Sleep Paralysis Stories – The Scariest Sleep Disorder Of All

Sleep paralysis stories typically involve unusual and often extremely frightening experiences. Perhaps you have one or two of these disturbing tales of your own to tell.

If not, I’ll first share one of mine to give you an understanding of what it can be like. Then we’ll take a closer look at whether sleep paralysis demons really exist, or if science can provide a logical, and hopefully comforting explanation.

sleeping man seeing a sleep paralysis demon

A typical sleep paralysis experience

Imagine the following scenario: you’ve fallen asleep as usual after a long day. You hope you’ll have pleasant dreams and wake up the next morning feeling refreshed.

But instead of waking up peacefully in the morning, ready to groggily hit the snooze button, you awaken at an unknown time in the middle of the night.

Two things immediately spring to mind: you can’t move at all, and you’re not alone.

You feel a weight on your chest, pressing you down and preventing you from sitting up. But it’s worse than that – you can’t move your arms or legs. You can’t even move your lips to call out for help.

You’re not sure who or what is pushing on your chest. It’s too dark to see. But you just know there’s a presence there. Something strange. Something frightening.

This happened to me last year, and was a very unsettling experience. Fortunately, there was no demon, ghost or burglar in my bedroom. After a minute’s panic, the feeling passed, and I was able to stumble to the bathroom to make sure my face wasn’t decorated with demonic symbols.

It seems I’d had a classic case of sleep paralysis.

A common experience

Sleep paralysis stories like this one are in fact surprisingly common. A review of 35 previous sleep paralysis studies in 2011 found that 7.6% of the general population had experienced sleep paralysis in their lifetime, with an even higher figure of 28.3% of students. And the prevalence rises again for people who have narcolepsy (around 40%).

You may have experienced it yourself, but until now not known what it was you were going through. So now we have a name for it, it might be helpful to know what causes it, and what you can do about it.

Accepting the cause is something which I now know many readers struggle with. Although sleep paralysis has a solid scientific explanation (as you’ll see below), the feeling can be so real that you may find it difficult to accept the scientific explanation.

Cultural, religious, esoteric and personal beliefs can all play a role in how you view sleep paralysis. And with that, how you decide to cope with any future episodes.

Polls – what’s your experience of sleep paralysis?

I ran several polls to find out more about readers’ experience of sleep paralysis. With thousands of people voting, they provide a fascinating insight into the variety of experiences people have.

Poll 1

In poll 1, you can see that many have had the experience of thinking there was a demon or other being in the room.

I imagine that many people who search online for information about sleep paralysis will have had the more intense experiences, perhaps skewing the results. But it’s still interesting to see how common that particularly scary feature is.

chart showing the results of a poll into sleep paralysis the kind of experience they have

Poll 2

Poll 2 shows that many readers find sleep paralysis terrifying. Again, those who search online for it are likely to have found it particularly disturbing. Having said that, there are still plenty of people who don’t find it so scary.

chart showing the results of poll 2 into sleep paralysis and how scared people are during episodes

Poll 3

Poll 3 shows that most people first experience sleep paralysis before they reach 20.

graph showing the results of a poll about the age readers first get sleep paralysis

Poll 4

Fortunately, poll 4 shows that most readers don’t experience sleep paralysis on a regular basis. If you’re one of those who do experience it regularly though, it’s a good idea to discuss it with your doctor.
graph showing sleep paralysis 4 results - how often people experience it

Poll 5

Poll 5 shows some of the things that have helped people stop sleep paralysis. You can also find more coping mechanism further on in this article.
chart showing the different ways people deal with sleep paralysis according to a poll

What causes sleep paralysis? The scientific explanation

The causes of the physical aspect of sleep paralysis are slightly different depending on the stage of sleep in which you experience it:

When falling asleep

Some people experience sleep paralysis during sleep onset – sometimes known as hypnagogic sleep paralysis. While falling asleep, your body naturally relaxes and you become less aware as you drift off to sleep.

However, if you do remain aware, you might realize you can’t move or speak if your brain stops your muscles from moving to help keep you safe while you dream.

When waking up

Alternatively, it can happen after you’ve already been asleep, known as hypnopompic sleep paralysis.

During the night you cycle through several different stages of sleep. During what’s called the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage you tend to dream more vividly. And so the brain ‘switches off’ your muscles to prevent you from acting out your dreams and potentially hurting yourself.

If you become aware again before the REM sleep cycle finishes, you might become conscious of the fact that you’re still paralyzed. So you could look at sleep paralysis as your body and brain being temporarily out of sync.

Why do you see, hear or feel strange things?

The explanation for why you feel physically paralyzed but awake is one thing, but how does science explain 3 of the main sleep paralysis stories that people report?

  1. That there’s an intruder or other presence in the room.
  2. That there’s some kind of sleep paralysis demon pushing down on your chest, strangling or doing other unpleasant things to you.
  3. Having an out-of-body experience.

The first two are usually explained by a combination of three occurrences:

  • During the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage of sleep, and the muscle paralysis that comes with it, your breathing can be shallower. And when you try to breathe deeply, you may feel that you can’t. Your brain might then misinterpret this as a feeling of being strangled, or a presence pushing down on your chest.
  • When you feel threatened, your body naturally reacts with its fight or flight defense mechanism. So if you wake up, are unable to move and it’s dark, you may react to the sensation of paralysis and breathing difficulty by thinking that something bad is happening.
  • In addition to the above two processes, several brain structures might interact to create a hypnagogic hallucination. During the common experience of an intruder or demonic entity, the hallucination may not initially take on any particular form. But when the threat system comes into play, you might misinterpret the feeling that you’re not alone as being that the additional presence is something bad – thus creating a hallucination which is demonic or malevolent in some way.

The out-of-body experience isn’t explained by the activation of the threat system. Instead, it’s explained by the parts of the brain involved in coordinating movement and also working out where the body physically is in space.

Researchers generally agree that an out-of-body experience is another form of hallucination caused by a neurological mechanism.

Dreams and nightmares overlapping with reality

In addition to the above, there’s also the confusion which can occur as your dreams or nightmares overlap with reality. If you wake up from a dream, but remain paralyzed, sometimes your dream imagery can appear to ‘map’ onto the real world.

So you may have your eyes open, but still see, hear or feel some of the strange or frightening things which you were just dreaming about, even if you can’t remember that you were just dreaming.

Then you add the physiological elements that come with suddenly finding yourself paralyzed, and you have all the ingredients for being very scared.

But why does it happen?

So now we know what happens, and what causes the feeling of paralysis and the hallucinations. But why does it happen in the first place, and only to some people?

Scientists aren’t completely sure, but in most cases it’s thought to be associated with one or more of the following:

  • Sleep deprivation.
  • Irregular sleep patterns – particularly with shift work or jet lag.
  • Narcolepsy.
  • A family history of sleep paralysis.
  • Poor sleep hygiene.
  • Sleeping on your back rather than your side or front.

Sleep paralysis causes – the not so scientific explanation

astral projection - one of the rarer sleep paralysis storiesIf you don’t believe that the scientific explanation is sufficient, then what else remains? Let’s look at each of the 3 main types of sleep paralysis stories in turn:

1. The Intruder

If you wake up in the middle of the night and you have a sudden feeling that there’s a human intruder in the room, then the possible explanation is simple. There really is someone else in the room.

If you weren’t paralyzed, then there would be an obvious way to find way out if this were the case: turn on the light and have a look, or prod your partner and tell them to do something about it. But you’re paralyzed though, so that doesn’t work.

Thankfully, it’s extremely unlikely that you’ll wake up to find a real intruder in your bedroom. And it’s even less likely that they will have a way to paralyze you while they help themselves to your valuables.

So if you wake up paralyzed and struggling to breathe, and then notice a presence on the other side of the room, it’s probably safe to assume there’s no intruder.

2. The demon

If you firmly believe in supernatural entities, there may not be a great deal of science that could convince you otherwise. It’s a personal choice to believe in such things.

What I would like to suggest though is this: if you experience sleep paralysis, wouldn’t it be more comforting not to believe that you’re being tormented by demons?

The scientific explanation would make sleep paralysis demon encounters so much easier to not dwell on and go back to sleep. And not dwelling too much on the experience is what many people do manage to successfully do.

Around the world

Interestingly, around the world there are many cultural interpretations of the forces at work in this particular kind of sleep paralysis event.

For example, in Fiji the demon is sometimes seen as a deceased relative coming back for some unfinished business or to tell the person something important. In Chinese folklore it’s also seen as a ghost rather than a demon or intruder.

Some countries, such as Iran and Pakistan, interpret it as being demons or spirits who have taken over a person’s body, often due to black magic performed by an enemy. In Turkish culture the entity is literally seen as sitting on your chest and stealing away your breath.

Many countries and cultures appear to have their own explanations for the sleep paralysis demon – some very similar, and others quite different.

The common theme being though that the entity is up to no good and something to be feared. I’m yet to find a culture which believes it’s a kind angel or fairy spending some quality time with you in the night.

I know from readers’ comments that some people do believe that demons or other evil entities exist. Some talk about them within a religious framework, others simply feel that there’s a lot which science can’t explain yet.

Among all of the comments from people who do believe these things there’s one common, and important, theme: nothing bad actually happened to them.

This then raises another question: if there are so many terribly evil beings out there, why is it that they do no more than scare people?

3. The out-of-body experience

When I was a teenager, I picked up a book in a library which claimed to be a training manual for astral projection. The idea being that there’s a separate part of you that’s able to leave the body and venture into other planes of existence.

The manual mostly involved visualization practice, which I spent a couple of days failing to do, before deciding it wasn’t for me.

There seems to be some overlap between the concepts of out-of-body experiences, near-death experiences, lucid dreaming and astral projection.

Many people report having experienced one or more of these, and the internet and bookstores abound with writers who claim to have techniques to consciously leave the body and have amazing adventures in the astral realm.

There’s no dispute that people do experience the sensation of an out-of-body experience during sleep paralysis. But is it best explained in biological terms, or are there really other realms, just waiting to be explored?

Again it’s a question of belief and I’m not here to tell you either way what you should think; you may even feel that both explanations can coexist.

Using sleep paralysis as a springboard…

There are many websites claiming that sleep paralysis has a biological cause, but can then be used as a springboard for lucid dreaming or astral projection.

I also recently came across what’s actually quite a sensible book explaining how to do this. It’s called ‘Sleep Paralysis: A Guide to Hypnagogic Visions and Visitors of the Night’.

It provides a detailed background to sleep paralysis, but also aims to help you find a way to convert sleep paralysis into a lucid dream. The point being that you can then take control of the experience and turn it into something positive.

And if you think that’s a ridiculous or impossible idea (especially if your personal experience has been terrifying!), you’ll find several detailed comments below from readers who say they’ve been able to do just that.

They have some inspiring stories of viewing sleep paralysis as a positive thing, which they enjoy because of the unique and fascinating experiences it brings them.

Choosing to believe in astral worlds that you can access and fly around in doing whatever you please sounds harmless and fun. If I’m honest I’d like to believe it’s possible – even though I’m not convinced.

On the other hand, choosing to believe you’re having the life sucked out of you by a sleep paralysis demon doesn’t sound so good to me.

How to stop sleep paralysis

When to see a doctor

Fortunately, most people don’t experience sleep paralysis very often, and so no treatment is required. However, if the following apply to you, it’s a good idea to speak to your doctor:

  • It happens regularly.
  • You feel anxious about going to sleep.
  • You don’t get enough sleep.
  • You feel very sleepy during the day or sometimes fall asleep suddenly or lose control of your muscles.

What medical treatment is available?

If you see a doctor, they might take the following action:

  • They may refer you to a sleep specialist to rule out the possibility of narcolepsy.
  • They may prescribe an anti-depressant medication, such as clomipramine, for a short period.
  • They might consider whether there’s an underlying mental illness if you’re experiencing hallucinations outside of the sleeping environment.
  • They would explain the biological processes involved in sleep paralysis, as outlined above, in the hope that educating you about sleep will help you accept it as a normal occurrence.
  • They might talk to you about developing good sleep hygiene techniques, which is thought to help reduce the frequency of sleep paralysis. The most important ones being to keep a regular sleep schedule, and not allow yourself to become sleep deprived.

Readers’ techniques for coping with sleep paralysis

In the comments below, many readers have explained how they either deal with or stop sleep paralysis. Firstly, I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone for contributing.

Please bear in mind that there’s no evidence that some of these work, other than the fact that people have said they help them personally. Remember that what works for one person may not for you.

  • Don’t let yourself become sleep deprived as it often happens more then.
  • Try to keep a regular routine of going to sleep and waking up.
  • Try to reduce stress and anxiety in your life.
  • Stay calm and try not to panic.
  • Try to wiggle just one finger or a toe. Some say this is more achievable than trying to move your whole body. Then you can try to move the hand or foot and slowly wake up the whole body.
  • Tell yourself that you’re actually in control. You can ‘order’ the experience to stop, or whatever you’re seeing to go away.
  • If you feel a weight on your chest, try to imagine there’s something friendly causing it, such as a big happy dog.
  • If it’s happening repeatedly, why not film yourself sleeping? This may be especially useful for people who have experiences where they feel that they have been physically ‘moved’ in their bed by some being, or their furniture has been moved. You would be able to reassure yourself that you weren’t actually dragged out of bed.
  • Try wearing a sleep tracker and see if it records you as being awake or asleep at the time. It can also help check your heart rate and breathing during the night.
  • Try not to think about what it ‘could’ be. Your imagination will probably make up something scary in the darkness.
  • Try to relax and ‘go with it’. Some readers actually enjoy sleep paralysis, and they welcome the opportunity to have out-of-body experiences or see what strange experiences they can have.
  • Don’t sleep on your back. Many people say they only have it in this position.
  • Try to organize your bedroom in a way which makes you feel safe and secure. Look into Feng-Sui to make your bedroom feel peaceful.
  • Don’t hang dressing gowns, coats or hats in places which look like figures in the dark.
  • Don’t read in bed as this can encourage you to fall asleep on your back.
  • Sleep with a night light on, or with music or the radio so that if you do wake up you aren’t in silent darkness.
  • Remind yourself that nothing bad will happen.
  • Imagine your body rolling from side to side in your mind and count each roll. Eventually you might notice you regain control of a body part. Focus on this part and try to grow the capacity for movement from there.
  • Count numbers to focus your mind on something other than the hallucinations.
  • Don’t sleep with a high pillow.
  • Keep your eyes shut and try to clear your mind instead of focusing on the things you can see.
  • Try squeezing your eyes tightly shut if you’re able to control the muscles around your eyes.
  • Keep well hydrated – drink water before going to bed.
  • Talk about it to family or friends – they may have experienced it too.
  • Write about it here. Some people find it helpful to describe their experience in the comments below.
  • If you have it once, get out of bed for a while to reset the brain. Perhaps also keep a light or music on when you go back to bed.
  • Many people who have a faith say they find prayer can be helpful. Some also say that calling on their religious beliefs and ‘commanding’ what they see to leave helps them.
  • Don’t take recreational drugs.
  • Check if any sleeping pills or herbal remedies you’re taking are causing it – either by discussing it with your doctor, or stopping taking them for a while.
  • Once the episode has passed, it’s good to take a moment to remind yourself that you overcame it again. Tell yourself that you overcame it, are not afraid and will always overcome it.

 How I recently stopped an episode of sleep paralysis

Since writing this article, I hadn’t had a single episode of sleep paralysis until recently. And I’m happy to report that I used two of the techniques in the above list to successfully stop it.

I woke up in the middle of the night to find myself in a strange position with my arms crossed on top of my body, almost like you see with medieval carvings of knights on tombs! And I could literally feel strong hands pinning my wrists to my chest.

I have to admit I was immediately very scared. The whole event was blurry, and I think I was having some dream overlap, but can’t remember exactly what now.

Two things sprung to mind after a brief moment of panic: ‘stay calm’, I said to myself, and ‘wiggle a finger’.

The calmness I only managed with moderate success, perhaps because this was the first episode in a long time, so I was caught off guard. But I did manage to focus my efforts on wiggling a finger.

In the haze of the night and the moment it felt quite odd, like my fingers were wiggling in different directions. But I think that’s possibly due to the disconnect between by body and brain with the paralysis.

Eventually I felt my arms loosen as well, and then soon afterwards I was able to shake the whole sensation away as I regained full control.

I then spent a few minutes doing some breathing exercises to ground myself and calm down, and then fell asleep again.

It seems that just knowing about the finger wiggling technique was enough for my brain to remember to do it when the sleep paralysis occurred.

So my recommendation, from personal experience, is to plant that thought in your mind too!

Further reading

The British National Health Service website has a section on sleep paralysis that you might find useful.

You can find some useful ideas in my article discussing how to stop nightmares and night terrors. Some of the ideas there about changing the content of your dreams might be helpful.

For any readers wondering if there’s a genetic factor involved in sleep paralysis, it seems that there could be. A study by researchers at Sheffield University in 2015 showed this in their research into twins who experience sleep paralysis.

Finally, in 2016 another UK study looked into the fascinating connection between sleep paralysis and lucid dreaming. They all examined the relationship between sleep paralysis and well-being, poor sleep and stress.

Please read before leaving a comment

After 3 years of personally replying to comments, I’ve decided to leave this fascinating and helpful discussion to the readers. I’ll still read them all before publishing to make sure the content is suitable for younger readers. But time constraints mean I have to focus my attention on other parts of the site.

It’s always very interesting to hear your sleep paralysis stories, and I know that many people find it helpful to have a place to describe what happened to them.

Moreover, other readers find it comforting to know they’re not alone and perhaps find someone who has had similar experiences.

So feel free to talk about your experience of sleep paralysis, and if you have any more tips or techniques for dealing with it, I’ll add them to the growing list of readers’ suggestions.

Leave a comment >>

2,781 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I have had sleep paralysis as far as I can remember in fact many times. You feel that something is sitting on your chest or is trying to strangle you and you are too weak to free yourself, especially when you are stressed. I think it runs in families because my siblings have this condition. My daughter who is in college has the same problem and hers has been worse because whenever it happens she screams and her room-mates complain which has really affected her self esteem and her studies. I call out the name of Jesus whenever it happens and as soon as I do that the spirit leaves me. Personally I think it has something to do with supernatural than scientific explanation.

  • spending the night with my fiancé. went to sleep and went into SP. i dreamed a woman was sitting on the bed next to my hip and she was blowing a mist of some kind into my face. on the bed next to me were 3 small toddlers. there was a row of beds along the was lined up end to end. we were in the middle bed.
    i couldn’t move a muscle. i couldn’t get away from the woman blowing this mist into
    my face or maybe my open mouth.
    i was terrified.
    it ended and i sat up and took a drink of water from the bottle on the night stand.
    my fiancé was glad i was awake. he said i was sitting up in my sleep making weird noises and swinging at something in the air.
    so i was able to move even tho i was in my dream totally unable to move. i was moving and he said swinging my arms and moaning and sitting upright.
    so i guess one can move during SP cuz that proved i could.
    i have had several other incidences where i dreamed i couldn’t move and i was really moving. i had one dream where i couldn’t move and when i woke up i was on the floor knocked out from my arms giving away as i crawled and smacking my head on the cement floor when my arms gave out.
    another time i had SP after surgery. i was sitting in my recliner and had an episode that seemed to last for hours. i know during the episode i had the urge to use the bathroom and couldn’t get there cuz i couldn’t move. i ended up having to throw the recliner out because i urinated in the recliner.
    so yes i have these episodes but i am still able to move even tho i am paralyzed in my mind.
    does anyone else move in their SP but feel like they can’t move or aren’t moving?

    • I’m here reading this as I needed to figure out why I’m having this feeling and dream. I don’t the exact time but roughly when I’m having the dream which is around 3am. Anyways I’m always sleeping in bed with my girlfriend. I tend to find myself sleeping on my stomach most nights with my arms cross except for this time, thus time I somehow fell asleep on my back. As I’m dreaming I see my room, my feet as they are under the cover and my arms and hands resting on my covers. As I lay here(which I see very vividly and feels oh so real, I notice this being. This being looks like that of a scary lady with no eyes and extremely quick. As I try to get up that’s when the figure rushes over to me, covers my mouth and holds my arm. I know my girlfriend is beside me, yet I try kicking and screaming to alert my girlfriend to help me, yet there is the being now looking over me as I frantically try screaming and moving. After what seems to be a few minutes of this experience I awake. It’s 4:35 am and I’m officially awake. I then proceed to wake up my girlfriend to ask her why she didn’t hear me screaming(this is the 2nd time this has happened, with the first time my girlfriend actually woke me up as I was screaming, though the noises I was actually making were those as if someone was holding my mouth closed) and so she held me as I looked weary and not ready to sleep again. Weird feeling

  • I don’t know if this is sleep paralysis, but there have been times when I’m falling asleep and i hear this awful loud roaring sound in my head, and it won’t stop, i can’t move and seems to last for hours.

  • I would say I’m one of those people who actually enjoys it. As someone who has spent time reading up on this as well as trip reports (stories of people’s experiences on certain substances), I find it hard sometimes to distinguish a sleep paralysis (SP) story I read from a bad trip report. It seems both are greatly influenced by what’s called set and setting. Set is your mental state. Some people who have had many SP experiences say they’re desensitized to the darker aspects or they’ve learned how to make them more positive experiences. Changing the way you see SP may be very helpful in changing the experiences you have. Setting is the external environment. I like the suggestion that says to make your room a safe place for you. That can definitely make you feel more comfortable.

    It seems many people freak out about not being able to breathe and this puts them into a “bad trip” type of experience. I don’t struggle with this (thank God) and I hope this suggestion helps anyone who does deal with that. Your body is breathing automatically when you sleep so breathing is not something you have to worry about at all. For me, accepting that my body is on autopilot allows me to focus on the mental aspect which I personally enjoy.

    Despite the vague mention of substances, I hope this can still be posted since I do feel this may help some people struggling with their SP experiences.

  • Hi in my sleep I feel like someone is trying to get me and pull me from behind. I only come out of it wen I shout and touch my husband. It only happens when I sleep on my side with my back to the door , that I feel someone behind me. I also see shadows of things go past in the corner of my eyes.

  • On two separate occasions, I soberly observed with my two untrained eyes, material demons in broad daylight fleeing my corporeal body when I started to fill myself with love and joy. Sacredness is innate in each of us, and love is our most powerful sacred state that turns our bodily temples into fortresses. No parasitic demons will tolerate holiness or sacred energies in their host environment, so they flee. The common explanation is that they’re far less dense than we are, and can penetrate our relatively porous bodies, just as we can penetrate clouds of gas, vapour, or smoke.
    My first extraordinary vision in this category came in my twenties, after a weekend of intensive regressive therapy. I had dumped a tremendous amount of negative energy on the floor mats in the therapy room, and now I was back at work on a Monday morning. I started across campus to get coffee, and as I walked I reviewed my progress in releasing a load of emotional pain As I reconnected with leftover feelings I began to feel centered, and a familiar warmth started to spread into my belly, combined with an uncharacteristic light heartedness. I could feel joy rising up in me. A young couple walking a few hundred feet ahead of me stopped to part company for the day. When I slowed down to observe the public affection they were displaying for each other, I felt a surge of joy. Suddenly I noticed out of the corner of my eye, a large plume of dense grey smoke, so dense it resembled wool, rising up quickly from behind my head as though escaping from my body. Like a dark shadow it rose up over 10 feet, still connected to me by its tail, before launching itself forward a few hundred feet in open air, directly towards the couple. As the plume of smoke flew towards them it grew two large arms of grey smoke which opened wide to embrace the young couple who had stopped to kiss goodbye at the approach of a bus. In this moment, there was a student walking nearby and much closer than the couple, but the dense smoke was drawn preferentially to the couple like a magnet. No one seemed to notice, but I was stunned with disbelief as I watched with frozen fascination. The vision was over in seconds, and though it was frightening, I still felt good afterwards. I could not comprehend the situation at the time, and it would take the rest of my life to reach a fuller understanding of that extraordinary event.
    About 40 years passed before I would see the smokey creature again, this time in my late sixties. We had retired to the country, where I started to meditate outside in good weather. I was intuitively developing a vortex ritual on my property, in which I would raise Gaia energies from the ground below my feet into an up spiralling vortex of love energy, and release it into the universal grid. One sunny afternoon, as I was walking the path to my mediation spot it happened again. I was preparing myself mentally for my vortex ritual as I walked, when I suddenly stepped back instinctively to avoid a small but nasty prickly ash tree. As I stepped back into a patch of sunlight, a man-sized plume of dense grey smoke jumped out from behind my head on the left side, and flew ahead of me down the path. It rushed past me so quickly that I thought it was a person wearing a dark grey wool sweater. I did not see it clearly until it was out in front of me, and then my brain was finally able to focus and produce a recognizable image. It was old smokey, and I called out “Hey”, as it flew past me down the path. Old Smoke left me with the clear impression that it was in a huge hurry to be away from me. This time I sensed an intimacy with this shadowy apparition, like an old acquaintance. I felt elated though confused by the event.
    The first event in my twenties puzzled me for years until I accepted the reality that the smokey apparition was a hidden aspect of my shadow self. With age, I found the courage to face it, own it, and integrate it into the rest of me as the part that I had rejected and left behind many years ago, for various reasons.
    Then last month Michael Harner died, and it changed everything for me. Dr. Harner was an American anthropologist who lived with various native groups to study global shamanism. He collected and compiled shamanic lore, and shared it with the world thru his Foundation for Shamanic Studies. Hundreds of his grateful students posted tributes to him, and some told of their shamanic journeys. I expressed my gratitude in a message as well, and it was key to gaining access to shamanic experiences not normally revealed to the rest of the world. One student with psychic vision described a shamanic training session where he watched dark grey plumes of dense smoke jump out of patients being treated by students, and enter neighbouring patients. That description matched my experience, revealing the universal nature of these particular entities. The information that set me free after a lifetime of searching was found on the shamanic path, confirming that indeed, there are many ways to the top of the mountain.
    My heart-mind now accepts the physical reality of discarnate entities. They seem to have little substance, meaning they seem to exist at much lighter densities, but can become visible to the untrained eye under the right conditions. Apparently, the spectrum of discarnate entities includes helping spirits, as well as harmful ones, and those who thrive parasitically on our dark energies are called demons. Most importantly, they are not me!
    So how can non-Christians protect ourselves against the dark forces, and maintain our own spiritual sovereignty without borrowing or accessing religious holiness? First, holiness or sacredness is an internal quality bestowed by humans, not gods. We humans render: persons, places, things, and ourselves, holy or sacred, by treating these with high respect, reverence, and love. We become aware of our own innate holiness or sacredness by recognizing, honouring, and protecting our own spiritual sovereignty, ie: our spark of divinity that we must never surrender. Genuine deities will respect and honour your sovereignty, and never try to thieve it. Second, my real life experiences demonstrate that the secular solution seems to be just as powerful and effective as any religious solutions, in the absence of documented comparisons. Whatever the mechanism of interaction may be, my real life experiences verify that if we reaffirm our spiritual sovereignty to ourselves daily, and stay on the loving path as much as possible, our body temples will fill with the protective power of our own sacredness, and the power of our own spiritual force will naturally repel parasitic demons, and may attract helping ones.

  • 3/23/2018. Last night I awoke with very large hands around my throat and completely unable to move, as if paralyzed. Although there is a night light in my bedroom, I was immersed in total blackness…not darkness, but totally absense of light. I felt no fear, but the hands were tightening on my neck. My wife was asleep beside me. I tried to talk, and couldn’t. I managed to squawk out my sister’s name three times, not loudly, just a squawk. My sister is 4 years older than me and a bit of a psychic……maybe why I called out to her rather than my wife beside me. I am 73 years old, never had an instance of sleep paralysis before. I do not have sleep disorders or narcolepsy, have no known stresses and my sleep patterns are normal. Previous to three months ago, my job had me with extremely bad sleep patterns…17 hour work shifts with 2-4 hours between shifts. Previous to that my sleep patterns were much worse…..sometimes 36 hours without sleep, followed by 12-16 hours of deep sleep, 12 hour a day work schedules…..yet never experienced sleep paralysis. Seems it would have happened then.

  • I have never experienced sleep paralysis or whatever it was that I had experienced this morning for the first time in my life. I am 21 years old and usually sleep pretty well but this time it was terrifying. It was around 5ish in the morning when I went to wake up I think and I could not feel any feeling in my body. I could not move my head, my arms, legs, nothing. I couldn’t even hardly open my eyes and I couldn’t breathe and was breathing fast and quick breaths that were very loud. I tried to call out to my fiancé next to me for help but I couldn’t say a word it couldn’t come out of me. At the same time, I felt something right above my face breathing on me and I heard a door close and open so I have no idea what had happened but I woke up so scared I was crying and shaking from what happened. I am religious and do believe there is demons definitely, but I am unsure of what happened to me. I am not sure if I had just experienced sleep paralysis or encountered something much more evil. Has anyone ever had this happen? Especially with the breathing of something directly over my face while laying there but couldn’t see what it was. It has just terrified me.

    • Hi Danielle, I have experienced sleep paralysis since I was a young girl. I used to believe I was being haunted and would often wake up reciting the Lords Prayer. There wasn’t a lot of information on the matter so for a long time I believed it to be supernatural. Once I found out what caused it, it helped ease my mind. It doesn’t stop it but it helps me break free better. The breathing and growling sounds are actually coming from you but because we are in a state of fear and confusion its intensified and feels like it is coming from an outside source. I am prone to extremely vivid movie like dreams and nightmares so it is always incorporated into my experience. I hope this helped.

  • I’ve had sleep paralysis several times while staying at my grandmas and going to my grandmother house. The people who I see where family members that died not demons. I was always afraid…. My first time I had it I was in the backroom were my moms grandmother died in. I went to sleep and it was like all of a sudden I woke up but I couldn’t move or yell out to my grandma or grandpa. She was trying to tell me something but I was too scared. And she could talk she could see that I was scared so she started saying don’t be scared don’t be scared . I just want to talk to you. But I couldn’t control the way I felt because I knew she was dead. When, I start describing how she looked my mom instantly knew that it was her grandmother. When I first look at her she smiled its like she knew who I was and wanted to have a conversation with me but when I looked at her and was scared she got sad. I’ve always had a sleep paralysis with her and my grandads brother that died. My heart beats so fast its like i cant breath . I cant move, or scream out for help.

  • I had my first sleep paralysis episode when I was just a small kid many years back, when I was maybe 12 or 13. I was sleeping and woke to the sound of the television on in our living room, unable to move but I was fully aware my mom had stayed up watching a movie, I could clearly hear in vivid detail the Dialogue of the television, It was an movie with a mailman whistling as he delivered the mail and greeting people with a friendly greeting, I think it may have been Don Knotts (remember him, Mr. Furly from Three’s Company). At any rate, I woke up unable to move with the sensation of something crawling on my chest… Next thing I am picked up out of my bed thrown against the wall by the light switch and fell to the floor… Next thing I know I am back in bed awake, and the mailman is still whistling on the TV. (At that time there was no internet to look it up, and the condition of Sleep Paralysis was something I did not know. My dream of the evil presence was not based on something I had read previously, my mind wasn’t conditioned to think ”thats what happens during SP, the evil was just there).
    I have had many episodes over the years, I’m now 56 years old. Some of the episodes have been intensely terrifying… Others were mild… Even though I am screaming ”help me, help me” at the top of my lungs in the dream, my wife says she can only hear slight murmur‘s… But even then she knows to try to wake me up which can be tough at times, she will physically have to shake me.
    It’s clear we all have the same sensation of an evil presence in the room with us… But it’s amazing how we can take note of things that are very real while it’s happening, for example I have an alarm clock that shines the time on to the ceiling above the bed… I know exactly what time these sleep paralysis happen because I am staring right at the time, the evil figure will even block out my line of vision to the time on the ceiling when it crawls on top of me, that freaks me out just how real it is.
    I would like to know what mental characteristics we all share… Is it insecurity, Lack of confidence, I’m a rather a reserved, not shy but conservative type person, but happy in life, I don’t watch horror movies, I like comedy, I listen to country music not demonic black metal. I’m a big sports fan, no ‘darkside’. Is it our inadequacies manifesting themselves???? It is really weird how the same presence of evil is something we all experience in these episodes, it’s scary how alike our stories are. IT makes me think there’s another dimension that we cross into (yeah, I know, that sounds nuts). We must all have something in common in our real world’s lives. I used to think stress might bring them on… But I have been under a huge amount of stress over the last year and have only had one mild episode, I’m sleeping better than ever even with the stress I am under. One other thing, in my sleep paralysis episodes I can go from a nothing dream (an almost pleasurable dream) of watching a butterfly flying around on a sunny warm day, then with in an instant there is an evil force and I can’t wake up my body even though my mind is wake. I thought I had invented the wiggle finger technique to get out of the dream… I guess not, most of us thought of that on our own it seems.

  • Im 26 and i’ve been getting sleep paralysis in phases over the last two years. I find if i go a few days with poor sleep i am more prone to getting it. when i get it, i get 2-3 episodes of it per night. i find it hard to stop as i have no control over anything in this state between consciousness and sleep. I have also noticed that if i lay on my back as im trying to fall asleep then i am likely to get it. i have only ever experienced sleep paralysis when on my back, so it’s something i try to avoid.

    the main form of paralysis i get is an out of body experience. i feel as if im levitating up and out of my bed and then i crash to my bedroom floor face first. i feel as if i can realistically feel the levitation and crashing to the floor, but obviously i haven’t moved.

    i also have experienced a strange goblin type creature the size of a 1 year old baby sitting on my chest preventing me to breathe effectively.

    but i am trying to regulate my pattern now and avoid sleeping on my back and it seems to be doing the trick.

  • I first experienced sleep paralysis about 5 years ago, I had 2 of the intruder. Just recently they’ve started back again, 3 now, but 2 of them were much different to the rest because the intruder was my brother. He was killed almost a year ago in a hit and run. We were very close, he truely was my best friend.
    Over the pass couple weeks I’ve had to move home to my parents and I’ve been sleeping in his room. One dream he came in and kneeled next to the bed up by my head, he was so sad and distraught. So I asked him if he wanted to trade places and he said yes. Of course, I couldn’t move, because all I wanted to do was grab him. But then he had to leave and I told him it’s going to be okay, God will look after him..
    That has been the most terrifying one I’ve had yet.
    When he died he was hit by 2 vehicles and was still alive after the 2nd but died minutes later. The thought of what he was feeling at that time has always played on my mind. So I wonder; what I think and worry about while Im awake, does that influence the kind of sleep paralysis I’m going to have come night??…

  • Have you ever felt like you were sleep but awake at the same time unable to move a muscle or speak at all? And it takes all the strength you have to come out of this feeling? Well, I was sleeping on my back and my gf was in the bed next to me. I dont know the exact time it took place, all I know that it was in the middle of the night.

    During my sleep my head turned from the left to the right, at that moment I seen a tall man with a black long coat on with the collar up. He seemed to resemble a white middle aged man. My bedroom door was open slightly maybe a foot from being halfway open and it let in lighting from the kitchen and he stood behind that light just staring at me. (A ghostly figure so to speak or someone out of an old black and white movie picture that had no color)

    At that time I felt like… well my first thought was he was an intruder and i could not move a muscle to act on instinct on defending my home and my family. The funny thing is, this entity was very, very, very calm. He looked down on me and simply smiled! FREAKED ME THE F OUT!

    At that very moment he extended his hand to me as if he wanted me to grab his hand and go with him maybe or as if he had something to show me. OH HECK NO BUDDY!!

    In my mined I began to panic and was very scared. And managed to mumble,
    “Im a child of God”
    “Im a child of God”
    Racing thoughts of evil ran through my head even though he was so calm and stood there smiling.
    At that time I drifted back to sleep. The experience its self lasted maybe the duration of about 10 seconds.

    I woke up in the morning with an uneasy feeling like i was having a panic attack with a very high level of anxiety. I instantly looked to the side of my bed where the man stood, but he was gone. This was way to vivid to be a dream and too real feeling.

    After I have done a bit of research on it and a better understanding of what may have taken place its called (sleep paralysis). I remember falling into deep sleep as a kid and feeling awake at the same time and not being able to move a muscle or speak but the latest incident has caused me to lose sleep and keep me awake at night afraid it will happen again.

    If you have experienced anything remotley close to this please do not hesitate to share it with me and elaborate on your encounter if you would please. Thanks

  • First time I had SP was when I was about 13, I was at my grandparents house, and I was sleeping in a room I have always found creepy for some reason. Remember going to bed early that night, as I have done with my chores, and my friends weren’t around to hang out with. Around midnight I woke up feeling very cold, and couldn’t move a muscle, then I have noticed a dark figure in the corner of the room next to the door, it was a short figure, and it was facing the corner perfectly still. I’ve started blinking very fast as every other part of my body refused to move, then I heard a voice saying “see you later” and it vanished. The next morning I have asked my grandparents if a child died in the house, as I thought it was a ghost or something, and explained what happened. Turned out we were the only owners of the house and no child have died there, but I was brought to our church for cleansing or whatever they did to me, also a priest came over to bless the house and stuff. I have never seen this thing until my 20th birthday, I was still living with my parents, and one night I felt cold again, woke up and instantly remembered the episode from my grandparents house, I felt terrified, I knew there was something in the corner, but didn’t want to open my eyes and look. Then I heard very pleasant voice saying “hello” and I looked at the corner, it was the same short dark figure facing the corner looking at it’s feet. Immediately replaced the feeling of dread with the feeling of sorrow, for some reason I felt very sad, and then the shadowy thing moved, slowly turned around and I could see his features, it was a small, pale boy wearing very old and damaged clothes, he looked tired, skinny, and I have never seen anyone who looked alike him before, yet looked very familiar, and got the feeling that I knew him very well. The feeling of dread returned and in a flash he appeared inches from my face and said “Boo” and it was gone. This “Boo” episode repeated many times through the years, there was a period in my life so bad, I had these twice a week, and it was always the same.
    Last time I saw it (him) was 2 years ago, it started as usual, but this time I did something. I kind of interrupted him the moment he was supposed to say “Boo”, I thought to myself “Boo, right? How hard it is to come up with something new?”, he stopped right in front of me, tilted his head on one side, grinned, covered my eyes with his hand and said “still waiting”, then it was gone and I could move again.
    It creeps the hell out of me, and I don’t really want to know what the little prick is “still waiting”. Does anyone else getting the same episode over and over again? Am I simply going crazy? I don’t know what to think of it.
    I’d like to apologise if there are a lot of errors in my writing, English is not my native language.

  • I’m prone to sleep paralysis and although I am spiritual I don’t have any sort of religion and feel no need to connect myself with one. Often, when I have sleep paralysis I see demons or things that in my mind would resemble demons. The other night, I began to have a dream where I was standing in a field of dandelions or daisies and as I was standing something began to crawl through the flowers and when it reached me I saw it was a woman with one antler and braided black hair. She moved like a snake and wrapped around me and ran her nails over my face and said “Angeless” (sounded like ‘angel less’ but the two words put together) and then the sky went gray and her eyes turned black. I woke up from the dream unable to move, lying on my back on my bed. I saw her figure at the end of my bed. She crawled up my bed but now she was moving like her bones were broken or like her limbs had lots of joints. She crawled on top of me and dove into me almost. She started eating my stomach and although I couldn’t feel myself being eaten I could feel her hands wrapped around my wrists and her nails and the weight of her body on top of me. Her hair wasn’t braided anymore and it hung in almost a stringy way and she didn’t look pretty the way she had in the dream and at this point I wasn’t sure that she was even still a woman. She didn’t look like a man or a woman or anything. She just looked scary. I looked down and whatever she was eating just hung in big coils that reminded me of pencil shavings and her lips had disappeared and her mouth just looked like a big void with blood all around it. She screamed really loud and then I woke up, laying on my side and shaking really hard.
    The day after this happened I didn’t really think about it because it just felt too crazy and weird to even be sleep paralysis or a dream that my own brain made. It all reminded me of something you’d see on tv so I just kind of decided that it was probably just something I saw on tv and remembered and turned into something scary but, as I think about it the more I feel that this wasn’t something to be ignored. I feel that maybe my lack of faith or religion has something to do with it. Maybe it’s a warning to get myself on a religious path. I really don’t know what it means. I kind of feel that her saying “angeless” may mean that I have no guardian angels or anything therefore I’m vulnerable to whatever is out there. I feel stupid even thinking this stuff because I have never believed in religion or had any interest in it but something in me is just uneasy. I’d really like some sort of input on this or someone’s advice because I feel really afraid.

  • I had a SP episode last night. I actually felt someone lying beside me. Then it was on top of me and I kept trying to push it off me. But couldn’t move. I tried calling out for help, but realized I live alone and no one to rescue me. So I kept trying to move and couldn’t. I then called out to Jesus to help me and it vanished. It took me awhile to come fully awake. I was pretty shaken. This happens every several months. Relieved to know there is an explanation for it and I’m not alone. Thank you

    • I had a similar experience. My interpretation of yours is: when you called out to Jesus, your own consciousness moved from the sleepy passive area of your mind, and entered the spiritual part of your mind, where your consciousness activated the resident higher spiritual energies that exist naturally in our higher self, the highest authority available. You saved yourself by retreating into your spiritual self. Demons exist in lower vibrations, and cannot follow your consciousness into your own inner sanctum. There, you can regroup and reorganize your defences and come out strong and spiritually sovereign. Beefing up your own spiritual sovereignty with positive self talk is the biggest step to self defence against dark forces. Believe in yourself, and then reach out to embrace your darkness that is a natural part of you. Once you achieve that, you will be ONE with yourself, a most powerful combination.

  • I said some words before I tried to fall asleep – acknowledging the Moon, Mother Earth and the Goddess.
    For some reason I added some extra words that popped into my head (maybe a chant?) and then I tried to fall asleep.
    The next thing I know, I am unable to move, awake or lucid and I am paralyzed. I cannot even wiggle my fingers or toes nor can I call out to my dogs who are asleep beside the bed.
    I am feeling afraid as I have no idea what is happening to me – though I know it has happened before – I just blank it out I think.
    Whilst I try to open my eyes, I glimpse shadowy figures around me – almost going about their day to day business in a grey and violet tinged world. I feel unsure about this and have a distinct unsettling feeling.
    Then I hear an inhuman snarling sound. Did it come from me? I am unsure.
    But it fills me with dread and I seem to go under again into another world. I am getting sucked or pulled down a corridor of some sorts.
    I know for certain that I need to stop from getting sucked down or else I will not get up.
    So I try with all my will to drag my arms, fingers and legs into any hole that I can grip onto. My body is heating up with the friction of trying to stop the powerful sliding sensation.
    Then I imagine I have a parachute on (like somehow I am still in control) – the parachute opens and slows my descent. This is seemingly enough for me to turn my head slightly, claw my fingers and whisper-yell to my dog to jump up in the bed.
    After several attempts, my dog jumps onto the bed and I am freed from whatever it was. I am almost panting and deeply unsettled. It still feels like there is a lingering presence – dark, male? Not benign – but watching.
    I do not sleep well for the rest of the night and am still very unsettled the next day. It was almost a full moon last night.

  • I’m 16 years old and have been having SP episodes since I was around 12- very glad that I found this site as it is comforting to know that others go through the same things that I have, I didn’t know what was going on for a while and thought that I was all alone in these experiences. I haven’t had an episode in years so the one last night caught me very off guard but I can say that I’m starting to figure out my triggers (last night I went to sleep at 3:45 so I was very sleep deprived). Unlike most of you my experiences don’t usually include demonic or out of body experiences- it’s more just the feeling of being completely paralyzed and not able to open my eyes or make a noise, I can usually pull myself out of it by wiggling my toes (which I also thought I came up with but I guess not lol) or focusing on my breathing. Last night’s episode was unlike the others though, I woke up around 7:30am and realized almost immediately that it was SP but panicked as it did catch me off my guard, I was able to make a small noise but not move any part of my body-even my toes. I hallucinated a demonic looking face- bruised all over and very ugly- and when I hallucinated being able to look down at my hand it was compeletely covered with bruises as well. Very scary because I’ve never had an SP like that before. I regained my cool and waited out the episode but was too scared to go back to sleep. That’s my experience with SP and if it helps someone like the other posts helped me then I’m glad I shared it.

  • I wouldn’t call it a dream nor a nightmare. This was far worse than a nightmare. I just experienced a sleep paralysis last night I went to bed around 11 pm last night. And woke up around 2 or 3 am because my brother came home late. So I fell asleep. I remember actually falling asleep on my right side then turning to lay on my back and that’s when it happened. I knew my brother was awake. My eyes were closed and I felt that someone was standing on top of me with one foot on each side of me. And that the “person” was crunched down staring at me while I had my eyes closed… at first I thought it was my brother because he used to sleep walk and baby it got worse or something. I was still terrified because I mean come on that would be scary to wake up to. But then I couldn’t open my eyes because of the fear. And I tried to get up and I couldn’t I felt paralyzed. It only lasted a few minutes and I got up and sat up I looked at my phone it was 4 am. I looked at my brother and asked if he was just over here and he said no. And I asked if anyone came over here when I was sleeping like my mom or dad or my other smaller siblings. He said no. He went to bed and fell asleep. I stayed up trying to search what my dream meant because before I just thought it was a nightmare. And then I saw the word sleep paralysis and I was thinking it’s not that. It can’t be until I read the symptoms. I don’t sleep very well, I go to sleep different hours but very late. Or I don’t sleep at all. I read stories and most we similar to mine. I stayed up watching a movie on my phone and went to bed at 6:30 am again because I was tired and sleepy. And I had another one. I was laying on my back and I felt something on me. And I kept telling my self it isn’t real and every time I said that the thing on top of me felt less heavy but then I would try to move and it felt heavy. So I kept saying to myself it’s not real the weight was gone and I fully woke up and I couldn’t breathe. I went to bed again and then I felt like I was out of my body floating because I was trying to turn on the light to see who was in the room with me but I failed to do so and it took literally forever to fully wake up. I don’t know if I’m over reacting or what I had just experienced. But it’s very frightening

    • I felt the same thing. This actually happened to me for the first time. I was sleep and It felt as if some one slowly laid on top of me. I moved my fingers and felt a hand press against mines and move them back. At that point I attempted to get up and felt my self trying so hard to raise up. I could hear myself attempting to scream but couldn’t open my mouth. Creepiest shit ever! Once I felt the pressure rise I jumped up and ran to the light.

      • I had been up to no good for awhile and I do believe that my soul may have been in question, you know, by the forces of good and evil. On my way home from wandering the streets one night I heard a voice come from a car parked in a dark alley say don’t lie, and then two guys laugh. When I got home to the couch I slept on it looked different, one of my roommates positioned a folding chair as if they expected me to sleep sitting up propping my feet on it. I did not trust it and decided to sleep on the floor, but as soon as I lay down on my back I felt something at my feet and noticed the blanket ruffling up and down as if the invisible man was trying to sneak into bed with me. It was so evil and deathly I felt a coldness that was like heat taking my breath away and immediately stood on my feat. Then I heard it say “This one is strong” and I knew I had to go outside. The worst thing was that I thought that the world was ending at that very moment. On my way out the door I looked in on one of my roommates and I seen her barley breathing, gasping, flat as if she was being squished by something and at the same time I think it was raping her. Outside I repented and slept in my roommates car that night.

  • Its’ spiritual. How much more evidence does one need? Hallucinations? With everyone seeing just about the same thing. Studies try to explain, with no hard evidence. I used my faith and called out to Jesus and it went away. Keep the Lord close to you and this will go away.

    • I agree! I have had SP since my teen years and I am now 37. I started praying during my episodes a few years ago. I haven’t had an episode in about two years. My prayers would wake me up almost instantly and then the SP finally stopped.

  • Mine are becoming worse…I use to hear ringing really loud almost to the point it hurt…like everyone pressure on my chest couldn’t move or speak…now I hear giggling and other unexplainable voices…the worse part is mine will now happen back to back leaving me to believe I’m not going to come out of it…last night I woke up to get water and I felt like something was there. I was fully awake at this time with my dog and boyfriend in room. I didn’t want to wake them so I sat in the bathroom..finally after a hour or so I grab a blanket ran back to the bathroom and tried to sleep with light on…few minutes later I couldn’t move I couldn’t shout there was knocking on the door…finally I broke out of being paralyzed and opened door it was my boyfriend but all his hair was gone he was pale and his mouth was saown shut…he was in the exact clothes he was sleeping in that night…I once again couldn’t move just stood there as he hugged me…I woke up sleeping in the bathtub due to my boyfriend walking in asking me what the hell I was doing…I didn’t know if it was him or not again…I couldn’t say anything I let him per went back to sleep in restroom…this sleep disorder is ruining my life…I can’t decipher what’s real and what’s not…I’m scared

    • I am so sorry you’re experiencing this, it’s been twenty years for me. But I’ll never forget the terror, I had many. Finally, I was able to scream IN JESUS NAME I REBUKE YOU!!~ It never returned.

      Love to you.

  • Hi, I am Shilvana and I am 21. Until now, I never knew what is this happening to me during my sleep but now I know the answer to this.
    I was 15 when the first time I experienced hypnagogic sleep paralysis. The first time was scary, I felt like something is entering into my body and I can’t do anything about it. And now it has taken control over my whole body and neither can I move a little finger nor speak anything. I felt like someone had taken my voice out of me and I won’t be able to speak again. I started mumbling prayers in my sleep and and fought with it. Then whatever that feeling was, it went. The next day when I woke up, I thought of it to be bad dream and completely ignored it. I thought I was dreaming. But the very next day same thing happened to me again, but this time I woke up in the middle of the night and my eyes were open, I could feel the thing entering into my body and I got scared again and I felt that it is squeezing my whole body and I cannot move at all and literally I felt like I am shouting and my mum used to sleep next to me, so I was shouting that mom something is strangling me but my mum just couldn’t hear. Actually I wasn’t screaming at all, it was just me thinking that I am screaming and no ones hearing. Then again I fought it and tried reaching my mother anyhow. Then I moved my finger and then the feeling went away and I touched my mother’s hand and slept.
    The third night it happened again and now I started taking it positively and felt that let it come, I will fight with whatever it is. I won’t be scared and I wasn’t.
    It happened for 3 consecutive nights. And I talked about it to my family members.
    We thought of consulting a maulana( a muslim man revered for his religious learning). He said there is no evil thing and nobody has done any black magic to her. I just kept thinking of what it might be. Then I started putting a holy book underneath my pillow so that no bad energy touches me.
    It stopped and now I have it once in 6 months and yesterday it happened again. I could hear my mum talking on the phone and I am trying to wake her up but nothing is helping and the thing has strangled me again. I fought it and when I woke up I found that I was facing the other side of my mum and my mum was sleeping peacefully, she wasn’t actually talking to someone. So I sort of came to know that my mind made it up because in reality when I went to sleep my mum was talking to someone. So I must’ve happened to recall that during my sleep paralysis.
    One time it happened like there a lot of people giggling and talking in the next room, my sister and brother in law talking in the next room and I am shouting for help but they just couldn’t hear me.
    Until now, I’ve had it many times, so I don’t fear it. I have developed a habit and now whenever it happens I pray and I think that I just have to move a little finger and I’ll be normal again.
    I am not dealing with any kind of anxiety, pressure or sleep deprivation but still I have sleep paralysis.
    Thank you for posting this online, I’ve got all my answers and now I know what was that thing that has been happening to me all these years.

  • I’ am 52 yrs old and I work at a hospital as a nurse on the night shift. On my days off it is hard for me to get up out of bed to get moving.
    This morning I was laying in my back in my bed feeling droggy and with no energy to get out of bed. Suddenly I open my eyes and to the left of my shoulder off the edge of my bed I saw a brown hazzy fog or smoke moving rapidly to sit on to my
    chest and it formed a wide heavy figure of a man with a pointed type of hood on his head and a face with undetermined facial fitures looking down on me for about 3-4 seconds. I was very stunned and try to ignore this experience. But the more I talked about it to my family I became more panicky. I decided to go back into my house and room to pray to God and Jesus to leave me and my family in Gods name. I will never forget this experience and I hope others
    People can feel like they are not alone and we can fight this strange phenomenon together.

    • OmG that is so creepy, my friend described that creature too and its similar to yours. I dont know what is that and why ppl have such dreams but im sure it has some meaning

  • My friend had a rly rly scary dream and sleep paralysis. After 1-2h of sleeping, about 2am she had a dream about demon in her house, she tryed to wake up but couldnt and also she was breathing hardly and felt like choking. Then she saw a demon/devil on her bed sitting in crossed legs position and talking to her but whats more scary is all details of demons looks. It was dark brown color and he had long hair, brown bright eyes and toes just like human fingers with long nails. Can u please answer me coz I rly want to know what this dream means and is it dangerous. Thanks

  • Thankfully mine stopped when I was in my 20s, from being 12. I hated & dreaded them but I knew when they were about to happen as there was a pressure in my head, a distinct physical feeling. I’d fight to keep awake but fail. Aside from the paralysis I had the sensation of being thrown against walls; believing at the time it was real I’d be concerned that the noise of me hitting walls would wake the neighbours! Sometimes I could hear the Lord’s Prayer in a distorted slow growl, & usually the sound of rushing leaves whirling around. Rather glad they stopped..

  • Ok. So I had my experience two nights ago from the time of this comment.

    Just want to point out before I start that it was in no way a ‘demonic’ or an ‘intruder experience’ at all.

    I fell asleep around 11:30 PM very drowsy and tired though blank minded so I was not really expecting to have any dreams.
    I think I woke up around 2 – 3 AM the following day only a couple hours later to my body feeling as if it were becoming numb.
    I knew right away I was entering ‘Sleep Paralysis’
    I tried moving my whole body in an attempt to wake myself up, of course, it did not work, even shouting with my lips slightly jarred would not work.
    On a side note, I felt as if my brother (who sleeps on the other side of the room), could almost .. ‘hear me’ [more on that later]
    This was my 3rd ever experience .. the reason why I’m saying this is because, on my 2nd experience which was only last year, I literally shit myself because on my 1st time experiencing this, I endured everything you would never want happened to you during an episode.
    So on my 2nd SP, it caught me off guard definitely spooking me at the time.

    Now back to my most recent episode.
    I ‘woke’ up to the sensation of my body being overwhelmed with numbness. Now I don’t know about anyone else, but I awaken to my body entering an episode, opposed to waking up already paralysed.
    What happens is my brain is awake, and I can ‘feel’ my body slowly falling into SP. I as mentioned, try to stop it from happening by shaking/moving my whole body whilst shouting out of my slightly jarred mouth. Just saying, that I’m slightly afraid. Not panicking the slightest.
    Nothing works and I’m now paralysed.
    What happens next surprises me.
    Of course (as I guess the majority of people on here do), I’m still trying to wake my body up by moving as much as I can, now in the effort of doing so, I somehow manage to gain control of both my legs. Now I didn’t notice this till I actually saw them moving below me in my peripheral vision. I was amazed and started swaying them front and back (I was on my side), like as if I was running in mid-air.
    Then out of the blue, I gained just enough control of my body to where I flipped my body around. So now I am facing the opposite direction of which I was facing prior to flipping. I was shocked. This had never happened to me before. In my other episodes, I could barely move my fingers.
    I was still paralysed and what ‘woke’ me up was the sound of my niece crying in the room next to ours. Now initially, I immediately thought it was some demonic or ghostly presence mimicking the sound of a baby crying, but when I actually woke up to the sound of my niece crying, I was in disbelief.
    This is why I think my brother could have possibly heard me, and how most people on here could have possibly communicated with those ‘asleep’ because of the fact that I heard my niece crying in my episode only to be awoken by the sound of the crying niece.
    Now I could be wrong and the only real connection you have to your surroundings is an out-of-body experience and or someone or something making a sound other than your hallucinations and yourself e.g your niece crying, waking up in/to an episode to music playing etc.
    But nonetheless, it was an odd experience indeed. And to be quite honest, I’m kinda curious as to what else I could to do during SP. Hmmm .. I’ll be sure to tell my story if I do.


    Thanks for reading my experience :)

  • Just woke up from SP at 4am, felt a demon drag me and lift me to the ceiling, felt like I was shouting in my chest but my mouth couldnt move. I actually felt like I had reached for my phone to have some light but my phone wouldn’t switch on & the demons or whatever it is started laughing. Tried to wiggle my toe or fingers but couldn’t, just kept shouting till I finally got out of it & my heart was racing. I can not handle having to go through this terrifying experiences anymore :(

  • I have had three episodes in the past three months.
    First one was when I was on holiday and woke in my hotel bedroom,lying on my right side against a wall to find I was paralysed and “something” was trying to drag me through the wall, I was very frightened.
    Second episode, I awoke, I was lying on my left side, to find I was paralysed and black ghostly “smoke” was rising from the mattress next to me. I was breathing rapidly and loudly in a panicky fashion, trying to call out.
    Third was last night, I was lying on my front, woke up paralysed and was aware of a figure standing over me, holding me down with two very strong hands and it was trying to kill me by smothering me with the duvet, I was completely under the duvet, I was trying to fight to get out, but couldn’t move, again was doing panicky loud breathing.
    Very frightening episodes, I am not religious, but on the last two occasions I automatically tried “casting the entities out” as if my subconscious had registered them as being “demonic”, but I could only whisper.
    I hope I don’t have any more.

  • I just woke up from sleep paralysis and I felt a demon of some sort behind me, breathing on my neck while whispering in my ear “I’m gonna get you”, and the breath was warm. I knew I was having SP I’ve had it before so with all I had I tried to shout and wake up and I thought “go ahead!!!” And as I waited yet still tried to struggle to wake up, boom here I am scared to go back to sleep and now on google looking for answers once again. I just thought I invented the wiggling The fingers to wake up trick lol guess not but glad it’s helping others too.

  • Last night i had an another crazy experience. I believe i was sleeping on my back. I went to bed very early,around 6:30and woke up 3hours later. Took a piss grabbed a snack and tried to go back to bed. I had to be up at 5:30 the following day. I tossed and turned for 2 hours. I tried stretching which usually helps, drinking water,since i did have a few beers throughout the day since it was the weekend, and even a few rounds of masterbation since my wife was not in the mood. That usually helps. I finally fell asleep around midnight. And then, i am not sure exactually when, it happened. I remember a gasp for air, the loud ringing in my ear started,like when u try to pop your ears but way more spell check isnt working. I remember trying to call out to my wife and raising my arms but i couldn’t move or talk. My wife subsaquently wasnt even with me,she slept upstairs. I felt my body vibrating a hundred miles an hour and i was breathing very fast short breaths. Here it was Again. I have been experiencing this a few times a year. Its so scary. It feels like my soul wants to leave my body. At our old house i always felt like an evil presence was there. But here i dont feel that. I always tell myself the next time it happens i want to fight through it and see what happens. But when it actually happens i think i am about to die and force myself to wake up. But this was the first time i actually felt like i was haveing a seizure. But i grew a set and just relaxed and then for the first time i felt what was like my soul leaving my body. In my mind i thought that was happening. I floated out of the house and into the sky. Kind of like jim carrey in the Scrooge movie. I know that probably that was not what really happened and i cannot recall everything i saw in detail since it was really just a dream,but i do know that once i relaxed and just let it happen, the feeling was incredible. I probaly had 20 episodes of SP in the last five years and this was the first time i just let go. Its so hard and so scary. U almost must be willing to die. Now i am excitieted for it to happen again but thats easy to say while i am still awake. Sweet Dreams everybody!

  • Deep banging sound wave like woke me yesterday morning at about 3am, as if i had earphones on, the banging sound started soft suddenly increast and became very loud in my head, i wanted to close my ears with my hands, thats when i woke up and realized i couldn’t move but felt some presents in the room, i tried calling for help but couldn’t my heart beat was very fast, then i said in my mind, in Jesus Christ name get out of this house, then i suddenly felt pins and needles moving from my lower body down to my feet, i could move again and my breathing was abnormal, very fast. Im a shift worker, never experienced such thing in my life before. I was sleeping alone in my eldest son’s bedroom. We are a family of four, i have two boys and the eldest always gets night terrors, now he does’nt want to sleep in his room thats why i slept there. Scared this thing wil harm my family. The experience i had was very terrifying and very scary.

  • I have experienced it a few times, I didn’t no what it was until last year. The first time it happened I was 16 living on my own, I must of fell asleep on the sofa but i sleep in a fetal position so my face was facing the back of the sofa. I woke up but I could only open my eyes half way thats when i saw a dark figure behind the sofa looking over me I was terrified and couldn’t move or talk it only lasted a minuet or so from what i can remember i went on got it to bed and went to sleep. The next time it happened a lady I new and has seen and spoken to a few time was at the bottom of my bed asking me if i was okay, again i couldnt move i woulld try to shout for help but it sounded like i was snoring everytime i did. I just remeber half way through the day lying on my bed not trying to go to sleep and then this happened. Once it had passed i gathered myself i was so shaken i decided to go to my parents before i did the very lady knocked on my door not long after asking if i was okay. I was utterly shocked i broke down told her i need to go to my mum i didnt tell her why. I went to the doctors after the second time and never again would i of gone back he sent me away leaving me think i was weired and stupid he hadnt a clue what had happened to me and said it basically that way. It happened a few years later 18 maybe twice but nothing as bad as the first times i just couldnt move or talk everytime i would panic but its happened before so i knew id be okay and wouldnt panic as much. More recently it happened again, I was trying to go to sleep and bam out of no where my eyes where open and i couldnt move only this time i felt like my mouth was to one side i couldnt fix it and my heart was beating so fast and so hard i could feel it at the side of my chest and stomache (i was lay on my side) it felt like it was almost trying to get out. I tried to shout my partner because it had never been like that before but it just sounded like i was snoring, i thought it was never going to end i tried to calm down and breath slowly if i would let myself and tell myself it was okay and then i woke fine but i was scared of going back to sleep. I was up most of the night until i dropped off. I do hope it doesnt happen again but its happened so many times already i am expecting it to.
    (I do have anxiety and depression but if that was the cause that would mean ive had it since i was 16 so that doesnt make sence to me)

  • All these stories are quite fascinating!

    I have encountered sleep paralysis a few times over the years but I never actually knew it was a thing until today. You can bet it was very relieving to see that sleep paralysis + demon is something many people experience and I am not crazy.

    Last night I was laying in bed and my cat was all over my head- clawing at my head and I kept throwing it off my bed when I happened to notice that my door was closed and then I remembered that I had closed my door and it would be impossible for my cat to even be in my room and thats when I realized I was in a dream. So naturally I decided I would like to wake up and thats when I also realized I couldn’t move at all – and naturally I started to panic and then I realized that something was behind me, snarling and laughing – I started screaming ( in my mind) “Get out you are not welcome” and I imagined that all the doors in my house where slamming shut and I started to envision a white light bubble around myself and told myself it couldn’t hurt me. I kept trying to shake my arms but it wasn’t happening. I kept screaming inside my head “Wake Up” and eventually I did but I was completely terrified and did not want to go back to sleep.

    Oddly enough I was able to grasp in the dream that the demon was my own minds projection but I still couldn’t keep myself from panicking.

  • I am 37 years old and am starting to have SP/HH episodes more frequently. I had my first episodes when I was 14, and they were quite bad until I was 19 or 20, then they dramatically decreased in frequency for many years. I am disturbed that they would return, as they have recently. I believe I need to make my bedroom more peaceful. I wonder what things others have done to create a more peaceful, pleasant bedroom, and once they have done so, whether it decreased their episodes?

    • Hey, first time for me was when I was 12, so imagine that it was 17 years ago. I had no internet acces and it was impossible to talk with people or family because nobody could believe that. So it was horrible for me as a kid to have this experience very often that period. I think my solution for that is to sleep with someone, I saw that when I’m alone most of time I have this problem, but when I sleep with my boyfriend I’m ok. So in 6 years I guess that it happened only once or twice when I wasn’t alone and it was soft comparing when I sleep alone. So this is the reason that I always want to stay with someone and I am still scared to sleep alone…

  • Last night or morning, whatever you wanna call it was the first time ever having SP. I woke up around 2 am hungry so I ate some snacks and read on my phone and when I was finally starting to fall asleep I felt like someone was behind me and I tried to dismiss it but instead it came towards me at a very fast pace. It was right beside me, centimeters away from my face and it started screaming at me but it wasn’t loud. It was like if I was watching a horror me and someone was screaming really loud but you turn down the volume so it wouldn’t be so loud. I couldn’t move or open my eyes or mouth. I started to internally shake. I wasn’t actually shaking but I felt as if I was having a seizure. I started to pray and pray and telling myself I was strong enough to wake up, and I eventually did. I was terrified, I was crying and I didn’t want to go back to sleep. I tried to keep myself awake as long as I could but around 6 am I was drifting to sleep but I was still awake and aware of my surroundings. I felt the shaking and screaming coming back slowly and then I couldn’t move or open my eyes again. I prayed again and kept reminding myself that I was strong enough to wake up and I did. I called my sister to comfort me. When I hung up it was around 6:30 am and I still didn’t want to go back to sleep. I’ve been reading all about SP and other people’s experiences with it. It is currently 8:34 am and I’ve been up since 2 am, I’m tired as shit but I don’t want to sleep.

  • I used to have sleep paralysis very often 4 or 5 years ago, and I would actually use it as a springboard for lucid dreaming, but I had to try very hard to visualize it, so unfortunately it didn’t last very long.

    I just had sleep paralysis again for the first time in a long time, and it was scary. Without going into too much detail, it felt like I was being dragged into a large burial pit. Then bodies and parts of bodies starting falling down around me. And I was trapped down there, forever. It took me a moment to realize I had sleep paralysis because my whole upper body was tingling, my ears were ringing loudly and growing in intensity, and it felt like something was about to grab me.

  • Firstly, I’m so thankful to have found your website…as I recently experienced my first sleep paralysis episode and it was overwhelmingly terrifying. Not only was the lucidity of my consciousness blurred but I couldn’t move. My comforter was being pulled down on both side on my chest and I couldn’t breathe — additionally there was a dark presence in an unidentifiable figure on my ceiling getting bigger and bigger. I couldn’t scream, talk or move but I told myself “yell now, get out of this” and I immediately came to in a completely terrified and emotional sit-up, and realized it wasn’t real. I have always had insomnia and very lucid, vivid dreams but this was a whole new level. I felt it was demonic even though I’m not religious. Thank you for letting me vent here!!!

  • I’m Experiencing Sleep paralysis problem from last 1.5 Yrs, and it does feel like there is a 3rd person in the room, and someone is pressing ur body and you are not able to move at all, even if you try it’s like a huge force dragging u more down and down, and also sounds lie ” Thud Thud Thud” and its like right next to my ears, and someone walking with bells in their legs, can clearly hear.
    Sometimes feel like someone is your legs out of the Bed, though you are in the bed, still feels like you will now be kicked out.
    Experiencing this almost every month, and it really is scary I always try to be spiritual to get this away from me.

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