Encounters with the Old Hag who grins, stares, pulls hair, strangles, and otherwise terrifies her victims
OLD HAG SYNDROME is a phenomenon in which you awake from sleep unable to move. You seem to be awake, but your body is paralyzed. As if this wasn't scary enough, these episodes are often accompanied by a feeling of an unknown presence in the room, strange sounds, and other mysterious manifestations. In the classic experience, the victim feels that an old woman in sitting on his chest, rendering him immobile and laboring to breathe.
To the medical world, the phenomenon is known as sleep paralysis combined with hypnopompic hallucinations. Those who experience the syndrome, however, are not easily convinced that what they see, hear, and feel are not real. And how can we explain when two or more people experience the phenomenon at the same time?
Here are some of the scariest old had experiences readers have reported.
It happened for the first time when I was 14. I couldn't move, didn't understand what it was. My most prominent time having to experience sleep paralysis was last year while lying in bed. I fell asleep pretty quick, but then woken up with the pressure of a hand on my right shoulder. When I could turn around, I saw the old hag! She had long, craggy gray hair, pale greenish face, long nose, and - creepiest of all - her eyes were all black. She smiled at me... then took off. That's when I snapped out of the paralysis. - OHS5
THE GRAY AND THE HAG
One night I left my windows open to let the breeze in. I don't remember falling to sleep, but I was paralyzed when I regained awareness. I remember seeing a black rain and could feel my body weighing five times its normal weight. I was sinking into the bed slightly. I turned my head and I saw what looked like an alien gray smiling at me. It wasn't easy to move, but I slowly and forcefully crawled to the edge of my bed to fall off and hopefully wake up someone in the house.
I could feel its thoughts, as if they were connected to mine. I wasn't supposed to be moving, was the emotion I felt from the being, but I did. I reached the edge, falling head first. When I hit the floor, I was awake in my bed face down, like I was when I first realized I was aware. My windows were still open and I could feel the breeze. - Lost Boy
CHOKING OLD HAG
I was sleeping one night when I suddenly awoke. The room was exactly as it was when I fell asleep. I couldn't move or scream. I saw an old, scary lady standing in front of my window. She quickly moved to me and started choking me! it seemed like at least 10 minutes before she let go and disappeared. I then could move and scream. I was terrified and would no longer sleep in that room. - bizzarre
THE WOLF FIGURE
I remember hearing a roaring sound in my ears and seeing a shadowy figure standing in the middle of my room either saying my name and laughing or just watching me. It was so real. I refused to sleep as a child, but whenever I told my mum, she didn't take me seriously... until it started chasing me. I could move at first and I would run round my room screaming and crying.
As I got older, it started to paralyze me and I couldn't move, apart from my eyes. I switched rooms because I thought it was the room, but it started to happen in that room, too, but now it was a wolf-type figure and it was on my chest. I felt safer sleeping at other people's houses, so I basically lived at my friend's house over that summer... until it started to happen there! Since then it has happened almost every week - for 2 years. - Snippy
EVIL GENERATES FROM HER
I am 42 and first had a nightmare about a terrifying witch at the age of 16. She kneels on my chest and stares into my face, slowly getting nearer and nearer. I am completely terrified. She wears a black cloak and hood. Her face is like a witch and evil generates from her, surrounds me from her. Other times, I can be lying on my stomach and she will creep her hand up the back of my head, down my face, and hook her fingers under my top teeth and pull my head back. Other times, she will bite, sit on the bed, knock the door, call my name, and generally scare the crap out of me. How can anyone explain this? - Jane.owen
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