Sadly, some people aren’t even aware that they are already using aggressive communication in relationships not just with other people but especially with their own spouse and family.
How does aggressive communication start and how can it affect one’s relationship?
Definition of aggressive communication
How well do you know the definition of aggressive communication in relationships?
We may, of course, have a general idea of what aggression, in form of communication skill is, but a deeper understanding of its definition can help us understand it better and eliminate aggressive communication in relationships.
Aggressive communication definition by the term is a method of being able to express one’s needs and desires but doesn’t take into account the feelings of other people.
It’s a selfish and harmful type of communication style.
Aggressive communication can end up greatly affecting your relationships and how people view you as a person and can also give you poor self-esteem and less social interaction.
In aggressive communication, a person would often communicate in a loud and intimidating voice.
This person can maintain a dominating stare or eye contact and will use controlling words, blame, criticizing, and even threatening words or actions.
Understanding passive-aggressive behavior
There is much confusion with passive-aggressive communication style and aggressive style, so to clear this out, in passive-aggressive communication, a person who may appear passive on the surface is actually resentful inside.
In a passive-aggressive relationship, they will say something that may look like this person is okay with it or agrees with it but will show indirect communication hints such as a facial expression or will give you the silent treatment.
What are some common passive-aggressive traits?
This person is afraid of voicing out their real concern and thus will opt to use other means to express what they truly feel. Aggressive communication is definitely different because this person doesn’t care about what others might think of feel and will use whatever words they want to use.
A passive aggressive lover finds it difficult to practice emotional honesty and open dialogue.
They resent the other person for making demands
Their need for approval impairs their ability to speak their mind
They are unable to say no to requests and demand, only to gripe about it later
Their hostile attitude can eventually land them in total isolation
They don’t assume the responsibility of creating happiness in their own life
Also, watch this video on how passive-aggressive behavior destroys intimate relationships.
How to change passive-aggressive behavior
Dealing with a passive-aggressive person entails a lot of frustration and misunderstanding.
It can become easier to deal with them if their partner makes an attempt to understanding what experiences have shaped their personality, and why they have adopted passive-aggressive behavior in relationships.
People who are passive-aggressive in relationships have usually grown in an atmosphere where they were discouraged to express their opinions and feelings freely.
Resultantly, they grow up feeling inadequate, and a sense of powerlessness.
If your spouse is passive-aggressive, there are ways to cope and circumvent aggressive communication in relationships.
Train yourself to accept the situation like it is, but do not make excuses to justify their behavior.
Set boundaries to protect yourself. Mutually negotiate certain off-limits topics to maintain harmony.
Approach them with vulnerability and empathy.
Find opportunities to speak about your spouse’s talents and positive qualities.
Assertive vs aggressive communication
It is another thing to clear as assertive communication is totally different than the latter.
Aggressive communication, however, is the opposite of assertive communication.
Aggressive communication examples
A person who has this type of communication style will not have any type of empathy in words or even actions and will only say what they want to say without thinking how hurtful their choices of words are.
Aggressive communication styleis often hurtful, blunt, and sometimes can even be disrespectful.
Aggressive ways to communicate doesn’t end with words; it also shows in indirect communication such as facial expressions, tone of voice, and body language.
Some aggressive communication examples or phrases from a person who uses aggressive communication are:
“Don’t be stupid, use your brain”
“Such a simple task and guess what? You can’t do it!”
“You’ll never succeed with your incompetence”
“I am right and you are wrong”
Aggressive communication in your relationship
Now that we’re familiar with aggressive communication, you’ve surely remembered some instances where you were able to come across someone like this at work and let’s face it, the most common reaction that we will have is to stay away from that person.
However, what if your aggressive communication experiences come from your spouse or partner? How do you deal with it?
A relationship where you talk but don’t resolve any issue, where feelings of hurt still linger because the way you or your partner communicate is not fixing your issues but just makes it worse.
Unfortunately, no relationship will last if there is no real communication between partners.
If you have an aggressive communication style in your relationship, don’t expect a harmonious one either because there is no real connection and communication in your relationship.
The stress and conflict that aggressive words can take on your relationship will have its toll and that’s the end of it.
Can you imagine having someone who constantly treats you with aggression?
How about feeling inadequate because of the words being thrown at you, and the lack of empathy of this person can bring your relationship.
What more if you have children who will start to mirror your partner’s aggressive communication skills?
Being exposed to aggressive communication in relationships at an early age can leave them completely scarred for life.
How to deal with aggressive communication
Being told that you have an aggressive communication style may not immediately change who you are but it is still an eye-opener.
The realization that you have to change your way of communicating with other people to have better relationships will not bring you down or belittle you.
In fact, this will help you grow better as a person.
If you want to change, accept that you have to be better and it starts with these questions.
Am I putting people down?
Am I able to actually listen when people are talking?
Can I take criticism?
Do I hurt people with my words?
Am I blinded with the bad effects of my freedom of speech?
These are just questions that will give you an idea of how you communicate and if you think help is needed, there are many ways where you can ask for it.
Good therapy can help you enhance how you communicate and there is nothing wrong in seeking help to be better.
Seek out a credible therapist who can guide you on how to deal with aggressive communication style.
It is best to get timely help as aggressive communication in relationships has the potential to shake the foundation of the strongest of relationships.
Why do we need to be better in the way we communicate with others and why is aggressive communication in relationships so destructive?
The reason for choosing effective communication over aggressive communication in relationships is fairly simple.
Relationships rely on how we communicate so if we want to have a lasting relationship, we ought to be assertive in the way we communicate and we have to remember to respect other people the way we want to be respected as well.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.