I bet you’ve known someone who was so needy that he or she seemed to want… no… demand… all of your attention. You felt tired, drained after almost every encounter.

  You may have been… or are… the victim of an “EMOTIONAL VAMPIRE.”

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  These people can and will suck you dry, if you let them.

If there is still such a person in your life, I know, you know that something’s got to change, or that relationship will also be doomed.

 When the  VAMPIRE is a spouse, you’ve got a lot at stake. Before your connection dies completely, it may be in your best interest to add a few tools to your survival kit.

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 Those struggling to love an EMOTIONAL VAMPIRE would do well to read Dr. Judith Orloff’s wonderful book. <Emotional Freedom: Liberate Yourself From Negative Emotions and Transform Your Life (Three Rivers Press, 2011.

 Dr. Orloff says Vampires fall into different categories and outlines some things you might do to help them and yourself to change things up a bit.

 VANPIRE #1. The NAGGER is the person who cuts you no slack, the onewho makes repetitive, annoying demands.

      WHAT YOU CAN DO: Naggers can be re-trained. That’s the good news. The bad news is that it takes lots of patience… and practice.

Your job is to set clear limits in a kind but firm tone. You might remind your VAMPIRE how much you love him and then talk about how much easier it would be for you to comply with his demands if you didn’t feel so pressured. Lobby to have him/her back off some and when he does… reward him by paying some attention to that which he is asking for.

 VAMPIRE 2. THE VICTIM/COMPLAINER thinks that no matter happens, the world is against him/her.

Annoyingly,  they bombard you with “YES, BUTS,” after you listen, sympathize and attempt to often helpful suggestions.

 WHAT YOU CAN DO: Acknowledge that you understand how unhappy she is about whatever is the issue of the moment.

Listen, as you usually do and then, in the name of love, work to re-direct the conversation. Make it clear that you don’t think it is constructive to just go over and over the same thing. Suggest a brain-storming session.

 VAMPIRE 3. The Criticizer makes you think you can do nothing right. He has a constant critique about everything you do. You end up feeling guilty.

 WHAT YOU CAN DO: Set off a  “LOVE BOMB”. Even if you are steaming, you can diffuse negativity. Recognize how you understand he is trying to help, but assert clearly how it is so much easier to hear when he is a little less critical.

        VAMPIRE 4. The Self-Obsessed Drainer makes everything about themselves. They may downplay your feelings and interests as they steer the conversation back to them. Some of these types are true narcissists.

 WHAT YOU CAN DO: Give your loved one the benefit of the doubt. He may just be going through a period of self-absorption, like everyone does, from time to time.

Help your loved one to shift out of his/her temporary self-centeredness by reminding them how much you would appreciate if she spent some time listening to you.

Most people are unaware when they are becoming self-obsessed, but when gently reminded, change can occur.

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 THINK ABOUT THIS:

If you are in a love-relationship, set clear limits and make sure to claim time for yourself. You know what works. Be it music, meditation, exercise or a brief escape, the result can also be restorative to your mate… and your kids… and even to friends who you value, should they become too needy and vampire-like.


Thanks For Visiting,

Email Dr. Linda

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