Over the last couple of years, I’ve noticed I seem to attract a lot of, what I can only describe as, human succubus. I’m talking about those people who suck everything out of you, who leave you drained as hell every time you interact with them. The energy-sucking skills of these leeches are boundless – they can siphon every last drop of vitality and joy from you through any mode of communication, but their effects are usually most pronounced in person. They are energy vampires.
I’ve gotten better at identifying and squelching energy vampires before they have opportunities to do too much damage, but they still slither onto my path all the time. I’m a magnet for these people and I did some research on it a while back. Low-vibe people are often attracted to high-vibe people because they need to feed off the energy of others. You know the type of person I’m talking about. You literally feel yourself sink when you see their name pop up on your phone. They’re the people who keep bugging you to hang out, but the thought of doing so literally makes you feel hollow. Energy vampires are takers in the extreme – they’re usually incredibly negative people who prey on the energy of others to survive. Trying to “lift up” an energy vampire is usually wasted effort because they rarely want to be lifted up… they like cave-dwelling.
Because energy vampires are dangerously toxic, its critical to limit or eliminate your interactions once you’ve identified them. I know this is often easier said than done, especially if you have family members or co-workers who are energy vampires. You can’t always just avoid energy vampires – I get it. When you can simply remove them from your life, great! But when you’re forced to deal with them, it’s important to know how to handle them and protect yourself.
The only way to identify an energy vampire is by how they make you feel. Do you feel a tightness in your chest when they walk in the room? Can you feel your blood pressure spike when they call or text? Are you left feeling nauseas or achy after an interaction with them? Are you instantly stressed or anxious when you have to deal with them? If you answer yes to any of these questions, you’re probably dealing with an energy vampire.
Types of energy vampires
There are four main types of energy vampires: victims, blamers, drama queens, and attention whores.
The victim. Of all the types of energy vampires, I think victims are the worst because they tend to be the most manipulative. These are the people who always whine about how everyone is out to get them, the world is against them, and bad things always happen to them. It’s gross. These tend to be narcissists who enjoy the attention they get from evoking pity in everyone around them. They’ve learned that people respond when they play the victim, so they’ve adopted a victim mentality in everything they do. Victims believe they have no power or control over their lives, that they’re just floating in the wind taking all the kicks the universe is sure to throw their way because it hates them.
While victims are annoying, I do think they can be helped if they want it — if they can become open to seeing that life really isn’t out to get them.
The blamer. Blamers are perhaps, the most irresponsible and stunted of the energy vampire archetypes. Like victims, blamers feel powerless, always believing that things in life happen to them, not because of them. Everything is always someone else’s fault. They didn’t get a job because the interviewer was a jerk. They didn’t get a promotion because their boss doesn’t like fat people. Their car broke down, not because they didn’t do regular maintenance, but because it is a piece of shit that the car salesman should have never sold to them.
Blamers are cringy. Just watch how defensive they act when you try to point out their true power in a situation or suggest that maybe the onus for a situation is actually on them. If you try to do this, blamers will often blame you for not understanding of their lot in life.
The drama queen. Drama queens are people who thrive off creating or talking about drama in other people’s lives. This type of energy vampire loves the dirt. They want to roll around in it all day long and if you’re not careful, they’ll drag you into it with them. These vampires are among the most pervasive type, probably because our society fosters this garbage. Drama, drama, drama. Turn on the television for two minutes and count how many dramatic messages you’re inundated with. Better yet, don’t. Throw your television out, immediately.
Dudes can certainly be drama queens, but women seem more attracted to it. Watch out for these people, the kind who seems to get off on other people’s struggles or who enjoys shaking their head disapprovingly and running their mouths about things going on in other people’s lives.
Drama queens really need to get lives of their own. They feed off drama because they don’t have anything worthwhile in their own lives to talk about. Unlike victims, blamers, and attention whores, drama queens are more likely to focus on other people than themselves (of course, in a negative way) because they’re bored by their own lives.
The attention whore. Oh God, the attention whore. This is the person who has to be the center of everyone’s attention. Being around an attention whore is draining AF. You’ll never get to talk because conversations are always centered around them. If you try to squeeze in a word with an attention whore, just watch how quickly they swoop in and steal the conversation back. No matter how gregarious or outgoing you are, being around an attention whore is sure to make you feel like a wallflower. The spotlight must be on them, and they’re unwilling to share it.
Attention whores are an incredibly insecure bunch of energy vampires. Sometimes they adopt behavioral patterns of constant attention-seeking because they didn’t get enough attention as a child, or maybe they’ve picked up these gross patterns because they’re truly self-centered, narcissistic assholes. Attention whores want to hang out with you so you can pay attention to them, or so you can go out together and get other people to pay attention to them. Their mentality is childish and exhausting to be around.
We all know energy vampires. It’s not always possible to just cut them out of your lives, especially when they’re co-workers or relatives. So here are some strategies I use to deal with these people when I have no other options.
Breathe. Take a breath. When you feel your body physically responding to an energy vampire, try to relax and stop yourself from getting worked up by them (often, they thrive on your negative response to them).
Set boundaries. Be honest about how much interaction you really need to have with energy vampires in your life and set clear boundaries to keep those interactions to a minimum. I had one call me a couple nights ago (she is a mixture of blamer, victim, AND drama queen). I really didn’t want to answer the phone… but I did. It was like I felt bad for her or something. After thirty minutes of listening to her garbage I had to interrupt her, loudly (I’d maybe spoken 10 words during the “conversation”), to tell her I needed to go. Why did I wait 30 minutes to do that? Why did I even feel obligated to pick up the phone? It’s important to set clear boundaries with energy vampires and decide exactly how much interaction you’re required to have with them. In my case, there was no need for the interaction. I wasn’t really obligated in any way. This person contributed nothing positive to my life… therefore the boundaries I’ve since defined have her out of my life.
Don’t feel bad for ousting an energy vampire when you can. You’re allowed to do that.
Amp your energy. Sometimes, you can overpower an energy vampire with good vibrations. Try being the greater energy when you’re forced to interact with them – be so fucking positive that they’re left stunned and confused by your bitchin’ vibes. Just remember that if they continue to drain you, this strategy can backfire. Give it a shot, but if they’re still acting like a succubus…
Exit. Leave the situation. Even with energy vampires you’re forced to interact with on some level, sometimes you just have to walk away. And that’s okay. At the end of the day you need to protect yourself from these people so you don’t become an energy vampire, yourself. – the company you keep has a profound influence on who you are. When it’s necessary, it’s totally okay to walk away from an energy vampire.