The Undateable Undead: Part Two
So, you made it through the Big Three and no warning bells sounded? Congratulations! Your modern-minded, commitment-ready vamp man who drinks sustainably and humanely sourced blood through a bendy straw just might be the fiend of your dreams! But before you close the lid on that king-sized coffin, make sure the rest of the world is on board with your relationship, or you will live to regret it. Or probably not live, but definitely regret it in the brief half-second before your painful obliteration. Here are three ways your loved ones and his can put your love six feet under.
4. His family does not not approve.
Is anything more stressful than meeting your new boyfriend’s family? Sure! Try meeting your new boyfriend’s carnivorous family who can barely restrain themselves from sticking to your neck like so many predatory vacuum hoses. Think about this: he’s having trouble not killing you every time he gets peckish, and he’s in love with you. Why would they hold back, especially when they probably disapprove of you?
Hostile vampire families (or coven, as they were called back before they started this whole “we’re trying to be nice” schtick) commonly derail the relationships of those members who date outside the species. It makes sense when you think about from the vampire perspective. As a vampire, you want to guard the secret of your existence closely. You can’t have the neighbors finding out you’re a vicious killer just because your brother started waving his fangs around to impress the ladies. Next thing you know, you’re under attack from the local cops/Van Helsings/werewolves. Also, would you want your vampire relative dating a human? No. You would think, “Why is Jeff with her? He could do so much better with, I don’t know, maybe another all-powerful, beautiful, rich, immortal vampire. Why is his self-esteem so low that he feels he needs to date weak little humans? It’s awkward when she looks at me like I’m about to eat her, especially since I am. Plus, it’s SO embarrassing when I bring Vladimir over and she’s here. He’s super-cool about it, but I know he’s thinking my family are such losers!”
If his family object to you, expect to have to prove yourself by surviving all manner of psychological torment, up to and including watching his mom kill multiple fluffy bunnies, pledging to never reveal their existence no matter who gets hurt, and surviving a game of magic baseball. Even if you do manage to earn their approval, you’ll still have to make sure you never get a papercut, or your future brother-in-law will go all brush-shredder on it. You can’t win.
And really, should you even care what they think? Let’s ponder the creepiness of the average vampire family or, as I like to call it, ultimate Stockholm Syndrome. The family begins with one lonely vampire, also known as a human adult whose life and very species was stolen from him/her. Torn from the fabric of human society but unable to fit in with other vampires due to some moral crisis over drinking blood, this orphan sets about living the right way (blood bags/fluffy bunnies), and in time solves his or her crisis of loneliness by making another vampire, often finding a sick human to change in order to allay the guilt: Well, he was going to die, anyway! Once the new vampire wakes up, the no-longer lonely vampire sets about the task of parenting. Over time, the group will grow as they continue to adopt new family members at the rate of a crazy cat lady. What’s wrong with this picture? First, lonely vampire is perpetuating the cycle of life-stealing and creating a race of vampires nostalgic for their humanity, who will go on to make stupid choices like dating girls too young for them and romanticizing the human ability to die. Second, all the vampires in the family are adults who had their own families, and yet they are perfectly okay with having a second childhood complete with new parents! Would you be okay with someone turning you into a different species without your permission and then asking you to call her “Mom”? No, because you’re sane. Vampires are not.
In other words, don’t feel you need the approval of this century’s Most Attractive Yet Pale Dysfunctional Family, but don’t even bother trying to date one of the family members without it. If you feel bad about having to break up just because his little sister threatened you with a much deeper facial peel than those offered by aestheticians, perk up. Your time has not been wasted. When you fall for a nice human guy whose mom hates you because you’re not Jewish/white/a ninja/etc, you’ll be so over-prepared she won’t even see you coming until you’re past the altar.
5. Your family and/or friends do not approve.
If you’ve ever dated anyone, then you’ve probably dated someone your friends and/or family didn’t like. Maybe they even liked the person but thought you needed someone different, someone better, or someone employed. You’re no stranger to the situation, and you know the appropriate response is always, “I’m so lucky you guys care so much about me, but you have to let me make my own choices.” Right?
Well, usually, yes. However, there’s a difference between “you need someone more successful” and “you need someone more living.” No one will be okay with you dating a “reformed vampire.” That’s like dating a “reformed serial killer” or “reformed mob boss” or “reformed figure skater”: one little adjective isn’t keeping them from hearing the noun that follows.
Even if you don’t tell them he’s a vampire, you’re still going to have trouble explaining that no, your new boyfriend can’t go with you to your 4-year-old cousin’s T-ball game because he’ll combust/sparkle like a disco ball/grow boils the size of gerbils the second sunlight touches him, and he can’t come over for your mom’s pot roast because even garlic powder will cause black smoke to shoot out his nostrils, and no the wedding ceremony will NOT be Catholic because even a slight sprinkle of holy water will cause his face to do that thing a hot skillet does when you put it under a running faucet. Also, I don’t care what vow of secrecy you made to his cult (excuse me, family), not telling your family they’re hanging out with a vampire is a jerk move. That’s like bringing home a man-eating Grizzly bear on a rhinestone leash and telling them, “Oh, he’s a Saint Bernard-a-doodle. He’s just a little oversized.” Plus, what are your true motivations for not telling? Are you really trying to protect him, or are you trying to avoid telling everyone about your choices? If it’s the second one, then maybe you are making bad choices.
If your loved ones ordinarily wouldn’t schedule an intervention unless you had turned into a crack whore, listen to them. No, they don’t “just not understand” your love. Rather, they do understand that you’re in the grip of a dangerous creature who might wind up killing you, or possibly them. Trust me: they are the only sane people left in this equation. And speaking of insane people….
6. His ex-girlfriends are immortal. And they HATE you.
Remember that time you started going out with Billy Gillespie in 10th grade, and his ex-girlfriend Kathy Harrison found out and shoved your face into your lunch plate so hard your retainer broke? Okay, hold onto that image, but replace Billy with the vampire William, replace Kathy Harrison with the vampire Ekaterina, replace your lunch plate with a brick wall, and finally, replace your retainer with your entire head. Get the picture?
I know you’re his one true love, but understand that your vampire boyfriend has had hundreds of years to go around the block a few times, and he probably fed that same line to all his other ladies of the evening. (Vampiresses, that is, not hookers. Or maybe them, too.) Since he’s had so many lifetimes to stack up the exes, you can expect jealous undead bimbos to routinely attack, kidnap, and torture you simply because they’ve spent hundreds of years stewing over the breakup instead of just getting highlights and moving on with their lives. Hell hath no fury like a demon woman scorned. Do you really want to look over your shoulder for the rest of your life? Are you going to keep believing that he “revolves around you the way we thought the sun revolved around the earth before Copernicus” after you run into a couple of vampire babes who ask, “Hey, did he tell you he revolves around you the way we thought the sun revolved around the earth before Copernicus? Because he says that to, like, everybody.”
We’ve all got baggage, but if his baggage is out for your blood, dump him. Loudly and insultingly in a public setting. That way at least you have a small chance any lurking she-devils will stop thinking, “I will rip her heart out and eat it” and start thinking, “You go, girl! That’s right, he’s not very well-endowed. Actually, why am I wasting my time stalking him? Maybe I should get some highlights…”
Let’s just hope her stylist does a good job. Lives depend upon it.