Self, Heartbreak

The One Toxic 'Friend' In Your Life You Need To Get Rid Of IMMEDIATELY

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toxic friend

One of the most malevolent of bloodsuckers, this person is vindictive and cuts you down with no consideration for your feelings. Driven by envy, competition, or severe insecurity they deflate your energy with just the right insult. The jabs of a toxic friend can be so hurtful and are hard to get them out of your head. 

Whoppers my patients have endured include: “Darling, gray hair is so unattractive;” “Forget him. He’s way out of your league;” “Don’t be absurd, you’re not material for that job!” Some are unapologetically bent on bloodlust; others are more passive-aggressive.

This fiend uses their own darkness to maim and insinuates that darkness in you, a maneuver they probably learned from their parents at the dinner table. Energetic fallout from these vampires is nuclear, leaves you sickened by siphoning vital energy. Excessive exposure can cause illnesses from chronic fatigue to depression.

The Go-For-The-Jugular Vampire is most damaging when they have you cornered. The place you least want to be is stuck in a car with them.

The noxious vibes from their comments pollute that closed environment. You, the recipient, can practically feel them congealing in your arteries. Research has shown that driving brings out horrific behavior; cars are a set-up for road rage, aggression, and family warfare. A common form of spousal abuse is for one partner to verbally incinerate the other in a car, and start driving erratically. Heed this warning. If you suspect someone belongs to this vampire species, don’t even consider getting into that vehicle!

Is there a way to learn how to stop an emotional abuser? Move heaven and earth to eliminate them from your life. There’s no gain to being exposed to such venom. However, if they must stay, never stoop to their level by countering meanness with meanness. That only inflames their power. Instead, do your best not to take their poison personally — the toxic friend is an injured person who pitifully can’t do any better.

In a temporary situation, say with a pipsqueak despot who’s filling in for your boss, feel free to shield to your heart’s content and not go for the bait. If we’re talking about your mother, who’s there to stay, go further by firmly asserting, “Mom, we need to treat each other with respect. Your remark about ___ was unkind. I won’t permit you to treat me that way.”

Don’t cave in. Limit contact or enforce other consequences if she persists. A realistic expectation is to gradually modify her behavior. I also suggest the following tactics from my book, Positive Energy to further diffuse vindictiveness. They can be used with other emotional vampire types as well.

Here's how to stop an emotional abuser, remove negative vibes and protect your energy.

1. Break eye contact to stop the transfer of toxins.

Use the breath to retrieve your life force. Let it function like a vacuum cleaner. With each inhalation visualize yourself power-suctioning back every drop of energy that’s being snatched from you. Keep inhaling until the job is done. Do this in the presence of a vampire or later on.

2. Exhale negative vibes out the back of your lower spine.

There are spaces between your lumbar vertebrae, natural exit points for energy. Touch the area; get a feel for the anatomy. When toxicity accumulates, expel it through these spaces. Envision dark gunk leaving your body. Then breathe in fresh air and sunlight, a quick revitalizer.

3. Jump in a bath or shower to cleanse negative vibes and prevent further drain.

If you are feeling particularly drained by a toxic friend, add Epson salts or sea salts to the water. If you are in the shower you can rub sea salt on your skin and then wash it off.  Drink plenty of water to flush toxic energy from your system too. Also, you can burn sage where this vampire has been to purify every nook and cranny. (This works well in hotel rooms when a prior guest’s leftover vibes feel smarmy, but use only a little so you don’t trigger the smoke alarm!)

Practicing these strategies to learn how to stop an emotional abuser will preserve your energy, short- and long-term. But also expect to bump into one pesky cosmic certainty: we energetically attract what we haven’t worked out in ourselves. So if you keep getting swarmed by a particular vampire, honestly examine why.

From experience, I’ve seen that I can guard my energy until lost Atlantis rises, but if I don’t strive to heal childhood patterns associated with unhealthy relationships the same vampires will just keep hovering. Conquering unresolved insecurities strengthens your energy field, reducing a drainer’s power.


Judith Orloff, MD is the author of The Empath's Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People. Dr. Orloff is a psychiatrist and an empath who combines the pearls of traditional medicine with cutting edge knowledge of intuition, energy, and spirituality. She is on the UCLA Psychiatric Clinical Faculty also specializes in treating empaths and highly sensitive people in her private practice. To learn more about Dr. Orloff’s book tour schedule, and to sign up for her Empath Support Newsletter visit

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This article was originally published at Psychology Today. Reprinted with permission from the author.