It’s not easy being an empath – even one with only mild abilities. It’s difficult to be around any type of sentient being, human or otherwise, without getting caught up in whatever emotional issues the other person is facing. Empaths are highly sensitive to the emotional energy others put out and can easily be overwhelmed and drained by the experience if they don’t take precautions and replenish themselves with alone time.

Maybe one of the worst things for an empath is coming in contact with an “Energy Vampire.” Yes, vampires are real but not all of them feed on blood. Many thrive on emotional and psychic energy and have no remorse about draining their victims dry. Even for non empaths, the energy vampire can be a terrible encounter.

You probably know or have known several energy vampires in your life – you probably just haven’t labelled them as such.

An energy vampire feeds on emotion and you can recognize their presence by the effect they have: Your eyelids become heavy, you feel unusually tired, any joy you had before the encounter is stripped from you, binging on comfort food will seem like a great idea, several encounters might make you have strange, troubling dreams. The vampire will show you no mercy and will feed upon you until you are completely drained. Then, if you manage to replenish your energy, they will return to feed upon you some more. Scary!

There are different types of energy vampires which prefer to feed on different types of emotion. Some will hunt out an appropriate victim though many will actually be drawn to you because you are giving off the correct energy pattern. If you are sad, angry, scared or hurt you might attract a vampire that feeds on that specific emotion. They will appear before you sadder, angrier, more fearful or more hurt and illicit or force a response from you – perhaps compassion, perhaps revulsion, whatever type of emotional energy the vampire desires.

The best defense is to avoid or flee from such an encounter. But sometimes this is not an option. The vampire might be someone you work with everyday, maybe a family member, or maybe some other sort of relationship that prevents you from distancing yourself from the creature.

What can you do?

First, be sure it is really a vampire and not just a one-off pathetic soul in need. Vampires are predictable with clear patterns of behavior. If it’s a vampire it is likely you will have more than one encounter and you will probably become aware of the person’s vampiric history. You might be a victim once but be prepared for secondary attempts. Next identify the type of vampire: is it trying to make you sad, angry, frustrated – what is the desired emotion the creature seeks? Once you determine that, you will be able to deny it the energy it wants.

Stay calm and maintain keen awareness. It is emotion they seek – don’t give it to them. Circumstances might require you to fulfill some sort of societal requirements by spending time with the creature but that doesn’t mean you have to feed it. Avoid having your buttons pushed. Recognize what the creature is after and when you feel yourself being drained interrupt their pattern. If they want sadness, tell them you’ve never really felt that way or tell them a bad joke to break the mood. Frustrate them with your own calmness. If they don’t leave, suddenly remember something else you have to do – but tell them you want to talk to then again, later. Next time you see them, they will be forced by their own condition to start over from the beginning. This gives you time to come up with another way to break their pattern and deny them the energy they need. Very soon they will move on to a more compliant victim and leave you alone. This will become someone else’s problem, to be sure. However, society limits the level of response we can use to defend ourselves in these situations: we cant use the proverbial wooden stake on them.

Now, if you’re an empath, even normal people can drain you of energy and fill you with unpleasant emotions.  So, empaths must train themselves to limit their exposure to other people’s issues. Practicing meditation and self-awareness is the best protection from negative emotional influences.