A small study of people who self-identify as vampires were, understandably, reluctant to reveal their blood- and energy-draining proclivities to doctors and psychologists for fear of rejection and being labelled mentally ill.
According to a report, Research, indicated that people who identify themselves as ‘real’ vampires, that is, needing others’ blood to gain energy – would not disclose their practices to those in the helping professions and risk reactions like ridicule, disgust and possible diagnosis of a mental illness.”
Self-identified vampires claim to drain not blood, but some sort of psychic energy or life-force from others, since these energies have not been proven to exist and are unknown to science, doctors don’t worry about that kind of vampirism.
There are many people who genuinely believe themselves to be werewolves and vampires. Clinical lycanthropy is a recognized medical condition in which a person believes himself or herself to be another animal, typically a wolf or canine.
A German man named Peter Stump or Stubbe; spellings vary claimed in 1589 that a belt of wolf skin he owned allowed him to change into a wolf. He said that when he changed form, his teeth and hair would grow and he had a desire for human blood. Stump confessed to killing at least a dozen people while in the form of a wolf; there was no real evidence that he could actually turn into a wolf, of course, and it’s clear he was mentally ill. He was found guilty of murder and decapitated on Halloween of that year.
Though Stump’s case is an extreme example, he’s not alone. In 2011, for example, a 19-year-old man named Lyle Monroe Bensley broke into a woman’s apartment and bit her neck.
According to a news report, the woman, whose name has not been released, broke free and fled the apartment, speeding to safety in a neighbour’s car early Saturday. When police arrived on the scene, they found Bensley, wearing only boxer shorts, hissing and growling in the parking lot. He quickly scaled two fences before he was captured, yelling all the while that he ‘didn’t want to have to feed on humans.’
A vampire patient who voluntarily engages in that behaviour could be considered a threat and involuntarily committed. Though unlikely, it’s certainly possible, and there for people who claim to engage in vampirism have some basis for concern.
It’s not a matter of the social acceptance of leading a vampire-inspired lifestyle, it’s a question of whether any harm is being done; given the rare-but-real history of violent acts committed by self-identified vampires and it’s a legitimate concern.