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Author Topic: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams  (Read 2269 times)

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Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« on: 05 March, 2012, 04:29:49 PM »
It came up in another thread but was off topic, so I thought

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_paralysis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Night_terror
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnagogia

Here is my account written many years ago, I've not had anything similar happen since, although I have had the false awakenings:


I rarely have nightmares (a lot of my dreams are violent and disturbing but I'm rarely the victim!!) but the dream that scared me was a form of the Black Dog/hag/night terror/sleep paralysis which some people over the ages have interpreted as some kind of alien abduction/demonic attack (there was a very good program on it the other day). It only happened once but it left an impression.

I basically woke up to find a large Black Dog in the corner of my bed room (I have a largish Black Dog but this one was much larger and much more malevolent) but I was unable to move. In panic I woke up sweating with my heart pounding only to look over to the corner to find the Black Dog still there and I still couldn't move. I then woke up in panic and the dog had gone, I struggled out of bed but came over faint and collapsed on the floor only to wake up in panic in bed. This kept happening again and again Black Dog/fainting then waking in panic. Eventually I woke up to find the Black Dog was pinning me face down in the bed with its hands gripping my upper arms (it had changed into more of a Gigeresque Alien-type creature although I couldn't see its face - changing the whole thing into more of a Hag-like incident). I then kept waking and trying to escape and fainting and waking and being pinned by the Hag until I finally actually woke for real (heart pounding, soaked in sweat, actually out of breath) although it took a while for me to realise I was finally awake. I must have 'woken' about 15-20 times before actually coming around.

As an interesting footnote I found bruises on my upper arms where I was gripped by the Hag although the explanation is that one of my friends was giving me a few friendly punches in the pub or I was actually gripping my own arms in my sleep.

Although it was clearly a dream it has left me much more sympathetic to the claims of 'abductees' and it is clear that the experiences are part of a continuum. I certainly feel sorry for people who suffer from these kind of things on a regular basis and I could imagine such things would turn me into a basket case (esp. if it wasn't as obvious that it was a dream with the continual 'waking').



I have since heavily researched the topic on and off, over the years (I have a Future Shock bubbling under about it too), so if anyone is interested:

David Hufford's book The Terror That Comes in the Night An Experience-Centered Study of Supernatural Assault Traditions is excellent, it is largely based on his research in Newfoundland but also looks at the wider issues. An aspect he brings out is that the locals have developed defences against the attack, and there are people with serious books offering defence techniques against alien abduction, some of which may work in similar ways:
http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=Vl8HAAAACAAJ

Susan Clancy's Abducted: How People Come to Believe They Were Kidnapped by Aliens is more general and looks at how things like SP can be the basis for alien abduction accounts through the influence of hypnotherapy and pop culture. As I've said above it is a genuinely shocking experience* (one that appeared to also result in physical injuries, even if there is a different reason for those, I believe) and people searching for an explanation may find an abduction narrative works as an explanation for them, as attacks by supernatural creatures did in the past. Then again, it could be argued that as I was aware of SP this explanation fitted me experience and worked for me. Hmmmm.

* I now know someone who has them a lot and they are punishing and wearing even though she understands they are a form of parasomnia

Anyway enough about me, I'll throw this open to anyone who has been visited by the Night Mare or has found themselves Hag Ridden (and yes please, leave your jokes about the ex-wife at the door ;) ).
if I went 'round saying I was an Emperor just because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me, they'd put me away!

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SmallBlueThing

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #1 on: 05 March, 2012, 04:50:35 PM »
Yep- as a child I remember being assaulted by these type of things fairly often, which I believe is common. Two that spring to mind are Dr Rat from the Rat Trap comic strip in COR! coming into my room, resulting in my paralysis and then him leaping on the bed to hold me down and deliver a spectacular raspberry right in my face (as per the final panel of those old strips). I believe this was the first, if only because my dad completely misinterpreted my wailing and got really cross because I was insinuating we had "rats in the house"- so at that point, I don't believe they can have been regular occurrences. The other one that stays with me is Muhammad Ali appearing in my room and sitting on me, before showing me a secret passage in the wall that I believe led down to Hell. In that one I was completely paralysed too.

In more recent years, I had a stonker when I was at university- wherein a dark figure reminiscent of 'The Scream' slowly coalesced out of the shadows in the corner of my room, leaving me utterly unable to move anything except my eyes. Every time I blinked, it got closer, until it was leaning over my bed. At that point I woke up in terror, got up to use the toilet, opened my bedroom door- and saw the same fucker walking away down the hall towards the bathroom! He then turned, began howling and ran towards me arms outstretched. At which point I woke up for real. Yipe.

Oh, and explain this (if you'll allow me to widen the topic a bit). Twenty-two years ago I was in bed with my then girlfriend, dreaming that some terrible presence had invaded my family home, settling in the coal-cellar, where it has scrawled obscenities all over the walls. In my dream, I ran out of the cellar (a place where, as a child, I'd been scared to go) and up the stairs to the first floor, with some Evil Dead style presence chasing me. At that point I woke up, to find my girlfriend staring at me in the half light with a blank look on her face. She opened her mouth and in the deepest, most frightening voice imaginable, said "The battle between the Ego and the Id has begun.". Then I woke up for real. Yipe again.

And that's not to mention the night I slept in my gran's bedroom when she was on holiday and my room was being redecorated, and her dressmaker's dummies gradually got closer and closer to my bed, while I was completely unable to move. Interestingly, earlier this year, my wife and I stayed at a friend's house in Wales for a night after a show, and the room we were in had dressmaker's dummies in it. I didn't sleep a wink.

SBT
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Emperor

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #2 on: 05 March, 2012, 05:06:08 PM »
Two that spring to mind are Dr Rat from the Rat Trap comic strip in COR! coming into my room, resulting in my paralysis and then him leaping on the bed to hold me down and deliver a spectacular raspberry right in my face (as per the final panel of those old strips).

It is interesting that popular culture would form part your experience there - it shouldn't be much of a surprise but such accounts aren't as common, perhaps because people are less likely to relate them, as they might seem a little silly, even if they are actually pretty unpleasant at the time.
if I went 'round saying I was an Emperor just because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me, they'd put me away!

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SmallBlueThing

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #3 on: 05 March, 2012, 05:28:49 PM »
Yes, though in my case that may be to do with my very young age (i may have been six, i'd have to check the dates Rat Trap was running in COR! back then, and i'd be interested to do so come to think of it) and the fact that i was brought up with no religious background to speak of. I was also too young to be interested in aliens- though i remember reading Chariots of the Gods at a similar age and being petrified by one of the illustrations- the goat spaceman holding a 'cd'. So my internal book of imagery upon which to hang my nightmares would, by necessity, have probably opened on pages illustrated with the comics i read and the tv i watched, rather than saints or little grey visitors.

SBT
« Last Edit: 05 March, 2012, 05:30:40 PM by SmallBlueThing »
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dracula1

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #4 on: 05 March, 2012, 08:38:24 PM »
Just read your nightmare accounts chaps and they are truely disturbing. I ain't going to get a wink of kip tonight  :o

SmallBlueThing

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #5 on: 05 March, 2012, 08:44:12 PM »
Just read your nightmare accounts chaps and they are truely disturbing. I ain't going to get a wink of kip tonight  :o

MWU-HU-HU-HU-HU-HURRRR!!!! Ve vill visit you in der depths oft der nacht, unt stare into your velly sooouuullll from ze corner ov ze room. Fear us, ve vill take away your arms unt your legs.

SBT
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vzzbux

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #6 on: 05 March, 2012, 08:50:31 PM »
The only sleep paralysis I can remember was the feeling that I was being sucked off (female of course) but couldn't react. I actually jarred myself awake in hope. Ah well.
No bullshit if that is what some of you are thinking.
Thinking about it I hav jarred myself awake on a number of occasions but can never remember why.



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dracula1

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #7 on: 05 March, 2012, 09:25:08 PM »
Just read your nightmare accounts chaps and they are truely disturbing. I ain't going to get a wink of kip tonight  :o

MWU-HU-HU-HU-HU-HURRRR!!!! Ve vill visit you in der depths oft der nacht, unt stare into your velly sooouuullll from ze corner ov ze room. Fear us, ve vill take away your arms unt your legs.

SBT

I'm feeling a Bela Luigosi vibe here ... now I'm  twice as scared!

chris_askham

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #8 on: 05 March, 2012, 09:28:07 PM »
I've suffered from sleep paralysis on many occasions - to the point where I've become quite accustomed to the sensation, but nothing anywhere near as creepy as actually seeing / dreaming up any kind of malevolent being. There's always the sensation of being completely helpless, half asleep and pinned down by unseen forces, and having to physically wrench myself out of it - taking all my strength to do so - with a vague feeling of some other presence in the room (other than the wife).

It's never felt like an overly threatening experience to me though, although I can imagine how it could be taken as such. And all this talk of Black Dogs and Hags sounds very nasty indeed.

Wouldn't mind some of what vzzbux is experiencing, mind.

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Mudcrab

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #9 on: 05 March, 2012, 09:36:44 PM »
I had one recently that I meant to post on the dream thread here. It was a bit of a nightmare, waking up scared and short of breath etc, but nothing on the scale of what you've both described above, none of the repeatedly waking up stuff, which I've always found the idea of really scary from an early age since watching the old Hammer House of Horror episode about it.

So yeah, can't remember a great deal about it now except I was on the top floor of a huge house which was apparently mine. Big long corridor with curtained windows leading to a bedroom area. The windows looked out on to a rooftop where there were neighbours approaching or something. I went out on to the roof area and there was (just remembered after reading) a black dog roaming about. So I closed a gate that led to the bit where he was and locked it, then went back inside. There was a smaller dog inside with me that was friendly enough (had a very "stiff" wagging tail  :-\  :lol:) but then the big black one battered against the window and scared the shit out of me. Woke up then.

So nothing as scary as the above but the black dog seemed significant. I found it fairly easy to link to stuff in my life which I won't go into (locking things out, hiding away kind of thing) but yeah, spooky.

Also brings to mind a big black crow in a couple of dreams years ago, but that was kind of a good one. Was on top of a snowy mountain, huge crow appears on a small tree and looks at me, I fall off the edge and get the whole falling thing, but instead of waking up with a jolt I landed softly in the snow and woke up feeling great. Very Castenada :D
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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #10 on: 05 March, 2012, 11:17:03 PM »
I had one recently that I meant to post on the dream thread here. It was a bit of a nightmare, waking up scared and short of breath etc, but nothing on the scale of what you've both described above, none of the repeatedly waking up stuff, which I've always found the idea of really scary from an early age since watching the old Hammer House of Horror episode about it.

Those false awakenings are almost as scary as the SP itself and it is like a horror film - when you think you are out of it and free, you get dragged straight back again.

I've had another bout of that without it. I also know someone who had a series of them where they dreamt they'd got out of bed, opened their curtains and there was a body hanging outside, at which point they woke up, opened the curtains an found a body hanging outside. By about the third or fourth time around he didn't want to open the curtains even though it eventually turns out he was awake.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_awakening

Thinking about it I hav jarred myself awake on a number of occasions but can never remember why.

I have noticed I've been waking myself up from dreams if it is getting too... uncomfortable (never the full-on horror dreams full of murder and mayhem it is often more personal, dead relatives that kind of thing). Not quite lucid dreaming but there does seem to be some kind of understanding that it was a dream and I didn't want it to continue. Of course, this might be my waking mind reworking the end of the dream to fit the fact that I was waking up...
if I went 'round saying I was an Emperor just because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me, they'd put me away!

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Tempunaut

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #11 on: 06 March, 2012, 06:55:26 PM »
I've experienced sleep paralysis a couple of times in the last few years - never with the accompanying dreams/hallucinations , but its still pretty terrifying waking to discover that you can't move a muscle.  The first time it happened, I had previously read an article (in the fortean times, I think) about the history of sleep paralysis, and i had the strange experience of knowing exactly what was happening.  There was around ten seconds of laying there thinking "well, this is what it feels like, then" before utter terror set in.  Concentrating on trying to move or speak, finding that you're body just won't respond, pretty much is the stuff of nightmares and I can understand where the idea of an evil spirit holdig you down, which seems to be repeated in cultures across the world, comes from.

Eric Plumrose

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #12 on: 06 March, 2012, 08:15:34 PM »
When I first started working there, I had the Argos version of the Tetris Effect. Catalogue numbers would descend and the only way I would be able to get to sleep would be to arrange them into blocks.

Can't recall ever having had sleep paralysis although I have woken several times in a hypnopompic state. Kinda like the opposite of a lucid dream: I've been aware I'm awake even though I was still dreaming. The sensation every time was one of my head expanding inside out.
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type 7

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #13 on: 07 March, 2012, 06:24:30 AM »
If anyone suffers from these kind of things, surely they must wake up everyone else in their household with their screaming at night?
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Mudcrab

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Re: Night Terrors / Sleep Paralysis / Old Hag / Black Dog dreams
« Reply #14 on: 07 March, 2012, 12:09:39 PM »
If anyone suffers from these kind of things, surely they must wake up everyone else in their household with their screaming at night?

For all your (apparent) literary genius, that seems like the most stupid and pointless you could say on this thread. "If anyone"? Really? Have you even read the posts?

GTFO and quit trolling.
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