My husband and I got married in late summer of 1987.   My marriage never became what I thought it would be.  It gradually went down hill, until 2004, when it crashed after we moved back to the state in which he grew up in.

In 2009, after years of frustration, I figured out that he must be passive aggressive.  It ALL fit and it made sense.  And I realized I wasn’t crazy after all.

So, this blog is my venting, my ranting, my thoughts in this insane situation in which I am at the moment.  I wish I had started it years ago, but at least I am doing it now.

If you have stumbled across my blog in your search for answers about passive aggressive behavior, welcome. Even though much of my blog is my rants, there are answers here, too. Leave me a comment with your question and I will write a post for you about my personal experience and what I have learned about passive aggressive behavior. I wish you well.

“The need to feel love and acceptance is fundamental to human happiness.  If we feel loved, we have a nearly inexhaustible source of fuel to burn against the intricate and unpredictable maze of challenges and fears that make up our daily lives.”
~James Myerson

138 Responses to About

  1. I have only been married for 2 years, but all of the things you describe about your marriage are exactly what I experience daily. I came to the conclusion a few months ago that my husband is passive-aggressive and it is great to have confirmation that I am not crazy (even though I feel like it). Thanks for putting into words how it feels to live with someone that makes the simplest of conversations so difficult.

  2. I love your blog, it has been so helpful to me and I just found it an hour ago. When I read your posts, I feel as though I am reading about my own life. Lately, I am a confused mess, emotionally empty and physically drained. I just don’t know what to do…

    • amanda says:

      I also just came across your blog as i have been searching for info on passive agressiveness since i read Scott wetztler’s living with the passive agressive man a couple of weeks ago…I am grateful to see i am not alone.I have been with my partner for 12 years and lived together for most of that but almost 2 years ago we started living apart when our problems became too much for me (its a long story) and i asked him to leave. about a year ago we started seeing each other again, but i have come to realise this just doesnt work for me and he is indeed passive aggressive. I went for 1 session with 3 different therapists in the past few weeks to simply describe the behaviour and get some affirmation of what i see. They in the main agreed with me, although i think i am begining to know more about PA than the therpists i have seen. Its really difficult, my partner is Mr. NICE guy but he has obstructed our life from the day i met him, leaving me without children which i would have dearly loved. the hardest thing is knowing in your guy you are right and that he has been a force for destruction in an oh so subtle way since i met him. i feel like i sound a little nuts if i tell anyone about this….they tell me to move on but i feel i have been abused

      • amanda says:

        i meant to say knowing in your gut you are right….

      • I am so glad that you found my blog! Thank you for your comment and I apologize that it has taken me so long to “approve” it! You are NOT alone and you are NOT crazy!!! Passive aggressive behavior is very real and it is abusive, very destructive. Being “Mr. Nice Guy” fools LOTS of people, even therapists. I am not sure how many therapists actually understand passive aggressive behavior and the harm that it causes. I hope you can leave this man. Take good care of yourself!!!

  3. I am so sorry for what you are going through; I understand the pain. I’m glad my blog is helpful to you and an encouragement that you are not the only one facing this kind of thing. Be as good to yourself as you can. You ARE worth it. :)

    • Vicki says:

      My name is Vicki- I’ve been married for 29 years. Learning about Passive Aggressive Behavior has changed my life….me too feel as I’m reading my life story. I don’t even know where to begin the emotions are too much..I know one thing that I was not crazy all those years…

  4. I am so glad I found your blog like others said it seems like I could have written a lot of your post. I didn’t know a lot about passive-aggressive nothing really. After reading some of your post I seen a link you posted that gave went over what to look for or how they would act. Everyone of them on the list fit my Soon to be ex to a T right down to the last little note about relationships falling apart. I sent the list to him in an email and he read it. He said the same thing it was him to a T. He said he seen what I meant when I would say the things I did to him and stuff like that over the last few years. He went an signed up for counseling and is going to start going to a men’s group who deals with things like this. He wants so bad to get back together but I just don’t think that is an option for us anymore. But I hope that he sticks with it gets something out of it and is able to move on and have a normal relationship in the future.

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  6. Wow!!! I am so glad to have helped you! :) And if your ex is helped, too, then that is a good thing also, even if the two of you aren’t together in the future. I understand the feeling of it not being an option. I can’t see myself living the rest of my life with my husband even if he ever did get help. But thank you for letting me know that my blog has helped you. :)

  7. renxkyoko says:

    Hello ! I don’t really know what a passive aggressive behavior is. This will be an interesting read, I/m sure.

    Greetings from California.

  8. sagemerald06 says:

    Greetings from GA. I’m following your blog and I have to say that I feel like I’m living your life. I’ve been married to a man for 15 years now and although in my situation it has escalated to physical, emotional, verbal and very much passive aggressive abuse. I’m sorry but I feel like crying right now, because I have felt all of these years like I am crazy. That there is something wrong with me. He’s 18 years my senior and very much a dominant. I consider myself a free bird and laid back and well even though I do like to take control of my life, he refuses to allow me to do that. He says he loves me and wants his family, but being abused day in and day out is killing me.

  9. Toni says:

    I would be interested in reading your blog. I have been in the relationship from hell for 19 years.

  10. mo says:

    Dear Wonderful Person, (I don’t think you use your name here, so I made one up for you :-)),
    In your post you wrote: “If you have stumbled across my blog in your search for answers about passive aggressive behavior, welcome.” That’s exactly how I found you!

    I am so grateful to you for being so brave and honest, sharing about your experiences in a passive-aggressive marriage.

    I’ve been married for 16 years, and last night the blinders were ripped off of my eyes and I saw for the first time that I am being subtly abused by my husband. It all became so clear — all the years of him not doing things I’ve asked of him — important things, like talking to his parents about something, or writing down the money he’s spent so I can stay on track of the account, or applying for a job, etc. The way he doesn’t communicate things with me, and doesn’t answer my questions directly, and procrastinates on anything I’ve asked for his help with. When I confront him about these things, he says it’s ADHD — he just forgets — etc.

    Last night we had a huge fight because this time I knew I wasn’t crazy — I knew I wasn’t wrong in being upset by how he neglects so many things that are important to me. It was awful. I feel sore and exhausted today, but in a way I feel a sense of empowerment to realize that there IS a big problem here, and it ISN’T all my fault.

    And, yes — the sex thing. That was the very first thing that happened. On our honeymoon he showed no interest — it was like an obligation to him. For the first two years of marriage he had no interest — I had to initiate things. I knew this wasn’t normal so I did everything I could think of to find help … we tried going to sex therapists, marriage counselors, reading books, etc Nothing worked. Finally I said, “The ball’s in your court now with the sex thing. I’m too tired to keep trying.” He never picked up the ball. He never brings up the subject.

    I stuck with him anyway because he was such a “great guy.” That’s the tricky thing — he’s so NICE. (but I am seeing through that now).

    Sorry to be telling you my life story — I just wanted to thank you. I have so many questions for you. Do you have kids? We have two, ages 8 and 12. (Our youngest is adopted. Conceiving our oldest happened with careful strategic planning). I feel so trapped. I can’t just pick up and leave. I don’t like where we are living, so if I left I would need to move to another state and I couldn’t do that to our kids.

    In addition, I became chronically ill in 2004, and I can’t work or function well enough to make it on my own at this point. My next step is finding a counselor and asking advice.

    If you want to email me directly I would love to correspond more about this (we could support each other), but I understand if you’d rather not. Still, feel free if you’d like.

    my best to you.

    • Dear Mo,

      Thank you for sharing all of this with me. I am sorry for not replying to you sooner; I started a new job this week and I have been so tired and so busy. I’m glad you found my blog. I am sorry that you have to face these things, though. It really is NOT fun! You are not crazy, these things are real! It is hard because he is nice. My husband is nice, too. But he is passive aggressive, which ultimately not nice.

      Have you read the book, “Living With the Passive Aggressive Man”? If you like to read, this is an insightful book. Really, though, your only hope is if he will see that he needs to address things and actually does get help.

      Do you have hope for your health to improve?

      I have two daughters. They are 18 and 22, so I don’t have to worry about them the way I would if they were minor children. It makes me so sad that they don’t have a “daddy.” He is their father, yes, but there is absolutely no relationship there at this point.

      Please feel free to ask me anything you want. I’m pretty open about this, on my blog anyway!

      Thank you again for your comment! :)

      • P.S. My younger daughter liked it that you called me “Wonderful Person.” :)

      • mo says:

        Hi WP! (That will be my nickname for you now — short for Wonderful Person :-)). Thanks so much for your reply. I do have another question for you — actually, a few questions….

        1. Do you know of any support groups for women/men with PA spouses? I saw below that you went to an Al-Anon group, but I’m wondering if there is anything more specific to PA spouses out there.

        2. Did you find yourself waffling back and forth about this for awhile? After I found your site and wrote you my long comment, I started second-guessing myself. I started to think I was just over-reacting, and maybe he doesn’t do the things I’ve asked because of other reasons than PA behavior. But the other night it all seemed so clear to me again, that he is truly being passive-aggressive. But then I question myself again … etc. etc. I’m not sure which part of me to believe!

        3. Is it typical to have horrible financial issues in this type of marriage? Are PA guys normally REALLY, REALLY clueless when it comes to earning/saving/handling money? A quick example: A few months ago I asked my husband to remind me of what his salary was … and he said he DID NOT KNOW!! He was on salary+commission, and he didn’t know what his base salary was. Not a CLUE. Now that’s just … weird. Lots of other stuff like that too — he doesn’t seem to care about finances at all. It’s resulted in a huge mess — I take the blame for not realizing sooner that he is irresponsible with money. I always gave him the benefit of the doubt and went along with his financial ways, instead of trusting my instincts and immediately taking over our finances.

        That’s it for now … thanks again for this site and all of your help and support!

      • Hey, Mo! It’s nice to hear from you again. I was hoping you would come back. :) You have asked some really good questions! I think they are “post-worthy,” so I am planning to answer them with posts, if you don’t mind, rather than reply here. I’ve already answered your first one about support groups with the post titled “Getting help.” I’ll get the other questions answered in the next few days. But please do feel free to ask me questions any time and if you feel an urgency about an answer, let me know that, too, and I will answer as soon as I can after I get the question. Hang in there! And don’t doubt yourself!

  11. Childofthetruth says:

    OMG! I had an epiphany a few days ago and have been researching like mad. I’ve been with a PA husband for 25 years now and I want out. I’ve got an appointment with a lawyer Tuesday just to look into separation and what it will take. My parents know of my decision but not my sons. They live out of the house. How do you even begin to tell them? How do I get my escape? I left him about 12 years ago and came back after two months. I was fooled! Oh, the whirlwind! But thank the LORD OF ALL to show me others who have, are going through the same thing as me. I really thought I was crazy. Any advice?

    • I am SO glad that you are getting out!!! How old are your sons? My daughters realized that my husband was PA before I ever mentioned it. They had already talked with their aunt about it. I tried to hide from them how bad things were, but they still knew things weren’t good. Depending on how old your boys are, they may already recognize that things aren’t right, haven’t been right. Remember that your husband will continue to be passive aggressive through the separation and divorce. It will not be smooth sailing! When I want to a separation/divorce workshop, given by an attorney, she said that yes, the process is hard, but that it will end. I would have everything you can in place, finances especially, before you tell your husband. Please comment back on my blog and let me know how things work out for you in the coming months! Thank you so much for stopping by and for commenting! :)

  12. kempa says:

    I saw the lawyer and now know what steps are involved. My next step is my transfer to another city regarding my job. I’m going for interview soon. My sons are in their early 20’s and now have a life of their own. I left the lawyer’s office feeling like such a failure and a low valued person because after 25 years we do not have much. Such investing and now feeling wasted. Oh, I wanted to ask you, did you go to therapy for any help? I know I will so as to deal with my issues. I have such anger and hurt. Oh, and did you “surprise” leave him or did you tell him ahead of time? Thanks for your blog. I really need support. Don’t have anyone to talk to except my mom and step-father.

    • Sweetie, you are not a failure!!! Do NOT allow yourself to think that! Think forward. Look at all the possiblities that lay before you! I actually haven’t left yet, I am sorry to say. When I do leave, I plan to have already taken care of everything: job, place to live, packing and moving, so that I can actually DO it and that it won’t simply be an empty threat. He knows I’m not happy. I’ve asked him to move out several times. I’ve attended Al-Anon, which was helpful, and I’ve talked with a therapist a few times. I know that there are places that offer divorce support groups and stuff like that. I do believe that it is important that you take the steps you need to to heal. If you like to read, I would recommend a book called Your Ex Factor (at least I think that’s the title!) It is a very good book to help you sort through all of this and make sure your future is brighter. Hang in there and feel free to write comments to me anytime you need to!!! :)

  13. childofthetruth says:

    How are you dealing with your PA? Are you trying all these “tips” that I read about, setting boundaries (whatever that means), not being “reactive” but “active”, and others? How can one unhealthy person help another unhealthy person? I’ve watched a good video of a pastor explaining how to biblically deal with a PA and I understand the love part, but I don’t understand how you can love someone and let them continue to hurt you, even if you try all the suggestions? I’m praying about my situation but I’m so scared to stay because it’s been 25 years of this stuff. I don’t trust him anymore. Oh, thank you for your kind words. I pray your blog helps thousands of women dealing with PA spouses.

  14. childofthetruth says:

    I could share my experiences with you, if that is ok? Yes, I wave back and forth with my situation. That, I learned, is the “crazy cycle”. Even now with the decision to leave, I am wavering. That is part of his behavior, ie: nice guy, not nice guy, huggy guy, keep you at a distance guy, say “I love you” one day and then don’t hear for weeks, etc. As of right now, he knows I’m distancing myself from him therefore he is trying to be more affectionate. Once I start to return the affections, he will then distance himself from me, hence the crazy cycle begins again!!!! As far as finances goes, yes he is clueless with regards to finances. Although he knows how much he makes, he does not know our bills or how much is being spent. We have talked about them many times as well as fought about it. I was very organized with my money before we married. When I married him, he was in debt and out of a job (was going to seminary!) So, I took over the finances and the fight began. 25 years later and we are still in debt and I hate it! He would use his debit card not knowing how much money we have and I would be frantically trying to find ways to cover the expense. I would then tell him to stop until we get paid again and then the cycle begins again. I eventually got my own checking account. And even though this is wrong, if we received extra money somehow, I would not tell him and use it accordingly, pay bills, save it for some huge expense. He finally opened his own checking account but of course no money ever really goes in it, just out! I was hoping he would see his pattern but instead he would go back to using the joint account. (URGGGGHHHHH!) I got a credit card (big mistake) to alleviate my fears of not having something for emergencies and already is up $3500. I have to confess that I have used it unwisely! Then he got a card. I wanted to scream!!!!!! We will never get out of debt it we don’t change. I cut up my card and now have to get serious about paying it off. Funny, how you ask if PA men are clueless. I used to describe my PA husband as an all around clueless man. Ever since I finally realize that my husband is PA, which is only about 3 weeks ago, everything makes sense, EVERYTHING! Therefore, I am trying to remember why I’m choosing to leave. This will be my second time. My sanity can’t take it anymore and yet I still wonder if this is right. I’ve been searching high and low on the internet to help me with solidifying my decision. We are not alone, that’s for sure, thanks to WP and her blog (a God send!) The tips that I’m finding in how to deal with a PA spouse is leaving me feeling overwhelmed and scared that I just don’t think I can do it but at the same time, I want to honor my vows and please God. I’ve prayed about it and am waiting one day at a time to see how all this will play out. I’ve got an interview Monday about a job and I will go from there. Sorry, WP, didn’t mean to highjack your Q & A. I want to be supportive as well as be supported. Thanks!

    • I don’t mind at all you sharing your experiences! :) And I’m guessing Mo doesn’t either. I know this is a huge struggle and having a place to “talk” about it is very helpful, both for those “talking” and those “listening.”

    • mo says:

      Dear Childofthetruth (I love your screen name!),
      THANK YOU, thank you, thank you, so much for sharing your experiences with me. OMG, your husband sounds exactly like mine!! I can’t believe how they are both so totally irresponsible with finances — I wonder how that fits in with PA behavior? And I have done very similar things that you describe — I got my own checking account, but I was foolish and used the money in there for home renovations and now it’s empty. Zilch. I also tried to take over the finances a few years ago but it was a total fiasco for the same exact reasons you describe. At first we were both going to write down what money we spent each day, but I my husband would keep “forgetting” to do it, or forgetting what he spent. So then I asked him to just give me all of his reciepts at the end of the day. But he NEVER was able to to give me every receipt. I could not keep the account balanced because I couldn’t count on him to tell me what he spent. I finally gave up. Also, when we first got married, I was very naive and June Cleaver-ish, believing that “the man knows how to handle finances so that was his job.” I’ll never forget when I opened the mail one day to find an electric bill that said it was our second billing — I was horrified! I said, “Husband (don’t want to use his name here — lol), you didn’t pay the electric bill last month!” And he replied, “Oh yeah, that’s no big deal.” I nearly fell over. I had always paid my bills on time, and had no idea it was even possible to be a month late on a payment. But instead of seeing the bright red warning sign flashing in my face, I went along with his ways — because, well … he was “the man” so obviously he knew what he was doing when it came to finances. — UGH!!!

      Since then it’s been one irresponsible money thing after another — spending our savings on things, cashing out the 401K, etc etc. We are now penniless. LIterally! And deeply in debt. We had taken out a home equity loan a few years ago, and my H was the one who took it out so it’s in his name. NOT GOOD. For months I was asking him what the balance was on the loan, and he kept saying he didn’t know. Not even a guess. Then I asked him for his password and user name so I could check it, and he conveniently forgot it — then forgot to look it up for me. Finally I forced it out of him, and when I checked the loan account I almost threw up. There was nothing left. He had been using it to buy groceries and tools and things — nothing extravagent, but all that time I thought we had enough $ coming in to pay our bills and buy our groceries … we didn’t,

      This is so long, but I just had to write back and tell you I UNDERSTAND! I am so sorry that you are going through this too :-(. I am so glad for WP and her blog and for bringing us all together. As far as leaving your husband goes, I know that must be an excruciating decision. My kids are only 8 and 12, and I have a chronic illness, so I am pretty much stuck here for now (although I’ve been tempted to take my girls and “run home to mother!” But she’s 90 now, and caring for her husband who has Alzheimer’s. I couldn’t do that to her). Anyway, I will be praying for you as you embark on this journey. I know that God will give you the insight and wisdom in your heart about what to do. As for honoring your vows … I’ve heard that in cases of abuse, addiction, or adultery, our vows no longer hold water. And I’ve heard that this PA behavior is a covert form of abuse. So I think you’re clear on that with God — but that’s just my humble opinion … whatever you feel moved to do will be the right thing. Keep me posted — I’d love to support you and encourage you and listen when you need a shoulder. My best to you!

      • Mo – have you actually talked to your mom about moving back with her? Maybe it would be a help to her to have you around. I don’t know how debilitating your illness is, but even if you are able to cook and do some housework, it might give her a little break. Again, not knowing your illness, there is also a chance that your stressful marriage situation is making the illness worse, and that once you have moved out and gotten settled, your health might improve.
        Hang in there!!! Do the best you can to take care of yourself! :)

      • mo says:

        Hi wp … this illness of mine is so hard to explain that I usually just say “chronic illness.” Basically I fall under the dumb and very stigmatized categories of Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The name Chronic Fatigue in itself is insulting and misleading. I’ve suffered from fatigue since age 14, but I was always able to manage it and live a normal life. Although i always felt like I was running uphill. Life has always been a struggle. But in 2004 after we adopted our daughter (my youngest), I contracted Cytomegalovirus — a form of Mono. My kids were 1 and 4 at the time and I had no support … and I was so sick. (my in-laws live 10 minutes away. I feel nauseous just talking about it. That was another situation where husband would not stand up for me with his parents. The most disgusting thing of all was that, after I had the Mono for 3 months and was getting no better, my husband’s parents began watching their daughter’s new baby 40 HOURS A WEEK so she could work!!! But in my case all I got was, “just call us if you need us.”

        Anyway, after having the CMV for several months and feeling no better I just figured the CMV had gone dormant and I was feeling sick due to stress. There was a ton of stress with my kids — my youngest had to have major hip surgery at age 2 and wear a body cast for 3 months, and that was only one of the issues going on with my girls. There was also an eating disorder in the little one (most likely due to the foster homes she was in), and recurrent pneumonia with my oldest, and excema and food allergies and on and on.

        SO — fast-forwarding a few years — I found out in 2008 that I was still testing positive for active CMV. This, I find, is an anomaly. It doesn’t happen. My infectious doctor tested me several times and finally said he was “stumped.” I ended up traveling 8 hours to see a specialist who also found that I had active Epstein Barr and HHV6. (I tested IgM positive for these viruses — and still do — meaning they are active and acute.)

        My health has spiraled downward and the viruses have taken a toll on all of my body. I am bed-bound most of the day. i will push myself for my kids when I need to, but I always pay for that. My lungs, heart, digestive system, brain, nervous system, and muscular system (i don’t even know if that’s an actual system) are all affected now.

        Sorry to ramble about this — that’s why I didn’t explain earlier. It’s so hard to describe. But this illness is one of those things that makes me confused, because my husband has been so wonderful in taking care of the kids and taking over the things I can no longer do: he cooks, grocery shops, takes the girls to their activities, etc. This makes me even more stuck.

        There is a place I might go to — a healing center that deals with chronic fatigue syndrome and similar conditions — that sounds promising — maybe (I’ve had my hopes dashed so many times I am afraid to hope anymore).. My mom offered to pay for it. I have 15 pages of paperwork to complete before I can talk to the head doctor (who is actually a naturopath; the center is mostly holistic, but it was founded by an M.D. so it has both the medical and holistic components).

        Sigh — here is another novel for you! But that’s my health story, in a large nutshell.
        love, mo

      • Hi, Mo, I wondered if you had chronic fatigue. (And I don’t mind the novel! :)) I do hope you will go to the healing center, especially since your mom said she will pay for it.

        It is hard when your husband is looking after so much for you. I have noticed that when I am truly not able to do anything (like during my first pregnancy and after a car crash I was in), my husband did step in and take care of things. I don’t know what it is about me being weak that he will take care of me but if I am healthy, he is more likely to tear me down.

        I believe that emotions and diseases are connected. And if I remember right, chronic fatigue is an auto-immune disease? And auto-immune diseases have been linked to the emotions of self-hatred – the body is turning on itself because of hating the self. It’s just a thought. There is so much to our minds and our bodies and our health!!!

        I do hope you will get to go to the healing center, especially since it is holistic.

        Take good care of yourself! :)

  15. mo says:

    wp, hi again. I was getting confused where to reply since our thread was getting so long, so I’m starting over. Hope that doesn’t confuse things. I just wanted to say that I also believe illness and emotions are related. I’m positive that all the stress and devastation finally caused my immune system to shut down (yes, it’s auto-immune). But I never heard about the self-hatred thing causing autoimmune conditions. That makes PERFECT sense.

    I’ve been learning a ton about mind-body medicine — how our minds and bodies are one unit, not two separate units. It all works together. In May I saw an M.D. who does hypnotherapy/NLP/time patterning in order to access the subconscious — to bring out and break up unhealthy patterns, habits and beliefs that can govern our lives. Sadly I was only able to have two sessions with him before we went broke again. (See, I am totally irresponsible with money now too. This doctor was very expensive and I knew better, but I saw him anyway). However, even after just two sessions I have noticed MANY things shifting in me — including how my eyes are opening to this PA thing. The doctor has been very kind to me … he still touches base via email every so often to see how i’m doing, even though I can’t pay for more sessions with him right now.

    • Have you heard of EFT? Emotional Freedom Technique? You could google it to find out more about it and it would be free to use. There is also a book called Feelings Buried Alive Never Die. That would be less expensive than a doctor visit!!! :} Don’t beat yourself up about trying to help your health situation. :} We need to be as strong and as healthy as we can be, so we can do better for ourselves and for others.

    • K says:

      Mo, I have Mixed Connective Tissue Disease (think Lupus), Fibro, and Myosfascial Pain Syndrome. Since I detached emotionally from my spouse (we’re still living together) my MCTD went into remission. Your spouse is making you sicker. I’m so sorry. I understand. You’re a worthy person, worthy of love and caring. Our PAs cannot provide these things.

      • You’re a worthy person, worthy of love and caring. Our PAs cannot provide these things.” Thank you. So well put.

      • mo says:

        K…. I am so dotty that I missed tout comment. I am just now seeing it here. Ive been running into some hassles with my email and my laptop so I didn’t see your comment come in….
        Lil!!!!__ Lol …
        — I just looked up and saw what my kindle did to what I was trying to write!! I’m so “dotty” was supposed to be “sorry”…
        I will try this again on a computer. I am just pecking away on this kindle thing. As u can tell I am not a big texter!

        Fusion (oh forget it!… I was trying to say “see you soon” the hip way… c ya sun? And it came out “fusion”). Sigh. “Ill be back soon when I can make sense (I hope u at least hot a chuckle out of this!)

  16. He’s not going to learn or change until you can stand in your power. We don’t change until there’s something to change for, and in reading your other bloggs, I see your waiting for him to make the right move. This life is about you, where do you want to go?! He is just a mirrior of where your not going, and a signpost for you to act. I have a page on Boundaries and Personal Power, that is a path to follow for anyone who wants a healthy relationship with whoever. I also have a page on Relationship that may be worth the read.
    I do hope you find blessings along the path you follow.

    • You are right. I continually wait for him to make the right move. However, I also now have a full-time job and am working towards financial independence so I can leave. I do not plan to just stay here and complain for the rest of my life!!! :} I will check out your pages. Thank you.

  17. darylw1984 says:

    I like your quote on the need for love and acceptance. I my experience this must begin with receiving God’s love and then work outward into our relationships with one another. Cindy and I were married in 1984, and she’s still the love of my life. But where would we be without God?

  18. redwallthoughts says:

    I have not read all of your blog yet, but it occurred to me that some of the behaviours at least fit the description of Aspergers Syndrome. A good friend was in an emotionless marriage with her husband failing to take any sort of responsibility for himself or the family. It was only after their child was diagnosed with Aspergers and they were told it was likely to be hereditary that they realised this could be his ‘issue’. Unfortunately she could not live in an emotionless void anymore.

    • Someone else I know has mentioned Aspergers Syndrome to me, but I honestly don’t think that he has it. This person has a child with Aspergers and she has talked to me about her child enough that I know a little bit about Aspergers. I think that my husband didn’t fully mature emotionally, that he has fears and issues that he won’t face. And he deals with life by being passive aggressive because of it. I completely understand your friend not being able to live in the emotionless void. It is very destructive.

  19. jen says:

    I could really use some advise right now. we have been working with therapests fot years and not much has helped. We recently had to sell our home because one of his issues is handling money. we have 2children, 9and11. They are also struggling with his behavior, my son is already in therapy for panic and anxiety.I always said that I would stay with him as long as I felt that it was best cor my children but I cant convince myself of this anymore. I would leave him but I have lupus and am chronically sick. My doctors took me out of work several years ago but disability is giving me a run around. I dont have any family to help. Iwant out of this marraige but i dont know how i can even support myself,never mind my children. no one deserves to live like this just because they are disabled and what am i teachink my children if i stay. Help and ideas please

    • My very first thought was that maybe you need to change therapists!!! Do you go separately or together? Maybe you could try going separately if you don’t already.

      I believe that often times physical illness are reactions to emotional distress. One lady who read my blog said that her health improved when she got away from her husband.

      I honestly do not know what kind of assistance is available to you. Can you check with a women’s shelter to see if they have any ideas for options for you? Or maybe even a divorce lawyer, to see what options you might have? Do you attend a church that would help support you? Can you ask your therapist if he/she has any suggestions for you to be able to move out? Is there any type of government office you could visit to see what the government might offer? I really wish I had more to offer you on this. I’m sorry. If I think of anything else, I will be sure to post it. Maybe someone else reading this will have other ideas for you. I really am so sorry. No one deserves to live like this. And yes, we do need to teach our children that we are deserving of love and respect and that they are deserving of love and respect. Good luck. Let me know how it is going for you. Take the best care of yourself that you can.

  20. Pingback: Receiving and Giving the Shine On Blog Award | Paula's Pontifications

  21. Julie says:

    I am in a state of shock as I slowly realize the true meaning of passive aggressive behavior. I’ve been around it for nearly ten years but never saw the darker side. Thought it was a kind of descriptor like “neat” or “funny”- just a style. He’s forgetful, absent-minded, non-expressive, preoccupied. Now I see much of these labels were simply excuses to cover up intentional acts of abuse. I didn’t know it had a name. It just felt bad. Flashes of incidents are just coming to the surface for re-evaluation. Like the time we went to buy me a birthday gift at a store that closed at 9pm. He wasn’t in a big hurry even though it was his idea. We got into the car and seemed to be driving to the right location- that is until he missed the exit. Missing this particular exit meant we would have to go through a long tunnel before turning around and yeah the store would be closed by the time we finally arrived. What felt especially strange was that this was an exit he had taken 100 times before in an area where he used to live. He didn’t seem upset by the fact we missed the exit or that the store would now be closed. And the gift from this store never materialized. Ever. I think he had some financial hardship shortly after so I didn’t feel comfortable confronting him. This happened many many years ago. I never really had a place to put it until now.
    Thank you for this blog.

    • Hi! Your story sounds so VERY typical of passive aggressive behavior! For the longest time, I never could explain what would go on; it wouldn’t make sense! I knew something wasn’t right, but I couldn’t define it. And so I ended up thinking I was crazy!!! When I finally learned about passive aggressive behavior a few years ago, it clicked! It made complete sense!!! Of course, I still think I am crazy and probably will until I leave and can heal. Thank you so much for commenting and sharing your story!

  22. Tracey says:

    I’m glad I came across your blog. My husband is passive aggressive. I realized this years ago, but didn’t know how to respond appropriately to it. Today we are separated because he can take no responsibility for his part in the breakdown of our marriage. Counseling has caused him to look at himself which he can not do. And so he has claimed the victim card and has left me and our son and for the second time his son from his first marriage. My stepson who is almost 19 decided to stay with me. He too is passive aggressive and so I feel as though I’m reliving much of what I’ve dealt with for the past 11 years. The problem now is that no one else sees my stepsons passive aggressiveness and so I become the horrible person. All advice given is from people who not only don’t know, but don’t want to hear my side and so I feel utterly frustrated and alone and misunderstood. I find some comfort in reading your blog and responses from others because you get it and you know I’m not crazy. It just feels like I am.

    • Hi, I’m sorry you have to live with so much passive aggression in your life. You are so right – if someone doesn’t understand passive aggression, they have no clue!!! They may mean well, but they simply do not understand the monster they are giving advice about! You are not horrible. You are not crazy! Just take the best care of yourself that you can! I try to read “The Language of Letting Go” daily. It helps me a lot in my battle. You are not alone and I am glad that my blog and the comments that I receive help you. Take good care of yourself!!!

  23. Hi there! I nominated you for the Shine On award. Do with it what you will, I know not everyone likes blog awards. Take care!

  24. Rene says:

    Hi There…I am so happy I found your blog…I have been married to a PA man for 11 years…I only found out he is PA after 9 yrs of “crazy” feeling…I really thought that there is something wrong with me…I felt I was being punished….for what I could not answer….we have been at this “dance” now 2 yrs…and still I feel I am going crazy…No one believes me…outward he is so sweet and loving…and at home he is angry, quiet wthdrawn…

  25. Tish says:


    i’ve lurked for a while and posted randomly, but wish to make a formal introduction.

    you’re blog has become my morning reading! when i sit and have my coffee after “husbro” leaves for work (that’s my name for him, as his behavior more closely aligns with that of a bratty little brother than a husband); and before my kids wake up. it is my only time during the day when i can reflect, be present in my own agency and BREATHE.

    cliff-notes’s version:

    husbro and i met about 11 years ago. i was in grad school he was a medical resident. we had a lot in common and hit it off instantly. things were fine, until i noticed that he’s often vacilliate between “moodiness and unmitigated anger” without provocation. i also later learned that he was a “serial monogamist”, that his relationships lasted on average 90 days, and that the failures in his relationships were always the fault of his partner.

    fast-forward: we broke up (after 90 days). reconciled (big mistake), and later married.

    to say that it’s been an emotional roller coaster would be an understatement. basically, everything that has gone wrong in our marriage (familial issues, finances, sex–or lack there of, my pregnancy, global warming…. ) was MY FAULT!

    ..and of course, he’s the loving devoted husband who’s overworked, broke, misunderstood, stressed, unloved and just can’t catch a break. did i mention that he’s a doctor?

    did i also mention that his mother has BPD (borderline), with a chaser of bipolar; and has the nurturing capabilities of cockroach? the result? an emotionally stunted child, AKA “husbro.”

    anyway, i filed for divorce. i couldn’t take it anymore. i was done.

    after he was served, he basically made my life HELL! he’d refuse to give me gas money, pay the kids’ tuition, give me money for groceries, or do ANYthing that i needed. he’d go days not speaking to me, yet REFUSED to move out (because he was, of course…broke) *rolls eyes*

    his divorce strategy: be tragic.

    the tipping point was when he flipped out the day of my son’s bday party. i spent the day preparing and husbro sulking. when guests arrived, he was the “life of the party” (as always), while i was basically falling apart. his issue was that he didn’t feel it right that he had to pay me alimony and was prepared to dig up anything that would basically make me out to be a “gold-digging, lying, crazy, crack-head” who isn’t worthy of alimony nor parenting his children (although i’m currenlty a WAHM, who has been their primary care-giver since they were fetuses…)

    yeah…it’s like that.

    yesterday, he loved me. today…well, not so much.

    anyway, i needed a new strategy. i didn’t WANT alimony, yet there isn’t a lawyer in the state who’d not look at our income disparity (93%/7%) and NOT request alimony. so basically, in order to keep my sanity and get the hell away from him, i need to earn at least $80K, to leave him and not request alimony. i have a graduate education, and have worked in federal policy so i’m “employable” (as he wanted to show since the first piece of discovery requested in the interrogatory was my CV). so that would get him out of long-term alimony. but for temporary?

    connect me to another man?

    yep. you read correctly. the ONLY REASON i want to leave is because i have another man, not because he’s an ass (although he’s denied me sex more time than i can count with a calculator). but how DARE i even think about sex with another man… or sex at all?

    …let that on simmer for a bit.

    so my “exit strategy”: withdraw the current divorce petition, find a job making $80K, get my finances in order and roll out with the remaining sanity i have left.

    i look forward to reading your stories… for no other reason than to remind me that when i question my sanity to look outward.

  26. mourninglight says:

    This is the best of all blogs/sites etc. on passive aggressive (and I’ve searched for many over the last handful of years). Thirty five years of trying to fix crazy here, aka try to – fix him to fix me to fix the marriage to fix me. Years of coping without affection and intimacy, but sharing children together. I appreciated him more as a co-parent than husband, but even that is punctuated by the intermittent behind the scenes ‘talks’ to explain/encourage what a basically good father would do. Parenting the parent, while all the energy poured into the relationship, and the loss of my own ‘self’ diminished me as a mother. This is my greatest regret.

    The appeals to his ego and his inner image (needs to see himself as a good nice guy, and woe if that is challenged), the need to always keep that in mind so that he never felt he was in my shadow, and while I was eroded and diminished bit by bit, his seemingly serene okayness with less and less of ‘me’. He would probably say it bothered or grieved him, but his behaviors show the opposite.

    My blindness to the covert disrespect and diminishing that trained our kids to see me as only weak and dependent, which over time I was becoming more and more. Hugging affectionately or complimenting me in front of the kids or other people, but as soon as the bedroom door closes, the comments begin about how he isn’t feeling quite right, has a headache, has to get up early and needs his sleep. The workaholic who never seems to have success or financial stability as the point of working hard, but rather just being busy. The super dad and good guy who could leave me depleted and in the fetal position, then step up to cook a meal, do dishes, drive the kids, or weed and water the garden (and whistle or sing while I was struggling to remember why life was worth living another).

    …. Unless I was recovering, attempting to make changes by taking a class, practicing an instrument, trying to have coffee with a friend, a foray into a job that showed promise for independence (the most escalation and worst behaviors came at these times), or my just showing flickers of thriving or happy. Then the sabotage and drama begins… he wasn’t feeling well enough to work (aka get money to pay bills), or he ‘forgot {insert anything important to me], an important bill wasn’t paid (chaos), he’d behave badly towards one of our kids (punish me?), or he misunderstood, or he decided something/anything else was more important than something I asked of him, and how dare I question him? Basically though, he looks good, and I look crazy, depressed and/or angry. Then he shows affection, rubs my feet, tells me I’m beautiful, and that he loves me (despite all he has to put up with…). Or suddenly he’s well enough and eager for intimacy. … And starving, I devour the crumbs. Although now, I tend to even eat those with some cognizant and pragmatic inner distance as I plan to find a life free from this pain.

    Several years ago, finding information the very first time on p.a. and alternating between euphoric relief and horrific grief. Believing that understanding would lead to the ability to find a way to change the relationship. Being willing to try every tip, working on changing myself, accepting him, recover from codependency, identify and release expectations (the quicksand deathtrap of a relationship with a passive aggressive), windows and pockets of hope when he acknowledges and says he needs help, the many plummets from the cliff when the acknowledgments aren’t followed by his actually working on changing. I read once that the p.a.’s are ‘the b*tchmakers’, and when I sometimes view and hear my going crazy self from a distance as someone I don’t recognize or want to be, I sadly nod. This is my first time to your blog/site, and am I missing a support forum?

  27. Shania says:

    omg i read your posts and i just feel so sorry for you. I can’t imagine what going through this must mean for you. you need to gain some self esteem (spend time with people who recharge you, close friends and family) this man’s energy is toxic. this has nothing to do with how he treats you but how you feel about yourself. this is a dead relationship and you need to move on. take back your life… your joy. this man cannot give you anything that you deserve. he will only bring pain and sorrow to himself and those around him. You need to feel sorry for him but don’t think you can “fix” this or “improve” this. At some point you have to blame yourself, that you put yourself in this situation and you need to resolve this situation as best you can ASAP. — For all the other women that are just now encountering a PA, you need to listen to your gut. If something tells you that something is wrong or off about a man, listen to it. Don’t try to change a man. Instead focus your energy on breaking away as best you can and find a man that can show you the love, the respect and the care that you want. Some people just don’t deserve love, some people don’t know how to love. And its not your job to teach them. They will suck you in and spit you out and not even look back. Love them from afar or help them as a friend if you have to.

  28. Jacquelyn says:

    I, too, have married a passive aggressive man. I can relate to all of what is written here. At this moment he knows that our marriage is in the toilet yet he pretends like everything is just fine! He goes on like we’re the happiest of couples. It’s scary weird. However he never touches me, he never looks at me, he never does what I ask unless I throw a screaming fit. When he knows I’m mad he buys me expensive gifts, yet he wont do the simplest of requests. he wont share anything with me, yet he says he loves me, he wont share his heart, his body, his feelings, his money, he wont even play golf with me now that hes found out i might actually be a challenge. Everyone thinks he’s just the nicest guy in the world. I’m leaving him, my feelings have changed after 12 years of beating my head against the wall. I know everyone will be shocked because “he’s such a nice guy” gag! And that makes it difficult. But I know what I have to do to make my life happy and talking to a zombie isn’t it. I’ve even been a bit PA myself at times dealing with him. But make no mistake I’ve talked until I’m hoarse trying to work things out and get absolutely no response whatsoever. Just blank stares like I’m crazy, after making my decision to leave I feel like a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders. And even tho I’m not financially secure and I may have to work 2 jobs and stay with my mom for awhile I’d rather do that than live under this cloud any longer. My journey isn’t over and I know I’m going to have to make things worse to make them better but I’m ready. I can’t do anymore here. Good luck to all of you and thanks for letting me into your lives a bit to once again find I’m not crazy!

    • Kate says:

      Go girl .scales are too heavy on one side life is way to short hope you did it as i am and will succeed. Id rather be responsible for my own lifes happiness than live this way.

  29. Teresa says:

    Oh wow!!! Mourninglight, you wrote “Hugging affectionately or complimenting me in front of the kids or other people, but as soon as the bedroom door closes, the comments begin about how he isn’t feeling quite right, has a headache, has to get up early and needs his sleep. The workaholic who never seems to have success or financial stability as the point of working hard, but rather just being busy. The super dad and good guy who could leave me depleted and in the fetal position, then step up to cook a meal, do dishes, drive the kids, or weed and water the garden (and whistle or sing while I was struggling to remember why life was worth living another).” YES!!!!! My husband does this…Mr. Nice Guy to the world, and I’m in our bedroom crying my eyes out…like I’M the crazy one!! Oh my gosh!!
    And you also said….”Believing that understanding would lead to the ability to find a way to change the relationship. Being willing to try every tip, working on changing myself, accepting him, recover from codependency, identify and release expectations (the quicksand deathtrap of a relationship with a passive aggressive), windows and pockets of hope when he acknowledges and says he needs help, the many plummets from the cliff when the acknowledgments aren’t followed by his actually working on changing”….
    My goodness! That is MY life!!! And YES about releasing the expectations…YES!!! I HAVE to do this! He promises me and promises me that he will change, that he will work with me….then NOTHING!! And I then get soooo hurt, then angry…But after reading that I now realize….I have to let go on any and all expectations…He cannot and will not do what he promised. End.of.story!
    And last…”Basically though, he looks good, and I look crazy, depressed and/or angry. Then he shows affection, rubs my feet, tells me I’m beautiful, and that he loves me (despite all he has to put up with…). Or suddenly he’s well enough and eager for intimacy. … And starving, I devour the crumbs.” This is ME!!! I look crazy, mean, like I don’t appreciate all he does for me!! Even my children, at times, will tell me to take it easy, cut dad some slack….they just DO NOT understand! And inside I’m CRYING, wanting them to understand…this is not the REAL me!! I’m hurting, I’m lonely, I’m scared….I feel I have NO ONE on my side!!
    This is a sad, lonely life….I’m 52, have always been a stay at home mom….My youngest son is 13, I can’t leave my husband…my son would be devastated…and my husband knows this and uses it to his advantage. He knows it…and I know it. But next week he’ll bring home flowers, so everything will be ok…right?? :'(

  30. Karen says:

    I am wondering what is it with PAs and all the foot rubbing. Mine does it too. When all else fails offer a foot rub but do it half heartedly. In snooping in my husbands phone I have found he also offers foot rubs to his girlfriend. Yes the one he thinks I don’t know about.

    • Teresa says:

      Karen, I have NO idea, unless it’s to throw us off balance, the “I’m such a nice guy, look, I’ll even rub your dirty, stinky little feet!!”
      My best friend who divorced her PAH would always tell me how he’d rub HER feet also….so there HAS to be some psychological reason behind it…but who knows?
      PAs are weird and do weird things! LOL!!
      So how long has he had the GF? My PAH had a 4 month emotional affair 3 yrs ago…that’s what opened my eyes to his PA behavior….when he tried to blame me for HIS affair! Jerk!

      • Karen says:

        Hi Teresa, There have been 3 woman that I know of since May. I don’t think he thinks I know about it. I really want to send the current one a message and ask if she knows what she is getting herself into. Maybe just suggest she google passive aggressive.
        I am so amused by all of the comments I see about foot rubs. There must be something about it. He will rub my best friends feet too. She’s not the kind to cheat, just incredibly nieve. She doesn’t really understand his behavior. He is always the greatest guy around her and more than willing to work on their house. (Just not on mine.) So it is hard to talk to her about all I am going through. She just doesn’t get it.
        I take it you are still with your husband. He truly is a jerk for blaming you. I feel like these guys should come with a warning label.
        Thanks for responding.

  31. maria says:

    ok. i feel like i was just lead to this site this morning. & wham i couldn’t stop crying whem i read all of your stories & support of one another.

  32. Sarah B. says:

    Almost 11 years into this and two kids and just recently had my ah-ha PA obsessive reading moment. I bought every book on it, read every website, read your entire blog in one evening. What’s interesting about PA behavior is that it’s sneaky. You don’t even know it’s happening. And being a codependent, I permitted it. Would love to email with you if you ever have the chance. Thanks for putting this stuff out there.

  33. Eek says:

    I didn’t know where to leave this message so I’m doing it here.

    It started here for me; http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/abusiverelationships/a/Pass_Agg.htm
    It’s not passive aggression. It’s ‘covert’ aggression and it’s conscious.
    Also read “Why Does He Do That?” by Lundy Bancroft. It really will explain the why. It saved my life. I hope it can help you. And if it can, please pass it on. They makes alone, keep us alone so we will stay. When we know what they are doing, we can protect ourselves. I got out. 4 years ago. I’m happily remarried to a wonderful and unabusive man, but I’m still healing and it takes time. I hope you find strength and freedom. And if you ever want to, please feel free to email.

  34. Eek says:

    Me again. I just realized some of that may sound pushy. I’m sorry if that is the case. I get kinda tongue tied when I’m thinking about life with my ex. I write something, send it and then realize how bad it could sounded. I meant to say “Also try reading.” I couldn’t find mention of it in your posting so I wasn’t sure if you had. If you have, please ignore everything about it. Still hoping you find happiness and freedom (you clearly have strength but hey, we can always use more right?) And again I’m sorry of coming off like a prat above.

  35. Hey! Your blog is great. I’ve nominated you for a Leibster Award, which generates awareness of up-and-coming blogs. Check out my page to find out more http://www.dragonflywomanblog.wordpress.com

  36. Happy now says:

    Hi! Just to thank you for this blog. You have helped so many to go through the maze. Passive aggressive behaviours are hard to understand and hard to prove to others as emotional and psychological abuse but to the many here who have been the recipients (I have the victim word) they are all so real and frustrating and unhealthy (breast cancer for me but am a survivor). I wish everyone here good health and peace. You are normal human beings and not crazy. The passive aggressive spouses are the crazy ones. There is life after PA’s relationship. Survive and flourish!

  37. Came across your blog tonight while searching blogs on divorce. I know what it is like and I hate that anyone has to experience it.

    Thanks for the information you have shared. It is encouraging to so many, especially those that have taken the time to comment.

    Be blessed!!

  38. Aleksandra says:

    Dear Lovely Madam,
    Thank you.
    I thought I was losing my mind.
    I thought I was going insane.
    But as I am sitting in my bed, sipping wine, I cought myself thinking how can I revenge my PA boyfriend for emotionally manipulating me.
    And I am imagining it. It feels great.
    Help me!
    Am I turning into him?

  39. helen burk says:

    I divorced a PA man almost 4 years ago after being maried to him for 22 years. I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder about 2 years before I left him and am absolutely positive living with him was the cause. I still find myself unable to get off the meds and even have flash backs when some event triggers a memory of him and the life I had. I am now in a loving relationship (and no way a PA one) , am financially Independent and with twin boys heading off to college. I wish I never stayed in that relationship as long as I did, though I didn’t know he was PA until much later. I don’t know if the pain he caused me will ever go away or if I will ever be free of these meds but I am at least free of him. I can’t stress enough to anyone that is with a PA man, to get out, and get out as fast as you can, because it can change you forever if you don’t .

  40. Tish says:

    You are indeed not alone.

    I’m in the process of completing my divorce from my passive aggressive husband, and he is essentially stalled the settlement process.

    In the last three weeks he has played games with child support payments, including stopping his direct deposit, and not signing the check. His attorney is at his wits end with him. My attorney and I are prepared to go for judgment. A noncontested divorce that would’ve cost us no more than $10,000, will now cost us upwards of $75,000, due to my ex-husband’s complaints, motions against him, inability to reach a settlement, lawyers fees with negotiations, lawyers fees with addressing complaints, and eventually mediation and court fees to hear this case.

    It is so true that divorcing these guys is like being stabbed one hundred times with a machete; they never stop. And they spend most of their time, trying to get you back. Not get you back into their life romantically, but getting you back for having the audacity to leave them. They also are incredibly convincing at first. First court date, they will concoct a convincing narrative in which, they have no idea why their wives want to divorce them, they are good husbands and fathers, and they just want to do the best to move on.

    It’s all lies. The truth: they want to screw you. And make it as difficult for you as they possibly can within the confines of the law.

    Unfortunately, these guys get so caught up with their pathology, that they rearly realize that in their attempts to be slick and skirt contempt, they actually commit contempt.

    The irony, most officers of the court see right through the bullshit. And these guys usually end up walking away with a short end of the stick anyway.

    One thing about these guys is that they cannot be happy. And be hate anyone who can.

    They do not know how to be happy and their only “happy” is what we gave them. . And they realized, that at some point we would see through the façade, which is why they never stopped relentlessly trying to break us down.

    When we do wake up and see him for what he is, and leave– his entire world crumbles. In appearance, he will fight tooth and nail (not to fix it per se) but to make sure that we are never peaceful and happy again.

    Our job, is to keep living. Most women who marry passive aggressive men are generally sweet, loving, and empathic. Many of us are also codependent. The first thing I would say to each of us is to deal with their own codependency issues FIRST.

    That way when he begins to play his games to feel you back in, you know where it’s coming from. Dealing with codependency issues, also keeps us vigilant for the next relationship, as there is high-risk, that we can repeat the same behaviors.

    I am so happy that you were able to get away. AND THAT YOUR TWIN BOYS, I’M GOING OFF TO COLLEGE AND WILL UNDOUBTABLY BE NOTHING LIKE THEIR FATHER. WHAT I WILL SAY AS I’VE EXPLAINED TO MY 22-YEAR-OLD SON, IF I SEE PASSIVE AGGRESSION YOU I’M GOING TO CALL IT OUT. HE APPRECIATES THIS. I ENCOURAGE YOU DO THE SAME WITH YOUR SONS. (sorry for the caps, but I didn’t know how us to stress this. I think something that we also need to address here, is that at one point our husbands were boys, and they learned this behavior from somewhere. If we are raising boys, there is high risk that our sons will exhibit the same behavior. It’s time for us as mothers, to nip it in the bud.)

    I am in the process of cultivating a relationship myself, and this gentleman is amazing. While nobody is perfect, and I’m under no delusion that I am out of the fog of my ex-husbands abuse–and seriously ladies let’s call it what it is it is abuse–I am optimistic that as the days, months, years go by, my life will return to a place of happiness and joy.

    Keep moving forward, my dear sister. You’re almost out of the fog.


  41. MO says:

    Hi WP!!! … It’s Mo; I discovered your blog back in 2012 when my blindfolds officially started to shed and I was able see the scary –and eerie — truth about my husband. Your blog was instrumental in helping me learn about pa, discover that my husband fits the pa mode to a perfect T, and begin in to accept the fact that I was / am In an abusive marriage.

    I had to stop visiting here for awhile because it was all so overwhelming …. I felt, and still feel, trapped in this marriage because of my illness (which has continued to get worse), and my two young daughters, ages 10 and 14, who I don’t want to abandon or ‘rip the rug out from under’ with the inevitable chaos of divorce.

    It’s a terrible ‘thin line’ to be teetering upon — my soul and my spirit and my heart need to leave. My body needs to leave; I see now that I’ve been living in a toxic soup for 19 years … and surely this poison is what triggered my immune system collapse in 2004. Last year I tested positive for Lyme Disease, which has probably been active all along (I had abnormal brain MRIs in 2006 and 2008, both showing the classic “Lyme lesions” — but my blood tested negative then). A therapist told me it might not be possible for me to heal under this toxic roof. ….

    …. But, in addition to not wanting to abandon my kids, I have nowhere to go. I have no money to start out somewhere on my own. My credit rating rating is in ruins. I cannot work (neurological-cognitive issues set in a couple years ago; I have the executive functioning capacity of an 8-year-old, according to the chiropractic /functional neurologist who performed an extensive brain evaluation recently. I am bed-bound 80% of the time now.

    I don’t mean to complain; I just wanted to let you know where I’m at these days — which isn’t too far off from where I was the last time I was here! My eyes continue to open and see new things as the blindfolds continue to shed … For example, I’ve seen how my marriage is an exact replica of my childhood — with the subtle abuse, shaming, blaming, being “dismissed”, ignored, and treated as totally insignificant. It’s uncanny to me how I managed to recreate that pattern for myself! I suppose that’s what felt normal to me, so I thought it was right and good.

    Also, I recently noticed that my daughters have been treating me the same way my husband does! When I finally ‘came to’ and realized what was happening, I began telling them “No! … Just because your dad treats me this way doesn’t mean it’s right or okay!” My 10-year-old immediately heard this and stopped the behavior — but my older daughter continues with it (though not as profoundly as she used to). Maybe I was able to catch it in time.

    There’s so much more I could say, but already I’ve written you a novel (that sure hasn’t changed :-)). More importantly than all my ramblings, HOW ARE YOU?? I need to read through your posts and catch up on what I’ve missed. I have thought about you often, and I’m so glad I finally made it back here. I hope to stick around more this time!

    Love, mo
    P.s. I noticed that your blog name is now “Writing about P.A” … which fits perfectly with my ‘WP’ nickname for you! (Which stands for Wonderful Person, in case you might have forgotten). And that is so true — you truly are a wonderful person, who is helping so many of us by being so brave and open here. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!!

    • Hi, Mo! It’s really nice to hear from you again. I’ve wondered how you were doing! So thank you for the update! I’m sorry you are still there. I appreciate what you said about your marriage being a replica of your childhood. That is so often what we do!!! Yes, I changed my blog name and yes, I really like that it fits with the WP that you gave me!!! : } I thought that was very cool! Please feel free to write a novel any time you want. That is part of the reason why my blog is here! Take good care of yourself! ~WP

  42. I am sorry to read about all of your pain. I just want to share it happens to men also. I have been dealing with the same issues for over 29 years. Worst part is she doesn’t see it and her blood family continues to enable her. This has caused much pain for me and my soon to be 18 year old son.

    • Yes, it does happen to men, too. I’m sorry for your pain as well, and for your son. It hurts us and our children so much. I wish you well.

      • JR says:

        What the… Whoa… You people have all unwittingly written the stories of MY last 5 years!

        You each wrote bits and pieces of my own love, hate, confusion, bewilderment, shock, hurt, push, pull, sanity questioning “relationship” turned unbelievably, nightmarish, personal HELL.

        Procrastination. Not a single bday gift or valentine. Weird gifts, if any at all. Always late with a strange excuse, if any. Always late. Usually late enough to miss an event.

        My personal favorite is agreeing to go somewhere special and backing out just as it’s too late for me to make other plans. Being invited by him to go somewhere and just not showing up OR calling me last minute trying to get ME to back out.

        Withholding any affection. Withholding normal conversation. Trying to get basic, normal everyday information is like pulling teeth.

        I mostly feel nonexistent? What I always chalked up to shyness (don’t laugh) was… Weird & off putting to people. Nobody comes around anymore.

        Strange little things… Won’t eat with me. I cook 3 times a day. 4-5 times a week, he’ll go eat out, not tell me & pull the innocent act.

        He leaves without saying a word to me. My mistake, I’ve told him I think it’s rude, please don’t…

        He can basically ignore my very existence for days… Unless I walk out the door.

        Then, of course, if I want/need/ask for something… Anything… That’s the quickest way to make sure it’ll never happen. Ever.

        Appears they ALL suck with money! He owns his own business. I’ve found THOUSANDS of dollars worth of checks, payable to him, hoarded! THOUSANDS & THOUSANDS! YEARS OLD. Why?! He doesn’t bill people half the time. Then gets pissed when they call?

        I can count 20 half completed projects.

        The twisting of details, stories and facts. Denying things even happen!

        But he’s a great guy and everybody loves him!

        Approximately 1.5 years ago I even started thinking maybe he had Asperger Syndrome.

        I wasn’t sure WHAT this freak of nature had going on in his head, but I knew it was something!

        About 6 months ago, I started emotionally detaching, purely out of self preservation. Before that I played the perfect target. I cried, defended, listened, took blame, tried harder while he pushed and pushed until I finally blew up becoming a hysterical, begging, blubbering, screaming, raging crazy woman… While he either stepped back with hands up, eyes wide & innocent asking what’s wrong with you OR just a blank stare. I started “detaching” the first time I saw, through my own tears, that he was smiling while I was teetering on the brink of insanity.

        Not a sweet, compassionate or even amused smile… More a smirk… satisfaction? I’d never noticed that before. Couple that with the real or imagined gleam I saw in his eyes and something clicked in me. He really DID push me to this on purpose! He really DOES like to see me like this. My pain, hurt, frustration and anger really DOES make him happy.

        I stopped taking the bait. I stopped asking or expecting things from him. I stopped the tears and begging and frustrated rages. I started ignoring him and trying to treat him the way he treated me. Aloof and apathetic, kinda? I wasn’t good at it, though. It goes against my very nature and i was so lonely. I’d end up falling for some scrap of “love” so he could reject me. Then I’d withdraw. Then he’d have to pick a fight.

        Now, he had to work harder to get my rage to show because I would agree with whatever he was saying and walk away. He would follow me around.

        The longer I could hold out, the more antagonizing he became. He was relentless! I’d blow and the crazy cycle started over.

        Things took a strange turn the better i got at trying to avoid things. I sat on the couch agreeing with him. I got a drink thrown in my face. I lost it. He got the fit he was looking for. And denied any wrongdoing… My fault, of course. Recycle!

        The next time he had to work even harder. He had to spit in my face to get the rage. Deny & blame. Reset!

        A few weeks ago i refused to play. I held strong. He lost his damn mind and became violent. He hit, slapped, pushed & choked me because I WOULDN’T fight with him.

        I truly believe he scared himself that day. Even while he was tossing me around, I refused to show anything but calm. It made him madder. He wanted me to take the blame for it and when I wouldn’t… He said it didn’t happen.

        I’m on my way out, now. Time & patience.

        Thanks for this!!

  43. sydne says:

    Hi, I’m Sydne. I am grateful to have found this site. I am going out of my mind. I have been with my boyfriend for 2 years. I took two years off of dating because my ex was a narcissist. I was in therapy, codependents anonymous, I thought for sure I was breaking my pattern of the last 30 years of dating. I met Bill online, he was not my type at all, terrible grammar, conservative, from the country. Ooooh but he was so nice. I had a real issue at first dating him, I would tell my friends and family he will stick out like a sore thumb at any events. My family is very liberal, educated, I thought I was just being shallow, NICE is the kind of man I want. My mother/friends told me I was being silly. He is nice for god sake, this is the kind of relationship you should be in. Charming, nice, gift giving, sweet, nurturing, caregiving, empathetic, a gentleman, affectionate, complimentary, understanding, generous. NOW. NONE of those things, until he tries to reel me in. I am aware, sensitive to, and exhausted of every game he plays.I have known for years I am codependent with a huge fear of abandonment in relationships. I shared a lot of those stores with him from my heart, intimate feelings, only to be used against me later. I feel so violated. He uses them against me to show me how broken I am. How I will never be fixed. That there is no hope for me to change, but he will try to live with it. I realized that he was passive aggressive about week ago after some online research.. I have been reading about PA ‘s constantly for the entire week. I ve read many articles, and been ‘sick’ myself, even looking up things like how to beat them at there own game. for the time before that, I believed him when he said, things were my fault, I needed counseling, I must think fighting is normal, he is not use to living in such chaos. (i’m not really that bad) WHen I read that PA’s are crazy makers, I felt better. I’m a kind friend and family member, I am supportive. I have long term deep, close personal relationships. Last night I was totally different person, I played such games with him, games to make his head spin and it worked for a while. Why am I stooping? Having fear of abandonment makes it so hard to leave. It is traumatic to me. But, how can I stay. How can I leave? I’m trapped.

  44. sydne says:

    More… I am hurt, resentful pissed, so pissed. STILL HOPING, for god sake, why?

    Now as the time draws near that I will see him today, I ask mmyself and wonder. WHat game face will Bill have on today. How will I react to it. How can I stop myself from reacting to it so he doesn’t turn it around and make me the person with all the problems. Will he break up with me again today? He does this often because he knows I fear abandonment. I beg and plead, and beeeeg and pleeeead with him to stay. He finally will say yes, with some conditions of me changing. I am powerless.

    • sydne says:

      Trying not to react today, on the outside he is a happy smiley laughing person. Zingers started slowly today, they seem to be picking up. I haven’t reacted to any of them. I am hoping, it gets worse before better?

      • sydne says:

        I thought I would feel better today, not reacting to him. But I feel much worse. I am not sure why. Maybe because, I am seeing how sick he is. Istant tears after I wrote that last sentence.

      • Heather says:

        Hi Sydne…I’m not sure how to sugar coat this for you…This boy/man your dating isn’t going to get better. In fact over time he will get worse. Each one of us on here at one time or another. either while with them or quickly after leaving them have had to face the fear of never being with anyone else. But being with people like this is far worse then what could ever be…if you ended up alone. You will be far better off to cut contact with him and never talk to him again… your self esteem and your mind and you heart and your body beg you!!

  45. Heather says:

    Ok here goes…this is going to be a mess of words but i will have to apologize in advance. I’m starting to go a bit crazy here. After 16 years of an off an off and on marriage i have come to the end of it. We separated in March of 2014. I am now wondering if i’ve made all this stuff up in my head. After reading all of the posts here i’ve realized i’m not and i was living a life of utter hell.g He lied all the time, can’t keep a job, financially irresponsible, struggling financially no food in the house but he’s charging it at work so he can eat. Demands an 8 dollar magazine when we have little money then pouts when i don’t get it for him. silent treatment for days and i don’t know why. very little sex if i haven’t cried for it or begged for it. mumbling under his breath from a seated position in front of tv about what my son and i haven’t taken care of around the house that day..or any other for that matter…watching disgusting (child based) porn on my sons ipod….(found this out after separating) Wouldn’t help around the house unless it was going get him something in return. Blamed me for everything that did or did not happen to him. No gifts no compliments…tried to drive my friends away with lies about what i’d said behind their backs. (none of it true) Caused me to rage all the time..i wasn’t like that before i met him…He is one of those overly helpful P/A’s who cling to people and jump whenever they make mention of needing help..i know he’s chasing after people in his new neighbourhood (i am sadly checking up on him) invites himself to parties and other events around him that he hears others talking about. (Did that the last New Years we were together with some people he thought were his “work friends” they moved the party to avoid him) i am afraid that now that he’s away from me the “controlling bitch” that he created that he’ll turn into this great guy. Can someone shed light on what happens to low functioning (he isn’t very intelligent) P/A’s Will he get his act together did i create this…Another thing…he won’t change his address on some things but has on anything that gets him Canadian government tax credits..he won’t take his name off our bills.and his facebook page is still attached to his old cellphone..that is in my sons possession…What is the purpose in this kind of thing..is it to hurt me and keep him in my head or because he doesn’t care about anything that happens here anymore? Is he living a better life now without me or will he always be the same sick damaged person??

  46. Val says:

    I just figured out my husband of 22 years is passive aggressive. I’m relieved. I knew it wasn’t me but he was so good at planting the seed of doubt or guilt. I now better understand why I ended up marrying him. Now, I need time to figure out how to increase my income so that I no longer feel trapped. My youngest is 16. The kids see the truth and are very supportive of me. I figure it will take 2 years to transition. How do I survive emotionally and practically in the meantime?

    • Keep focused on your goal. Detach emotionally as much as you can. Read “The Language of Letting Go.” Make good decisions for YOU. Don’t be drawn into his games. Take good care of yourself. I wish you well.

    • marie3 says:

      Val, I just learned that my husband of 18 yrs is pa. I am relieved as well and you sound like you are doing the same thing I am. I am putting back money and biding my time. I refuse to be someone’s tool of punishment because of their unresolved anger. I also refuse to give in to his attempts to anger me again. I survive emotionally through prayer and Bible study and the support of good friends. This blog is a great place to vent also. If you are not connected to a good church I encourage you to find one. GBY!

  47. Hi there,

    I haven’t looked at your blog for over a year but I sincerely hope you are happier now and have gained the courage to leave your passive aggressive. Please can you send me your email or email me at dingdongitsmrwrong@yahoo.co.uk as I need to ask you to delete a comment I made on here. I’ll explain in email.

    TC :)

  48. It’s still coming up just says Awaiting moderation above. Can you delete permenantly?

    • I think that if you sign out of wordpress and look at the page, you won’t see your comment or “awaiting moderation.” When I look at the “about” page, your comment is not there. Maybe have a friend look on the page for you and ask if they can see the comment. Let me know. I’m not sure what else I can do, but I will try!

  49. Jennifer K. says:

    Stop trying to rework this relationship. People RARELY EVER CHANGE. It is more comfortable to stay the same rather than venture out into the unknown. It takes an extraordinary person to sacrifice the known and risk the unknown to keep a relationship. You have but one life…why waste it?

  50. Trish says:

    I have been married for 18 years to a passive aggressive man. I want to leave him but I feel so guilty and I worry continuously. I told him for years he was putting a wedge between us and now I don’t feel like I can ever trust him. My mother was in the same position and she stayed with my dad. She died never knowing what being with someone who loved her just as deeply as she loved them was like.

  51. Teresa says:

    I’m in my 15th year of marriage to a man I dated for 6 years. Never saw PA until a few years ago, never knew what it was. He was great while we dated, I was pretty much a priority but there were signs then that I overlooked. We are both well educated and I’m retired. I work part time in a lucrative profession so standing on my own 2 feet is not a problem. Here’s my problem. Everyone thinks this man is the greatest person on earth. Everyone…but me. He is a workaholic, a controlled alcoholic, hypocrite and shows no affection to me ( unless it’s to get back in my good graces) nor his poor daughter. He is the good son ( they know nothing about his life, he hides everything) with everyone. He says he’s just a private man. I know something happened when he was a child, I know he must have never been able to voice an opinion, his family is the wierdest I’ve ever been around. They only talk about surface things…no emotion shown to each other. His brother is the same way. I told him one day it was so odd that he and his brother married such vibrant, emotionally strong women and now we both are such bitches, don’t you see a pattern here? Of course there is no reply, never. Doesn’t matter what I say, ask or imply. And my profession is communication skills. My problem is not how I’ll get out, but how I can live in this small town when everyone thinks of him as a pillar of this community, so upstanding, honest, capable and trustworthy. I did believe for a long time I was crazy, got on antidepressants, then realized…..I’m not. I am the life of the party, people love it when I am around as everyone is laughing. I am a social person…he has held me back from so many things that I’ve wanted to do. I have been the good wife, but my temper has caused so much pain for both of us. I regret what I said, but justify it by the hurt he inflicts on me just by merely ignoring me. I have threatened divorce and he has said, implicated that he expects me to leave. Isn’t this part of the PA makeup that is angry with themselves but can never express it?
    I’m 62, I really don’t want to start over, but another weekend of watching him do what he enjoys is gonna send me over the edge. And yes, I go…without him, take trips with my girlfriends…I spend a lot of time with them. When he’s here which is rare as he works all the time, I still feel alone.
    My health is good, but situations like this play havok on long term good health, eventually the stress will kill you. My time is running out, I know it, he knows it.

  52. Kat says:

    Ironically, I stumbled onto this page trying to find ways to cope with my anxiety and depression built by my very-soon-to-be ex land lady. She has nit-picked everything me and my Fiance’ do, down to the way we store our food, how we wash our clothes, and even how we put down the toilet seat. she won’t get mad to our faces, and will only talk to us in notes the majority of the time, but whatever list of people willing to talk to her on the phone know just how “terrible” we are. She has even told my fiance’ that she is perfect, and not in the self esteem boosting way. Unfortunately though, I can also relate a lot of these behaviors to myself, which in a lot of ways scare me. I am going to be getting a counselor soon, so hopefully they can help me figure out whats all going on in the respect of whether or not I’m actually passive aggressive, and help with all of the other mental issues I know I have but can’t put a name to. I love my fiance’ so much, and we’re getting married next month. the last thing I want to do is wind up making our marriage fall apart. :/ So I thank you for putting this out to the world.

  53. Beth says:

    Hi, I found your blog looking for women who have experienced relationships with men who are either controlling or passive aggressive. It’s long, so I’m sorry.

    I broke up with my boyfriend of 3 years in November of last year. I felt like he wasn’t making me a priority; recently, he was only seeing me 1x a week. He said he was too busy, although he made time for everything else. He only told me he loved me when we were fighting, and wouldn’t tell me if he wanted marriage / kids or not. It made me feel so unworthy, so bad, every day, for a long time, like he was stringing me along. My friends said they were tired of seeing me cry.

    I was proud that I did it and broke it off. He cried, told me he always wanted me in his life, and he was sorry he couldn’t give me what I wanted. It was a painful breakup, but I thought, all things considered, it went ok. His parents even called me to tell me that they missed me, loved me always, and to keep in touch.

    I tried dating a few guys, getting back out there to take my mind off, and I had decided in the beginning to not contact me ex for as long as I could to heal. I complied; he did not, inviting me FOR THANKSGIVING after we had ended things. I did not respond until well over a month later, when I wrote him a letter describing that the invite was too soon, telling him I wished him peace, and I am doing my best to come to terms with this, that I knew we were both hurting. I said in the letter I’ll cherish the memories we made, we both tried our best, that I am trying to date as part of coming to terms, how it’s weird and strange but I am getting through it, and while we’re both in pain I wanted him to be OK.

    Maybe he thought he was going to get me back, who knows? But the rage from my ex has been so intense. His friends began to unfriend me, which I could deal with, that’s fine, just sad. Then, a mutual friend told me my ex was suggesting I must have been cheating to be dating so quickly, and it broke me that he was attacking my character. She said he was “out of control and I’ve never seen him like this”. She asked me to just “let the dust settle and don’t do anything rash”. I wanted to marry my ex, I would have done anything for him!! I did anything for him, for 3 years, I tried to be the perfect girlfriend. I just didn’t want to be at the bottom of his list anymore.

    The next cut was from my exs parents. Weeks prior, I had ordered them a cake delivered for the holidays. I arrived home to find they had written “Refused, return to sender” on it, took it to the post office, and PAID to mail it back. I loved his family, it made me feel so incredibly bad that they would go so out of there way to hurt me. If they were mad, they could’ve thrown it out, or even regifted. That’s so much rage to mail it back.

    Then, I received a package. Plain white envelope, unremarkable return address. I opened it to find a ziplock bag full of SH**. Someone went and paid nearly $30 to send me a bag of feces anonymously. Stunned.

    My ex denied any knowledge. I’m so freaked out. For my ex and his family to be so cruel, it hurts so much, after all the time I invested with them. It feels so far above and beyond what is rational / normal for any breakup. Up until the breakup, EVERYONE thought he was the GREATEST guy, except for a few friends who saw me cry for days every time he gave me the silent treatment, time and time again.

    I guess it’s compounded because I always felt GUILTY throughout the relationship. If I asked him to do something he didn’t want to, or talk about an uncomfortable topic, he would “take space to process”, sometimes showing anger towards me. It could be a day, up to four at the worst. He wouldn’t contact me, I wouldn’t know what he was thinking, and wouldn’t know how long. It would tear me down inside, and I’d spend the time crying on the couch. Then, when we’d finally talk, he would console me and hold me and swear he wasn’t mad that I asked a question or whatever that we had argued about. It was just NEVER a good time to talk, EVER. Later, I found myself visibly shaking during these conversations. So I guess I always felt at fault; if I did A instead of B, Y instead of Z, maybe he wouldn’t be so upset and this wouldn’t have happened. It wasn’t about my feelings; it was about keeping him satisfied.

    Today, I found your blog, and cried. I’ve been seeing a therapist who has been treating me for PTS, depression and anxiety from the split, and it hit me like a ton of bricks, at how passive aggressive and controlling my ex was. Your blog really nailed it. I just wouldn’t see it. I don’t mean controlling as in checking my phone or anything, but controlling in keeping me in check by manipulating my feelings. Limiting how often he said he loved me, he always had so many “rules”, and they were unwritten, so I didn’t know I had broken one until I was on the receiving end of one of his silent treatments, and I was asking him if I had done something wrong. He did it right in front of his family; stand just close enough to me so no one sees anything is wrong, but completely ignore me right to the point where I wanted to cry and fall through the floor. I can’t help but wonder if maybe he picked it up from his family in the past (hence the returned cake)…

    A few times he got drunk and said inappropriate things that made me upset he conveniently forgot, and then of course, when I got upset and confronted him, he apologized “even though he didn’t remember”…followed by a day of silence to punish me. He flat-out refused to celebrate Valentine’s Day because it was a “forced holiday”, and “compromised” by taking me out the following weekend every year. There’s nothing that makes a woman feel less important than knowing her partner is home playing video games and drinking beer or whatever on V-Day because it’s “forced,” only to shower me with flowers and affection a few days later. It definitely messed with my head. I begged him to celebrate at home with me one year, and he complied…only to make me promise not to wish him a happy V-Day (once again tempering my happy feelings). I began to feel like I was putting on a happy act for him to keep him satisfied, trying so hard to be the “cool” girlfriend and giving up what I wanted.

    Sorry this is so long, I just really, really want to thank you. It makes me feel a bit less crazy that I’m not the only one. And now that we’re over, I’m seeing a lot more scary patterns I missed while in the thick of it. I try telling myself I dodged a bullet getting out, and that his actions (trying to keep me around, and then lashing out at me) after were probably an attempt to manipulate control back after I left, and better now than later.

    But thank you, I will definitely continue to read your blog and am rooting for us both to find what we need and deserve, because no one deserves to be hurt by a PA. For awhile I stopped sleeping / eating, and dropped 17 lbs, so just trying to get my life back on track and limit my involvement only to close friends and family who are 100% understanding. Your blog is a wonderful support system for all of us going through this, or trying to heal from it.

  54. Amy says:

    I left after 30 years of marriage and have had no regrets. All of the self-doubt I had is now gone and I know now that there is something better out there, and I am a better person now.

  55. clarekeast says:

    I notice the last post was May last year are you out of it?

  56. Shannon says:

    I am so thankful I found your blog. I have been married to my husband for almost 21 years and I just put the passive aggressive name to our–his–problem about a month ago. And I am overjoyed to learn I am not crazy, I’m not responsible for his behavior or insecurities, and to learn I am not alone. We have two kids who I finally started standing up for when I noticed his behavior’s detrimental affect on them. But for me it hasn’t gottenany better only worse. Now I am the biggest target. But I am learning, and I will get there. Thank you for your blog. I can’t wait to read more.

  57. Christopher M says:

    Nearly a year ago I married who I believed was the love of my life. We dated for 4 years. I always knew something was off in her behavior, but she made me believe it was just me not adapting to her nor providing a safe place for her to open up. It took me a long time to understand what was really going on, but it was too late. When we got married she had the most loving look throughout the ceremony and the days after the wedding. Unfortunately that is when I began to understand her behavior and I disengaged from being pulled into her non ending arguments. Then I’m sure she felt how she lost the power to manipulate me and one day she just left me, with no real explanation. She kept saying she loved me and adored me but that I was a very aggressive person (which I’m really not, I have long time friends and ex girlfriends who can attest to that). I wanted to help her, I loved her like no one on earth but she cared less, she just left like it was nothing. I’ve been through hell and back with this, it’s been about ten months since this happened, she never let us talk about it or work things out, not even one option before divorce. I used antidepressants for about 5 months, they helped a little, then I dropped them and I’ve had a rough past 3 months or so. Recovering from a relationship with a PA is the worst experience and please keep this in mind: you cannot think of these people as normal individuals, they are not logical, most of them have alexitimia (cannot relate to people’e feelings or even their own), and if you keep trying to find a reason of why things happened, or why they left you or why they hurt you, you’ll be grieving your WHOLE life. These people move on with no remorse. I found comfort in a forum like this one, a couple days ago was the first day after almost one year, that I could say to myself “I feel somewhat OK”. You will come to a point in which you truly understand that what you lived with these people was all a lie and there is nothing to grasp on to, their love is not real, their words aren’t either, their promises mean nothing, all they are looking for is power and to show how they can do whatever they want, after all, EVERYONE is always wrong or judgmental of them, they always have someone to blame and a way to turn things on you to make you look like an aggressive and bad person. You need to pulverize the memories you had with them, they weren’t real and they will not understand you or care to understand even if you sit with them along with ten family members, three psychologist and two psychiatrists, they’ll just deny their doings and behavior and will hate you for “judging” them… As you can see, many have wasted their whole lives with a PA and are either very ill, physically mentally or have even committed suicide. If you are reading this and believe your partner will get better and you can live a satisfying life on their side, I’m sorry to tell you that faith has nothing to do with this. I put up with things you wouldn’t imagine, all to no avail. I have no trouble finding beautiful woman that will go out with me, see, it didn’t matter how good looking I am, how nice my body is, how responsible I am in every sense, or how loyal I was, nothing is ever enough for these people, so PLEASE, PLEASE if you are reading this, please save yourself, you are worth so much more than they have you thinking, you matter, you can be loved, not really by them, but your family and real friends do, you don’t need a person like that beside you, they will dispose of you at one point so do yourself a favor and walk away with your dignity, don’t let them destroy you more than they already have. I came very close to finding an easy way out through suicide, I have the crisis management line in speed dial… Come back every night and read these posts to remind you that these people have a huge problem, but they do not care to get any help, nor do they want it, very often these passive aggressive are also very narcissistic, in my opinion they are the worst type of person you can ever encounter and ever get involved with. As many books say, if you find yourself close to these type of people do not stop to try to understand them or help them PLEASE RUN! I’m still going through this and wished I never met her, she destroyed my view of life, my trust in people and filled me up with emptiness and endless sadness. You deserve better. I am here for you if I can be of any help or support. God bless.

  58. swimsonemile says:

    I have a horribly unhappy marriage. After exhausted reading and reflecting I realize there is no escape for me. Last month I attended a discreet divorce workshop for woman. All it did was open my eyes that getting a divorce would either leave me incredibly poor or dead. I could run with a few things and a few dollars only to be deprived of my friends and family with me always looking over my shoulder. I consider it from time to time but I’m no longer young.

    What I’ve learned from the year of blogging and reading articles online is my husband is a narcissist. Never in a millions would I have thought that described his personality. But the more a read the more I know it’s correct. Just because I know how to define his behavior doesn’t make it any easier or better.

    I was wondering what do you think the difference is from a passive aggressive person and a narcissist?? I pray I can get the courage to leave but after thirty-two years of marriage and running our business even longer together I don’t see it happening. I have no options in seems.

    I plan to read more of your blog and hope for some inspiration. If you are interested in my story you can find it here: https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/66200628/

  59. Theresa says:

    Hi there,
    I’ve been out of my relationship for a year now. We were together from almost 3 yrs. I only saw his passive aggressive behavior until we moved in together. He showed hostility in not speaking to me when he was mad and sitting by himself just internalizing his emotions. It was difficult to see it through as I felt like I was going crazy. His communication skills were really hard to comprehend as it seems like he had hidden messages. I am trying to move on but it’s been really hard as my heart feels like it’s split in two. I am very embarrassed as my entire family met him and nowe I feel as though I’m some sort of player with men. What are your experience like married to a passive aggressive.

  60. Sara Fleming says:

    I am free. I lived with him for 7 years, married for 5. We have a child together, so I still have to see him but with the help of a strong support network, I was able to get him to move out of the house and into an apartment. He doesn’t want to move on but I am filing for divorce.
    Thank you for your blog – it helped me understand what was happening – helped me accept that I was in an emotionally abusive relationship.
    I read the book Emotional Vampires – it helped me too. My friends help me everyday. To every woman who is still in this relationship… I hope you can get free. It is worth it. It is hard, but it is so worth it. I wake up every day with a sense of peace, and relief.

  61. LK says:

    I heave a question about the passive agrressive partner will the leave?

  62. LK says:

    I am looking for help in dealing with a PA. Will they ever leave or end things or will I have to be the one? I am not sure I am ready yet but he keeps saying he needs a break or we should be friends then changes his minds. Any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks

    • Hi,

      Chances are that you will have to be the one who leaves. For one thing, a passive aggressive person is, well, passive. Second, a passive aggressive person will often do the exact opposite of what you would like for them to do. Good luck! I wish you well.

  63. Theresa says:

    Hi there,
    I dated a man that claimed to be passive aggressive. I didn’t know what he ment by that term. We were planning our lives together and even bought a house. It was difficult living together as he had tendencies of running away from me when he was upset. I couldn’t understand it. I didn’t feel like myself with him. It was such a strange relationship as he was so nice when we started dating but when we started living together I saw the passive aggressive side. He manipulated me in order for me to break up with him as he didn’t have the ability to do it himself. It was pretty hard as our relationship came to an end and he tried to get more than he deserved. I felt like I was going crazy. Extremely depressed and I was worried for what my future holds.

  64. Jeannie says:

    I have no problem with the amount my husband does around the house. I do feel taken for granted and undervalued when I clean or decorate an area and he messes ut up. Ex: shelf in bathroom decorative items carefully arranged…. Which you cant see now due to his large array of bath products. Yes, he has another place to put them and a trashcan for empties, which he wont toss. Ex : Freshly made bed from mattress out, asked to keep pets out of bedroom. Rewashing bedspread and mopping floors cayse he let the pets bAck in there! Help !!

  65. shari says:

    I’ve read your blog on the day of what should have been the start of our four day break away ‘celebrating’ our 1st wedding anniversary, which is on the same day we said goodbye to our daughter Sophie who was born asleep five years ago. Instead of this being a week to share, ive been told curtly that he doesn’t want to go on break, I’m now on day 18 of silent treatment (apart from replying ‘no’ when I asked if we can make up and go on our break. this episode came about from a silly and trivial misunderstanding, and I didn’t see it coming. I’ve gone through many of these silent treatment periods before (3 in the last year, one totalling 30 days) but for some reason Im still blaming myself on and off. What could I have done/said differently, etc. none of my family know of this current silent treatment episode and one year anniversary congratulation cards have been coming in thick and fast. I’m in total shock, as I ask myself “how can someone who says they love you, be so cruel”. I have tried making chit chat but all I am getting in return is utter contempt. I think I know in my heart of hearts what I need to do, but it’s such a massive thing to go it alone. I’m having to contemplate spending this Wednesday commemorating my baby loss alone. I feel so empty and when I’m really upset to myself as as if I’m living with a monster. How can he ever think our relationship can grow (and trust for each other) if he keeps on sending me to Coventry for the slightest thing. The thing is I remember feeling contented about a month ago, but then in a short heated (where did the come from) confrontation I can be contemplating having to move out, end my marriage, and offer my handsome labrador up for rehousing, as I can’t afford the fees, plus I want him to be happy and exercised regularly, etc. my husband has in the past fortnight withheld dog walking monies for our lab. It seems so mean and controlling. I’m feeling rather upset and sorry for myself. I don’t know if I have the strength to walk away, yet I know this behaviour pattern will continue. He had offered to go for for counselling 2 years ago (we’ve been together 12 years) but he never actually went when it came to it. I must sound rather daft, as I’m sure anyone looking in would say he doesn’t love me, else why would he act that way. I feel as if I’ve been sleepwalking through our relationship, not wanting to acknowledge the situation for what it is. However the last 30 day silent treatment made me start to think ‘maybe it’s not me after all’. However I do still tend to think in between these episodes it must be me, why else would I be in this situation. Please advise me, I’m open to any input. I want to be happy, and in a loving marriage, im just not sure that’s what I’ve got just now. Maybe I’m expecting too much. Many thanks for any input offered. shari

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