Because I’ve been dealing with a stalker (wow, 23+ years now), I am interested in a valuable book that came into my awareness a few years ago. I have purchased it and shared with others; its title is Dodging Energy Vampires by Dr. Christiane Northrup. She’s got some great insights and advice and can guide the empath through understanding and dealing with the EVs in your life.
Besides “Energy Vampire”, you may have heard various other terms for this person:
- Psychic Vampire
- Emotional Vampire
- Energy Sucker
Dr. Northrup acknowledges that the mental health profession (but only in the past 25 years or so) has clearly identified energy vampires and the effects they can have on others.
I have also watched many helpful YouTube videos available highlighting how to recognize and deal with specific issues encountered with the energy vampire. Regarding narcissists and also those researching the areas of Sociopaths and Psychopaths, I’ve found Dr. Ramani Durvasula, Dr. Seth Meyers and Dr. Les Carter are very interesting to listen to.
5 Signs That You’ve Encountered an Emotional Vampire
- Your eyelids are heavy, and you feel ready for a nap.
- Your mood takes a nosedive.
- You want to binge on carbs or comfort foods.
- You feel anxious, depressed, or negative.
- You feel put down.
To protect your energy, it’s important to combat draining people. The following strategies can help you identify and combat emotional vampires from an empowered place.
5 Types of Emotional Vampires
- The Narcissist
Their motto is “Me first.” Everything is all about them. They have a grandiose sense of self-importance and entitlement, hog attention, and crave admiration. They’re dangerous because they lack empathy and have a limited capacity for unconditional love. If you don’t do things their way, they become punishing, withholding, or cold. [And, from my experience, insulting, belittling, bullying and demeaning in an attempt to keep you off balance and wondering, “What just happened?”].
How to Protect Yourself: Keep your expectations realistic. These are emotionally limited people. Try not to fall in love with one or expect them to be selfless or to love without strings attached. Never make your self-worth dependent on them or confide your deepest feelings to them. To successfully communicate, the hard truth is that you must show how something will be to their benefit. Though it’s better not to have to contend with this tedious ego stroking if the relationship is unavoidable this approach works.
- The Victim
These vampires grate on you with their “poor-me” attitude. The world is against them, it’s the reason for their unhappiness. When you offer a solution to their problems they say, “Yes, but…” Eventually, you might end up screening your calls or purposely avoiding them. As a friend, you may want to help, but their tales of woe overwhelm you.
How to Protect Yourself: Set kind but firm limits. Listen briefly to the friend or relative but then say, “I love you but I can only listen for a few minutes unless you want to discuss solutions.” With a co-worker, sympathize by saying, “I’ll keep having good thoughts for things to work out.” Then add, “I hope you understand, but I’m on deadline and must return to work.” Body language that telegraphs “This isn’t a good time,” such as crossing your arms and breaking eye contact, can help enforce these healthy limits.
- The Controller
These people obsessively try to control you and dictate how you’re supposed to be and feel. They have an opinion about everything. They’ll control you by invalidating your emotions when they don’t fit into their own rule book. They often start sentences with “You know what you need?” and then proceed to tell you. You end up feeling dominated, demeaned, or put down.
How to Protect Yourself: The secret to success is to never try to control a controller. Be healthily assertive, but don’t tell them what to do. You can say, “I value your advice, but really need to work through this myself.” Be confident, and don’t play the victim.
- The Constant Talker
These people aren’t interested in your feelings. They are only concerned with themselves. You may wait for an opening to get a word in edgewise but it never comes. Or they might physically move in so close that they’re practically breathing on you. You edge backward, but they step closer.
How to Protect Yourself: These individuals don’t respond to nonverbal cues. You must speak up and interrupt, as tough as that is to do. Listen for a few minutes, then politely say, “I hate to interrupt, but I have to talk to these other people/get to an appointment/go to the bathroom.” (It’s a much more constructive tactic than saying, “Keep quiet, you’re driving me crazy!”) If this is a family member, politely say, “I’d love if you allowed me some time to talk to so I can add to the conversation.” If you say this neutrally, it can better be heard.
- The Drama Queen
These people have a flair for [turning] small incidents into off-the-chart dramas. My patient Sarah was exhausted when she hired a new employee who was always late. One week he had the flu and “almost died.” Next, his car was towed, again! Each time this employee left her office, Sarah felt tired and used.
The above article is copied from Psychology Today. Link: (https://www.google.com/search?q=how+to+write+the+title+of+a+magazine&oq=how+to+write+the+title+of+a+magazine&aqs=chrome..69i57j0l6.9061j0j15&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8)
There are many sources of information about these ‘users’, but I found another link which may give an additional perspective: https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/energy-vampires.
After reviewing the various types, I realize I have encountered them all, to some extent or another, in several social groups as well as in the workplace. My hope used to be that the narcissistic sociopath, and yes, perhaps psychopath (judging by the 20 items on the Hare Psychopathy Checklist), interested in harassing me would tire of his games but it seems he enjoys the non-interaction too much. It makes me wonder how many of us are tolerating this insane behavior…from the same weak-minded person. It is so very sad to see a life wasted in this toxic manner. But…I have moved on and no longer give my energy away; I need it all for myself.