Question: I have a feeling that I may have this, I think I’ve actually had it for years and just thought it was normal, horrible but normal.
It’s a very strange dream and basically it feels like I’m awake but can’t get up. I’ll be lying in bed and know exactly where I am but my whole body feels tired, like way too tired to move or sit up or get up. I am always on my back and try think of new ways to ways to wake myself and sit up, I’ll try to move my body and sometimes feel like I do sit up but then have to lie back down. Another element of this for me is that I always feel like someone is breaking into my house and I can’t get up to stop it or check if it’s real. I’m alone in the house every time this happens. I generally feel like I can’t breathe properly when this is happening too. I know what happened that morning for example that my boyfriend has left and if we spoke, I know what time my alarm is going to go off and I feel really concious. I told my boyfriend about it last week as I was asking if he has ever had the same thing he said it sounded strange, he’d never heard of it, when it happened again today I was a bit freaked out by it as I think I get this quite often. I just started to do some research and can relate a lot to all the articles here. The furthest back I can remember it was when I actually had my apartment broken into at university. I had been out the night
before and went to bed really early (4pm) I tried to wake myself up all night but just couldn’t as my whole body felt exhausted. I then I had the sensation that someone was breaking in which unfortunately that time had actually happened. The guy came into my room and turned my light on but then left again when he seen me, I managed to convince myself it was a friend and went back to sleep. Is it possible that this has just been brought on by that experience? I’m finding it all a bit frustrating as its quite frightening when it happens and I feel panicked when I wake up and can’t concentrate that well.Kevin: Hey Gail, what you describe certainly sounds like sleep paralysis, yes. The difficulty moving, the weight pushing you into bed, the feeling of others around you in the house–all pretty characteristic. In some ways it is normal though, interestingly enough, in the sense that it is coming from a normal process in your body related to REM sleep. More on that here, if you haven’t seen it already. I think it’s probably a stretch to say that the break-in experience in college is bringing on the sleep paralysis now, but perhaps it is contributing to the feelings of having someone breaking in that are coming with it now. I think that’s sounds plausible, but can’t provide much more insight on that.Something that may help with the frustration you’re feeling is a book by Ryan Hurd about tools and techniques for exercising some control over your sleep paralysis. It’s pretty recent, and a game changer in the general perception of SP. You can get more info about it from my review here.All the best,Kevin