Passive Aggressive Disorder

Passive Aggressive Disorder



Passive-aggressive behavior is universal and is a common way of registering
opposing attitudes, especially when they are unequal. A person whose behavior is
dominated by this mode of behavior is said to have a passive-aggressive
personality.

Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder is known as a present pattern of
negative attitudes and passive resistance to conditions for adequate
performance. This disorder usually begins by early adulthood and present in a
variety of conditions, as indicated by four (or more) of the following:
continually resists routine of social and occupational tasks; complains of being
misunderstood and unappreciated by others; is irritable and argumentative;
unreasonably criticizes and scorns authority; expresses envy and resentment
toward those apparently more fortunate; voices exaggerated and persistent
complaints of personal misfortune; alternates between hostile defiance and
remorse.

A good example of passive-aggressive could be when, let's say some workers go
on a by-the-book slowdown (passive-aggressive), where everything is done
precisely by the rules: garbage cans are neatly placed in front of houses; every
stray scrap of paper is picked up; the truck is inspected frequently for safe
operation. The route doesn't get completed because of this "care."

The term passive-aggressive, when used to describe a defense mechanism,
refers to indirect resistance to authority, responsibility and obligations.
Associated symptoms include complaining, irritability when faced with demands,
and general discontent. Anger is usually expressed indirectly through
resistance, delays, losing things; delaying and sabotaging one's own efforts or
those of others. The individual does not intentionally mean to irritate others
to oppose authority, like a rebellious teenager would do. Rather, the P-A
individual unconsciously acts out his or her anger unintentionally.

The treatment of any of the personality disorders is quite difficult, since
there is usually little motivation on the patient's part. For details, you can
look up Treating Personality Disorders, edited by David Adler, New Directions
for Mental Health, 1990.

Category: Social Issues