What it’s like being passive aggressive

By MEAGAN PEOPLES | November 30, 2017

Once, mad at my sister on the way to the grocery store, I bought the sugariest, most fattening snack I could find so that she would gain weight. Another time, mad at a friend for a reason I can’t even recall, I deleted Facebook for three days so that I could pretend not to have seen their messages.

Often, people consider any kind of non-verbal, non-face-to-face conflict passive aggressive. But to me, that’s just an equally aggressive text message or post-it note. Of course, it’s far better than direct confrontation, but it’s still too close to a real argument for me.

Texting never seems especially passive aggressive to me. I mean, the person can respond. You’ve gained a few extra seconds to think and the ability to “not see a message” but other than that, you’re basically just having a non-verbal confrontation.

More importantly, these fights can take place at any time. You could be furiously texting your roommate about their inability to take out the trash, work yourself into a fervor and then have to put a smile on your face as the lady sitting next to you on the bus strikes up a conversation.

No, as far as I’m concerned, texting is not a passive form of communication. Truly the most passive form of aggression is to simply ignore the problem until it either goes away or blows up in your face — another technique I am quite familiar with.

While I would never recommend the passive life to anyone, (in fact, it’s definitely way healthier to air your grievances when you have them so that they can be resolved) I wanted my fellow less-than-aggressive people to know that they’re not alone.

So the next time you think you’re being silly or petty for turning the heater down just a tad in your roommates room, know that you definitely are petty but that I totally would have done the same thing.

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