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What is "passive aggressive"?

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Elsa
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Chelley asked on Mars In Libra – Read All About It!

"What exactly *is* passive aggressive ??? Accused of it but don’t know what it means! Srsly."

Can someone field this for her, please?

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curious wanderer
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Backhanded compliments, saying something that means something on the surface, but the way it's said changes the meaning to something insulting.

I'm better at examples.

You ask someone to do something. They don't want to do it, but whatever their dysfunction is, they won't tell you no. Then they don't do it, and when you ask about it, they paste on this innocent look and say "oh, I'm sorry, I forgot."

"Your nails are so pretty. It must be nice to have all that time and money to do things like that." (Said with a slight edge to the second sentence.)

"Mean girls" type behaviors. Civil to the face and nasty behind the back can be passive aggressive.

Undermining, ignoring someone or what they say, some kinds of victim-playing.

One of the hallmarks of passive-aggressive behavior is that the person can claim innocence of any wrongdoing on the surface of the behavior. You have to either know their motives or be able to read between their lines to really call them out.

It can be a dangerous game calling out someone who is passive-aggressive. If they're surrounded by people who are not clued in, or are on their side, you come out looking like the bad guy. 

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sand
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it's feminine placements' fighting stYLE. :D

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Elsa
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They provoke people to react in anger, and play (and sometimes believe) they're innocent.

"Don't worry! Of course, I'll pay the rent/the child support/the whatever..."

And then they don't - you get mad and they act like you're the bad guy.
~~
You say you're on a diet...they bring you fattening food and act like you're crazy when it pisses you off..."

Etc.

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curious wanderer
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sand said
it's feminine placements' fighting stYLE. :D

Wanna say that to Mars in Cap? /:)

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CocoPeaches
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Egging-on with inaction

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