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Emotional Vampires: Dealing with People Who Drain You Dry, Revised and Expanded 2nd Edition Paperback – June 15, 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 107 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Albert J. Bernstein, Ph. D., is a clinical psychologist, speaker, columnist, and business consultant. Dr. Bernstein is also the author of Dinosaur Brains, Neanderthals at Work, and Sacred Bull.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 2 edition (June 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071790950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071790956
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,479 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dr. Al Bernstein is a Clinical Psychologist, Business Consultant and author. Over the past 30 years, he has worked with individual clients of all kinds and consulted with businesses large and small. His writing reflects the variety of his experiences as well as his humor and solid common sense. His books offer step-by-step instructions for dealing with difficult people and situations. Two of them, Dinosaur Brains, on the role of instincts in business, and Emotional Vampires on personality disorders are considered classics in their respective fields.
Born, raised and educated in Virginia, Dr. Al now lives in Oregon with his wife, children, granddaughter, two dogs and three cats.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have already posted a review of the original version of "Emotional Vampires" that has helped at least one person in their purchasing decision. Now, with regard to the revised and expanded Second Edition, I also give it 5 stars and encourage anyone who finds themselves navigating the shark-infested waters of living with/working with/associating with a person afflicted with a personality disorder to order it right away and study it like a Talmudic scholar.

Which version should you buy? Buy the original version if you are just starting out in learning about personality disorders. The original version is written for the novice, and shows each personality type defined and described to perfection. Dr. Bernstein will give you tips at the end of each personality type for dealing with their tantrums, tirades, schemes, alternate states of reality, hypnosis, paranoid delusions, aloofness, passive-aggressive assaults, and eyebrow-raising verbal cues.

However, if you already have some experience diagnosing personality disorders and want a more in-depth look, then I encourage you to get the Second Edition. Here you will find a wealth of information on drama queens, bullies, control freaks, daredevils, used car salesmen (not the actual, but maybe also the actual), lovable rogues, gossip queens, the terminally depressed, narcissistic legends, tiger moms, puritans and perfectionists.

Whew! The list is long and tiring, but think about it, if you don't have this trusty book hidden underneath your mattress, how could you possibly navigate a world full of Emotional Vampires? And in the age of the Kardashians, Facebook, iphones, botox, Paris Hilton, and Narcissistic politicians in high office, there may be more of THEM than there are of US.
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Format: Paperback
This book was riveting in that we ALL have these people in our lives - so we ALL should read it. We might be working with them, living with them, children of them, spouses to them. Either we can't or won't believe that people can be this way and they are so alternatingly charming and pleasant and then cruel that they actually are training us like lab rats to exhibit the behavior they want from us ... and we stay around because we somehow want to save them from themselves. Women especially - READ it - and then make your daughters read it! Know about them before you are reading it to understand what just happened to you! I started out with highlighter but gave up because I was highlighting everything as though the book was just about me and my specific situation. Good stuff. I've shared it with friends who are caught in the world of an emotional vampire and they thanked me. Don't hesitate. You'll swear the author is writing about someone you know.
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Format: Paperback
Do you have people in your life who seem to drain your energy? Do they need your attention all the time and expect you to put their needs before everything else in your life? Do they question you minutely about what you've been doing, who you've spoken to and where you want?

If you can answer yes to all those questions you may have one or more emotional vampires in your life. Like the fictional blood-sucking variety they may seem more attractive and more fun than anyone else you've ever known. But you need to be aware that this is just the surface and something much darker lurks underneath.

This fascinating, amusing and frightening book will help you to understand the vampire in your life and may help you to salvage a bit of your own life from the wreckage before you become just an accessory to the vampire. The author divides emotional vampires into categories - antisocial vampires, histrionic vampires, narcissistic vampires, obsessive-compulsive vampires, paranoid vampires. Some people may show tendencies from all these categories and all human being may exhibit some of the symptoms and behaviours at times.

The author demonstrates by means of everyday scenarios how vampires manipulate you into doing what they want you to. They put you in the wrong so that you feel obliged to help them and they twist what you say and use it against you. The only way to deal with them is to play them at their own game and stand your ground even if means ending your relationship with the vampire. Even if you don't think there is a vampire in your life at present this is still interesting reading if you are interested in psychology.
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Format: Paperback
Berstein outlines various categories of emotional vampires and links them to a personality disorder. Examples of the different personality disorders varied from extreme, perhaps intentionally exaggerated, to over-simplified. My review is about the narcissists, since that was the personality disorder in which I was interested. All the other personality disorders, he made seem as if they were self-defeating, no need to pay them much mind, in my opinion.

Berstein talked about different types of narcissists, which I began to feel was from a less empirical source and a more personal one, particularly the Narcissistic super star, whom he regarded quite highly. He seemed to be writing a manuscript on how to deal with a (super star) narcissist in a way that I believe a narcissist would like to be dealt with, but not necessarily healthy for the non-narcissist. For example, he talked about narcissists being behind the success of today -- without success there is no narcissist and vice versa. The appropriate ways to deal with a narcissist then is to compliment him frequently, only align your needs with his, and then present all your desires in that fashion -- most literature describes this way of interacting with a narcissist in a mockingly fashion, like: if you are with a narcissist, be prepared to make it all about him, deny your own needs, have no sense of self, etc. (like you get the feeling that THIS way of interacting with a narcissist is masochistic, wrong) -- but he meant it literally as advice.
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