Remember when everyone said that UFOs were figments of our imagination and anyone who said they saw a UFO was a kook? Yes, good times, good times! Not only did the government know that UFOs were real, but they also had videos and documentation to verify their existence. It’s so nice knowing you can trust “the experts.”
So, let’s talk about old hags.
According to Sleepopolis.com, the old hag, also known as the night hag, is described as a wrinkled and withered old woman, “witch-like” with her long hair and drawn countenance. The story goes that just as you fall asleep, she creeps in, crawling from the foot of your bed to perch on your chest, making it impossible to move or breathe and generally scaring you senseless.
Incredibly creepy – right?
But, not to worry, the experts tell us it’s just sleep paralysis. Sleep paralysis happens when you wake up as you’re going into or coming out of the rapid eye movement (REM) stage of sleep.
Dr. Leslie Ellis says, “The most important thing to know is that sleep paralysis is normal. Having an episode doesn’t mean you are losing touch with reality or being visited by the ghost of an old sea witch. These legends, in various guises, have been around since Sumerian times as a way to make sense of those frightening occasions when we wake up paralyzed, unable to move from the neck down. What you may not realize is that we all experience sleep paralysis every night, but for the most part, we dream our way right through it.”
But are all “Old Hag” experiences sleep paralysis?
A March 2022 story in The Mirror seems to question that theory. “A woman said she is being stalked by a ghost who is in love with her husband – and now the family is being regularly haunted.
Gemma Palfreman, 36, describes herself as a ‘sensitive’ – a person who is more aware of ghostly senses and apparitions through energy coming from people, places, or things.
She’s seen ghosts all her life, but none that have caused such a ruckus as the ‘growling old hag’ who, according to a psychic, is in love with her husband, Jason, 32.
The ghost, dressed in Victorian attire, softened when the pair had their first child, eight-year-old Cameron, and left them alone – but awoke the young boy’s psychic powers, and now he sees ghosts too.
Gemma was initially haunted by the ghost, but all that changed when Cameron was born in 2013.
She said: “Luckily, she smiled at him.”
“But we would always hear banging in the house, walking up the stairs and slamming doors and she would growl, too.
“When Cameron came along, I kept seeing her near his cot, which I think may have been because he has this sixth sense.”
Luckily, when they moved to Norfolk in 2015, they left the hostile spirit behind them, although Gemma says they soon picked up new ghosts.”
But enough about Gemma, let’s talk about Reddit poster Equivalent_Release79’s post. This is his story about an old hag. “When I was between 9-11 years old, my family owned and ran a “corner shop” in the UK, a small local shop. The shop was in a very old building which had a previous incarnation as a pub and boarding house.
From the day we moved in, my (3 years) younger brother, Mum, and I all hated our house above the shop. There was a horrible unwelcoming feeling in the living accommodation upstairs. I always felt watched and just uncomfortable. My brother had horrible nightmares and wouldn’t sleep a night in his own room but could never articulate why. My parents totally redecorated his room in a style he chose (American football theme), but he still refused to ever sleep in his bedroom. We all chose to stay downstairs in the small room behind the shop rather than spend any time upstairs.
I also had a beautifully decorated bedroom upstairs. Night after night, I had horrible nightmares about a woman coming into my room and lying down on top of me. I would feel heavier and heavier until I couldn’t breathe. I was 9-11 years old at the time. I never saw this woman in any detail but I would feel her come in, lay down on me, and crush me until I woke up.
Thankfully, after two years, we moved out, and I put my memories of “the woman” down to bad childhood dreams or a distorted memory. After we moved out, my Dad converted the building into a number of flats, and we kept it for years, renting the flats out.
Thirty years have passed. Last week my parents were visiting. We got to talking about that house, and my Mum said how much she hated living there. I agreed and told them about how I used to have horrible scary dreams about a woman coming and lying on me. My Dad looked really shocked.
He then told me about one of his tenants who had rented one of the flats from him. He’d chalked him up as a weirdo. He stayed for about six months. When he left, he told my Dad all about the woman who would come in most nights and lie down on top of him until he felt he couldn’t breathe. That’s why he was moving out.
So I’ve been stewing on that and didn’t know where to share. And I joined Reddit just to post my story.”
So, sleep paralysis or ghostly visitor?
You be the judge!