Emotional Vampires: Signs, Types, Tips

intro emotional vampire

Emotional vampires are those people who drain your energy and make you feel bad about yourself. They can be difficult to recognize because they take different forms, but there are common types of emotional vampires that we all encounter in our lives. In this blog post, we will discuss the signs, types, and tips for protecting yourself from these frustrating individuals.

What Is An Emotional Vampire?

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An emotional vampire is someone who makes you feel bad about yourself. They drain your energy and make it difficult for you to think or act normally around them. If they are family members, friends, coworkers, bosses, partners, etc., the damage that these vampires can inflict on us in our relationships can be extremely damaging.

What Damage Can They Cause to You?

Emotional vampires can damage your self-esteem and make you feel like there is something wrong with you. They may also try to undermine your opinions, sabotage important projects or relationships in your life, convince others that they are right even when their logic makes no sense – basically anything that creates chaos or confusion for those who come into contact with them.

Remember

  • They need to be treated like vampires because no matter how nice you are to them, it will never be enough.
  • They have an insatiable appetite for your energy and they can’t live without feeding off of others’ emotions to feel alive themselves.

NOTE: The good news is that by being aware of the different types of emotional vampires and their signs, you can protect yourself from them.

5 Signs That You’ve Encountered an Emotional Vampire

There are five telltale signs that you’ve encountered an emotional vampire in your life:

  • Always need to be the center of attention
  • Are never wrong, even when their logic makes no sense.
  • Put you down and make you feel bad about yourself
  • Are always negative, complain a lot, and everything is drama for them
  • When they speak their words sow doubt in your mind about yourself or situations that concern both of you (sabotage)

If any of these signs ring true then what has happened is that an emotional vampire has found you and is feeding off of your energy.

The Types of Emotional Vampires And Helpful Tips

There are different types of emotional vampires and recognizing which one is impacting your life is the first step in protecting yourself.

Characteristics Of The Narcissist

narcissist

  • They believe that they are superior to everyone else and expect you to treat them as such.
  • You aren’t worthy of their time, attention, or affection.
  • Their entire self-worth is based on what other people think about them so they will do anything it takes to get others’ approval.
  • They love themselves first but they expect you to love them back equally.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Narcissist

The best way to deal with the narcissist is by setting boundaries and sticking to them no matter how much they push your buttons.

  • Don’t give in to their need for attention or let yourself get pulled into one of their pity games because that is exactly what they want from you.
  • Don’t give them your power so that they can feed off of it and don’t let their words hurt you because, in the end, everything is always about them anyway.

Characteristics Of The Critic

critic

  • You are never good enough for them.
  • Constantly point out flaws in everything you do, say, or think.
  • Try to convince others that their negative view of your actions is accurate and they question your judgment on important life decisions.
  • Make it clear that they know better than you what is right or best for you.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Critic

The best way to deal with the critic is not to feed into their need for attention.

  • Don’t argue with them, don’t try to defend yourself, and don’t give them any power over you. Simply walk away or change the subject whenever they start to criticize you.

If that’s not possible, then confront them head-on and stand up for yourself. Let them know that their words are hurtful and that you don’t appreciate the way they make you feel.

Characteristics Of The Victim

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  • They play the victim role in every situation and always have a sad story to share.
  • They use pity to get what they want from you and make you feel guilty for not helping them more.
  • Everything is always someone else’s fault and they are never responsible for their problems or choices.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Victim

The best way to protect yourself from the victim is by setting boundaries.

  • Let them know that you are not their therapist and that you can’t solve all of their problems for them.
  • Don’t give in to their pity games and don’t let them guilt you into doing things that you don’t want to do.
  • Be assertive and let them know that you will not tolerate their behavior.

Characteristics Of The Controller

controller

  • Want to be in charge of everything and everyone.
  • Micro-manage your life, tell you what to do, and how to do it.
  • Are not happy unless they are the ones making all the decisions for themselves and those around them.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Controller

The best way to protect yourself from the controller is by setting boundaries.

  • Let them know that you are not their assistant and that they can’t control your life or decisions.

If this doesn’t work, then confront them head-on about their controlling behavior in front of other people (if possible) so it’s clear to everyone how unreasonable they are being.

Characteristics Of The Gossip

the gossip

  • They love to gossip about others and stir up drama.
  • They are judgmental of everyone, even you – they think that they can tell how good or bad a person someone is just by looking at them based on their clothes, makeup, etc.
  • Their gossip reflects badly on those who trust them and highlights the fact that anything said to this type of emotional vampire is never safe.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Gossip

The best way to protect yourself from gossip is by distancing yourself from them.

  • Don’t share personal information with them, don’t confide in them, and don’t trust anything they say about other people.

If you can’t do that, then confront them head-on about their behavior and let them know that it makes you uncomfortable and that it’s unacceptable.

Characteristics Of The Drama Queen/King

drama

  • Everything is a huge deal to them and they love playing the victim role.
  • They constantly create chaos and confusion in their lives as well as in the lives of those around them.
  • Drama queens and kings always have an emotional reaction to everything – there is no middle ground for them.
  • If you can identify which of these emotional vampires is impacting your life, then the next step is to learn how to protect yourself from their damaging influence.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Drama Queen/King

The best way to protect yourself from the drama queen/king is by setting boundaries.

  • Let them know that you don’t want to be involved in their games and that their behavior is not acceptable.

If this doesn’t work, then confront them head-on about how their behavior is negatively impacting your life and make it clear that it needs to stop.

Characteristics Of The Know-It-All

know it all

  • They always have to be right and are not interested in listening to anyone else’s opinion.
  • They love to give their opinion on everything, even if they know nothing about the topic at hand.
  • Their lectures can feel like verbal abuse and their tone is often condescending.

Tips To Protect Yourself From The Know-It-All

The best way to protect yourself from the know-it-all is by distancing yourself from them.

  • Don’t ask for their opinion, don’t confide in them, and don’t trust anything they say.

If you can’t do that, then confront them head-on about their behavior and let them know that it makes you uncomfortable and that it’s unacceptable.

NOTE: It’s important to remember that just because someone is critical of you, it doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you – they’re simply projecting their insecurities onto others.

A Few Things To Remember

There are a few things you can do to protect yourself from emotional vampires:

Set boundaries and limits

Let them know that you will not tolerate being put down or made to feel bad about yourself.

Don’t engage with them

If they start giving you a hard time, walk away or end the conversation.

Stay positive

Surround yourself with positive, supportive people who want you to succeed in all areas of your life.

Be gracious

Even if the person is being critical or judgmental towards you, see them for what they are and don’t let their negative words impact how you feel about yourself.

Don’t take their criticisms personally

Emotional vampires love to criticize to feel powerful and make others feel small. Just because they’re attacking you doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with you.

Maintain your sense of self-worth

Know your value and don’t let anyone diminish it.

Psychotherapists On Emotional Vampires

Therapists often see emotional vampires as clients. While they can be difficult to deal with, there are ways to manage them and help them learn how to cope better in their relationships.

If you find that you are struggling to deal with an emotional vampire, then it might be helpful to talk to a therapist. They can help you understand why this person has such a negative impact on your life and give you some tools for dealing with them.

Conclusion

Emotional vampires can be a real challenge to deal with and they can often do a lot of damage to our psyche if we’re not careful. We must learn how to protect ourselves from their negative influence and stay positive, even though they may always seem to bring us down.

If you know someone who is a potential emotional vampire, be mindful of how they make you feel and the conversations that you have with them. It’s never easy to deal with an emotional vampire. But if it wasn’t for people like this in our lives, we wouldn’t grow as individuals or appreciate those who make us feel good.

A Word From Mantra Care

Your mental health — your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.

At Mantra Care, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depressionanxietystressrelationshipOCDLGBTQ, and PTSD. You can take our mental health test. You can also book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.

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