I’m very interested in sulking. I am a past master of it myself (in recovery…) and so am sensitive to the issue!
Sulking is a performance. When I sulk I am signalling my displeasure by my withdrawal. I am making myself noticed by my absence. What intrigues about sulking from a standpoint of Freeforming or therapy is that sulking attempts to block out intersubjectivity or kimusubi. The stance is you don’t understand me and by God I wont let myself be understood. This stance can at times be almost embarrassingly dissolved and the sulker unmasked. I am sure you will all have experienced the situation when the someone manages to engage a knowing smile from the previous strenuously stern faced sulker. Both parties know at the same moment exactly what is happening between them. At that moment the game is up for the sulker. They then have rejoin humanity or make a vigorous attempt to reinstate the sulk. However this is rarely successful as the ruse has so obviously been blown!