This is my brutally honest ghost encounter from July, 2018. I appologize for the mini novel - but bare with me. To this day I cannot fully comprehend what happened. Maybe someone in this online community can help me understand what it all means.
I had been backpacking for two months on a long term sabatical trip, scratching off bucket list items. One of my weird eccentric items was to stay in a haunted castle. I'm in my early 30's and I've been interested in the paranormal since I was a child, hence my weird bucket list. (Note: I 100% do not dabble nor do disrespectful things.)
Up until this time my ghost experiences were minimal and I still find myself sitting on the fence between known science, psychology, the paranormal and skeptism.
While in England I found a youth hostel called St. Briavels that just so happens to be in a 1000 year old castle and it is rumoured to be haunted. I had been turned on to the idea after watching a documentary about the castle years ago, and wanted to try out my own "luck" at seeing a ghost. (The doc is on youtube.)
I was at the castle for 5 days, staying in a shared female dorm (8 beds) and my encounter happened on night 4.
It was the height of summer and our top floor castle room was unbelievably hot (~27°C) and I found myself struggling to sleep yet again. I don't know the exact time, but I believe it was around 2am. I had gotten up 10 minutes before to descend the 3 story spiral staircase (I dubbed Mt. Everest) to go to the bathroom, and I was laying back in my single non-bunk bed surrounded my snoring ladies. I turned on my left side to face the wall; I remember thinking about how hot and sweaty I was and wondering how I was going to get back to sleep in the heat.
Suddenly, a very large male hand, fingers extended palms flat, started from the top of my head and stroked down my hair with strong pressure. For obvious reasons a jolt of adrenaline hit me, and I've always been a calm fighter during 'fight or flight' incidents.
What happened next is where things get extra weird. The large male hand moved towards my abdomen area and out of instinct my right hand sprang up and caught the wrist of the hand before it could touch me again.
I remember I was holding fast his right hand by the wrist and he was trying to pull his hand back, but I was stronger. Like some sort of paranormal/energetic tug'o'war. I tried to scream to alert my roommates of my attack, but I was fully paralyzed except for my right arm.
After about 15-20 seconds I felt everything abruptly stop, like a light switch turning on. The attack was over and my paralysis was gone. I could move and make sounds again. I sat up quickly and looked around the room, everyone was sleeping in their own beds.
I estimate the attack lasted approximately 30 seconds from start to finish and after I felt no residual presence in the room.
To this day I don't fully understand what happened that night. Does partial sleep paralysis exist - and does that explain how I was able to fend off my attacker? Was it completely psychological - despite spending previous nights in the same room without feeling fear? Was I being attacked by energy and maybe somehow I was able to energetically take charge?
I'd like to point out that if this was sleep paralysis it would be the the only incident of sleep paralysis in my life. Also, there is zero chance that anyone of my roommates/guests could have done this and it was not completely dark and no one was moving around our squeaky floored room before and after the incident. At the time I felt 100% awake.
Again, sorry about the mini novel but I could really use some insight and I don't know who to turn to.
Also, for those interested, I did move beds the next day and checked out 1 day early (I paid for 6 nights). After the incident a staff member told me that no one's reported being touched in that room but a few guests have reported waking up to hooded figures standing over their beds. So naturally I'm not too happy about the 'touchy-touchy'.
I went to this castle to experience ghosts and I may have got my wish. Either way, bucket list item checked off.