Have you ever seen a dark shadow or an intruder in your room but couldn’t yell or move to confront it?
The current medical diagnosis for this phenomena is called sleep paralysis: in which a person in a transitional state between wakefulness and sleep temporarily experiences an inability to move, speak or react. I have experienced this at least 15 times in the past 8 years. I would often see a figure standing in the doorway, a person in the corner of my room, a figure looking at me from inside my closet. I would scream but no sound would come out and then suddenly I’d gain consciousness, realize my mouth was shut, no one was actually there and I could, in fact, move again. Aside from fear and a short duration of immobility, these experiences have sometimes felt like but never actually had any physical effect on my body. I believed in medical explanations such as anxiety, depression, low levels of melatonin, smoking too much weed before bed, sleep deprivation. All of which were applicable to me and made me support the theory that my experiences were just a waking hallucination and muscle weakness.
The night of October 6th, 2013 changed everything.
I was on a regular sleep schedule, content, and not using drugs. It was then that I experienced something that felt…well…like more than a hallucination.
During sleep, I suddenly felt aware. I felt every hair on my body stand as if a dense, cool cloud consumed me that I couldn’t escape from. I felt hands with long nails force my feet apart and slide up the insides of my legs as my arms were raised by an anti-gravitational pull and bound together over my head. Hands came down both sides of my neck, opened around my breasts and pushed down with a force so heavy it was suffocating and stabilized my body from any further movement. Simultaneously, a dripping, warm tongue flicked against both of my nipples and glided from the crack of my ass to my clit and swirled around like a liquid tornado. A thick thrust would slowly enter in and out of both my pussy and my mouth for what seemed to last for an hour. Then came rapid, violent thrusts pounding like the kick drum of a fast tempo. I was trying to scream of intense fear and pleasure, then abruptly came to reality as usual. The dark (which I thought was the inside of my eyelids) moved like a shadow and evaporated revealing the ceiling, making me unaware of how long my eyes had been open for. I was paralyzed for another minute or so until I was able to close my mouth when I realized this time…it had actually opened. I turned my head and saw my boyfriends back, his sleep undisturbed. I forcefully dropped my arms to my side in disbelief they were actually above my head, then realized my legs were spread as far open as possible. As I brought my feet together I felt a puddle between my thighs. I touched the sheet. It was very, very wet. I felt such an intense body high, confusion and fear that I fell back to sleep within minutes.
In the morning, I asked my boyfriend if we had sex in the middle of the night, as we often did, hoping that if we had it could offer some sort of reasonable explanation for the movement of my body during sleep paralysis. He said no. “Oh, must have been a dream”, I replied…. but I knew that what had happened was unexplainable, beyond the realm of neuroscientific reason. I never spoke of this occurrence until now.
Did I actually encounter something in a similar transitory state of consciousness? Something between life and death?
Was a dying mans dream of sex able to take place in my actual bedroom? Did my twilight stage of consciousness serve as a portal for it?
Am I schizophrenic?
For fear of loosing my mind, I dug deeper into the sleep paralysis theory. I was both disturbed and relieved to find that similar encounters have taken place. They are written throughout history. They have been given a different name in countries all over the world.
We most commonly call it the Incubus. The word derived from Late Latin incubo (a nightmare induced by such a demon); from incub(āre) (to lie upon). The Incubus is a demon in male form who according to mythological and legendary traditions, lies upon sleepers, especially women, in order to engage in sexual activity with them. Its female counterpart is the succubus.
Religious tradition holds that repeated sexual activity with an incubus or succubus may result in the deterioration of health, or even death. Science cannot yet offer a solid explanation for this mythological demon, phenomenon, disorder of sleep, whatever it is; I’m calling it sex with a ghost and he gave me the most intense orgasm I’ve ever had.