Energy Vampires (Poll)

posted 7 months ago in Relationships
  • poll: Have you been the target of an energy vampire?
    No, never. : (7 votes)
    10 %
    Maybe, I’m not sure. : (10 votes)
    14 %
    Yes! I’m under attack right now! : (15 votes)
    21 %
    It’s become a way of life. HELP ME! : (3 votes)
    4 %
    Yes, and I have recovered. (Please share your story). : (37 votes)
    51 %
  • Post # 2
    Member
    761 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2019

    I’m not sure if this is in the same category but I had a friend who would always call me just to complain about her life (without really making a good effort to fix it), rarely follow the advice I give her, rarely listen/care about my life, and was veryyyyy needy. I still put up with it as I have been in a similar position before and could understand how she felt.

    I don’t think I would’ve ever been able to end it on my own as it wasn’t exactly abusive or disrupting my life in a major way but it would definitely negatively impact my mood and stress me out. One day she got mad at me (over a misunderstanding) and I tried my best to fix it as I don’t like to hurt anyone but she wasn’t having any of it so I got really mad and told her what I felt and what she can do to fix it. She (as usual) just wanted to pretend like nothing happened and started making small talk (she’s the type who prefers to sweep problems under the rug). I told her I will keep talking to her only if she is willing to acknowledge the issue and fix it. She didn’t respond to that and kept trying to make small talk. I responded but without interest and it looked like she finally got the hint and didn’t send anything more. I thought it’s for the best and didn’t make an attempt to contact her again after that.

    Good riddance! 

    Post # 3
    Member
    217 posts
    Helper bee

    More than I can count! The biggest thing to help me was to recognize that I am not beholden to this person, there’s no “helping” them (whatever that means in that particular situation), and they have nothing positive to offer me. The second you realize you’re going out of your way for someone who would never in a million years do the same for you, nope, bye.

    Post # 4
    Member
    2061 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2018

    I had a very good friend who started sapping my energy. She would call and literally talk for 4 to 5 hours about all the terrible things in her life. She was always the victim. Granted, she had been dealt some pretty rough cards in life, but she was rapidly spirling downward and seemed to take no initiative in helping herself. I paid her rent for a couple of months when she said she was really strapped, but finally had to cut her out when she kept asking me to “round up” and for increasing amounts I just couldn’t afford on a regular basis.

    Post # 5
    Member
    4482 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I have someone I’ve actually referred to as an energy vampire, but maybe emotion vampire would be a better descriptor. She thrives on emotional situations and seems to try to inject every little comment or action with some sort of emotional element, even when there isn’t one. Her comments often seem designed to elicit a specific emotional response from the other person.

    It is absolutely exhausting after awhile. You come out of a day with her feeling entirely drained of energy and emotion.

    My best solutions so far are (a) try not to be alone with her because she’s “better” at taking on one person at at time then accomplishing this in groups and (b) give bland, unemotional responses when I can tell she’s seeking a particular emotion. She trained her immediate family to play into it so well that she gets confused and off-track when the conversation/encounter doesn’t go the way she expects.

    Maybe this is a variation of the energy vampire? The end result on the “victim” seems pretty similar.

    Post # 6
    Member
    545 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2018

    I have a friend like this now. She’s super sweet and kind and will totally do anything for you.

    Except she has no sense of independence or self. All the activities she does are things other people were doing. She latches on tight just to be included, even if she really has no business including herself. She just follows what everyone else is doing.

    She wants to talk about all of the little minutiae of her day. Her stories are either someone else’s story (her coworker had to get a ride from her husband because her car was in the shop and almost was late to work kind of stories) or just so unbearably dull (picture someone describing daily paperwork level dull).

    She will co-opt plans to talk about her issues. Like we’ll have plans with other people, and she will force us to talk about her problems for hours so that we end up missing our plans. She is stubborn and gets so wrapped up in emotional thinking that she can’t solve her own problems. She point-blank refuses to take care of her emotional needs or think logically about her problems no matter how inappropriate her behavior may be.

    Oh, and she is having an emotional affair with a married man (“but he’s divorcing her”) and refuses to see it. And she won’t break it off because “they’re friends and you don’t just stop talking to friends” even though he is her ex and he’s admitted to having feelings for her but how could I suggest she’s the other woman?!

    Here’s the worst part: I feel like a shit friend for not wanting to be her friend or sharing that level of closeness. Of course, she never accuses me of anything, but she hasn’t picked up on any signs that I don’t really want to be close to her and I’m forced to see her all the time. 

    So seriously, how do you stake an energy vampire? Especially someone who is nice but oh-so-needy?

     

    Post # 7
    Member
    1392 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2020

    Yes, I’ve dealt with more than one in my life, and have gotten better and faster at identifying them, and cutting out of my life.

    The one currently in my life is a friend’s girlfriend, but her toxicity is leading them to break up soon (said friend literally said he’s breaking up with her in the next week or so). 

    The one I dealt with before this I wouldn’t have cut out because I was so dedicated to helping her, though I slowly stopped giving advice and realized she needed to help herself. She moved away and ‘couldnt handle’ being friends with me and others anymore, leading her own demise. I then found tweets where she bashed me behind my back, so when she crawled back wanting to be friends again, I made it clear that door was shut and she was not ever going to be a part of my life again.

    The one I dealt with in childhood was very sweet and nice. She was homeschooled and didn’t have other friends, so she clung to me. Some truly bad things happened with her family that I tried to support her through, but ultimately I couldn’t be her main support when my life was growing and expanding, so I ended up ghosting her. Not initiating conversations or visits, ignoring ones she did, and after a few years, the friendship faded and I moved away.

    I’m not sure the best way to cut out these people, but find ignoring them and their needs works, as does blocking them from contacting me.

    Post # 8
    Member
    4542 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: January 2017

    jayquellen :  I have learned to cut them out of my life also. EV leave feeling energized after seeing you, meanwhile you’re left utterly drained and irritable. If I feel lifeless after seeing someone I now quickly learn to avoid them or minimize my time with them. I have dropped a few clients over the years because of their energy and felt 10000% better for it. 

    Post # 9
    Member
    761 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2019

    LadyBear :  I love the suggestion of giving bland unemotional responses. I’ve found that to work with my energy vampire, though temporarily.

    She would get mad at me for not being more helpful then 🤷🏻‍♀️🙄

    Post # 12
    Member
    1392 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2020

    lifeisbeeutiful :  Yes, minimizing time and ultimately cutting them out completely is the best way to keep your life surrounded by positive, good people. 

    If I start dreading seeing a person or think about how much I wish I didn’t have to interact with them, it’s a glaring sign that they shouldn’t be in my life if I can avoid it. 

    Post # 14
    Member
    6023 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: September 2016

    I’ve found that anyone whose approach to their life requires us to exercise significant levels of ironclad restraint to interact with them can be draining to be around- not even through any deliberate action of their own. If/when we have to shut down or shut off parts of ourselves in order to maintain relationships, they can become vibrationally detrimental or vampiric.

    I do not find myself “under attack” from energy vampires much anymore because I’ve got really effective boundaries in place and I’m okay with people deciding that they do not prefer my company (just as I allow myself to honestly assess when I feel that way about others). My SIL has some co-dependent habits that can devolve into energy vampire tendencies when she’s stressed and I just take my time responding to her when I feel it happening. If it gets too bad, I’ve found that mentioning it honestly, directly and with a neutral tone can snap her out of it.

    Post # 15
    Member
    336 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: June 2019 - City, State

    yeah, they’re everywhere in my profession(s). 
    I have learned how to energetically shield myself, how to say “no” and getting stronger with boundaries. I have learned how to avoid being gaslit into giving more than I can comfortably give, I am still learning how to give and not be drained-

    I am still working on not taking it personally if people respond with anger to my boundaries…

    it’s all a big learning process. 
    A mentor to me once said those people are my teachers, in a way. So I just try to focus on remaining kind and getting stronger, managing my own self-worth and not being a vampire myself (it’s contagious—we can get too “needy” when our energy is drained and we feel like victims.)

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