Passive Agressive (PA) comments infer that there is a problem (or that you have a problem) without actually saying that there’s a problem. For example; “My last church never did it this way“, “That might make some people feel left out”, “I suppose that will just have to do”. Depending on the inflection and the tone, they could be perfectly reasonable observations. But you know when they’re not just observations.
I’ve always wanted to make a t-shirt that says “Well at least I’m not passive aggressive”. I think that’s hilarious!
It’s really worth training yourself to recognise these type of comments from others and from yourself. A colleague and I used to play a game “Can you say that in a more passive agressive way?” as a fun way of training oourselves to recognise it.
Recognising it is the first step to resolving it. Otherwise you just walk away from the conversation feeling bad, but not really knowing why.