Yeah, well, even as a practicing witch (mythical being as that is in some people’s minds) I do not see Edward Cullen sneaking into my room any time soon, besides, Jasper is much more to my liking, being the Southern Gentleman he is… but I am speaking of Energy Vampires here. We all know they exist; it is just the argument over the relative term that some people use for describing a certain type of person. The types of vampires are many and varied, but the three I have encountered most often are the ones I will discuss here.
Energy vampire is the term in the Pagan community for those who drain you of your energy, simply by their existence and your being around them. Sadly, everyone has one or more in their lives. They are usually fun to be around, in the beginning. They are so peppy, so full of energy, and excitement. Always ready with a joke, or a story. They can be bright and shining energies that walk into a room and instantly grab attention. Sadly, it is not until they have wormed their way into your life and become at least somewhat important that you come to realize all that energy they are brimming with has been drained from other people in their life.
The “downer/drama” variety vampires are the people who are all doom and gloom, all the time. They always have some drama going on in their life. Everything is a tragedy in their eyes. Their four-year-old child will not stop asking constant questions, she must have a brain tumor because she asks the same questions, repeatedly. The boss is giving the vampire all this responsibility at work; he must be waiting for them to fail so he can fire the vampire. Their spouse is “unfeeling”, always making them decide where to go for dinner. Even worse, the spouse brings home unexpected treats and surprises, oh my gosh, the spouse is having an affair! Even their dog proves that something is wrong by smothering them with all that unconditional love. The vampire explains, “You know, dogs can smell cancer”, so they decide that obviously they must have cancer. Oh, yes, the life of this vampire is just too torturous to be borne.
There are vampires who are the “always on alert” types. They are bouncing around and cannot sit still as they point out what is wrong with everyone around them. Their neighbor painted their house an unattractive eggshell color so they must be selling their house. Of course, this means that it is time for the vampire to repaint their house, too. Their mother/mother-in-law is seeing some new man that she has not introduced to the vampire, so something must be wrong. This is a sign that the vampire has to plan a big family party and make sure to invite the new flame to check him out, just in case. The vampire’s son does not “hang out” with the vampire any longer. As a matter of fact, ever since he started high school he avoids sitting and talking to the vampire for that first hours when he comes home from school to talk about his day, like he did in elementary school. Well, obviously, he is on drugs or running with a bad crowd, so it is time to create a calendar of events for them to attend together. The vampire’s best friend went to the movies Friday night, but not with the vampire, as normal. Instead, the best friend took a date. This must mean that the vampire has not been spending enough time with the best friend and the friend is acting out. Obviously, the current weekly schedule of Friday night movie, Sunday afternoon brunch, Tuesday BFFs only coffee klatch and Thursday night book club are not enough time together. Noting in the PDA: Must do more with BFF. This statement followed by no less than three exclamation points, of course.
Finally, we come to the type of vampire that is my personal favorite to want to thwack in the back of the head with the palm of my hand. HARD! The “all about me” variety vampires are my bane in life. This one cannot understand that not everyone agrees the vampire is perfect and wonderful in all ways. They think their life is so much more exciting than everyone else’s, let’s talk about it. Their ideas, so much better, so everything has to be done the vampire’s way. Oh, are you sick? Well, I feel much worse, so you should feel sorry for me even though you have terminal cancer and I only have an infected hangnail, after all, you can get morphine and all other types of serious pain relieving drugs but I just have to suffer, types of vampire. Every penny they earn goes to pamper them. They have a spouse and children, but the vampire is the one getting that special $40 facial cleanser or their daily $8 coffee treats due to their “I deserve it after having to deal with the spouse and kids” mentality. Yet, if you ask me, it is the kids and spouse who need the treats after dealing with the vampire. Meanwhile, the spouse and kids do without actual necessities because the money went to the vampires “treats”, instead. People decide to go to lunch together, vampire says they will go too, but adds, “Who is paying for mine? I went shopping the other day and am short until payday.” These vampires see everything as a “what can I get out of this” or “who can I use today” opportunity instead of a “How can I help others to enjoy my company” opportunity. The want everyone to do things for them, compliment them, tell them how smart, beautiful, handsome, amazing they are, yet they do nothing or anyone other than themselves. Then, when you make it clear that you are through with them, they act all hurt, while checking you out under their eyelashes to see if you are feeling guilty enough that they can use it to their advantage.
Ultimately, it is our choice whether we want to have the energy vampires in our lives. We alone can decide if we want to associate with the vampires or kick them to the curb. Granted sometimes the vampire comes in a “package deal” with someone who is actually worth spending time with and that you enjoy being around. Then it becomes more difficult. The decision is yours however, as to how you relate to the vampire.
You may take a soft line approach, try to talk to them about their vampirism, and try to show them a better way to behave, one that will not alienate the people in their lives. Show them that there are other ways of handling things than sucking the life force out of everyone around them. Help them work on their problems and even soften the blow by ask them to help you work on your problems. We all have issues that are in our blind spots, after all, things we need to work on but that we do not necessarily know that we need to work on. Let them help you as a blow softener.
When necessary, you may need to write out a plan, arrange it in a systematic manner, and take it one-step at a time. Work on each step until it is second nature to the vampire to corral those pesky, continually annoying natures and improve the way they interact with others. Show them how much better they can get along with others when they are not draining everyone around them of their will to live.
If worse comes to worst, you try everything you can think of and they refuse to listen, refuse to try a new approach, or refuse to even care about the way they are and how they make people feel when they are around, then it may be time to toss them from your life. If they are part of a package deal and you cannot toss them entirely, then limit your exposure to them. Ignore the comments designed to draw your attention to them. Do not allow them to draw you into their energy sucking spirals. If necessity calls for it, bind them with a spell from having an effect on your life. As an eclectic witch, I am not gung ho about binding spells, but even an eclectic witch knows that there are times to bind and you have to be ready to step up to the plate and swing hard when the time comes!