Garlic can't save you from the Divorce Vampire...
Mmmmhahahah... [evil laugh sound effect]
Ok, so the Divorce Vampire won't actually suck the blood from you... but they will drain you mentally and emotionally. And, frankly, you (and me both) don't have the time to be held back by the Divorce Vampire's negativity.
Signs that you have a Divorce Vampire in the midst
1) There is someone (friend or family) who always asks you how you are doing... but not in that friendly, looking for a happy story kind of way. It translates more into "your life really sucks right now, are you going to make it through another day?"
2) Whenever you express an emotion about your divorce, custody situation, money situation...whatever...they chime in immediately with "I KNOW EXACTLY HOW YOU FEEL" before you even finish the thought.
3) When you are feeling a little down... and bitching about how your new date is late... or your ex was a jerk... the Divorce Vampire will immediately respond with the most negative possible explanation instead of comforting you.
4) You start out happy-go-lucky early in the conversation and by the time you leave... You are angry, depressed or hurt.
How to escape the Divorce Vampire
Unfortunately the standard vampire deterrents (garlic, wooden stakes, crosses) don't work in this situation.
However, the typical Divorce Vampire is easily distracted and will go off on multiple tangents. So, you need to re-direct the conversations with some clever tactics.
On the phone
Start making crackling noises and say "You are cutting out...I think...losing...you." Hang up. Find some chocolate and or a glass of wine.
Out for a drink
Stumble a little bit and "spill" your drink on said vampire. It won't fizzle like holy water, but will buy you some time with the distraction.
At their house
Verbal Judo "Chop" - Ok, so here you have more distraction possibilities. When the "How are you doing...because your life really sucks?" question comes up, ignore it and ask about something else for the distraction. Pictures on the wall?...Where are the kids?...Or how about the dogs?
While the Divorce Vampire may appear to be an expert on everything, they are probably still coping with emotions just like you are. Try to understand where they are coming from. If they were truly experts, would they still be so bitter about their problems?
You might want to read more about the closely related Emotional Vampires: Dealing With People Who Drain You Dry.
Then take a moment to ask yourself, where do you want to go in life. In five or ten years, do you want to be dwelling on an angry past?
Sometimes you just have to let go of the negative things in your life. Sitting around, being angry hurts you and takes time away from the really important things - like your children.
Good luck and Happy Parenting!
Books that might be helpful...
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