Ever heard of an energy vampire?
Distant descendants of Count Dracula, these individuals suck all the fun and goodness out of your soul.
You generally leave interactions with them feeling exhausted and drained.
The weird thing is that you probably don’t even notice how tiresome they are to be around.
Often, these types of individuals are the most enticing.
They come up with the most exciting of adventures to drag you along on and are always game to party.
But maintaining relationships with people who actively drain your energy and exhaust you can have an incredibly negative impact on your life.
Are you ready to learn about what types of behaviors energy vampires engage in, and how you can protect yourself?
(Clue – garlic won’t help)
1) They’ve always got their fingers in the drama pie
Whenever you meet up with this person, there is always some tea to spill.
They tell you about how a certain friend hooked up with someone they shouldn’t have at the weekend.
They let you in on a little secret someone shared with them about how a mutual friend just lost their job.
They tell you about the third nipple they spotted on one of your mutual acquaintances.
Those who constantly dabble in drama are tiresome and meddling.
No one enjoys having their secrets spilled, so they’re certainly not worth trusting.
2) They’re a fan of toxic positivity
Having a positive outlook on life is great.
But there’s a point at which positivity becomes toxic.
It’s absolutely exhausting to want to confide in a friend or partner and be met with this extreme pressure to display only positive emotions.
You know the mantra; good vibes only.
“Everything happens for a reason!”
“It could definitely be worse!”
“Look on the bright side!”
All examples of toxic positivity, which can be disheartening to hear when what you really want is an empathetic shoulder to lean on.
Of course, someone out there will always have it worse.
But being met with statements like these belittle your experience and leave you feeling invalidated and guilty.
3) They complain about everything
Whilst you’re not allowed to have bad days, emotional vampires love complaining.
Complain, complain, complain.
This coffee sucks.
This movie is boring.
The sun is too sunny.
Toxic positivity might be applied to you, but it sure isn’t applied to their own life.
People who see only the negative aspects in life and can never rest without letting everyone around them know about their discontent.
On the whole, this makes the world a whole lot greyer for everyone else privy to the constant complaining.
4) They’re self-centered
Often, people who love being in the spotlight can be fun to be around.
They know the coolest people.
They get invited to the best parties.
They’re up to date with all the trends.
But the downside to living in and loving the spotlight is that these people don’t really have time or consideration for anyone else.
Bad news: to them, you’re not that important.
You might get taken along for the ride, but they’re unlikely to ask you questions about yourself or be there for you when you need them.
5) They one-up you
Okay, you’ve had a bad day.
You need someone to vent to, so you go to this person and confide in how miserable you feel.
“Yeah, that sucks. But to be honest I think I’ve had it worse recently. Today at work…”
Never to be outdone, these types of individuals stray into the narcissistic category.
They can’t possibly share the limelight or show pity for someone else, and would far rather the spotlight shine on them alone.
6) They can’t let you be happy
In the same way that you’re not allowed to have a bad day, energy vampires and exhaustive people will also never allow you to feel good about yourself.
Get a promotion?
“Well, good for you. You’re halfway to being on my salary!”
Published a book?
“Great! I mean it’s self-published so it doesn’t really count but I guess it’s something…”
Ran a half-marathon?
“Impressive! A few years until you manage a marathon like I did, I suppose.”
Your friends and partners are supposed to lift you up and celebrate you.
Constantly feeling diminished and drained on the occasions where people really should be popping out the champagne bottles is exhausting, and a sign of a weary relationship.
7) They can’t function alone
Particularly in relationships, co-dependency can be one of the most draining bonds between partners.
They can’t function unless glued to your hip. They need to know your every move, and god forbid you go a day without texting them.
Navigating your own life is hard enough as it is, but supporting someone else who relies so heavily on your presence is beyond draining and far from healthy.
8) They constantly need reassurance
This goes for partners, friends, family members.
Having to constantly remind someone that you’re paying attention to them is exhausting.
Relationships involve a lot of give and take, and being able to voice appreciation and affection is important.
But there comes a point where constantly having to tell someone you love them, that you find them attractive, or that you appreciate them becomes draining.
These statements should come naturally.
Individuals who demand you say them, and make you feel like the worst person on earth should you forget are very difficult to maintain healthy relationships with.
9) They’re life’s greatest victims
Listen, nothing is ever their fault.
One of the biggest parts of an emotional vampire’s diet is sympathy.
And this they can only feed off when other people shower them with pity.
They love being held and coddled and told it was never their fault.
Living in a constant state of victim-mentality, they love being assured that they have it so tough and they’re so admirable and brave.
10) They blow things out of proportion
Obviously you need to be sensitive to other people’s sensitivities and triggers.
But making a small joke or teasing someone and having that person act like you’ve stabbed them in the back leaves a bad taste in everyone’s mouth.
Owing to their desire for attention, exhausting people will exaggerate everything.
They’ll spin small misfortunes into massive catastrophes to make sure everyone listens and pities them.
And they definitely won’t let any light teasing go without acting like you’ve betrayed them.
Even a small and light-hearted comment will be taken so personally and will mean you’ll probably have to beg on your knees for mercy.
11) They suffer from immense mood swings
One minute, you’re having a great time.
It’s all good-times and giggles, and then it’s as if a switch is flipped.
Suddenly, and out of nowhere, they’re storming and seething like a furious wildcat.
These sudden mood swings can also lead to violent outbursts of anger and aggression, which can leave you feeling uneasy.
Knowing how easily their mood can switch, you find yourself tiptoeing around them on eggshells; never knowing what might set them off.
12) They disrespect your needs and boundaries
Maintaining a healthy relationship with someone who doesn’t care for your personal needs nor your boundaries is nigh impossible.
They’ll call upon you to help them come night or day and demand you bend over backwards and sacrifice your own happiness if it so pleases them.
Forget personal space or material items.
That salad you were saving to bring in to work tomorrow?
“Oops, it just tasted so good.”
That cute dress you wanted to wear out this weekend?
“Well, it’s more my color than yours anyway.”
You’re too busy with work to speak to me?
“How dare you! I’m obviously in need and you’re being so selfish.”
Boundaries concerning time, possessions, or triggering topics aren’t a concern.
Exhausting people prioritize themselves.
You’re there for their amusement and benefit, and your needs are definitely not on their list of concerns.
Modern day vampire?
Do the above points make you think of anyone?
If you think you have spotted an emotional vampire in your social circle, consider your relationship with that person.
They might be fun and enthusiastic when they want to be, but chances are you’re leaving most interactions drained and weary.
You only have so much energy to give, and wasting it on people who misuse your time and disrespect your boundaries will only devalue your life.
Your time and energy could most likely be used in other areas or in other relationships with people who value and inspire you.
And whilst you might be attached to this individual, it’s also not your job to change someone.
(Plus there’s no cure for vampirism).