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Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder?

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What are these behaviors I get from my boyfriend? Never answer a direct question, instead would say “here is what I will do”, silent treatment a lot, would always change the subject of discussion often by criticizing me, circular conversations, would interrupt & lose his temper when I was calm & logical, reason would not work, would say ‘I don’t care if I am illogical’, would get angry when I wouldn’t, would pay me back money in small increments dragging it out, I cancelled a date saying I was tired he said he would be tired the whole next week, said I wasn’t good because I didn’t encourage him to eat better, said I must see him 3 times a week no less, he would tell me how to say things what to say, would compare me to previous girlfriends,word play, like telling me that ‘accusing’, ‘texting’, ‘saying’, ‘meaning’, were all ‘different’, changed his Facebook status to single after we had been intimate & denied it even tho he knew I looked at his page, did it to anger me, demanded long periods of avoidance after losing temper.

I tried telling him how I feel when he does those behaviors, and asking him how he felt when he did them, he asked me to admit that I was also at fault in the relationship. I told him I thought he was passive-aggressive, sent him links that talked about it, and suggested therapy bec he is already seeing a therapist, he is legally blind also, has been in group, don’t know what for though. Has said he has little confidence with women and once considered self harm, but then tried to cover that by saying he didn’t mean physical harm, but prostitutes. He was oddly quiet and polite for two weeks when I told him his behavior was abusive and it hurt me, thanking me for calling, like I was a sales person, saying he had ‘a fun time’ after sex, saying ‘I like making Sarah’s happy’ (me). Then it started again, the behaviors. I left him after 5 months because I suspected he was passive-aggressive and abusive and likely would not change. Wouldn’t mind a second opinion. Once I discovered what PA was, and stopped reacting to his actions, he became increasingly more hostile and angry.

Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder?

Answered by on -


What I do not read in your email is anything about what you are getting out of this relationship. It sounds depleting and demeaning. Now that you know what you are up against, it might be time to review your options. Is this really what you want in a relationship? You may want to move on.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder?. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 7, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 7 Jul 2015)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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