passive aggressive men will sulk rather than raise their voices, explode in rage or come clean about what’s bothering them.  Those who are more demonstrative may let you know by tormenting, phone-slamming gestures that they’re angry, but they aren’t generous with the specific reason why.  Passive-aggressive guys contain their anger, but their message (‘I’m angry and it’s your fault’) comes through loud and clear.”

“Passive-aggressive men are rarely “bad guys,” brutalizers, tyrants at home or at work, Lotharios or anti-social con men.”

“…any episode of violence would never be labeled ‘passive-aggressive.’  It’s clear, active and direct.”

By its very definition, passive-aggressive behavior is passive.  Passivity and covert abuse is the way they handle anger, rather than facing it openly and punching somebody in the face.  Or addressing it in any healthy way.

But PLEASE, if you EVER feel you are in physical danger, GET AWAY from him!

Has anyone reading this had a different experience than I have with passive aggressive behavior and aggression?

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This entry was posted in covert abuse, emotional abuse, marriage, passive aggressive, passive aggressive behavior, relationships and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to passive aggressive turn aggressive?

  1. This comment is by lifeofalovergirl.wordpress.com:
    I would say my ex got a little more aggressive towards the end of our marriage, or at least his behaviors were more overt. He did things like throw a chair across the room and broke it and would block the doorway and yell at me and get more in my face and intimidate. Over all though it was more passive stuff. I never thought he would beat me or anything. There was one time when I was pregnant with one of my children that he got angry with me in the car and hit me on the leg and once he slapped me across the face. Those were the only times in 15 years that he lay a hand on me.

  2. sagemerald06 says:

    Yes, I have experienced physical abuse by my husband who is passive aggressive. He beat and punched me a few days ago.

  3. Oh, Sweetie! Get away from him, please!!! I am so sorry this has happened. :{ Are you o.k.????

  4. sad says:

    I have read somewhere that verbal abuse eventually becomes physical abuse. My passive aggressive husband threatened/poised to hit me with his clinched fist. He would have done it had I not told him, go ahead, I will put you in jail. Lately. too, he has been accusing me of being covetous, greedy, harsh words with no basis except following his instructions. I have noticed that he is adopting his horrible father’s mannerisms (walking around the house even going out in the yard in underwears and not changing his t-shirt for weeks). He did not do those before. For a 61 year old man (or child) he likes watching tv soap operas which are really for bored housewives or teenagers. , Anyhow, it is his problem. “What you didn’t break, you can’t fix.” We are living apart.

  5. firefly says:

    I’m late to this conversation but want to comment about my experience with a passive aggressive relative who took this abusive behavior to an even more dispicable level. The abuse started out as typical PA behavior – insulting, backhanded “compliments”, telling me they were “just joking” after saying something horrible to me, etc. When this was no longer satisfying for my abuser I started receiving VERY PAINFUL backslapping “hugs” from this sweet, smiling devil. This sick individual was using a “friendly” gesture as a vehicle to physically assault me. This person also
    “accidentally bumped” (BODY SLAMMED) into me at a family gathering while saying “oh, excuse me!”. Passive Aggressive Covert Physical Abuse! To protect my sanity & personal safety I will not allow myself to be anywhere near this person. I think there are many things at the root of this behavior – insecurity, jealously, anger, etc. After years of trying to have a cordial relationship & reason with this person I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s impossible. In my case putting strong boundaries in place was the only solution. It would be interesting to hear if anyone else has experienced what I call PA Covert Physical Abuse.

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