A GIF showing what it’s like to wake up with sleep paralysis.
You’re forgetting the terrifying hallucinations
As someone who’s had sleep paralysis multiple times, let me tell you that if your mind has woken up and your body hasn’t DO NOT ATTEMPT TO OPEN YOUR EYES. Wake your body up first by slowly trying to move it, wiggle your toes and hands, then gradually work your way up until your body is fully awake. Opening your eyes when you have sleep paralysis is hard enough, but when you do there is a good chance you can see hallucinations like this.
I also have been the victim of sleep paralysis too many times, its bad enough without hallucinations, and so i thought i would add some info on sleep paralysis for anyone who suffers from it.
- As Shada said, wiggling toes and hands are good ways to snap out of it, although other small body parts work, even humming/talking (although things related to breathing might be more difficult). Just FOCUS on one part, its hard to regain control, but easy to become paralyzed again.
- Once you can move again, dont go right back to sleep, you might get paralyzed again. Or have the worst dreams of your life. Turn on a light, do something relaxing, like reading a book. Its been said that looking at a light before sleeping can prevent sleep paralysis.
- Sleeping on your back rises the chances of you getting sleep paralysis. If you get it a lot, pay attention to what position you are in when it occurs.
- Hallucinations, the best part, arent just things like in the gif above. They could be anything from just dark shapes floating around, to scary monsters and demons to sounds and feeling like something is shaking/touching you. I’ve had an experience where it felt like my bed was shaking while a metallic screeching sound roared whenever i tried to breath. Solution? ignore it. Its all you can do. Hallucinations cant actually do anything to you, and you cant move again if you’re being distracted. And once the paralysis is gone, so are the hallucinations.
- Most people dont really have to worry, they will only get it once or twice in their life. Maybe not even ever! :D
The “wiggling a body part” thing terrifies me. Because I OFTEN know I’m partially asleep and try to wake myself up by moving body parts. And then I do and suddenly YAY! I’m up! Creepy paralyzed feeling gone!
Wait…why can’t I stand up straight or talk??? FUCK! Still dreaming!!!
And then I either have to wait it out or go back into dream world and jump out of a window. I did that more when I was younger— drastic dream-actions to shock myself awake…
I also have a thing where I am actually awake and able to move, but still hallucinating? Idk what that is even.
I have a shaky relationship with consciousness.
I put two wholes in my wall trying to escape because of the halucinations when my body woke up
I’ve dealt with this shit maybe around 5 times now and let me tell you DON’T EVER FUCKING LOOK INTO DARK SPACES
Just breathe and think the happiest thoughts of your god damned life else you’re in for a wild ass ride
This was my entire life, from my teens through my late twenties. The hallucinations. Oh my gosh, the hallucinations. The bed suddenly tilting was a big one of mine. The unmistakable sense of a lurking and menacing presence either in the room or just outside it, trying to get in.
I had no idea what was going on. During the day it seemed ridiculous, but when it was happening it seemed pretty obvious: demons. I mean, you read about how what people thought were succubi and ghosts was probably just basically bad dreams or a sleep disorder and it sounds like, “Oh, old timey people, you were so quaint, hahahaha!”
But then you’re lying there in bed completely unable to move, and you can hear these noises and the bed is rising and tilting like it’s trying to buck you off, and there is something there—maybe you can see it and maybe you can’t, but it is definitely there.
And it’s not something anybody ever talks about, and you’re not going to be the first one to bring it up, so you never find out that it’s a normal—if not common, then not unheard of—part of the variety of human experience. You never find out how many other people out there are going through it.
I had a horrifying summer of sleep paralysis before I figured out what it was a few years ago.
I had tons of free time and I spent it taking naps. I would sleep on my back. Both of those things I later learned bring up the chance of waking up with sleep paralysis. It didn’t help that I would be home alone.
I’d wake up, feeling fully conscious but entirely frozen. I was fortunate enough to rarely have any coherent hallucinations I’d usually see shadowy blobs and at the very worse I’d feel hands pushing back on any part of my body I’d try to move. More typically I’d wake up with hyper sensitivity to any noises in my room or the sound of feedback. The helplessness by itself was just terrifying.
In my own room I don’t have many problems waking up with sleep paralysis. I just acknowledge that I’m having sleep paralysis. When I’m away from home I try to face away from windows, mirrors, and dark areas. I used to have a vivid imagination involving mirrors and portals so it has the potential to run wild during a bout of sleep paralysis.
Knowing what it is has helped me tremendously in minimizing its power over me.