I am new to this site, but I really want to share something that happened to me. Me and my family lived in a small house in a village near Amsterdam in the Netherlands. My parents bought it somewhere around 1979. At that time I was 2 years of age. The house was build somewhere around 1910 and as long as I can remember there was always something strange going on.
As a young child I could frequently see strange shadowy figures upstairs and from time to time I heard someone, or something, breathing or scratching from inside the walls. I remember that at night I could regularly see these strange figures, whom looked like long black shapes, moving in a odd rhythmic way through my bedroom. And one scary thing I remember like it happened only yesterday.
I was about 4 or 5 years of age and I began to notice them more often. Or let's say, I became aware of the fact that what I saw wasn't something normal and it really started to scare me. Every night it looked like they were moving closer to the edge of my bed and at a certain point they came so close that I hid myself under the sheets, so I could not see them.
Of course that didn't help much, because now I started to hear them. They made a strange mumbling sound and as a child (or now as an adult) I could not make out what it was. But it scared me so much and after a few night I was so scared that kicked with my foot at the edge of my bed. To my horror I really hit something and it made a loud and eerie kind of scream.
A few seconds later my mother entered my room, asking me why I made such an awful scream. I told her what happened, but it was of no use. I could not convince her that it wasn't me, but one of the "monsters" near my bed. She tried to calm me and told me that there were no such things as ghosts or monsters. She told me that I was safe in my room and asked me to go back to sleep. It may sound strange, but from that moment on I never heard the noises again and I never saw those things again... Until 1989.
In that year my mother suddenly died and left me, my father and two younger brothers to take care of ourselves. From that moment on the atmosphere changed in the house. I started to see the shadowy figures again and the scratching noises and the breathing came back. I could hear it all through the night.
One day I noticed that our cats started to behave strange. They became very jumpy and nervous and refused to go into certain places in the house (one of these places being my room). It was like they could see things that we (well, most of us) apparently couldn't.
What also spooked me was that some places in the house were freezing cold (for no reason). My father and my two brothers also seemed to be affected by whatever it was. My father kept telling us stories about ghostly appearances and a "woman figure" he had seen in our living room. My two brothers became very aggressive and violent and used course language all day through. It was like something dark (re) took possession of the house.
At night things really got creepy. Something was constantly pulling my sheets away and made frightening noises from inside the walls. Downstairs I frequently heard people walking or moving things around. Our cupboards and closets were opened and shut all night through... And every time it happened I went downstairs to see who's there and every time there was nothing, but a couple of "scared" cats hiding under our couch.
One day one of my brothers asked if I had heard the strange noises the night before. Of course I heard the noises, but I was curious about his story and asked him what he was talking about.
He described all the things I heard every night. He thought that we had a burglar in the house and so he stormed downstairs to teach him or her a lesson. But there nothing there and angry and frustrated he went back to bed.
In 1999 my youngest brother started to behave in such a bad manner that the authorities decided (with the consent of me and my father) to put him in a foster home. From that moment on he immediately changed and became a friendly and caring young boy. I think that whatever haunted our house had lost grip on him and therefore he changed. But I, my other brother and my father could not move elsewhere and had to deal with the house.
In 2001 a friend of mine told me that whenever he came to visit our house he felt like something in our house was watching him. It made him feel uncomfortable. He also said that from the corners of his eyes it was like there were always strange black manlike shapes visible in, but also close around, our house. I had never mentioned this to anyone, not even to my father and brothers. I was shocked, but didn't have the courage to tell him what was going on. But we talked about it for a while and made some silly jokes about it.
That was a big mistake and that night I would learn the hard way. I do not recall the time, but suddenly my sheets were violently pulled off my bed. My room became freezing cold and the scratching noises came from all the walls. It was almost like something was rapidly moving through all the walls. And then I heard very loud breathing and something what felt like enormous hands grabbed me by the neck and threw me into one of the corners of my room. Apparently I lost my consciousness. When I came to my neck really hurt and it still was very cold in my room. I decided not stay there one more second and rushed downstairs. That night I slept on one of our couches, with the company of our cats. That gave me a safe feeling.
Next morning father and brother had no clue what had happened that night. I asked them if they had heard something, but they both said no. They did ask if there was something wrong with my neck and I replied that I fell out of my bed and hurt my head and neck. I went to the bathroom and noticed a large bruise in my neck.
That same day my friend came to visit me again. He immediately noticed that I behaved strange and asked what was going on. I referred to our ghost stories the day before and told him that I have had the weirdest dream. That something attacked me and that I woke up in a corner of my room. Worried he asked what was wrong with my neck. Before I was able to respond he pulled my shirt up and he froze.
I asked him what was there. "Do you want to know what's on your neck?", he asked. "You know that you have a bruise in the shape of a very large hand in your neck and on your shoulders." Now I really was afraid and that day I told him everything that was going. He immediately believed the entire story.
My brother overheard my story and when it came to an end he told me that he was so glad that he was not going crazy. Unfortunately later that year my father's health rapidly worsened and he started to show severe signs of dementia.
But now several people had noticed it and since we did not know what it was, we all decided to try to ignore it and most certainly to not to offend it anymore. That seemed to help a little. Things calmed down a bit. But we could still hear the noises and every night things still were moving around. The cold spots in the house remained and for several months I refused to spent the night in my room. But at a certain point I decided that this was ridiculous and I started to sleep there again. I don't know why, but it never bothered me again and I was never attacked again.
Somewhere around 2002 my father's condition worsened and he could not live in the house any longer, so we all moved out. I moved to a small apartment near my old house and my brothers moved somewhere else. The house was sold to our next door neighbor. He always wanted to buy the house, so he could make one big house of both houses.
I moved in my apartment and for a while I feared that something had followed me to my new apartment. Again I felt like I was being watched and again I saw something but this was different. It did not feel bad. The cats (I kept them after moving out the old house) were not spooked and one day I saw something that was as clear as day. It was an old lady, a friendly looking old granny. I was not afraid of her and spoke into the room right at the exact spot where I had seen her. I said that I did not mean to intrude, but that it was now my house. That I lived there now, but if she wanted, she was welcome to stay. Immediately something changed in my apartment. Everything suddenly felt so serene and peaceful and I have never seen her again.
Later I heard from my new next door neighbor that an old brother and sister had lived in my apartment. The sister took care of her brother, but then the sister died and the brother couldn't stay there so he was moved to a nursing home. That was shortly before I moved in. The woman my neighbor described was the woman I had seen.
At the same time my old neighbor had his own problems with the old house. Because he did not have the funds to immediately cost the renovation, he decided to rent the place out. Not a single one of his tenants stayed there for very long, but the most striking case was a young woman who rented the house. She told my old neighbor that she simply loved the place and even paid him two months in advance. A few days later my old neighbor came home from his work and noticed a large truck in front of the house and several movers taking her stuff out.
He wanted to know what was going on and one of the movers told him that the woman did not want to spent another minute in that house. She did not even want to get near to it and gave them the key. My old neighbor could keep his rent. The man could not tell my neighbor what had happened to her, but something scared the living daylights out her.
Up to this day I still do not know what it was. Some of my friends say that it most likely was a poltergeist, another friend said that maybe it was a demon and one girlfriend even mentioned that maybe it was the spirit of my deceased mother, although I refuse to believe that. Things were already off before she died and I don't believe that she would ever turn to violence.