Stop Passive-Aggressive Bullying


I am driven to talk about BULLYING because it is something that has followed me my whole life and it seems most people don’t even know that someone they care about is being bullied. So, I’m pulling together information that will help any of you that feel trapped in bullying situations or relationships.   

Most childhood bullies choose a more subtle bullying lifestyle when they grow up, but they still have the emotional immaturity of a child.  They are driven by Pride and Selfish Ambition.  The world revolves around their happiness or lack there of.  The type of bullying I want to talk about is The Passive Aggressive Bully.  This bully would never risk an outright approach for fear of exposing themselves and ruining their carefully constructed image of perfection.  They are brilliant manipulators and they are experts at orchestrating circumstances and people in their favor. When exposed they lash out and deny their mistakes and they will even lie to preserve themselves.  The most difficult kind of bully is The Passive Aggressive bully.

Hidden traits:

  1. Charming
  2. Obsessed with image
  3. Distorts truth and reality
  4. Evasive
  5. Plays the victim
  6. Self-righteous
  7. Pompous
  8. Hypocritical
  9. Two-faced
  10. Rumor-monger
  11. Passive-aggressive
  12. Pretends to care


This doesn’t mean that anyone who displays these behaviors or characteristics is a bully.  It doesn’t mean that, because someone has treated you poorly, you are being bullied.  This is just a list of traits that are not visible. They are subtle and are much more devastating if unavoided.  I plan on having a series of posts dedicated to this.  I will be pulling together from many different resources to bring you a full understanding of the bully, and his or her psychological state.  I plan on sharing parts of my lifestory to give you a full understanding of how this type of bullying can affect a person and arrest their life from knowing success.

Bullies are the worst kind of sociopaths and they will fight you to social death.  Usually, yours, because most targeted victims are too weak too fight back, are victims of past abuse, the costs of fighting back are too high, or they have a strong moral obligation that prevents them from doing so.

I hope to go through these characteristics one by one and give you examples of the behaviors that manifest because of them.

I highly recommend checking out the following websites if you are a victim of this kind of bullying.

Kick Bully- Where Your Fight Begins

Bullying In The Family

Bullying: The Family Connection

This Emotional Life: Adult Bullying

Life After Adult Bullying

The Verbal Abuse Site

Books Recommended by Leading Anti-Bullying Sites:

Mean Girls Grow Up: Adult Women Who Are Still Queen Bees, Middle Bees, and Afraid To Bees by Cheryl Dellasega PhD

Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls by Rachel Simmons

Victory Over Verbal Abuse: A Healing Guide to Renewing Your Spirit and Reclaiming Your Life by Patricia Evans

To Be An Anchor in the Storm: A Guide for Families and Friends of Abuse Women by Susan Brewster

Beyond The Tears: A True Survivor’s Story by Lynn C. Tolson

Reviving Ophelia: Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls by Mary Pipher PhD

When Friendship Hurts: How to Deal with Friends Who Betray, Abandon, or Wound You by Jan Yager

Toxic In-Laws: Loving Strategies for Protecting Your Marriage by Susan Forward

Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life by Susan Forward

Boundaries: Where You End and I Begin by Anne Katherine

Self Esteem: A Proven Program of Cognitive Techniques for Assessing, Improving and Maintaining Your Self-Esteem by Matthew McKay

The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem: The Definitive Work on Self-Esteem by the Leading Pioneer in the Field Nathaniel Branden

Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life by Martin Seligman

Living with the Passive-Aggressive Man: Coping with Hidden Aggression by Scott Wetzler

The Emotionally Abused Woman: Overcoming Destructive Patterns and Reclaiming Yourself by Beverly Engel


  1. I’m a victim of this type of bully at my work place and I’m in my 40’s! I’m doing the right thing and reporting it. It’s going to be hard, but I’m doing it for me and for all the others that are bullied and can’t fight back.

    • My thoughts are with you Cindy. I’m sorry you have experienced this. It’s the worst form of bullying because it isn’t aggressive. But it’s just as damaging to the emotions of the individual. Big hugs!

  2. I experienced this type of bullying from inside a women’s group. It was devastating because the person who exhibited the behaviors was incredibly sly. She holds a ton of victim energy and pulls people ( including me) in through her ‘poor me, I’m so creative but I’m still broke and I can’t catch a break’ stories. Our daughters were best friends and she leaned on me for strength and was actually holding my hand as she strained to push out her second child. Her amniotic fluid spilled all over my knees. She began by withdrawing, not returning phone calls and requests for play dates. Our group met weekly for 2-3 hours and each of the 8 members went around in a circle and talked about the wins and challenges of the week. It was very intense and all of us were very close. Or so I thought. She and another member of the group decided to teach sewing classes and my child was not allowed to be in the class. They made the distinction that the only girls that were permitted were two years older than my daughter but every week the pack of girls including the older girls and their younger siblings would cross the schoolyard in front of my daughter and I in the car and she would say ‘There’s Ramona and Willa going home together, why can’t I be with them?’ It was just heartbreaking and it went on for weeks and weeks. When I made overtures oy connect or investigate what was wrong or why she hadn’t responded to my last request, I was met with coarse vagueness and denial but no accountability. Daily in the school yard as moms would gather to visit outside our children’s classrooms I would join two or three of them talking and be met by weird snide looks or dissing of my sincerely expressed comments. One of the members if the group was an early childhood psychologist and I went oy her in frustration. Two of the other members of the group had solved a disagreement in front of the rest of us through mediation with the therapist. I requested this with the passive aggressive bully and she refused to do mediation and made no effort to contact me to acknowledge my efforts or to personally problem solve the situation. I could not believe it. Here we had shared birthing our children, the death of my sister in law. Countless hours hashing out the worries and excitement of early motherhood, our children felt like siblings and I was being systematically excluded from all activities outside of the weekly meeting. There were more sewing glasses that I wanted to participate in and that I expressed interest in that I found out later were happening with out me. There were group trips to the local pool with the kids that I wasn’t invited to and then near the end, I discovered that all the girls that were within 2-3 years of each other age wise were swimming on a local swim team together and I hadn’t been informed. Was this just accidental? I saw more than half of these people daily on our school campus. We met weekly to tell our stuff and catch up and yet there was something slipping. I felt crazy. I would wake up at night obsessing over something I had said or a tone I thought might have accidentally slipped into a comment I had made. It was hideous and ultimately I recounted all of this in an email to the group and was met with angry responses denying any wrong behavior. I was also told that I should basically just get over it because we were a group. It was horribly painful and took place over the course of three years so my confidence is only just now returning. To this day none of them will talk about it. Since I left the group I have had multiple people tell me in private conversation how the PABully also tarted them with the same devastating disrespect and casual disregard but no one will blow the whistle because she has so strange power and people in the community take a weird pride in being connected to her because she is so creative. The twisted thing is that the people in this group are a therapist, a children’s book writer, a voices against violence facilitator, an alternative style family movement writer, and others. People that are held in high esteem but have a strange ego investment in their own fabulousness. Thanks for letting me tell this story. I needed to.

    • Thank you so much for contributing to this awareness. It is frightening how these bullies have a hold on people and you are absolutely correct in your observation of people not blowing the whistle. If they are in the good graces of these seemingly charming PABullies then they have nothing to lose. They gain acceptance and benefit. These bullies treat people like garbage and dispose of us when we have outlived our purpose for them. I’m absolutely moved that you shared bc you are a perfect example. There are done people who feel like they are being bullied but really they are in some type of skewed perspective but you experience is the classic and brutal example of Passive Aggressive Bullying. I can only hope that you will recover quickly. Thank you again from the bottom of my heart for sharing your truth.

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