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My Waking Nightmare


Up until yesterday, I had never heard of "Old Hag Syndrome" or sleep paralysis. I was diagnosed with insomnia at the age of 19 & started taking medication to help me fall asleep. I've been on that same medication for years & have never had any problems or side effects. A couple of weeks ago, I fell asleep on my sofa. I awoke to the sound of breathing & assumed that it was my husband. I looked to see if he had fallen asleep on the recliner, & there was no one there. I was aware that I was in my living room. I could hear the television & had this overwhelming feeling to just fall back to sleep but, for some reason I felt a presence in the room with me. I became terrified & I tried to call out for my husband but, my words sounded like a faint whisper. My arms & legs were paralysed & I could barely open my eyes. I was able to open them for just a second & see a black figure standing in the door way. It had no features, just blackness.

I was so panicked at this point that I began to pray. I'm not a religous person but, when this was happening, I felt as if I was going to die. I couldn't get the words out but, in my mind I was begging for God to help me. I felt my body being moved but could not control anything. I tried to open my eyes again & could only see my feet up against the ceiling. I felt the coldness of the wall behind my back. I could hear my dog whining but could not open my eyes long enough to see where she was at. Then, I felt like I was falling. I opened my eyes & realized that something horrible had just happened!

My dog, Baylee was standing on the couch next to me, shaking & crying & I wasted no time running upstairs to wake my husband. I told him what had happened, even though I knew it sounded ridiculous. For the next couple of days I thought about what had happened. Could it have really been a dream? It didn't happen again until the night before last, April 17, 2011. Again, I had fallen asleep on the couch. I woke up in a panic because I felt pressure on my chest & was unable to move. Like before, I tried to scream but the words wouldn't come out.

I fought to open my eyes & I know this sounds crazy but I could clearly see a black mass sitting on my chest. At that moment I began to pray. It was almost like instinct because whatever was happening to me felt evil. Thank God it didn't last as long as the first time. It was over pretty quick but, the very next day I looked online to see if anyone else had ever experienced this. I'm glad to find out that I'm not alone. I hope that it doesn't happen again because it's the most terrifying thing I have ever experienced. I would like to believe that there is a scientific explanation for these occurrences but in my heart I know that this is spiritual! I'll be praying for all of you as well as myself. Hopefully, this nightmare is over!

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, Starla79, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

zzsgranny (18 stories) (3327 posts) mod
11 years ago (2012-07-27)
😆 😆 A Christian Atheist?...Now I've heard just about everything... Please armyofcastles, enlighten us about this curious combination/oxymoron... 😆
Armyofcastles (4 posts)
11 years ago (2012-07-27)
Demon snakes? PMSL! Humans have hands and we do damage too. Does this make us minions of the demon. No. Because that's just silly stories isn't it. I'm a Christian but I class my self as atheist because religion is just wrong in amany ways.
formerghostmagnet_03 (1 posts)
11 years ago (2011-11-02)
i had the same feeling. My first experience of this something was when I was in 2nd grade but I didn't payed any attention and then just this year it happened. I was sleeping but I don't know it felt like I was half awake or what ever but I was paralyzed all right and then I saw a silhouette of a man is so tall and I felt so weak all I could do was say "God save me" and "Jesus please help me" I closed my eyes and prayed for safety I prayed in my thoughts and then the presence disappeared. But it was really scary like my soul was being taken away from my body right from my stomach.
nighthawkman (3 stories) (15 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-16)
Hi Starla, My experience with this sort of thing happened to me while serving in the army, it was about 1976. I was having a knap on my Bunk when I was startled by a pressure all round me, not just on my chest but that's where the strongest pressure was.
I tried to get up off my bunk and had it in my head to run I was so frightened, but I was paralysed, I couldn't move an inch. I do remember thinking "please someone come in and save me" but there wasn't anybody there in my block, they were all down the naffi.
I wasn't dragged up a wall but it was very very scary and when I told my mates well... You can guess what reaction they gave...
Anyway, what lasted only a minute seemed like 100.
Always put it down to a dream on or within a dream but after reading your story perhaps it was a supernatural occurrence!? 😕

I have added you to my favourites because I can relate 100% 😊
Loganz_sis (1 stories) (150 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-16)
I am not sure if you wanted any advice or just wanted to share... Either ways I just wanted to put my two cents worth - Don't let all this information here overwhelm you, take what makes sense to you and ignore the rest:) good luck.
DeviousAngel (11 stories) (1910 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-13)
Malahkai, you are out of your mind, mate. Lay off the sauce. I don't know where you're getting your information from but clearly you are not in the right state of mind to give advice.
kardagen (2 stories) (161 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-13)
it sounds like SP, not sure what the connection between shadowy figures and sleep paralysis is but seems to be a fairly common theme between the two, that is my own personal opinion, and bu no way am I saying it couldn't be paranormal. It is odd that it only happens on the sofa, lots of ifs, and buts. Could be comfert, feeling of security from your bed, spacial distorsion making your psyche kick into over drive, night terror coupled with sleep meds not allowing the body to recognize its awake. Its a rough diagnosis. Could be a lot of things, simple or complex.
Malahkai (4 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-13)
I was Being Tormented by Demons and still am for about 12 Years now lol, 10 Years being Abused... All sorts, 2 years in defence Mode, not I'm starting to go the Offesive Stance. So maybe I can help:)...yeah I had a demon once who sat on my chest and smiled, I was litterly laughing because his smile went from one cheeck to the other... So that didn't work out as the demon planned "to scare me" since then it didn't happen again LOL.

There are Demons who have Strenght to Paralyze a Person, I hard that a Demon named I think Basilisk wenn looked and or wenn Biten by it, it causes total Paralysis?...sorry I'm german. Or a Demon wenn you look at it you get Paralyzed. Also there are different kind of Demons, Satan don't know how, but gained most of the Animal world for his use, so Demons can range from anywere from Insects were people believe there allergic reaction through stress... To 20-100feet Long Snakes. Bao Constrictor Wraprs around his enemys to Choke them.

Smaller "Demonic" snakes wrapt themselfs areound the Neck of People and squees now and then... For what? what happens to the Brain and Heart wenn your don't get enough Oxygen everyday.

Now you prayed, PERFECT. I can see the Fear in the Demons now, why?...well let's just say Jesus Christ sometimes gave me Demons to play with as target practice.

What you need now is Truth, now this can be tough, you Prayed and you said that it was an instant reaction? seems like Jesus Christ is Calling you, for what I don't know, but I would suggest to go on your Knees and Pray to Jesus Christ if he is using the Demons to get your Attention to himself, yes he does that, be happy about it. Pray that you will Search him and want to know what Jesus Christ wants, just to get this Demon away from the House.

Now either that, or its because Jesus Christ already Put his Attention on you, Satan found out and now is sending Demons to well...Kill, Steal and Destroy.

So yeah either way Pray and tell Jesus Christ, that you will take at least 3 weeks from your life Reading and Praying the Will of Jesus Christ and why The Demons. I mean either 3 weeks reading and praying... Or it might get worse.

P.S Jesus Christ tried to get my Attention with one, trouble... Lets just say, I broke and went to him at the 6th Trouble. Now imagine what is happening to you know just 6 times worse. So yeah really quick lol, find Jesus Christ and Pray to him to get rid of the demons.
bobdylanrock2244 (1 stories) (16 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-12)
become a full christian it might want you too, if this doesn't work call for a priest to take this sprit away. It worked for me I had this 4 or 5 times when I was 12 years old. Hope this helps xx 😊
DeviousAngel (11 stories) (1910 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-11)
You should read up about out of body experiences (OBEs) because that is what this sounds like. I think it's possible that you were in that "between" state, between awake and asleep, and you may have involuntarily astrally projected. For some people this is really difficult, and for others it just happens. That could explain why you felt lifted up and dropped again; it's like your spirit rises from your body and when you wake, it sinks back in. As far as the black entity is concerned, that seems to be a very common thing among sufferers of SP (I've had experience with hypnagogic hallucinations myself) and they SEEM very real... But the mind is a terrible thing.

Having an OBE may also explain why your poor pooch was so freaked out. He probably saw it and was like "UHHH, what the heck?"
darkcookie (24 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-10)
Become a full on Christian so next time you see it you can cast it out on the name of Christ.
Crissangelfan22 (6 stories) (21 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-10)
hey how are you... I have experienced something similar to this when I was only 12 years old I auctully did the same as you I prayed asking god to help me... I didn't feel like I was getting attacked though just watched and whispered about and I did see the black shadow and excatly how you described it is what I saw. And I felt like it was trying to get to me but it couldn't which is a good thing cause it didn't feel friendly at all. But I didn't feel like my feet were against the ceiling I couldn't imagine how that felt.
DrX (guest)
12 years ago (2011-05-09)
After reading your story and the comments I would say that maybe your medicine had the effect on your sleep so that you were more likely to be attacked by a spirit. If ouiji boards can do this why not meds too?
Lilady4 (7 stories) (427 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-09)
Well this sounds quite frightening! 😨 You can google information about sleep paralysis if you want, or you can talk to your GP if you want. This is what health professionals are their for. If this doesn't work, go and seek spiritual help. But, I will have to agree with brainlessbandit on this one. Sorry, I do not have any personal experience with sleep paralysis or "old hag syndrome".
Love & Light, Rachel ❤
taz890 (12 stories) (1380 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-09)
[at] ghostsdigme WHAT ARE YOU ON?
Why would you say someone exchanged the meds for lsd?
And noticed this poltergeist of yours gets around its here and in shadowdancers story too same name but this time it has not spoken to you personaly unlike in shadowdancers story. 🤔
ghostsdigme (8 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-09)
Someone probably replaced your sleep meds with LSD. Check into that.

It was most likely a poltergeist named Loki.
brainlessbandit (2 stories) (27 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-07)
Given your history of insomnia and the fact that you take meds, I'd say this is nothing more than hypnopompic sleep paralysis. You may not have had problems before, but being an insomniac who's had several SP episodes before, I can tell you that it happens when you least expect it, even if you haven't had problems with it in the past. You said this happened while you were sleeping on the couch? Assuming that you normally sleep in a bed, sleeping in a different position from what you're used to tends to contribute to SP occurrences. Were you stressed at the time it happened? Did you eat anything before you went to sleep? Have you been having problems related to your insomnia lately (e.g. Can't sleep, can't dream, have nightmares)? Those are factors that affect the frequency/onset of SP.

If this becomes a problem, see your doctor.
redphx (4 stories) (827 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
I've had a ton of problems with sleep paralysis. The biggest thing I noted was that when I have normal SP I don't see things or hear things, I just get stuck. When I have SP with a entity in the room I will get the fear, seeing, and hearing. What you describe is almost like a mix between SP and OBE. I've had one OBE where I was stuck to my floor. I fell off my couch, fell onto the floor and my husband walked by and stepped right through my chest. When I looked up I saw my body asleep on the couch. I had a "stuck OBE" It was really weird. That could have been what you were dealing with. You just got stuck to the ceiling.
I personally think that an entity was in your home. I think based on your descriptions that this entity caused the SP and OBE and your dog reacted to you in distress. I won't say that this thing is bad. It may not be but if you decide you don't want it around envoke white light into your home. Not all visits like this are malicious it very well could just be a curious drop by or it may be wanted to show you something on the astral.
ym (2 stories) (2 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
In our religion, if things like that happen, we usually change the place of the bed or sofa. Try moving your sofa to a different place of the room. Also spray perfume on your sofa if that's the only place you have had that experience. My elders said that spirits resist strong perfume.
bacchaegrl (506 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
Old hag syndrome isn't always paranormal. It can be just a scary thing that happens. So it only happened while you were on the couch? Never in your own bed? That could mean a few things; one, there is some unpleasant energy in that room, or two, the couch does something weird to you. I don't know if that means anything paranormal is going on. I honestly think that most old hag cases aren't paranormal at all. Feeling an evil presence though, that's something. Still could be all part of a dream, yet it's a bit unnerving. I hope it stops for you. Maybe you should avoid the couch!
guyinsane2008 (guest)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
I have a few more stories that I would like to share but I guess they'll have to wait until YGS decides to accept new submissions.

I have experienced Sleep Paralysis and False Awakenings on many occasions sometimes its difficult to distinguish between these 2 phenomena and actual demonic oppression. It is strange that whenever these things occur and we call on the Name of God, we would wake up. Through every occurrences in my life these attacks would only end after I call upon the Name of God.

This leads me to believe that it could be possible that demons are attacking us when we sleep. Though SP/FA can account of the majority of attacks, why is the Name of God needed to end them? Why can't we say some other thing that would end the attack?
Hoodzy (2 stories) (16 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
As Gizzy said, the first experience doesn't seem like normal sleep-paralysis. My brother, Matthew, believes that human beings are safe when they're asleep, but perhaps traumatic events or high levels of stress can open a person up to nasty spirits? This certainly seems the case here.

The second one is similar to the things I'd see before I started taking Zoloft. These apparitions were brought on, I believe, by panic attacks that I would suffer through almost daily. (PTSD is quite the annoying condition) Perhaps you had one as well?

I hope that things get better for you. Being attacked, or feeling like you are, while you're asleep and vulnerable is a horrifying experience!
BadJuuJuu (guest)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
I would be inclined to think both these events were likely sleep paralysis. You mention both times this happened, you were sleeping on the couch. I'm going to assume you usually sleep on a bed. Sleeping in a different place than usual can trigger s/p. Hope this helps set your mind at ease a bit. ❤
Gizzy (3 stories) (71 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
First of all I am so sorry for your experience you must have been terrified. If this thing dragged you up a wall and then dropped it is not sleep paralysis/old hag syndrome. It may be something completely different. The second occasion does sound more like SP. Are you having any personal issues or going through a bad patch? I only ask as this seems to make you more vulnerable to spiritual attacks. I hope that does not occur again. But if it does keep us updated and we may be able to help further. 😊
Brad (1 stories) (18 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
I've had a similar experience recently. A few times recently I've fallen asleep and felt like I was half asleep, conscious but not in control. Once on my couch where I could see but I couldn't move and another time that felt like I was hallucinating. The scariest time though was about a month ago. I got home from work and was going to take a nap for a few hours. I went up to bed and was sooo tired. It had been about 10-15 minutes of just lying in bed and I couldn't believe I hadn't fallen asleep yet because I was so exhausted. I remember looking around my room before I dozed off and it seemed to be pinkish in color. Not sure what that means but I'll continue. I fell asleep and as soon as I did I was in my bathroom floor being pushed to the ground by an invisible force. I tried yelling but could not. I came out of the dream in my bed lying on my back (I fell asleep just moments before lying on my side, I can't sleep on my back) there was a black face right in front of me and my eyes were crossed. I tried and tried to focus them but I was paralyzed. I then kept trying with my left hand to pull the covers over my face. I would close my eyes, reach over, feel the blanket in my hand and pull it over my head. Then I'd open my eyes and the blanket would still be where it was before, not over my face. I tried this about 5 times and was sooo frustrated that I finally came out of the state I was in. After that I just fell asleep for good and reflected on this later. I'm not sure what happened but I know it wasn't in my mind. Even if I imagined everything. When I actually was 100% conscious I was on my back. I hate sleeping on my back, something was on me. Sorry this is so long, but I had to share.
Leehome (1 stories) (15 posts)
12 years ago (2011-05-06)
I have experienced what you have... A few times. Its been years thank goodness. I had an experience where a being was lying on me. We were face to face and it was squeezing me so tight I couldn't breathe and began to go limp from exhaustion. Interestingly, I "awoke" from the dream, yet was still dreaming and asked my grandmother what I should do. She told me to demand that this thing say its name. I "fall asleep" in the dream again and the being doing the exact same thing. I remember to demand its name but the words come out in a whisper, like you talked about. This thing dried my mouth out. My lips curled up and I couldn't say or do anything. I then decided to say the "Our Father" prayer, which I believe in with all my heart. As I spoke these words the being slowly lost strength. I kept speaking and the being went limp, rolled off of me, and lay on the bed next to me. I could see the outline of its head and shoulder as it lay on its side facing away from me. Your story really struck me. I know these things happen to other people. I am sorry they happen to you.

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