Passive Aggression

Overcoming Passivity and Passive-Aggressive Behavior

…in the Early Stages of Therapy Couples therapy has numerous challenges in the early sessions depending on the type of presenting problem. Our next few newsletters will focus on some unique challenges and what to do about them, beginning with passive behavior and passive-aggressive behavior. A common pattern of highly distressed relationships is each partner wants the other to change first. The complaining partner wants massive personality changes. The “request” is more or less stated as a demand or accusation, with no awareness of how much is being requested. When this happens, the pressure is on either you or the partner to do something to relieve the distress of the complainer.… Read more...

Help! My Partner Must Be Passive Aggressive!

  In our last newsletter I mentioned why a passive aggressive person is so hard to live with and the major cause of this frustrating behavior: they break agreements without warning and have quicker excuses than a four year old caught with a hand in the cookie jar. The passive aggressive person will break agreements and then lament they can't live up to the exacting standards of their partner. The passive aggressive person will often try to make others' unreasonable standards, rather than their unreliability, the focus of the problem. The spouse is caught in a bind. If they keep bringing up broken agreements, they are constantly nagging.… Read more...

Does Your Partner Drive You Nuts? The Passive Aggressive Personality

Asking your mate to empty the dishwasher should theoretically be totally devoid of drama or tension. It's just one of many chores necessary to keep your home functioning–right? However, with a passive aggressive personality, any situation has the potential to go from the trivial to emotional combat. It started with the simple question from my wife, Ellyn, “Pete did you empty the dishwasher?” I didn't respond but begrudgingly left the History Channel and headed for the kitchen, knowing I had agreed to do it before now.   Click here for a FREE report on Passive-Aggressive Behavior!… Read more...

The Passive-Aggressive Male

Gentleman: Ever wonder why you're driving people crazy? These are some of the things that the passive aggressive male says: – “Nothing. I'm just thinking.” – “No, why do you ask?” – “Angry?” – “I don't hate it.” – “I won't stop you.” – “What's the problem?” These are some of the things that a passive-aggressive man does: – Has a new lock put on the front door and forgets to give his wife the key. – Calls an early staff meeting and shows up forty minutes late – Talks on the phone for an hour when he knows that his girlfriend is trying to call.… Read more...

A Glossary of Terms that are sometimes Confusing

Couples Therapy is a counseling procedure that seeks to improve the adjustment of two people who have created an interdependent relationship. There are no standard procedures to help two people improve their adjustments to each other. Generally, a more experienced therapist will offer more perspectives and tools to a couple. Length of treatment will depend on severity of problems, motivation and skills of the therapist. A couple can be dating, living together, married or separating and may be gay, lesbian or heterosexual.

Marriage Therapy is a term often used interchangeably with marriage counseling. The term marriage implies two people have created a union sanctioned by a government or religious institution. The methods used in marriage counseling, marriage therapy and couples therapy are interchangeable and depend more on the specific challenges of each unique couple.

Psychotherapy is one or more processes to help improve psychological and emotional functioning. Examples are psychoanalysis, cognitive therapy, behavior therapy, Gestalt therapy, Transactional Analysis, Rational-Emotive therapy, or group therapy. Many forms of psychotherapy are blends of different approaches. For example, newer forms of psychotherapy called energy psychology draw upon recent advances in brain and neuroscience. These approaches often build on cognitive behavioral methods.

Clinical Psychologist. After graduating from college, it usually takes about five years of graduate school to get a Ph.D. in Psycholgy. It then requires an additional two years of supervision and passing a written (and often) an oral exam. There are a few states that allow psychologists to prescribe medications (with additional training) but that is uncommon.

Psychiatrist. After graduation from medical school, there is a generally a 4-year psychiatric residency. After the completion of this training, psychiatrists must pass an exam issued by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology to obtain certification and legally practice in the field. Psychiatrists can prescribe medications.

Clinical Social Worker. This profession usually requires two years of study after obtaining an undergraduate degree. While specific licensure requirements vary by state, most require clinical social workers to obtain 3,000 hours or 2 years of supervised clinical experience, after obtaining a Masters degree. Social workers can also specialize in diverse fields such as human services management, social welfare analysis, community organizing, social and community development, and social and political research.

Marriage and Family Therapist. Obtaining this license requires a Masters degree which takes approximately two years of post graduate study. The license also requires 3000 hours of supervised work and passing written exams.

The Couples Institute. We have assembled a group of top notch therapists at The Couples Institute. Whatever marriage help or marriage advice you are looking for, we are here to serve you. While most other therapists see only a few couples a week, we specialize in marriage and couples relationships, working to develop and bring you the most current and effective approaches to couples therapy. For more information about couples therapy or marriage counseling, see our couples therapy section.