Entries in psychopathology (3)


Can a Toxic Relationship Make Me Toxic Too?

My brother is married to a passive aggressive woman and he is very unhappy in his relationship. I have a friend who just got engaged to a passive-aggressive woman. Both my friend and my brother have developed quite a few negative personality traits that make me not want to be around or even talk to them. Do you think it's their true natures coming out (ages 35-40) or the result of relationships with passive aggressive women?

Great question! I am sorry that you are having a difficult time being around your friend and brother right now. Passive-aggressive behaviors, which are hostile and resistant actions that a person expresses in very subtle or indirect ways, are not fun to experience. For example, your sister-in-law might give your brother the “cold shoulder” to show she is angry and defiant rather than telling him about the real reason she is she upset about something. 

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“Insanimus Guano,” Stalking, and How to Deal with Unstable Ex-partners

My friend Jessica just broke up with her boyfriend of 6 months. Why? Her boyfriend’s ex-wife went crazy after finding out he was dating someone new; she created a scene in front of his house that ultimately required him to call the police to get her to leave his property. Suffice it to say, my friend did not want to be involved with someone who brought so much baggage to the table.

I understood all too well. Sadly, many of my closest friends have had similar experiences. A few of my favorite gems (names have been changed to protect the innocent):

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Another Reason to Avoid Narcissists

image source: squidoo.comJust in case you need another reason to avoid dating narcissists: In a sample of nearly 300 men, those scoring high on narcissism, high on psychopathy (e.g., irresponsibility, low empathy, antisocial behavior), and with an unrestricted sociosexual orientation (e.g., the belief that love and sex are separate) were three times as likely (45%) to report engaging in sexual aggression (e.g., sexual assault and rape) compared to those low on these three traits (15%).

Mouilso, E. R., & Calhoun, K. S. (2011). A mediation model of the role of sociosexuality in the associations between narcissism, psychopathy, and sexual aggression. Psychology of Violence, 2, 16-27.