I've typically seen passive-aggression used to punish and humiliate other people while making oneself look good. It is the back-handed compliment or the "kidding around", or the "helpful advice" that is intended to hurt another person. I think it stirs things up to get the other person to act because the passive-aggressive person wants to come out looking polite, rational, or whatever labels makes them appear in control while the other person gets upset because they have actually been wronged. I guess I find that whole process lacking courage, but those skilled at it know how to make it petty enough that any push-back looks unreasonable, so you do have to just ignore it. People use it because they can express their anger, punish other people, but still bypass personal responsibility in the matter.
I will say that when people get abrasive, or really direct, that it is important they don't confuse their own opinions with the "Truth". That frustrates me a bit as well, but at least it is presented in a style that allows for a direct push-back against it.
The first man to raise a fist is the man who's run out of ideas. H.G. WELLS
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. FEYNMAN If this is monkey pee, you're on your own.SCULLY
Could someone please explain to me what english speakers usually mean by passive-aggressive? I never really got exactly what kind of behavior it is supposed to be.
Passive-aggressiveness (negativistic personality trait) is a personality trait said to be marked by a pervasive pattern of negative attitudes and passive, usually disavowed resistance in interpersonal or occupational situations.
For example, a worker, when asked to organize a meeting, might seemingly happily agree to do so, but will then take so long on each task in the process - offering excuses such as calls not being returned, or that the computer is too slow, or that things are not ready when the meeting is due to start - that a colleague is forced to hurriedly complete the task, lest the meeting be postponed.
When the behaviors are part of a person's personality "disorder" or personality style, repercussions are not usually immediate, but instead accumulate over time as the individuals affected by the person come to recognize the disavowed aggression coming from that person.
People with this personality style are often unconscious of their impact on others, and thus may be genuinely dismayed when held to account for the inconvenience or discomfort caused by their passive-aggressive behaviors.
In that context, they fail to see how they might have provoked a negative response, so they feel misunderstood, held to unreasonable standards, and/or put-upon. This starts a new negative cycle, when the passive aggressive person "defends himself" from others' perceived stringent demands and retaliates with more passivity and unconscious sabotage.....
I would define "Passive-Agressive Peacemaking" as:
pretending to be agreeable and cooperative on the surface, while, in subtle ways, being patronizing, dismissive, difficult and/or manipulative.
An example of "Passive-Aggressive Peacemaking" would be attempting to resolve a conflict by saying, "I'm so sorry we aren't getting along. I will pray that you get the professional help you so desperately need."
And I guess Abrasive Honesty would sound like, "I can't stand you! Seriously-you need a fuckin shrink."
I doubt that either one could be considered a "good" approach, but personally, I would rather hear the second one.
I can handle Abrasive Honesty, but the Passive-Aggressive Peacemaking is so low and despicable I can hardly even think about it without going into a rage.
Yeah I had checked wikipedia but wasn't satisfied with the answer. I much prefer your example. Well I guess the issue here is whether or not the passive-aggressiveness we are detecting is really there. If it really IS there (meaning it's an underhanded move), yeah, it irritates me more than abrasive honesty.