96. Passive Aggressive (Empathy, Lent 37)

96 passive aggressive pix

I remember a counsellor during my divorce mentioning almost casually that I was passive aggressive. I was stunned and really hurt. This is one trait that people seem to really loathe in others, was I really doing that? Well, maybe. But looking at this with self-compassion I can see that for me (and maybe for many people) when it did occur, it was a self-defence mechanism. I couldn’t come out and say what I actually wanted to, for fear of confrontation or of being emotionally or physically hurt. So the comeback came indirectly. And then this becomes a habit, especially when we are living with fear, that is hard to break.

I have worked really hard with God over many years to try to be far more honest with those around me about my hurts and grievances. It has been very tough for me, as I was trampled emotionally for many years. I didn’t even realise that my pain was seeping out of the cracks in this way. So now when I twig that other people are doing this, my first instinct is to have compassion, and try to help them say what they really want to about what they really want to, when they do, rather than feeling they need to go all around the houses and back again. Because another thing that self-compassion has taught me on this one, is that it is an exhausting way to go about things!

text © Keren Dibbens-Wyatt 2017 photo from Pixabay


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