Why are there so many silent men?
80% of men prefer to “clam up” and not share their personal thoughts with loved ones, in order to avoid feeling vulnerable, rejected or criticized. This is according to a survey recently conducted by Creative Conflict Resolutions, applied to their clients lists.
Creative Conflict Resolutions tested more than 900 men by using an online questionnaire, in order to determine the presence of passive aggressive behavior in each test-taker. This test has twenty-one questions about the way people approach communication and emotional issues in their relationship, and it is still available for free at their site, Passive Aggressive Test.
Their findings show that among passive aggressive men, and sometimes even with otherwise emotionally healthy men, there is an insistent urge to hide true feelings and opinions.
This leads to the confusing situation that many couples face during a passive aggressive relationship. The passive aggressive person makes promises, agrees, and otherwise goes along with his partner to avoid feeling vulnerable - but then doesn’t deliver, because they never really meant to. Their partners feel frustrated by this contradictory behavior, and confront the promise-breaker with this fateful message: “I think you might be passive aggressive.”
The result? A vicious cycle where the passive aggressive person retreats more, clams up more, trying to fly under their partner’s emotional needs radar. It turns into a situation of extreme isolation and growing lack of trust, which can end the marriage.
Another interesting statistic? 68% of the men tested said they found some satisfaction in being called out; they felt that had gotten “revenge” by breaking a promise to someone who deserved to be let down. Why the revenge? This is the core of the Creative Conflicts proposal: to find the heart of the passive aggressive person’s hurt, which prompts him to take revenge against people who are only looking for a deeper connection.
Creative Conflicts wants to share this information with both the passive aggressive man and his partner, addressing both the causes and the effects of passive aggressive behavior. “The partner of a passive aggressive person can spend the best 20-30 years of their life trying to decode this maddening double message, all while being accused of thinking crazy thoughts and be overly needy when the subject is brought up, and thus suffering from a debilitating low self-esteem.
After analyzing the results and the implications thereof, Creative Conflicts created a new set of tools for the passive aggressive husband, to complement the tools they already offer for his unsuspecting partner. With their survey, Creative Conflicts gained greater perspective on the mindset of the passive aggressive man and where his emotional needs lie. Their tools outline the path and steps a passive aggressive man needs to take in order to heal his emotional disconnection and his sending double messages. Creative Conflicts’ new system is ready for their clients, and has already met with success. It can be found at the "4 Steps to FREE Your Marriage of Passive Aggression" program.