The Donor-Vampire Relationship
Feeding is not inherently sexual, but it can certainly have an erotic element. The VEWRS found that while many vampires have a romantic or sexual relationship with their donor (or donors), even more find donors among trusted friends or social networks. Donor-vampire bonds often reside somewhere between platonic friendship and romantic relationship.
Crystalis, 32, from Phoenix, describes herself as a "hybrid" vampire, meaning that she can feed on either blood or energy. According to her there are, "a surprisingly high number of people that are enthralled by the concept of being fed from." Vampires do not take on new donors lightly. Blood feeding, in particular, requires a great deal of trust, and donors must first get screened for diseases.
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Diss, 35, is a blood donor from Switzerland who shares a romantic relationship with her vampire. She explained how the vampire/donor relationship creates vulnerability for both parties. "The vampire trusts the donor with sensitive knowledge about them, and the donor trusts the vampire to injure their body with blades or needles."
Diss became interested in sharing blood with vampires while reading Anne Rice. She later found out about real vampires through a television documentary. Diss found her way to the community and became Cynsanity's lover—even though she never expected to be anything more than a donor. She described blood as the most carnal—literally of the flesh—of gifts. Cynsanity, 25, from Austria said of their relationship, "It is very weird to be with someone who actually wants to be cut and fed from. Honestly, it's freaking me out a bit."
According to Diss, taking blood can run the gamut from essentially a medical procedure to a profoundly erotic experience. Vampire/donor couples use knives or razors for a more sensual experience, while less personal methods of feeding involve little physical contact and may include medical equipment such as lancets or syringes. Some vampires believe vital fluids such as semen, menstrual blood and breast milk can serve as a substitute for blood. Vampires that feed in this fashion rarely have a detached relationship with their donors.
Unlike sanguinarians, psychic vampires can feed without the donor ever realizing it. Through a technique called "ambient feeding," psychic vampires simply soak up energy from the environment. Even ordinary people experience a buzz of collective energy at social events like parties, concerts, and some religious services—for psychic vampires, these are ideal locales for ambient feeding.
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Most psychic vampires feel it is unethical to take energy without the donor's consent. Consensual psychic feeding can include physical contact similar to a sensual massage. Sex is also an good source of psychic energy. Many vampires describe this as "tantric feeding," because the union it creates is seen as mystical. Tantric Sex 101