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Sleep Paralysis and Hallucination

sleep paralysis visions presences

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#1    LilaBoo

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Posted 03 June 2012 - 05:00 AM

I have had two experiences with sleep paralysis, and while I found them frightening I wasn't too concerned. However, as I have done more research into the topic, I'm realizing that the things that I saw during the episodes were very similar to what others have seen.

The first time was a few months ago. I was home from college, so I was catching up on a lot of missed sleep. I woke up in the middle of the night, and I felt an extreme difficulty with keeping my eyes open. I don't specifically remember not being able to move the rest of my body because I was so distracted by my eyes, which kept closing despite my best efforts. I saw a very tall, willowy woman standing next to my bed. I remember being extremely terrified and not wanting the extra vulnerability of having my eyes closed. She slowly walked beside me. My eyes closed and by the time I was able to wrestle them back open she was standing behind my headboard (in retrospect I couldn't have possibly seen her there, but I knew she was there). Then she threw some sort of sheet over me, but by the time it landed I was fully awake and she and the sheet were gone.

At the time I figured it was just a dream, because my dreams tend to be both vivid and unusual. However, a very similar thing happened to me last night and I am now convinced in both cases I was, in fact, awake. In the instance last night, I woke up and saw what looked like a small but very distinct silhouette of a head and shoulders next to my bed. I could tell that it was just my Mickey Mouse plush toy, but I nevertheless felt terrified and thought I was going to die. I tried to grab Mickey, but I couldn't move. It was the most difficult struggle I can imagine, trying just to lift an arm. When I finally regained control of my body I grabbed Mickey and went back to sleep with the sense that whatever had been in my room was gone.

The shadowy figures and feeling of doom seem to be common features of sleep paralysis, which freaks me out. I was wondering if anyone has heard of the other things that I experienced: difficulty keeping my eyes open, the apparition throwing a sheet over my body, or the apparition-physical object duality?


#2    George Ford

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Posted 03 June 2012 - 10:15 PM

Don't sleep on your back. Worked for me.

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#3    Apopo

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 02:36 AM

View PostLilaBoo, on 03 June 2012 - 05:00 AM, said:

I have had two experiences with sleep paralysis, and while I found them frightening I wasn't too concerned. However, as I have done more research into the topic, I'm realizing that the things that I saw during the episodes were very similar to what others have seen.

The first time was a few months ago. I was home from college, so I was catching up on a lot of missed sleep. I woke up in the middle of the night, and I felt an extreme difficulty with keeping my eyes open. I don't specifically remember not being able to move the rest of my body because I was so distracted by my eyes, which kept closing despite my best efforts. I saw a very tall, willowy woman standing next to my bed. I remember being extremely terrified and not wanting the extra vulnerability of having my eyes closed. She slowly walked beside me. My eyes closed and by the time I was able to wrestle them back open she was standing behind my headboard (in retrospect I couldn't have possibly seen her there, but I knew she was there). Then she threw some sort of sheet over me, but by the time it landed I was fully awake and she and the sheet were gone.

At the time I figured it was just a dream, because my dreams tend to be both vivid and unusual. However, a very similar thing happened to me last night and I am now convinced in both cases I was, in fact, awake. In the instance last night, I woke up and saw what looked like a small but very distinct silhouette of a head and shoulders next to my bed. I could tell that it was just my Mickey Mouse plush toy, but I nevertheless felt terrified and thought I was going to die. I tried to grab Mickey, but I couldn't move. It was the most difficult struggle I can imagine, trying just to lift an arm. When I finally regained control of my body I grabbed Mickey and went back to sleep with the sense that whatever had been in my room was gone.

The shadowy figures and feeling of doom seem to be common features of sleep paralysis, which freaks me out. I was wondering if anyone has heard of the other things that I experienced: difficulty keeping my eyes open, the apparition throwing a sheet over my body, or the apparition-physical object duality?

View PostLilaBoo, on 03 June 2012 - 05:00 AM, said:

I have had two experiences with sleep paralysis, and while I found them frightening I wasn't too concerned. However, as I have done more research into the topic, I'm realizing that the things that I saw during the episodes were very similar to what others have seen.

The first time was a few months ago. I was home from college, so I was catching up on a lot of missed sleep. I woke up in the middle of the night, and I felt an extreme difficulty with keeping my eyes open. I don't specifically remember not being able to move the rest of my body because I was so distracted by my eyes, which kept closing despite my best efforts. I saw a very tall, willowy woman standing next to my bed. I remember being extremely terrified and not wanting the extra vulnerability of having my eyes closed. She slowly walked beside me. My eyes closed and by the time I was able to wrestle them back open she was standing behind my headboard (in retrospect I couldn't have possibly seen her there, but I knew she was there). Then she threw some sort of sheet over me, but by the time it landed I was fully awake and she and the sheet were gone.

At the time I figured it was just a dream, because my dreams tend to be both vivid and unusual. However, a very similar thing happened to me last night and I am now convinced in both cases I was, in fact, awake. In the instance last night, I woke up and saw what looked like a small but very distinct silhouette of a head and shoulders next to my bed. I could tell that it was just my Mickey Mouse plush toy, but I nevertheless felt terrified and thought I was going to die. I tried to grab Mickey, but I couldn't move. It was the most difficult struggle I can imagine, trying just to lift an arm. When I finally regained control of my body I grabbed Mickey and went back to sleep with the sense that whatever had been in my room was gone.

The shadowy figures and feeling of doom seem to be common features of sleep paralysis, which freaks me out. I was wondering if anyone has heard of the other things that I experienced: difficulty keeping my eyes open, the apparition throwing a sheet over my body, or the apparition-physical object duality?


Like bulveye said, don't sleep on your back. Sleep on your side, and perhaps get a bolster/pillow just beside you so you won't roll back.  When you experience sleep paralysis, just close your eyes and let the feeling wash over you, and it will be gone very soon.

Edited by Apopo, 04 June 2012 - 02:37 AM.

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#4    scowl

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 10:57 PM

I've had only one experience with sleep paralysis. Fortunately I immediately recognized what it was. I had just been dreaming that I was swimming and when I woke up, I realized my arms weren't moving any more. Of course they hadn't been while I was dreaming either. :)

I calmly waited for the ability to move my body to return. It was kind of interesting to mentally move my arm and not feel it move. It just sat there like dead meat. After I don't know how long, I started to feel scared because I was experiencing what it would really be like to be paralyzed. Wait, did I have a stroke or something while I was asleep? The terror of that possibility was enough to make my body come back. Everything jerked back like I had flipped a switch. I wouldn't want to experience it again but it wasn't all that bad.

When I was younger I had many hypnagogic hallucinations. They always happened one hour after I went to sleep. Some were terrifying. Some were funny. Once I got to around 30 years of age they mostly stopped and I rarely have them now.


#5    lizzieboo

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Posted 16 June 2012 - 08:59 PM

Most of my experiences with sleep paralysis have occurred when I was sleeping on my stomach (years ago, there were times when that was the only way I could fall asleep). I would then "awaken" but I would be unable to open my eyes. I would have a feeling that something or someone was near me, and that whoever or whatever it was, it meant me harm. Terrible harm--but that if I could just open my eyes and turn over, the threat would be compelled to vanish. I would struggle to open my eyes and to turn over, and the more I struggled the more urgent it seemed that I should. Long story short, by the time I forced my eyes open, I'd be in a full anxiety attack--shaking all over, short of breath, etc. I can't even begin to tell you how much I hate those experiences. (I don't sleep on my stomach any more. Ever.)

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#6    Starflower

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 01:39 AM

I've had two experiences which may or may not fit into this category.

One was when I was 16.  I think I had just awakened because I had felt a bump on my headboard.  I was laying on my front, so I couldn't immediately look up.  I suddenly experienced what felt like two small feet landing on my head, then running down my back, and I remember hearing a kind of gutteral laughing along with it.  As the sound of the feet hit my floor at the end of my bed, I came fully awake, turned over, and sat up.  I quickly looked down to the end of my bed but saw nothing there.

The second time, I was in university, laying in my bed asleep.  I suddenly awoke to the feeling of something thudding on the bed next to me.  I was paralysed and couldn't move.  I then felt a hand cover my mouth and nose so that I couldn't breath, but the only thing I could see was the curtains in my window blowing inwards from the wind.  The hand remained over my mouth, and I heard something whisper something to me.  Unfortunately, I could make out what it said.  At that point the hand left my mouth and my paralysis was gone.  I sat up, and saw my cat on my desk, and her fur was strait up.  I went to close my window only to discover that it was already closed.

What were these?  Dreams?  Or something else?  I feel as if I was awake during these experiences, and I definitley know I was awake immediately after.  And what spooked my cat??

Edited by Starflower, 19 June 2012 - 01:59 AM.


#7    Rafterman

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 01:51 PM

Textbook sleep paralysis - absolutely nothing paranormal about it.

Go to any sleep center and they will tell you exact thing.

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#8    scowl

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 04:23 PM

If you wake up and you're paralyzed, you are still in a dream state. Any strange experiences you have in that state are hallucinations no matter how awake you feel.

I completely ignore all reports of "bedroom abductions".


#9    Lcvec

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 04:26 PM

View PostApopo, on 04 June 2012 - 02:36 AM, said:

Like bulveye said, don't sleep on your back. Sleep on your side, and perhaps get a bolster/pillow just beside you so you won't roll back.  When you experience sleep paralysis, just close your eyes and let the feeling wash over you, and it will be gone very soon.

This. The hallucinations can be different depending on the person but as Apopo said, just close your eyes and ignore the fear and the vibrations, it all goes away in a few seconds.


#10    scowl

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 06:01 PM

View PostLcvec, on 19 June 2012 - 04:26 PM, said:

This. The hallucinations can be different depending on the person but as Apopo said, just close your eyes and ignore the fear and the vibrations, it all goes away in a few seconds.

The one time I had complete sleep paralysis, the fear is what broke it. I came straight out of a dream, woke up paralyzed, but immediately recognized what was happening. I calmly waited for my body to come back for I don't know how long and it just wouldn't come back. Eventually I started to wonder if I had had a stroke or something in my sleep. The terror of that was enough to make my body come back in a flash.


#11    foxy-embalmer

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 07:42 PM

I've been having this happen to me about 2 or 3 times a month for the past 12 years.  Does anyone else have them this often?  I do have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, and I work some really strange hours.


#12    Starflower

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 07:50 PM

View PostRafterman, on 19 June 2012 - 01:51 PM, said:

Textbook sleep paralysis - absolutely nothing paranormal about it.

Go to any sleep center and they will tell you exact thing.
This is actually good to know, because I have wondered about this.  I'm guessing my 'memory' of my cat being spooked was also part of that hallucination, just before I woke up fully.


#13    julia52

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 11:13 PM

View PostStarflower, on 19 June 2012 - 07:50 PM, said:

This is actually good to know, because I have wondered about this.  I'm guessing my 'memory' of my cat being spooked was also part of that hallucination, just before I woke up fully.

i don't think your memory of your cat being spooked was an hallucination..just my opinion, of course..


#14    Apopo

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 04:56 AM

So... I had another SP experience.

Couldn't move, and it was really painful, like someone was punching my whole body.

Woke up with my back aching.

I really hate SPs like these.

"A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees"

#15    Rafterman

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 01:23 PM

View PostStarflower, on 19 June 2012 - 07:50 PM, said:

This is actually good to know, because I have wondered about this.  I'm guessing my 'memory' of my cat being spooked was also part of that hallucination, just before I woke up fully.

I'd say there's a good chance of that.  Your cat could have also just been spooked - it happens.

I had an overnight sleep study done a couple of months ago and the doctor flat out asked me if I ever woke up paralyzed or saw shadows/scary creatures/aliens in the room.  He also said that sleep disorders in our society are at epidemic levels, but that it's also the most overlooked medical condition.

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