Several years ago, I had posted an account of my experiences in my stepbrother's childhood home, titled similarly to this one. My stepbrother is visiting for the holidays and it led us to recount our experiences in this home. I also found photos of the inside of the home, which I can share if anyone would like to see them, from a real estate listing.
To recap: the home was built in 1750, and is located in the historic seaside village in Massachusetts where I grew up. Other than my stepdad, who lived in the home with his family for nearly 10 years prior to his divorce, families have come and gone. The house has been for sale twice in the last 5 years, and never seems to be able to maintain occupancy, despite having undergone renovations. I question if this is due to the presence of other elements in the home. From the moment I stepped foot in this home as a child, I was immediately met with the sensation that the house was haunted, and I felt deeply uncomfortable being left alone in the oldest part of the home, especially upstairs. It constantly felt as if no matter where you went, there was something glaring at you or ready to jump out at you every time you entered a different room or turned the corner. I was always on high alert due to this unwavering sensation, and for the longest time, everyone had told me that I was the only person who experienced these feelings.
It turns out that is not the case, and my stepbrother and his friends, many of whom I also knew from childhood, experienced them as well. From the backyard of the house looking up at it, my stepbrother always felt, especially at night, as if there was an unseen entity in one of the upstairs windows staring at him, and he felt a constant compulsion to look up at that window as he was walking through the back door of the home. This window corresponded to the upstairs hallway, which I was deathly afraid of as a child and where I felt that the majority of the activity in the home was concentrated. I also just found out that the majority of his friends refused to be left alone upstairs in the house, openly stating they believed the house was haunted and that they would get this sensation that when they were upstairs alone, there was an entity right beside them, and although they could not see it, they could not shake the sensation that it was there. I felt this too. It was the feeling you have when you are in a room with another person, you are looking in a different direction but you know that if you look up, there will be someone there. Only there never was anything there. Sometimes, it felt as if there was someone or something inches away from your face, and even closing your eyes you would still "feel" it, with that pressure feeling in your forehead near your eyes when something is in front of your face.
I knew that my stepbrother had, at some point, moved from his room upstairs to the downstairs room in the back of the house which was part of a more recent addition, and that he did this because he believed the upstairs was haunted. But he never explained exactly what he had experienced until now. He told me that while the upstairs especially felt as if he was being watched and surrounded by unseen entities, nothing was so jarring to him until one night when he was lying in bed and was having difficulty sleeping. He had the persistent feeling of being watched which never really left you while in the home, but right when he closed his eyes and was about to fall asleep, he heard the sound of a door creak open, followed by footsteps down the upstairs hallway. He thought it was his father, so he closed his eyes and tried to go to sleep. Suddenly, the footsteps stopped right in front of the door to his room, he heard his doorknob turn, and the door to his own room start to slowly creak open. He closed his eyes and pulled his blanket over his head, waiting anxiously for someone to enter the room but there was no sound of footsteps. He lifted his head from under the blanket and saw the door wide open, but he could not see anyone or anything, only the stairs in the dim night light. All of a sudden, he felt this immediate sensation that someone, or something, was right next to his face. The temperature seemed to drop almost instantly. He swung his arms around on all sides and frantically began looking around but he could not see anything there. After what felt like an eternity and that sensation not going away, he screamed for his father, who ran into the room and convinced him it was all a bad dream and to go back to bed. The next day he moved downstairs, and only went upstairs when absolutely necessary for the remainder of time that he lived in that home.
There were many experiences I remember that I did not connect to paranormal activity until now.
One was that my stepdad's ex wife used to have this locked cabinet full of antique dolls, dishes, and plates which was in the dining room at the foot of the stairs. This cabinet was locked, and she and my stepdad were the only ones with access to the key. They made a big deal of this, because every item in the cabinet was antique and expensive. One day, I remember my stepdad went into the cabinet to remove one of the antique dolls with the intention of selling it to a collector and while doing so found that one of the plates, among the largest, most antique, and worth the most money, was broken. It was cracked almost all the way down the middle, but not enough for it to shatter. When he took the plate out to inspect it and try to ascertain the cause of the damage, it split in half right in his hand. There was no explanation for this, and no one had been in that cabinet for months. Moreover, the plate was located centrally in the cabinet and easily visible, and no one had heard or seen any indication that it was broken before this.
Another experience was when I was watching a movie with my stepbrother in the downstairs office room in the older part of the house. The sofa was against the wall and there was a window directly behind the sofa, and I always felt that there was someone, or something, watching me from outside the home, but I could not see anything. I would feel the need to lie down in just a way that I felt if something was watching me from outside, it would not see me because of the angling of the sofa. This feeling was persistent and jarring and prevented me from being able to focus on the movie. It created this prickly feeling on the back of my neck and caused my heart to race. Combined with the feeling that there were entities surrounding me within the house, staring at me from around every corner and from behind every door, from above and from below, this feeling was unshakable.
In the last year of their ownership of the home, they adopted a cat. I remember seeing this next event happen. The cat would refuse to go in specific rooms of the house and never went upstairs. One day I was watching a movie with my stepbrother in the same room as just mentioned. In the corner of the room was a table covered in a table cloth, with pictures and other memorabilia on it. The cat had crawled under the table cloth and was under the table, as cats often do, and suddenly started hissing and letting out aggressive meows. This startled us all because we thought there might be a mouse or some other animal that had gotten in through the ventilation. The cat ran out from under the table with its tail swinging back and forth and darted out of the room. I searched under the table to see what was underneath, almost expecting something to be there, but there was nothing. No sign of any animal activity, no ventilation system where something could have gotten through. The cat never went back into that room again and to this day it remains a complete mystery as to what he saw under the table.
The final experience I remember that I had not originally attributed to the paranormal was that in the creepy upstairs hallway, was a small door which was about 4 feet in height which led into a crawl space which was used for storage. I NEVER went in there nor would I imagine doing so, but my stepdad mentioned that one of the last weeks they lived in the house, he attempted to open this door to get items out of the crawlspace as they were packing, but the door just would not open. The knob would turn, but he could not push the door open, as if someone on the other side was pressing their weight against the door to keep it wedged shut. This crawl space was connected to another from another upstairs room, so he crawled around in the space and accessed the door from the other side. There was nothing blocking it, he was able to open it from the other side, and has no understanding of why it should have been wedged shut.
My stepdad refuses to believe this house was haunted. One day he sat in his upstairs room asking any spirits to reveal themselves, but nothing did. But even he admits that he would get that creepy feeling on the back of his neck where every hair stood on end and he felt as if he was being watched, but he writes it off as social conditioning. The house was 250 years old and looked haunted, so why would it not be? But the rest of us still believe.