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Frightful Appearance


All names have been avoided to protect the identities of those I love, and wish to avoid causing them any more stress then they already have to deal with.

I am going to begin with some background information. January 2009, I was at my concert choir practice on a Saturday morning when I found out something had happened. I was not given details, but was told to go with my sister who was waiting outside for me. I arrived at my house to come face-to-face with a room full of faces of grief and loss, and found out my childhood best friend and her parents had been brutally murdered by their schizophrenic adopted son.

We all suffered from the event, but my brothers fiance took it the hardest. These people were her close family. The girl was her little sister and the parents were her parents as well. She has carried this grief with her even to today, putting strains on both her professional and personal life.

Back to what happened on Sunday, March 11, 2012. I had spent the whole day at my brother's house. My sister-in-law was excited and happy, this being the first day in a week that she had not had a panic attack. We went to grab some groceries around 10 P.M and came back and started unloading them. She handed me some items and asked me to take them upstairs and put them in her room. I grabbed them from her and made my way up the dark staircase. I entered her room and turned the light on, walked over to the bed and set the items down. That was when I noticed the Dream-catcher I bought her for Christmas was spinning above me. It was connected to the fan that was turned off, and the windows were shut, meaning there wasn't a draft in the room. I just shrugged it off and made my way to the door. I turned the light off and began stepping outside of the room.

That was when I saw them. Opposite of their room is a huge mirror. In my reflection I saw my sister-in-law's parents standing behind me with their hands on my shoulders. Their faces looked down on me with horribly sad expressions, but their faces were not as I remember them. They were bloody with holes all over them, which I assume symbolized the way they died. I ran down the steps without looking back and quickly told my sister-in-law nothing was wrong when she gave me a worried look.

I spent the remainder of the night on edge, impatiently awaiting the arrival of my mother to come and take me home. I wouldn't dare say anything to my brother or sister-in-law about what I saw, out of fear of how they may react. I personally don't think my sister-in-law could handle any more stress. I paced back and fourth between the kitchen and the front door, peaking out to see if my mother had arrived yet. It was the third or fourth time I was at the front door that I turned around and saw "her" gliding down the steps. My sister-in-law's sister, my childhood friend, and the girl that I fell in love with. She slowly went down the steps, her expression locked onto mine. She had one of those smiles I used to adore, but she looked just like her parents, covered in blood with holes all over. I walked over to the kitchen without looking back and just stayed there, hiding my feelings underneath to avoid scaring my sister-in-law.

I don't know why they decided to show themselves to me, but I have a couple of ideas. My first idea is that they chose to show themselves to me in hope that I would talk to my sister-in-law. She has carried them deep within her everyday, crying daily and just not letting go. I completely understand that it must have been hard for her to lose almost everyone she had ever loved, but she won't let go. I feel that her parents and little sister are stuck with her until she finally learns that she cannot hold onto them forever. They want to leave, but refuse to leave her in her current state.

The second idea I came up with was a more scientific idea. I thought maybe the Dream-catcher triggered a memory deep inside of my brain and threw itself into my thoughts as I looked into the mirror. Maybe my mind created the image because I was thinking about it subconsciously. I am not sure about how that works, it was just a guess.

One last thing I would like to say before I finish is that I have recovered from the loss. I, too, felt great suffering when I lost those three individuals, but I eventually got over it. Not a day goes by that I don't think of them, but I was happy to think that they were in a better place. This appearance really worries me, it makes me think that they are not in a better place. They are stuck with my sister-in-law until she finally recovers from the accident.

Please give me any advice that you can. It will be greatly appreciated.

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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, drakoniss, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will participate in the discussion and I need help with what I have experienced.

NeverEndingStory (3 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-15)
I, personally have the same problem you Sister-in-law does. I went through years of torture as a child, a teen and to now to be this bad with my disorder, I even locked myself away for a year, afraid of everything and having panic attacks uncountable times a day. I know how she feels and this is a huge subject to present to her. I had both my Grandmothers haunting me until I came to terms with both their deaths. I was still a wreck after that, but not as badly. They might be trapped due to her grief, they may have something to finish... Some how you must help them, try to figure it out without telling her anything, see if it's possible for you to do anything... They showed themselves to you for a reason... Knowing what your Sister-in-law would feel like, it's best you try your hardest to figure it out before talking to her about any of this. You should analyz her and see where she stands with her illness, she first of out your own judgement to see if she can handle the subject being brought up, but don't scare her. I'm in pretty bad shape due to all the years of horrible occurences in my life, her's was all in just one big mass of the same time, I know that personally would of destroyed me, she's coping... But, she took a drastic turn for the worst due to that incident, and I know that pain in every way. This is something you have to be careful with, think through very well and know what you are doing. Seek help for the souls of those people if you can before you mention anything to your Sister-in-law, while you try that get a feel for her progress on her condition on the side, so you better understand where she's really at with this and her life in general really. It's hard dealing with a person that has a problem like that, they could know all about their own illness, but the mind still takes over no matter what you tell yourself. I feel so horrible for her, it's scary living life that way day by day, feeling a panic attack once is traumatizing, imagine not being able to escape them everyday: (They put me on meds and it helped a lot, but I notice as my life gets worse the pills don't always work...:/ Pardon me for asking, but is she on strong meds for this? Sorry for such a long post, but this hits a personal spot for me. I've lost a childhood friend too, in fact many, and too many of those I loved died sudden and unfairly, my family was never good with being able to deal with deaths of those that close and never were able helped me. I had to struggle and suffer alone. Please do all you can to help her and those souls, don't let it get to you either, you need to be strong for one sad living soul and three that are not at peace in death. I'm sure if they were coming to show themselves to you that they moved on and are happy, they would of never apperaed to you the way they died. They need something from you, I really hope you can figure this out and help your Sister-in-law and them move on before it get's worse, it is possible, because I've been there and I'm still struggling to this day. I'm on thirteen years stuck like this, doing all I can on my own, she's got you right now, so please be careful and save her from becoming a wreck like me, I'm so serious! I hope for everyone's sake that this is resolved and you all move on happily in life. All the very best and my heart goes out to you all. I'm so sorry: (
YellowRose (1 stories) (12 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-15)
I too have lost a childhood friend, coming up to 12 years ago now, he was 11. If you read my story you will see my experiences with him. I'm hoping that he has moved on, now that we know he's happy now, as he wasn't happy when he 1st passed. I really hope your sister in law gathers the strength to let go of her grief, as I feel that this is why her family are sticking around. I really wish you the best of luck, as only you can decide when the right time to tell her is.

Kind Wishes - YellowRose 😊
sds (14 stories) (1434 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-15)
Its a great personal experience for you. I don't think rational and scientific meaning could be attached to this. I feel that your sister-in-law's parents and her sister are attached to her and hence they are trapped. As others have said, if your sister-in-law is happy now and not undergoing any treatment, why don't you speak to her and share your experience barring the appearances of the spirits. The parents of your sister-in-law as well as your childhood friend have probably be hinting at you to speak to your sister-in-law, their loving child. Why don't you give a try. A great and sad story. Thanks for sharing.
ind_83 (55 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-15)
WOW, that is a great experience you had. It is really sad to lose someone so near & dear to you. I can also feel that pain, because I have also lost my father in a tragic incident. He was my best friend & the only person in this earth who was able to understand me. I have always seen him in my dreams not in reality, well now at this point of my life I do not want to see him face2face, because I want him to live peacefully & happily wherever he is. Well through this all I want to say is that you start to pray for your childhood best friend & her parents to move on with peace. I really hope & pray for your sister in law that she also may come out from this eminent loss... Well I wanted to say other things also, but I am not so fluent in english... So I am unable to reciprocate my exact feelings for your sister in law & your whole family. God bless you. Once again thank you for sharing. 😢
cookieskid (4 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-14)
Thank you for sharing this story. I am so very sorry that all of you suffered such a traumatic experience. I hope that your sister in law finds the help and healing she needs. Prayers go out to you and your family.
RainLilly (36 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-14)
It worries me that your sister in law is having so much difficulty letting go. I think in many cases the spirit of a loved one is "trapped" on this plane by the grief of the living, but somehow I feel that may not be the case here. I get the impression that your sister in law is unable to let go, because she still senses the presence of her family.
Is it possible that the family is still waiting for closure? They may be unsatisfied with whatever judgment the son received, whether they may feel it was too harsh or too lenient, if they feel it was unjust they may be waiting for it to be made right. Maybe you could talk to them, help them with closure.
I think they showed themselves to you instead of your sister in law because they don't want to frighten her. They realize she's still in pain, and although they are suffering as well, are reluctant to add to her turmoil. They could be hoping that since you have come to terms with their loss, that you can help her find peace as well.
If she is not attending grief counseling, I think she should give it a try. Losing someone is hard, but she lost her whole family in an incredibly tragic way. Pain like that takes time, and a lot of support to be able to move past. Grief counseling may be of tremendous help.
MissEmoVampire (3 stories) (25 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-14)
I don't know what it's like to lose a best friend but I do know what it's like to live without someone really close to you. I'm glad you do not live in grief and sadness and hope you sister-in-law is ok.

ILee (1 stories) (91 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-13)
Is she currently seeing a therapist? If not, I would advise that she does. And if she does, perhaps you can contact her therapist and seek his/her advice on how to approach her about this subject.
drakoniss (1 stories) (1 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-13)
I appreciate the advice ILee, I will work on getting around to tell her, but the timing is an issue. She is still really broken on the topic, I am really afraid of causing another panic attack. I'm pretty sure she has them when she thinks of her family. But throughout this year they have been getting really bad, she was even diagnosed with PTSD. So telling her is the hardest thing to do.
ILee (1 stories) (91 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-13)
There's a theory that spirits are trapped here on this earthly realm because they have "unfinished business."

With that being said, I think your first theory may be your best bet. I feel that your childhood friend and her parents aren't able to move on because they don't want to leave your sister-in-law in the state that she is in. They want to be able to move on knowing that she's happy and in a good place. So perhaps, that's their unfinished business.

I can understand you don't want to talk to your sister-in-law in fear of causing more stress. But perhaps this is what she needs to hear to help her let go. But definitely leave off the details of their appearance. She doesn't need to know that.

I'm glad you're at peace and hope that your sister-in-law and her family will be as well.

Thanks for sharing!
puppyqueen67 (9 posts)
10 years ago (2012-03-13)
Ah, I don't know what its like to lose a childhood friend, but I don't know what I'd do without mine. She's my best friend to this day. I am very glad that you've moved on and do not dwell in the sadness. Thanks for sharing your story 😊

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