Yes, they really are out there. I’ve met several! Energy vampires are just waiting for a weak moment. Energy vampires are those you allow to “cross your line.” They usually have no conscious awareness they are “stepping across the line.” That is why I like the word vampires: energy vampires go about life “unconscious of their effect on others” and if allowed to, will suck you dry.
Energy vampires push boundaries. Having clear boundaries is essential to a balanced lifestyle. The placement of boundaries is directly related to self-concept and feelings of self-worth. Someone with weak emotional boundaries can end up feeling drained and wounded by others even if no fang marks are visible. Some examples of ‘fang marks’ can be:
- Excess criticism. It doesn’t even have to be about you to drain you, “Did you see the way that waitress treated me?”
- Personal attack. “You’re stupid to think that.” “You can’t do that!”
- Misplacement of responsibility. Commonly called guilt, “How come you didn’t stop me!”
Boundary setting problems come from distorted views about control and responsibility. Our perceptions and expectations will affect the kind and degree of boundaries set with individuals. Many are good at setting certain boundaries with certain people, yet cannot set boundaries with others. Setting boundaries can produce feelings of guilt and emotional debt. People with blurred boundaries may feel:
- it is ‘mean’ to hold people responsible for their choices and behaviors
- the other person will not make the right choice
- the need to control, protect or shelter someone
Sometimes people do have burdens too big to bear. They need our strength, time, support and knowledge. Sometimes they just think the burdens are too big to bear. Good boundaries support and encourage others without carrying them.
Any confusion of responsibility and ownership is a problem of blurred boundaries. Blurred boundaries can cause people to lose track of what belongs to them and what belongs to the other person. Surrender the need to control everything and everybody in life.
Similar to the concept of physical property lines, the owner of the property is responsible for what happens within that property. Non-owners are not responsible. Remember, behaviors have consequences…. Experience your consequences and let others experience theirs. Protect your Self. Energy vampires will suck you dry if you let them.
Have a great day in whatever your adventure.
To Life! To Success!