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Such a person doesn't mind losing or winning; however, they dislike having to experience resistance/confrontation. To clarify, such a person does not necessarily "fear" confrontation but thinks confrontation is too much of a hassle.

Let's make a point that finds confrontation too much of a hassle is the primary meaning.

— A clarifying treat for those who get it; otherwise, insightful nonetheless:

"If I don't have to do it, I won't. If I have to do it, I'll make it quick."

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  • 2
    "hates" confrontation or "fears" confrontation?? Apr 29, 2014 at 15:00
  • 1
    Apparently, "almost-everyone-in-my-school". :) Apr 29, 2014 at 22:37
  • Hmmm... Coward sprang to mind from you question title. It still marginally applies, as one definition for coward is a lack of courage to endure dangerous or unpleasant things. But there are probably more applicable terms.
    – Patrick M
    Apr 30, 2014 at 3:34
  • A grown and experienced person doesn't have any feelings for confrontation, neither fear nor joy. Also, hate and dislike come from negative feelings associated with the confrontation, so it's still fear, albeit less concentrated. Confronting or getting confronted by someone a meaningful number of times will cause this hate and dislike to disappear, so it's a temporary condition and the person shouldn't be named anything but inexperienced. Apr 30, 2014 at 6:37
  • Related.
    – tchrist
    Jun 7, 2014 at 20:43

10 Answers 10

6

"Conflict-averse" is the term we use for this in the human services professions.

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    Could you provide any references or quotes to back up your answer? Thank you.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Apr 30, 2014 at 4:32
  • +1 this is definitely the phrase that leaped to mind when I saw this question. Apr 30, 2014 at 5:08
20

I think the easiest word is non-confrontational.

I would also suggest the following:

  • carefree
  • nonchalant
  • indifferent
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    It was as simple as tacking a "non" to it; whenever English isn't complicated it is just straight-forward :b Apr 29, 2014 at 15:26
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    Non-confrontational sounds more accurate than carefree or indifferent. A person could be be carefree or indifferent but still be confrontational.
    – Keneni
    Apr 29, 2014 at 15:30
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    @Keni - the idea of being carefree is not caring. If you don't care what would you be confrontational about? Indifferent is the same thing. Apr 29, 2014 at 15:32
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    @Jack - very very common. Especially in speech. Apr 29, 2014 at 15:33
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    @user2738698, non-confrontational is what you are looking for. "carefree", "nonchalant" and "indifferent" don't necessarily mean the same as non-confrontational.
    – Kenshin
    Apr 29, 2014 at 23:25
2

You could call that person "agreeable" or "passive"? - as in, they will go along with what another person wants, whether they want to really or not, in order to avoid confrontation.

2

I have always used the word amiable:

a·mi·a·ble [ey-mee-uh-b uh l]

adjective

  1. having or showing pleasant, good-natured personal qualities; affable: an amiable disposition.
  2. friendly; sociable: an amiable greeting; an amiable gathering.
  3. agreeable; willing to accept the wishes, decisions, or suggestions of another or others.

It's antonyms would definitely describe one that is confrontational:

1. rude. 2. unfriendly, hostile.

2

When this creates an obstacle to function or communication, the verbiage in the DSM of the APA is 'avoidant' as in the "Avoidant Personality Disorder", or the paradoxical "Avoidant Attachment".

It differs from conflict-aversion as the basis of a Social Phobia, in that the person avoiding does it habitually, or in the spirit of excessive detachment, not out of (aware) fear.

(That is why this almost always ends up as an Axis II thing, and not a primary disorder.)

2

Consider placid, unconfrontational, and easygoing.

placid: indisturbed by tumult or disorder; calm.

unconfrontational: not confrontational.

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  • Dead link. (15char) Apr 29, 2014 at 16:26
  • The link is misspelled with an 'm' where there should be an 'n'. thefreedictionary.com/conciliating
    – piCookie
    Apr 29, 2014 at 16:31
  • Great word to add to my vocabulary. Thanks, Elian!
    – user67261
    Apr 29, 2014 at 20:25
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    While this is a good answer, it seems to add meaning on top of what was requested. Someone who dislikes conflict does not necessarily take action to lessen conflict. Apr 30, 2014 at 2:32
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    I agree with @MichaelMior this is not really what the question was. A conciliatory person is a peacemaker. Someone who is uniting two sides that are fighting possibly. So they do get involved in conflict, but as "counselor". Apr 30, 2014 at 8:36
0

I suggest we coin "anticonfrontationalist"

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  • Please provide a definition; it may very well fit the word I seek and checks may be shuffled around, if you know what I mean ;D Apr 30, 2014 at 4:10
  • 1
    how about profrontation-alist
    – mcalex
    Apr 30, 2014 at 5:56
0

A couple that spring to mind, depending on context.

Compliant: disposed to agree with others or obey rules, especially to an excessive degree. Similarly, acquiescent, docile. These indicate someone who will avoid confrontation by agreeing with something disagreeable.

Passive-resistance (or resistor): is the practice of achieving goals ... without using violence. This is a better fit for someone who still disagrees with the disagreeable thing, but wishes to avoid confrontation while bringing about change.

-1

Peaceable refers to a person who likes to be left in peace, but doesn't imply weakness.

-1

Evasive. Or non-confrontational. Whatever works!

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