Signs Of An Emotional Vampire

July 10, 2019  |  
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emotional vampire traits

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We all have one in our life: an emotional vampire. Maybe you didn’t even know that’s quite what the person was, but now that you hear the term, you get this little heat on the back of your neck or the hair on your arms goes up and you realize there is an emotional vampire in your midst. Don’t feel too terrible for letting one into your life. Like I said, we all have one (or a few) so it’s not just the weak or the naïve who let it happen. In fact, if you do have such a person in your life, it’s probably because you possess some very good traits, like you’re a good listener and you’re very empathetic. While good friends celebrate and nurture those traits in you, emotional vampires prey on them. They suck the life out of you, and they gain access to do so through those very traits of generosity and empathy. Here are signs of an emotional vampire. If you notice one in your life, it may be time to wear a garlic necklace. Or at least stop answering her calls. That’s a type of friend to be rid of. Luckily, unlike real vampires, emotional vampires don’t have eternal access to your home once you invite them in.

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How are you never gets a simple answer

You can never just ask, “How are you?” and get a, “Pretty good!” or “I’m fine, thanks!” If you ask how this person is, you better buckle up for a detailed breakdown of every single thing that is currently bothering this person.

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They rarely ask how you are

Meanwhile, this individual rarely asks you how you’re doing. You can end the interaction and realize that the conversation was all about this person. If you think about it, this person is completely unaware of major changes and updates in your life, because she never leaves time for you to speak. Furthermore, her life updates are always so tragic and all-consuming that she leaves you feeling like it would be inappropriate to share your good news.

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If they do, they relate it back to themselves

If this person does ask how you are, you don’t get more than a sentence or two out until she relates your update back to herself. Everything you say reminds her of something happening in her life.

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No interaction is brief—they make you run late

You can never just have a brief and simple interaction with this person. This person doesn’t know how to do casual pleasantries. She is either silent or she makes you feel like you’ve opened Pandora’s box because what’s usually on her mind is the state of the world or how unfair everything is. Talking to her means you’ll be running late after.

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At first approach, they’re never smiling

If you really think about it, you realize that you see this person walking around moping and looking sad all of the time. Individuals who are mostly emotionally well have a neutral look on their face while walking around, if not even a smile on their face. But this person is always consumed with thoughts of self-pity and despair, and it shows on her face when she isn’t even thinking about it.

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They corner you in social settings

This person needs constant one-on-one attention and doesn’t do well in social settings. At a party, she’ll corner you and drag you into a very intense emotional conversation. The party will end and you’ll realize you barely got to talk to anyone else.

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They lob out vague comments that beg questioning

She’ll make comments that beg further questioning. You’ll say something like, “Nice day huh?” and she’ll say, “Sure. Just wish I could enjoy it…” And here we go.

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The they fish for attention

This person fishes for attention. Her social media statuses say things like, “Feeling down” or “Nobody understands me.” She just begs for people to reach out and ask what is wrong. But she doesn’t even look for quality attention from close friends: she just wants any attention from the thousands of strangers online.

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They key in on the negative point in your story

If you tell a story that is, overall, a happy story, she’ll key in on the one negative part and want to talk more about that. You could tell her about your vacation that was amazing, but the car rental place cheated you on a couple of bucks, and she just fixates on that and how dishonest people are.

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And make you feel it’s worse than it is

In fact, when you’re actually rather unfazed by some small bump in the road, she makes you feel like it’s worse than it really is. She brings up all the bad elements of it that you hadn’t even thought of.

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They’re silent when everyone is happy

When everybody in a group is laughing and having a good time, she becomes noticeably silent. She doesn’t participate in the conversation if it is positive. Her brain just doesn’t skew that way so she has nothing to contribute.

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When you say goodbye, you’re sadder than before

When you end interactions with this person, you feel sadder and more tired than you did before. You feel depleted of energy. You feel cynical about the world.

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And they’re happier than before

Meanwhile, this person entered the conversation with a frown and is now smiling. That’s because she unloaded her negativity onto you, and she sucked up all of your good energy.

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They always assume the worst

This person’s brain will accelerate any situation to the worst-case scenario. If, for example, a new neighbor who is a musician moves in, she’ll start talking about how his practice will be loud and he’ll probably have odd characters over for band practice and disturb everyone’s peace. All this over seeing a guitar.

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You don’t crave interactions with them

You never think of seeing this person—she just reaches out and you see her because you’re available. But on your own, you wouldn’t miss her. That’s because she doesn’t bring you joy or energy.

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