I’ll never forget that fateful night where I couldn’t sleep and turned to Netflix for company. The Office? Not feeling it. Say Yes to the Dress? Been there, done that like a thousand times. The Vampire Diaries? This looked interesting.
Oh. My. God.
One episode in and I was hooked. Creepy town, vampires, young and innocent, unsuspecting Nina Dobrev, and a gaggle of some of the best looking guys (Ian Somerhalder, but who’s playing favorites) on television had me hooked. I devoured the first two seasons available, then rewatched them all with my mom and sister after convincing them I had found the best show ever. Now, I’m among thousands who eagerly wait for Thursday nights when the show airs on The CW at 8 p.m.
The show, while a guilty pleasure, is not all hot, supernatural beings and gore. It’s a lot more than that, with plenty of valuable things waiting to be learned. Here are 10 of the most pivotal life lessons The Vampire Diaries has taught me thus far.
1) You’re capable of making it through the worst circumstances
The characters on TVD have faced an unbelievable amount of tragedy, and even in their darkest hours they still manage to come out on the other side a bit more damaged, but nonetheless ready to carry on. We’ll all suffer loss and our own personal tragedies, yet we have to know that even if it’s in the tiniest amount imaginable, hope will remain. Time heals even the worst wounds.
2) Even the worst of people have some good in them
Damon, Klaus, Katherine…these characters have all, at one point or another, been the biggest antagonists and yet as time goes on, we find we can’t hate them. We in fact might even have started to love them. All people are complicated, some more so than others. Our personal demons do not always have to define the person we are. Most importantly, we need to know that even the worst person is capable of change.
3) Beware of hot brothers
Apparently hot brothers are bad news. Or ah-mazing news. Either way, tread lightly. Know that just because they’re from the same bloodline does not mean they are the same person. And even though they aren’t the same person, chances are you’ll be crazily attracted to one brother for all they aren’t in comparison to the other brother. We learned it through the Stefan, Elena, Damon triangle, and we’re beginning to see it in the Klaus, Elijah and Hayley storyline. Keep in mind that the selfless brother with your best interest constantly in mind is probably the safer choice.
4) Real friends will stick by your side no matter how much of a monster you’ve become
Elena is pretty terrifying when she first turns, but Bonnie and Caroline never desert her. The same with Jeremy and Vicki. And the same with Stefan and Alaric in regards to Damon. The people who love you will never give up on you. Simple as that.
5) Trying to manipulate the people you love will backfire on you
Klaus may think he knows what’s best for his family, but the fact that he’s constantly threatening to stake them and lock them in coffins until he’s ready to use them can only happen so many times before everyone revolts. If you want your support system to always have your back, you must have their trust and respect. Trying to obtain this through manipulative measures will only chase them away.
6) Family above all else
The bonds that exist between the various families on TVD remind you that at the end of the day what matters most is the people you call family. A family is not made up of just blood relatives, but by the people who know you best, who would do anything for you and who would literally DIE for you (hello, Bonnie and Lexi). These are the most important people in the entire world. Never forget that.
7) Don’t wait for things to happen, make them happen
Ah Damon, you beautiful, deep and tortured man. In one episode, he states that “You can’t sit and wait for life to come, you have to go get it.” I love this. Life is all about chasing your dreams and creating your own destiny. You can’t be a passive player in the game. Cue Elena and Damon’s long awaited kiss outside that shabby motel.
8) Do the things you’re most afraid of
Rebekah, an often emotionally abused character, provides this bit of wisdom. Life is all about doing the things you’re scared of. Why? Because often fear and desire go hand in hand. We sometimes don’t go after the things we want because of fear of the unknown. Face your fears and you can do anything.
9) Don’t fear giving out second chances
Multiples characters in TVD have messed up big time. Key example, that time Damon broke Jeremy’s neck and temporarily killed him. Elena could have hated him forever. But she didn’t. She doled out another chance and ended up falling madly in love. People make mistakes (HORRIBLE mistakes), but if any inkling of you is saying maybe I should give them another opportunity, then by all means do it. Unless they did something seriously, seriously awful. Use your head!
10) When all else fails, drink
Sometimes there will be days that just suck, circumstances that just suck and people that just suck. Throw back a glass of whiskey or two TVD style and go to bed knowing tomorrow is another day.
For all of these lessons and more, make sure to tune in! And if you’re a newbie yet to be cast under The Vampire Diaries spell, check it out on Netflix ASAP. Seriously. I’m compelling you to.