No, Donors Are Not Your Food Or Farm Animals

There has been a trend lately that has been bothering me. The talk of donors as cattle. Some of it is subtle, but it is there. It is the same insidious condescension and oppression that other minorities experience, and as feeders, we should know better.

Donors aren’t things to be ‘farmed’. We should not objectify our donors. Donors are autonomous human beings, and we have a symbiotic relationship. In fact.. we need donors. Donors don’t need us. Wanting our donors to be healthy should be common decency as a human being, not viewing them as an object of use.

I have as much of a predatory nature as anyone else. Mine is intense and I had to practice daily meditation to control myself for years. That doesn’t mean we are okay to treat other people as food. Some may say the blood itself is objectified and not the person. When someone objectifies a woman for sex, they are still objectifying her as a person.

We have a responsibility to encourage the right attitudes towards the very people who help us stay healthy and sane. If I was a blood donor and was spoken of in that way, I’d walk right off. It alienates people. There aren’t enough visible donors as it is. We are all human beings, and we should care for one another regardless. Donors have autonomy. They cannot be farmed. If you treat them poorly, they will leave and there’s not a thing you can do about it. It’s that simple.

Every sanguivore is responsible for:

  1. Managing expectations with their donor, and being clear what the nature of their relationship will be from the start;
  2. Making sure their donor is tested and keeping current with paperwork, taking into account any recent risk exposure such as sex. HIV takes weeks to show up on a test;
  3. Having thorough and complete knowledge of how to draw blood safely and best practice. This involves more than YouTube videos. Take a course (you can buy a venipuncture one online for $70), read books. Build on your knowledge. I’ve done a course and have practiced venipuncture for years, and I still read books on it to develop my knowledge and keep it fresh. There are several available on Kindle. Learn about the human circulatory system and sites to avoid, regardless of how blood is drawn.
  4. Make sure the donor is safe to donate. Ensure they are not malnourished and do not take too much blood. Be mindful of things like a self-harming history if drawing blood through cutting.
  5. Practice after-care with your donor. Dress the site appropriately, whether with cuts or needles.
  6. Treating your donor with respect. They are not food. They’re doing this to care for you. They deserve nothing less than your respect and appreciation.

There are more things, but this is a start. Be safe, be mindful and be CAREFUL. Know that how you talk about donors reflects on you and also influences how others see them.

Why Blood Donors Are Always Welcome At My Hearth, and Expectations of Donating Intimacy

A toast to blood donors

toast

Blood donors are great. Seriously. Let’s raise a glass and give a hand to all of our blood donors.

No, this is not another April Fool’s article, by the way.

I was surprised at the response to my article about the nurture of blood donors. The number of donors who commented about sang abandonment was interesting indeed. It saddened me to see that people who understand something which is, let’s face it, pretty weird to the outside world had their heart broken for caring enough to give.

Now, I know there are two sides to every story. I will attempt to cover some of these points here. Still, I wanted to write this piece to share my personal appreciation of donors and share some thoughts about blood donation.

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Blood Donors: Our Nature vs. Your Nurture

Giving blood is the ultimate self-sacrifice. Donors give of themselves to us for us to feel better. Or is it? Is giving blood such a huge sacrifice? Stay with me here.

Many sanguines are troubled by a notion of hurting the donor. The fact that a donor has to be stuck, cut, or somehow ‘harmed’. I feel that the innate nature of sanguivores is the cause of that. We have urges. We want to bite. We hunger for that blood. We twoof. We then feel horrible for doing so. Some feel ashamed, guilty. Some, over time, have accepted that this is simply who they are. Some stay stuck in this negative feedback loop of self-loathing. But donors don’t often feel the same way about giving their blood. The two perspectives can be in juxtaposition.

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Bitter Or Better? Just Do It – Thoughts On Productivity

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

– Mahatma Gandhi

Everyone has their opinion on what can be done better, what improvements can be made, or how things should be run with a project. A recurring theme I notice is people who are disillusioned with the status quo or how things are being done. I often then ask, “why can’t you start these things yourself?”..

One thing I try my hardest to do with med sangs, or to be honest, anyone who asks is to encourage people to take action. It’s easy to get bogged down with your doubts and thoughts. It’s easy to believe you’re not capable of making waves, of enacting change, of helping others.

The people you surround yourself with greatly influence how near or far success feels at any given time. Action begets action from others. So what if you’re new? So what if you don’t yet have it all figured out? So what if you don’t yet command the respect you desire from your peers? These things come along the way and with time. People respect action and someone at least trying to make things better for people. If you screw up, at least you’ve learned lessons along the way. This can pertain to a number of things; starting a meet up group, a new organisation, a business, or a movement. People join when they see action and believe in your message.

I try to facilitate and encourage my friends to write and create projects. I aim to support initiatives of others if I agree with them. I think it’s important for us all to cultivate creativity and passion in people by giving them tools, a platform, and support.

Are you bitter, or do you want to make things better? If the latter, how? What can YOU do today to create value for other people?

Forget the haters. Leave behind the negative self-talk. Believe in yourself. Take action. Just DO IT.

A

Donors: A piece by Giselle DeCavalier

[Guest re-post with permission from Giselle DeCavalier. Post is from 2015.]

In sharing this, I hope to shed some light from this Donor’s experiences and feelings for the benefit of others. I am a Sang Donor. I have to come to think of donating as “the Act.” There are no adequate words to describe how the Act feels. I know that if I do not participate in the Act every so often, I suffer for it. I don’t want to be turned and I’m not out for popularity. I know I am a Donor as surely as a Vampire knows that they have a need. My need is to give.

I must be clear on this point: I do NOT participate in the Act because I am crazy, depressed, or a cutter. I do NOT exchange money, sexual favors or anything else for that matter. It’s not dinner and a movie, it’s not a date. I sincerely want to help, and I need the exchange as well. I don’t expect to be treated like royalty, or to be asked to treat anyone else like it either. That being said, it cannot be ignored that there is a relationship that forms of a sort. At the very least, I think it’s kind of silly to try and give to someone I can’t at least call friend. It should be nearly impossible to stay impersonal with someone who has shared themselves with you so intimately. Now there are bad donors just like there are bad vampires. Just try your best to communicate what you expect. Then you and the donor are on the same page.

What makes me crazy? When I offer to a vampire and they spend all their time searching for an ulterior motive. It can be hurtful when a vamp treats the exchange as though nothing else about me is worth associating with excepting my blood. I do NOT have to be crazy to do what I do, and please keep in mind vamps, there is a bond that develops, like it or not. If you start taking from a Donor, you have to recognize that that bond is going to exist. It’s absolutely imperative that you talk with your Donor about boundaries and STAY HONEST.

There is nothing in the world like feeding one of you only to be thrown away like a piece of trash. Those wounds take a long, long time to heal. Take care with those that give to you, we may not be fragile, but our feelings can be bruised as quickly as anyone else’s.

What do I get out of donating? A relief of my burden, an opportunity to talk with someone whom I can befriend, who understands my need to donate; and a chance to help someone who I know is truly in need. The Act cannot be treated like a one night stand. For me to allow the kind of bond that exists after a donation, I have to at least know that I will hear from the person I gave to again, that they will take me as I am and expect nothing that wasn’t discussed.

I make sure to let any vamp I donate to know that I am an empath. This means that a certain amount of “drama” should be tolerated by them; they, of course, are free to choose not to feed from me if they can’t handle that. My emotions are not always mine, and I do not always deal with the backlash of that as well as I would like. That’s what makes it so easy for me to be understanding when a vamp comes to me hungry and moody. I can completely understand being a little out of control of one’s self.

Of course I strive to get a better grip, it’s no fun for me to bawl my eyes out when I’m deliriously happy. That “this is too good to be true suspicion vibe” that I get from many vamps on their first feeding is hard to shake off too. Being empathic, as many of you know, gives someone an awful lot to deal with.

It can be very rewarding to give, I do not want to discourage anyone who feels the need to give from doing so, but I do want to issue a caution. For Donors, be VERY clear on what you expect to your vamps. Vamps be VERY clear to your Donors as to what YOU expect. Honestly can save alot of hurt feelings, misunderstandings, and sometimes prevent some pretty dangerous situations. Be smart, care for one another, and most of all, look out for yourself. Don’t get into a relationship with a Donor just because you are hungry and you think it’s the only way they will feed you; or the other way around either.

I’ve made mistakes with this in the past and have suffered for it. It’s my hope that by sharing my experience, I can save someone else the pain I went through.

I will add this word of encouragement, donors. As the time goes by, it gets easier to “contain” the emotions from donating. It comes with maturity and practicing shielding. As always, I am around to lend an ear.

Donors: Enter Your Sanctuary

I am pleased to announce that The Red Cellar now has a donor-specific safe place; the Donor Sanctuary. Very little content or focus is given to donors, yet they sustain others and are crucial to someone else’s health and well-being. Donors have stories too, and the need for support in this very human experience. Donor content will also be part of my blog on this site. The group is also for friends and family of sanguivores.

To join, please click here.