Entertainment Love and Romance What Kind of Woman Marries The Passive Aggressive Man? Share PINTEREST Email Print BigStockPhoto.com Love and Romance Divorce Relationships Sexuality Teens LGBTQ Friendship By Cathy Meyer University of Florida Cathy Meyer is a certified divorce coach, marriage educator, freelance writer, and founding editor of DivorcedMoms.com. As a divorce mediator, she provides clients with strategies and resources that enable them to power through a time of adversity. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Cathy Meyer Updated September 24, 2017 It takes a special kind of woman to choose and marry a passive-aggressive man. The woman who marries the passive aggressive man was taught in her family of origin to accept a high level of frustration for a minimal level of love and caring. What does that mean? How about we use me as an example. When I was a child my father was constantly withdrawing from my mother. He was an alcoholic who found it easier to deal with problems by drinking. His withdrawal frustrated my mother who became resentful at his withdrawal. As an adult, it makes sense that I would choose a man who mirrored what I had grown up witnessing. When we first met my ex-husband was charming, needy and couldn’t be around me enough. He was every woman’s idea of the perfect m, in the beginning. Never once did I question his lack of relationship with his family. Or the fact that he didn’t have any long-standing friendships. I was in love with love and this man, who from all outward appearances had a lot of love to give. What I didn’t understand at the time was, due to my childhood, I was conditioned to rescue the needy, to help them, help themselves. The Passive Aggressive Cycles Between Hostility and Withdrawal The passive aggressive man or woman’s behavior cycles between hostility and withdrawal. If you become involved with a passive aggressive man within a few months you will come face to face with a man who is either very hostile or shuts down and withdraws. In some cases, the passive-aggressive man will do both. I remember the first time my ex withdrew from me. It was while we were still dating. He was unable to form an emotional connection with me but instead of taking responsibility for his own inability he behaved as if I was the one with an issue. I willingly took on the responsibility. I made his faults my fault. I convinced myself I was not doing enough to keep him happy. The funny thing is, the harder I worked on the relationship the more he withdrew. My entire marriage consisted of me trying to find solutions to our problems and him withdrawing further and further away, both emotionally and intimately. A Woman Married to the Passive Aggressive Man Lives Daily Attempting to Connect With Her Husband Her attempts to connect threaten him and bring to the surface his fear of attachment, which means more withdrawal. The cycle goes on and on and on! What happens when someone you love dismisses your efforts and withdraws? You become angry and frustrated. Your attempts to communicate calmly turns into deeper resentment and anger. In response to your frustration and anger, he withdraws a bit more and you both end up not having your needs met because the more you try, the further he withdraws. The passive aggressive husband won’t return his wife’s anger. He will get back at her in covert ways, though. He will withhold affection, forget important dates…if it is something she needs, he will make sure she doesn’t get it. There is a Reason Passive Aggressive Behavior is Called Crazy Making Behavior His covert anger drives the wife of the passive aggressive man crazy. The crazier she feels they angrier she becomes and the yelling and screaming becomes a desperate attempt to be heard by a husband who refuses to listen. The passive aggressive man fears becoming emotionally attached to a woman. Lessons he learned in his childhood taught him that doing so isn’t safe. What happens when the passive aggressive man’s wife becomes angry? His fears are confirmed; she is not safe and he is not safe in the relationship. The woman who marries the passive aggressive man spends a lot of time hoping for more than her husband is willing to give her. She wants closeness, cooperation, love, and attention. She wants actions and behaviors from him that show her he loves her. By the time my marriage to my passive aggressive husband came to an end I had no self-esteem. I don’t think I’ve ever felt as lonely and the sense of abandonment by my own husband was overwhelming. The loneliness I experienced in my marriage was worse than any I had ever felt as a single woman. The passive aggressive man sabotages his marriage but it takes that one special woman to enable him to do so. That woman who, in dealing with her own issues is attracted to the walking wounded. That woman who goes above and beyond when it comes to making a relationship work. And, she will continue to attract passive aggressive men until she realizes that, as an adult woman she has the ability to limit how much damage another person can do to her life. Being loved should never mean turning yourself inside out for anyone. Being loved means knowing when to set boundaries, knowing your own worth and if need be, walking away from a man who does nothing but withdraw and withhold what you desire.