Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder

Passive-aggressive behaviors are those that involve acting indirectly aggressive rather than directly aggressive. Passive-aggressive people regularly exhibit resistance to requests or demands from family and other individuals often by procrastinating, expressing sullenness, or acting stubborn.


Cluster Number:
Wiki Number: PW155
Diagnosis: Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder
US Patients:
World Patients:
Sex Ratio:
Age Onset: Childhood and beyond into adulthood
Brain Area:
Symptoms: Pervasive pattern of negative attitudes and passive resistance to expectations of adequate performance.
Progression: Persons typically procrastinate, covertly obstruct, are inefficient and stubborn, but nice when they wish to be.
Causes: A childhood were expressions of frustration or anger was not allowed. Children repressed honest feelings.
Medications: None listed.
Therapies: Depending on the behaviors, therpists should use psychodynamic, supportive, cognitive, behavioral & interpersonal methods.


The world-wide medical research
reports chosen for each diagnosis 

Clicking each title opens the
PubMed article’s summary-abstract.

  • Development and Psychometric Properties of the Test of Passive Aggression
    by Christian G Schanz on May 13, 2021

    Background: To date, most research on aggression in mental disorders focused on active-aggressive behavior and found self-directed and other-directed active aggression to be a symptom and risk-factor of psychopathology. On the other hand, passive-aggressive behavior has been investigated less frequently and only in research on psychodynamic defense mechanisms, personality disorders, and dysfunctional self-control processes. This small number of studies primarily reflects a lack of a reliable and...

  • The role of personality traits on mode of delivery
    by Sabri Berkem Okten on February 5, 2021

    CONCLUSION: This is the first study that investigates the relationship between mode of delivery and personality traits according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and cognitive behavioral perspective in the literature. These personality traits can be carried at a level that is not clinically significant to create an obvious pathology, yet they might play a role as the motives behind the apparent reasons for women who request CS. Understanding women's motives and...

  • Evaluating Stable and Situational Expressions of Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder: A Multimethod Experience Sampling Case Study
    by Katie C Lewis on October 2, 2020

    Passive-aggressive (PA) personality traits have received increasing attention in the research literature and are known to interfere with treatment engagement and recovery. Theoretical disagreements about PA, combined with its omission from the DSM-5, have left open many questions regarding its dynamic structure and temporal stability. Our goal in the present case study was to use a multimethod, experience sampling assessment framework for a single research subject enrolled in long-term...

  • Aggressive behavior and metacognitive functions: a longitudinal study on patients with mental disorders
    by Valentina Candini on June 11, 2020

    CONCLUSIONS: This study led to some important conclusions: (a) some aspects closely related to violence are predictive of aggressive behavior only in patients with poor metacognition, thus good metacognition is a protective factor; (b) poor metacognition is associated with a history of violence, which in turn increases the risk of committing aggressive behavior.