Real Succubus Tales: Sleep Paralysis and the Genesis of Erotic Horror

"Succubus 2" by Mike Teves, used with his permission

“Succubus 2” by Miles Teves, used with his permission

I was struck by Richard Gavin’s recent commentary in which he observed that most horror fiction is rarely horrifying, but rather tends to focus on peripheral unpleasantness, such as nausea, gore, or bloodlust. As I read this, spontaneous images immediately welled up in my mind from some of the most horrifying moments of my life that were not only chilling but also erotically charged: sleep paralysis night-mares. This tangential response from the body/mind — unbidden but undeniably seductive — is the focus of this essay.

During sleep paralysis, terror and the erotic often come together in a dizzying array of ambiguity. It is precisely this ambiguity — am I safe? Is it okay to feel this way? — that can escalate a merely creepy scenario into one of apocalyptic dread and sexy terror.

While all fiction doesn’t necessarily have its genesis in real life, there is undoubtedly a close connection between sleep paralysis and literary horror. Some of the most famous examples of direct influence would be Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher.” [1] (Teeming Brain founder Matt Cardin has also written about the creative horror connection here and speaks eloquently about it here).

This makes me wonder about the direct influence of erotic sleep paralysis nightmares on culture and literature. I’m not a literary expert, especially concerning erotic horror, but I do know quite a bit about sexy devilish imps because, well, they have stolen into my own bedroom at night. By outlining the experiential roots of the real life succubus, as well as some of the science behind it, I hope to start a discussion about this potential correlation as well as the significance of this neuro-mythological pattern in the human psyche.

To break the ice and showcase the symptoms of this bizarre dream state, here’s an example that happened to me a few years ago:

I woke up in the morning and realized I couldn’t move. I knew I was in sleep paralysis, but rational thought didn’t stop my fear from spiking when I heard the bedroom door open, followed by the sound of footsteps and the swooshing of fabric. The sound was exactly that of my wife walking into the room in her slacks and overcoat, but I knew that my wife was actually at work. I decided to roll with it — with the thought, in other words, that this could be a spirit-walker sent by my wife, a part of her soul. (It made sense at the time.) My eyes were seemingly closed, so I next felt her sit down on the bed next to me. The mattress sank and I could feel her presence palpably. Then I felt her lips on my own, soft and warm. I relaxed further and my desire swelled intensely, all at once. She embraced me passionately. At this point, my vision somewhat returned and I could make out the face of the woman kissing me. That’s when I noticed that her cheeks were covered with fur and she had the snout of deer. My stomach roiled and passion turned to grappling terror. I woke up immediately, absolutely freaked out.

Symptoms of real succubi attacks

Perhaps you have had the experience before yourself. Have you ever woken up from sleep and realized you couldn’t move? It happens like this: the more you struggle, the more it feels like you are being held down. You may even detect a presence in the room, hovering near the bed, or perhaps in the corner of the room.

Then come the visions. About 14 to 18 percent of the time, sleep paralysis victims come to face to face with an otherworldly entity. [2] I wish I could say “human-like entity,” but actually many encounters are with hairy monsters, animal-hybrids, giant insects, and/or aliens.

A smaller subset of visitations, however, include ghosts or human-like entities who sit on the victim’s chest and proceed to sexually molest them, including sensations of penetration. This is the incubus or succubus encounter (male and female spirits, respectively), recently popularized through the Canadian paranormal show Lost Girl.

Some of these experiences are downright dreadful, and are aptly named “ghost rape.” Others are actually pleasurable, resulting in orgasm. Yet sometimes the encounter rides a thin line between horror and eros, in which the victim is both turned on and horrified simultaneously. This phenomenon has been little explored due to all of the nested taboos (demon sex? really?) but it’s more common than we’d like to believe.

Unholy night visitors are wholly natural

Perhaps the strangest insight into these uncanny visitations is that they are part of a forgotten vision complex that still manages to squeeze into modern life despite our rational culture’s desperate wish that the demons will go away. Neurologically, sleep paralysis visitations occur when the brain is in REM sleep, also known as dreaming sleep. However, sleep paralysis visions are no ordinary dream, as they occur when REM sleep intrudes into wakefulness. The mind is awake, but the body is asleep, resulting in bizarre bodily feelings and sensations as we notice our own perfectly normal muscle paralysis that comes along with REM.

“Perhaps the strangest insight into these uncanny visitations is that they are part of a forgotten vision complex that still manages to squeeze into modern life despite our rational culture’s desperate wish that the demons will go away.”

Why so sexy, though?  As it turns out, REM can be a physiologically aroused state of mind. Dream orgasms and pleasure during sleep paralysis are possible — and for some people common — due to this basic biological fact.

Sleep paralysis is a common symptom of sleep conditions like narcolepsy and sleep apnea, but it can also come unbidden to millions of others due to stressors such sleep restriction, anxiety, and over-medication. In these cases, sleep paralysis can be managed by attending to lifestyle habits.

The natural occurrence of the erotic night-mare, along with its cross-cultural expression and deep historic presence, suggests to me that terror and sexuality are neurologically linked, and that each can serve as the gateway to the other. Both erotic and horrific images, for example, lower the heart rate and increase the galvanic skin response compared to other images. [3] As many a young couple at the movies have discovered for themselves — not to mention all the vanilla soccer moms currently reading 50 Shades of Gray — the body has similar reactions to both kinds of arousal.

Here’s another example of how the succubus confuses and stirs us. Walton, a reader of my blog, sent me the following narrative:

I was [sleeping and] lying on my stomach, on top of this beautiful woman, having sex, she was saying things, and the sex got more intense, at the point near orgasm I awoke to sleep paralysis, and I hallucinated me on top of a white skinned, blue-lipped dead body. It stayed a few seconds while I couldn’t move and then vanished when movement returned. It sounds negative, but I found it to be exciting in an odd way. (personal communication, 2009)

Courage in the face of ambiguity

Novelist and dream worker Robert Moss has also walked this line. In his case, the sexual and horrifying nature of the visionary encounter leads to a transformation of the entity as well as an invitation to delve further into the dreaming imagination. Moss recalls how, as a teenager, a disgusting hag with multiple arms and withered breasts entered his bedroom and accosted him. He was completely paralyzed as the hag crawled up the bed, stomped on his chest, and then lowered herself onto him. Moss explains how,

Despite my disgust, I am aroused and now she is riding me. Her teeth are like daggers. My chest is spattered by blood and foulness from the rotting heads. There is nothing for me to do but stay with this. I tell myself I will survive. At last, the act is done. Satisfied, the nightmare hag transforms into a beautiful young woman. She smells like jasmine, like sandalwood. She takes me by the hand to a forest shrine. I forget about the body I have left frozen in the bed. [4]

In literature, “sticking with” the ambiguity of horror and eros could be seen as the mark of excellent fiction. The rising levels of confusion open us up to new levels of vulnerability that neither passion can achieve alone. Given that we live in a world where it’s apparently common to be harassed by amorous ghosts, Moss’s account offers a refreshing perspective by showing that the ambiguity of eros and horror can be honored not just as titillation, but, if our egos survive the ordeal, as a portal into the deep imagination.

What would have happened, I wonder, if I had possessed the courage to stick with the “Deer Woman” who came to my bed in the guise of my dear wife? This realm may be an example of neurognosis at work: the idea that unconscious patterns of wisdom are hidden inside the psyche, waiting for us to have the courage, patience, or training to unlock them.

"Succubus 1" by Mike Teves, used with his permission

“Succubus 1” by Miles Teves, used with his permission

This exploration of erotic horror could easily be misrepresented and quoted out of context, so by way of clarification, I’m not suggesting that nocturnal assault “should” be tolerated, and I’m definitely not advocating for the willful incubation or calling of sexual demons to the bedside for personal pleasure. We have enough troubles! Nor am I suggesting that social views towards consensual sexuality and the politics of rape should be doubted due to this curious phenomenon.

Rather, my curiosity today extends only into the reaches of imagination, creativity, and entertainment, which appear to have some curious bedfellows nonetheless.

I’m very curious to hear what those of you more versed in erotic horror than I, as well as succubus experiencers, may have to say about this topic.


[1] See Adler, Shelly R, Sleep Paralysis: Night-mares, Nocebos, and the Mind-Body Connection, Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers, 2010, especially pp. 54-58, for a discussion of the relationship between sleep paralysis and literary/artistic creativity.

[2] Hufford, David J, “Sleep Paralysis as Spiritual Experience,” Transcultural Psychiatry 42, No. 1 (March 2005): p. 37.

[3] Carvalho, Sandra, Jorge Leite, Santiago Galdo-Álvarez, and Óscar F. Gonçalves, “Psychophysiological Correlates of Sexually and Non-Sexually Motivated Attention to Film Clips in a Workload Task,” PLoS One 6, No. 12 (Decembe4 2011): e29530.

[4] Moss, Robert, “Liminal Complaints: Demons, Night Nags and Sleep Paralysis,” Dream Gates, BeliefNet, January 2011.

Images by Miles Teves, used with his permission

About Ryan Hurd

Ryan Hurd is is founder of He is also a frequent contributor to Business Insider and Reality Sandwich. His books include LUCID IMMERSION GUIDEBOOK: A HOLISTIC BLUEPRINT FOR DREAMING (2012) and SLEEP PARALYSIS: A GUIDE TO HYPNAGOGIC VISIONS AND VISITORS OF THE NIGHT (2011). He has lectured at Stanford University, the Institute of Buddhist Studies, and the Rhine Institute, and has presented and published papers on sleep paralysis, lucid nightmares, and the application of dreaming for uncovering researcher bias and novelty. He has a MA in Consciousness Studies from John F. Kennedy University and a bachelor's degree with a specialization in archaeology, and is a board member of the International Association for the Study of Dreams and a member of the American Anthropological Association and the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness.

Posted on February 25, 2013, in Paranormal, Psychology & Consciousness, Visions, Dreams, and Visitations and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 60 Comments.

  1. Kudos on your work above Ryan and for taking a risk on a potentially taboo” subject matter.
    If I may be allowed to comment, ….
    As you know, not all “victims” who suffer from sleep paralysis, poltergeist and other anomalies experience the Incubus/Succubus “attack”. It is my opinion/theory that a large part of the Erotic Horror as mentioned above is in fact (for some at least) due to the taboo associated with either the perceived sexuality , sex act and/or that same act with another person, animal or entity. Yes, “guilt” I am personally aware of a woman who fantasizes about being intimate with an alien and at the same time confessed to being ashamed at having admitted this to me. The images we see (perceive) with our eyes and/or mind are subject to interpretation by our very own Unqualified minds. What the conscience minds can not make logical to our own unique standards, the creative side will fill in the grey areas (no pun intended) the blanks usually during sleep. Then we wake and say something like, “Wow, I just had the craziest dream”. Often times I have had the experience of a woman approach me. She taunts me, as she is already disrobed. Sometimes it goes into great detail, other times not. I have been living with this issue for many years. But the fear, the run to your daddy’s side fear. I know this woman is Satan, and she knows I know.

    • thanks for the comment Chaz. I agree, we can co-create the succubus encounter depending on the extent of our fears — but I don’t think fear is always the manifestor of specific experiences, or that lack of fear will always shape shift the experience. as for the woman being Satan, that sounds like trouble to me. as Brave Sir Robin says, run away!

    • they know everything we know and they exploit it as soon as they can.. it’s so intrusive, it’s the definition of the word.. mine came to me as Archangel Michael, because that is what i was lead to believe was the only possibility and every time i learnt something new, it came to me as a manifestation of the new information eg it only became sexual when i KNEW it could be sexual.. now I am afraid to learn new information, as i know it will be exploited, but fear is not a word i like to use as i know this is their goal and what feeds them. Do you really think you are visited by satan or just a legionairre of satan? is there really a difference!? Would like to know what you think Chaz 🙂 God bless pal 🙂

  2. Very interesting article, Ryan. I don’t read erotic horror fiction (I have enough imagery in my head, thanks), but I would definitely think that anyone who’s writing it has more than likely experienced sleep paralysis. I would say the same about all types of horror, whether erotic or not. I don’t think it will be much longer before these authors and movie-makers hear about sleep paralysis and begin to speak out about their personal experiences and how it’s contributed to their art.

    • right-o! I’m hoping this article helps with turning the tide and speaking out. Succubi victims unite! I am presenting on the topic of creative sleep paralysis at an upcoming dream conference actually and have found a number of modern artists who have been directly influenced by their SP.

  3. I wrote on this topic with respect to Coleridge for a paper. I found a book in my school library called Coleridge And The Daemonic Imagination by Gregory Leadbetter, which was wholly fascinating, so I had a good excuse to get a little bit crazy . My closing argument was effectively that what happened in Rime Of The Ancient Mariner was kinesthetic. I also recommend Dr. Wilhelm Reich to study up on.

    • interesting Daniel! can you speak more about the kinesthetic qualities of the Coleridge poem? do you specifically mean out-of-body or some other similar form of dream delirium?

      • I wrote a paper for school that is on my blog. My thought was that when the albatross falls from his neck, like lead, and he finds the room to pray again, its analogous to lament or sighing.

        Dr. Wilhelm Reich believed that people had a sort of character armouring that, if manipulated (think yoga, or qi gong, etc..), would release a biological energy that he called orgone. In massage, his work is highly regarded. Orgone could as well be ki or ch’i or whathaveyou.

        Daemonic-Dread is another similar idea analogous to Dr. Wilhelm Reich’s theories in the sense that the shivers or shudders are inspired by conception of the numinous from the liminal . East-Asian shamanism is kind of like this because their philosophy is “come what may”. I like korean shamanism a lot because they equate lament from suffering as a catalyst for receiving blessings or boons.

  4. Check out the new David Bowie video,
    the Stars Are Out Tonight


  5. Im just wondering are you looking for people tthat this has happened to?? It has to me but wanna make sure thats what your looking for??!!

  6. Its probably happened to everyone. Its very common and natural.

  7. It occurs to me that the most obvious example of the direct influence sleep paralysis has on literary horror would be Lovecraft’s Dreams in the Witch House. But I wouldn’t call it erotic horror.

    Fuseli did self-induce sleep paralysis/night terrors through manipulating his diet, but Coleridge was a victim of his big heart. Literally. His heart was over-sized and responsible for both his lethargy and night visions.

    I never made the connection between sleep paralysis and the Fall of the House of Usher, but it does make sense.

    I have experienced sleep paralysis with the usual accompaniments – desire but inability to scream, restricted breathing, demonic presence – but never one that turned erotic. I also wonder about instances where the succubus turns into an object of desire and whether they might signify a relapse into normal REM sleep mode.

    • great thoughts, thanks for the comment. I have never heard about Fuseli’s dietary experimentations before. Any good sources to point me towards? Juicy stuff.

      Also, as for REM, it’s hard to say, but fun to ponder. technically SP occurs when the brain is in REM too, albeit intruded REM into stage n-1. I think the sexuality is more about individual differences than anything else, with some good old fashioned expectation effects too (just like with lucid dreaming. As Stephen LaBerge is fond of saying — lucid outcomes are products of expectation more than anything else)…

      • I have found numerous references to Fuseli’s raw meat eating habits. One of the first – in terms of chronology – is in Quincey’s Confessions of an English Opium-Eater; there is also reproduced the rumor that he created Nightmare after eating massive quantities of raw pork chops. There was a comprehensive article I read a long time ago about the habits of writers and artists – mostly the Romantics – and it confirmed Fuseli as a raw meat eater. I think the article appeared in a late 19th century American literary magazine. I have also found the same repeated in various biographies. Also, every time there is an exhibition of Fuseli’s work, the raw-meat eating habit always pops up.

        It might be exaggerated or even anecdotal, but I prefer to think it is true.

  8. A deeply interesting piece, Ryan. Nicely done.

  9. I am pleased to see The Teeming Brain continue to explore this area as a fascinating phenomenon that encompasses several disciplines of study. As an individual who experienced sleep paralysis and feelings of a presence in the past, and as a scholar who remains interested in the paranormal and its influence on the human experience and expression in folklore, literature, film and television, this is a welcome and helpful exploration. I look forward to digesting the referenced sources, some of which I had not seen before.

  10. I am not sure if this has happend to me but, i have had dream when i have sex with women. (All of them brown hair) but i have never had the sleep paralysis. I am a pretty spiritual person ratjer than relgious. I wear an el cevache necklace.(onyx necklace) for protection. Do you think this has something to do with it? Please email me.

  11. This is so…great. I mean, I’m 18 now, and I thought that all these years, I was the only one having these sleep paralysis attacks. Then BAM, the internet shows you’re not alone!

    I’ve experienced this horror too, seeing a demon up my face but I can’t do anything about it. HOWEVER, the difference is that it’s not horror-erotic. It’s either horror or erotic only. Which is really weird.

    Sleep paralysis only happens to me when I go to sleep very, very, very, very, very tired.

    1) I’m sure it’s sleep paralysis. I’m not dreaming of other places – I can “see my surroundings”

    2) I’m not sure if it is somewhat like Lucid’s the weird part. When this feeling sets in, I start seeing a demon. You know what I do? I think of sex – it works sometimes. Sometimes, I’m so tired that I can’t even think, and the demon is JUST AT MY FACE. When I can think, though, the demon disappears, and whoever I think of is just there with me. It’s never me WITH the demon. Later I feel guilty about it (the sex)

    Recently, whenever paralysis sets in, I panic and actually manage to move my hands before anything forms in front of my face. During the times I’m tired enough to continue being paralyzed, I SWEAR, if only I’m a good painter/drawer whatever, I’ll post in the internet the face of a demon that will totally scare the batsh*t out of you. Really. It’s amazing I’m not crazy yet.

    The comments seem to indicate that sleep paralysis causes a succubus/incubus attack, which then turns into an erotic event, or the other way around. Absolutely not my case.

    Bottom line: I try to get enough sleep. Never happens during college, though. 😐

  12. Interesting Teeming Site and a subject I have some experience with.

    For about ten years off and on I had Succubus experiences. She looked much like the graphic you have of a succubus with flaming red hair. I would become aware of somebody straddling me and having the most passionate sex imaginable.

    I had previously been in a twelve year marriage where we had great sex. Some 4000+ simultaneous orgasms, a great marriage, a great passionate love but nothing like the redhead.

    At the time I just dismissed the experiences as an overactive libido. No such luck this was the real succubus deal.

    These experiences left me a little messed me up and I kept looking for her and at some point I said this is just ridiculous and had a shamanic friend chase her away. She has not come back.

    I have an inquisitive mind and inner explorations are richly rewarded (even built my own John C Lilly floatation tank) once we get our bearings in the space.

    You and some of your high bandwidth pals here might be interested in learning more about accessing your atrophied pituitary and pineal (DMT) glands. Kicking up the bandwidth waiting for those who get those golden glands working. Go to

  13. please send me any sucubus book

  14. kinda freaked out

    Alright so this just happened to me last night. Just want to share my experience.
    So after some crazy lucid dreaming (which I’ve experienced only a hamdful of times) I end up in a small room, sitting on a bed with a young attractive girl with wavy blonde hair and red lipstick. We just talked, getting to know each other. Asking different personal questions. She asked me where I lived and I answered “I lived with my mother” no big deal right? I mean im only 20. Well she thought otherwise. She started laughing hysterically, almost violently. I got somewhat pissed because she just kept laughing. Then it hit me, I’m dreaming. So I try waking myself up. AS SOON as I tried doing this, she stops laughing and gets nose to nose with me. Glaring into my eyes. Next thing I know im falling forward onto the bed and land face down, which happens to be the exact way I was sleeping on the floor. I land and im facing to my right, can’t move my body. The girl ended up under my right and and starts kissing my hand. Then $hit got real, fast. She starts a sort of transformstion, shaking so violently. As she is shaking she starts becoming a decrepid old woman whose face is sunken in, there is too much detail to describe. But she looked exactly like the first picture on this page. Well she goes from kissing to shredding my hand and arm with her teeth, the pain was all too real. She was also chanting something but I couldn’t make since of it. It was some language that I’ve never heard. I was fully aware I was somewhat awake because I could see the room around me but she was there, plain as day. My friend was on his computer directly behind me playing a game. So I was able to barely move my left hand. I attempted to hit his desk to get his attention but I merely tapped it. I could move my mouth, I attempted to yell but it came out as a faint whisper. I also had control of my right leg but my leg was moving far too slow to kick anything. I made a connection while this was going on, I became paralyzed when I touched her. So I tried what felt like forever to start lifting my right arm off of her. The chanting got louder as my arm went higher and finally my arm came off of her and she dissipated. I was released from the paralyzation and sat up, had full control of my body again. Told my friend about it and he said he watched me move my arm and my leg but thought it was a bad dream I was having.
    I am no paranormal fanatic, but I do somewhat believe in it. I have always been skeptical about SP until it happened to me last night. It started happening I’d say around 2:40AM because when I sat up it was 2:44AM. What brought me to comment this story was seeing the first picture, which is exactly what I seen. Hair, sunken face, crazy hands, torn clothes. All of the above. Except she was greyish with a very light blue tint. If you have questions just ask, if you’ve seen her before also I’d like to know what yoy experienced.

    • Yeah, that is deserving of being freaked out about!

      The “old hag” is what this is called when experiences in a strict sleep paralysis setting, but as a dream archetype the crone is bitter medicine and pan-human. I have also experienced dreams of watching girls transform into old crones — an existential reality that is nonetheless a cornerstone of horror. I believe that many of see the same things due mostly to “neurognostic” constants – that is, universal responses to human problems that transcend culture and are biological in origin. But that’s my bias.

    • You’re story sounds alost the same as my three encounters and you said the first pic looked like her! Before reading your comment I screen shot that first pic because it looks just like mine specifically the long fingers grey skin.

  15. kinda freaked out

    Excuse the poor typing, I’m using my phone.

  16. So many different experiences, yet so many similarities. What a very strange world it is. I’ve had many many sleep paralysis experiences that are highly erotic, and luckily very very few that involve an element of fear or horror. At most I get annoyed at the things/people that seem to be moving around just outside the door or in the corners and talking which I know are not “real” because they are very distracting and cause a sort of paranoia.

    I have only had one lucid dream of having sex with someone who turned out to be a demon but it was pleasant. Mostly in my sleep paralysis I am highly aroused in a way that feels like a side-effect, no entities involved, not ones that I can see or feel anyway. I often beg and pray for relief, because the erotic sensations are so intense as to be frustrating and tortuous, but most often nothing can be done. I’, sure I’d happily accept the assistance of anything, even a demon to bring me to climax in that state.

    I often seem to be healing myself in reiki-like fashion while in this state and experiencing intense vibrations, rarely healing from an external source, and often this healing practice involves the popping out of demons, thought forms or some sort of seemingly unwanted energy from the body. The erotic energy seems to build eventually taking over my consciousness as this goes on.

    I’ve read that the arousal has to do with lower beings sucking your energy, but that explanation just doesn’t jive with the subjective experience of my encounter and the context. I thought it made more sense that the orgone-orgasmic type energy was simply a side-effect of the general chi energy channeling strongly and causing the vibrations.

    It similar every time, and yet its all very subject to things I read during my day that get into my head, the various explanations for what is going on, someone else’s experiences. Very strange indeed. Perhaps I would be more scared about sleep paralysis, and encounter more negative forms, if I could never wake myself up, but I am able to with my willpower if I truly feel like it about 90% of the time, and the other 10% I tend to fall back into a real dream. I usually feel more bored than scared if I just want to be getting a good rest and am sick of these same old “hallucinations” over and over.

    • love your perspective!

    • I find your post very intreging i also have the same thing happen to me the sexual energy is so intense it feels like a constant orgasm that never actualy climaxes if that makes sense haha i have no case of sp i do have very lucid dreaming but most of the time im not asleep when i feel this energy ive also thought i had a succubus do to the energy but found that i never climaxed so i figured it was all in my head maybe were to welcoming and it scared them hahaha if you would like to talk more about it you can email me at id like to learn more about why this is happening ty have a wonderful day

  17. Code Name: Blue Jay

    So, I’ve had my own experiences with sleep paralysis and succubus encounters (if that is what you’d like to call it). With my own experiences, I am awake, though still a little drowsy, and am able to move slightly. It’s almost like that feeling you get when you sleep in on a Saturday and you know your suppose to wake up and are just about to turn over and get out of bed. When the experience starts, I automatically close my eyes. (sleeping, you ask? I have no idea) But than there is a pressure on top of me, as if someone is laying on me, and “he” feels me and pins me. And you know, does sexual things. Including having sex. (Now I’d like to point out, I’m a 21 year old virgin. I don’t even know the first thing about sex!) The last encounter (which have gotten even more frequent. As in, every night) I was somehow able to will myself to grab “him” by the arms. Suddenly, there was a lot of things going on. Lights flashy (Similar to strobe lights. which is not normal for me, I hardly ever dream of lights)and a screeching sound (something between a car breaking and and an animal screeching). I’ve never been extremely scared about these dreams (just when they started happening. Which originally it was about being dragged across the bed into a dark obis of nothingness), but this startled me. It was almost as if “he’ was telling me that he DIDN’T want me to see him. They are quite realistic dreams. Bed moving, sheets being imprinted, even the feelings of “his’ hands were real. One moment, there was a night where i only felt like I was embraced by ‘him”.

    Now let me clarify, I really don’t condone any of what is happening. Me NOT being afraid has come from a long, long, long life filled with bad nightmares to the point where I’ve learned to control my fear in my dreams. I’m just curious whether this is REAL or NOT and WHO/WHAT this thing is. Even after reading articles about this topic, I do believe it’s another being and not some scientific theory. BUT a demon? Idk, it didn’t seem like “he” wanted to harm me. But than again, that’s my own experience. Reading about other peoples experience, it almost seems like life or death or horror or erotica, which i don’t really feel as if mine is like that to the extreme.

    That being said, sorry if I’m all over the place. Like I said, this is a reoccurring thing.

  18. I’ve had the sleep paralysis phenomenon. I awoke unable to move
    With the feeling of a very negative entity in my room. Fear
    Engulfed me. I prayed Christ blood to protect me and the presence
    Left with the fear. Very strange experience.

  19. Well this just happened to me I will say it was scary. I awoke in my bed fully awake, but unable to move. I could move my head though. Then i feel the door open, my heart begins to race. I’m to scared to look.

    This woman appears. She sits down on the foot of my bed. She was actually quite attractive. I wasn’t going to let that sway my mind tho. I try to move with all my might but am unable to. This is what made me a little scared because i was fully conscious but unable to move. For the first time in my life I felt helpless.

    She then whispers in my ear “You cant move can you? I’m going to be your worst Nightmare.” Then to my surprise she turns around and begins to ride me. Then All these memory begin to surface back to me. Memory of fights I had with my parents and everything. Then she grabs my throat at this moment I scream god help me. Then she gets thrown off me. She then tries again but is unable to step near me. She then walks off with this strut.

    The worst part though is what she said as she left “if you see me again you will die :[.” I wasn’t scared tho I said yea all-right big but in a cocky tone hehe. I have never feared death because I know it is a natural thing that’s why when she said it I didn’t even flinch.

    Then as soon as the door shuts i am able to move my body again. I awake in my bed AGAIN. I rush out of my room to see my brother in his room. (odd because he just left for the military.) I ask him what is he doing here. im Fuzzy on what he said. But I then close my eyes and tell myself wake up! I finally wake up. I grab the sleeping pills box and throw them in the trash. :]

    Morel of the story: Don’t take sleeping pills.

  20. I had one visit me 3 nights ago staying at my friends house in their spare bedroom. At least, what everyone is telling me ‘visited me’. I don’t really believe in Demons/Ghosts/God or whatever. However 2 nights later I saw something on a tv show that made me think twice about my experience a few nights before. I saw the room I was in, as it was, the door to my right, the fan blowing beside the bed, when I started to feel tingling in my body and all of a sudden I cudnt move. The door opened and 2 men entered the room. One jumped on the bed and through a knife near my head. I knew what he was going to do. I had been scared but once I felt it happen, it was amazing, it felt incredible and I climaxed! I woke up, excited and satisfied. After searching the internet the night after I read up on inviting them, I manifested the same experience although way less dramatic but still satisfactory… I am enjoying every minute of this mindful manipulation… As we are told that whatever we are thinking of as we go to bed we dream of in some way, the Mind is an incredibly power tool, much more powerful than a so called ‘hell demon’ of which no ACTUAL EVIDENCE is given. Given that heaven and hell are completely based on CIRCUMSTANCIAL evidence, I can’t wait to fall asleep again tonight, and invite it all in. Demon or no Demon. 🙂

  21. i,myself, suffer from the above pschosis/phenomenon. in my case, it is not so glamorous and, more embarrassing than anything. and, i’ve learned a lot. but, the one thing that still eludes my grasp, how to get rid of the apparition. anyone have suggestions?

  22. Interesting article. I just had a crazy experience today, but I’m not sure it quite fits in.

    See, I had never experienced sleep paralysis until today (and, to be honest, I’m not sure if it really was that). I knew exactly where I was, what position I was laying, etc. but I couldn’t move (I couldn’t even open my eyes no matter how hard I tried).

    Then , all of the sudden, someone (I have no idea who or what, though, because I literally cannot open my eyes) is tugging on my hair, pulling my head back as far is it can (and, strangely, it doesn’t even hurt). Then, I feel an intense pleasure and can hear myself crying out loudly (although, I’m not sure if I really was or not because no one in the house came to check on me or asked me about it). After, I fell into a deep sleep where I was not aware of my surroundings at all.

    It was definitely a strange experience (one I’d like to get to the bottom of if possible…)

  23. I enjoyed reading this. It been suggested that most ‘mystical experiences’ are no more than heightened erotic sex dreams through the lens of memory playback.

    As for my own sleep paralysis experiences, they are terrifying if I forget to breathe – which is easy to do when one is in this disassociated and unfamiliar state. I am convinced that people that claim to ‘suffer’ from this phenomenon are simply forgetting to breath when it occurs and that their perception of ‘terror’ is 1. A projection of their own oxygen deprivation as a result of fear and 2. An evolutive mechanism which evolved to wake up the ignorant dreamer before they cause damage to tissue from this oxygen deprivation. Fear and oxygen deprivation go hand in hand when in this state. It’s often hard to tell which comes first because they both feed off of and exacerbate each other until the dreamer shouts them self awake or recognizes that the only thing to fear is the fear itself. The two art depictions in this article are the same image, the top image perceived by a shallow breathing dreamer and the bottom image of a freely breathing human being.

    I’ve never put eros and terros together though it makes sense. Terros is oxygen deprived eros! 8D Thanks again.

  24. I have encountered sleep paralysis a couple of times. It started when I was around 13 years old. It will always happen when I sleep facing up. I would always struggle and force myself to wake up. I could feel my head shaking like mad and vibrating. When I wake up I will feel so exhausted, sometimes i fell asleep shortly after that and got into the sleep paralysis state again.

    I remember 2 years ago I had it again. I was lying on my bed, unable to get up and I was closing my eyes. I heard sounds like a piano was playing slowly (but it has no tune or melody) and when it got faster i felt someone or something was running on top of me? Then i heard the sound of children giggling but it sounded evil. It scared the hell out of me..

    When I moved into another room (just beside my old room) last year February it didn’t happen to me again. It’s only sometimes when i sleep at my boyfriend’s house i will experience it.

    And it happened to me last night again. I don’t know whether is it because I went to my old room’s toilet to bathe. I had it twice. The first time, I dreamt of my friend walking around my room. I couldn’t remember much. After that I couldn’t get up again, I was shaking my head vigorously to wake myself up. When I managed to wake up I fell asleep shortly after and went back to the same dream. My friend was walking around my room again, looking at me. Then I felt something was amiss, like i felt there was an evil presence around.. so i asked him to slap my face. He did and I had no feeling. So I was like, “shit i’m dreaming. this is not real.” and i struggled to wake up again..

    Somehow after that dream, I dreamt(?) that a guy was fingering me. Surprisingly it felt so good and real and i think i had an orgasm? after that he wanted to use some weird things to finger me and i said no no no i don’t want to do it anymore. Then the “dream” ended. I woke up with a UTI today and it feels so terrible. It’s so weird because I didn’t have sex recently and I always make sure I keep my vagina clean. I felt so scared that I went to google and found out about incubus(sex demon). Is it real????? I know all these sounds crazy but it’s all true!!!! 🙁 someone please help me? I’m afraid that this will happen to me again. Sorry for the long post but i need some advice..

  25. This morning I woke in sleep paralysis, with the usual high pitched buzzing I hear, unable to move , I tried my hardest to get out of it but I couldn’t,(I put it down to stress in my life). I then felt a hand around my waist (I was sleeping on my side naked) , I started crying and freaking out…. but then this man started kissing my neck, touching my body, I could feel his stubble on my neck, I started to calm down , he turned me around , moved on top of me and he passionately made love to me. It felt ridiculously real and good. He was handsome and sweet. I orgasmed ,he orgasmed inside me at the same time (I don’t know if my orgasm was real) and he told me he could only see me once every 15 years. I then slowly woke up, nothing was there I was in the same position. The whole time I felt awake, I could hear the sounds outside, everything was so real.
    I can’t wait for 2030 lol 😉 !!

  26. Email me to

    I had the sleep paralysis , a couple of months ago.and. I dont live with parents anymore…independent…
    This weird dreams was before i came to know avout sleep paralysis and succubus.
    One day night perfect sleeping… I dont know…it was like sudden attack .. There was a a beatiful woman and small kid in her hands .. They were coming towards me as face to face .. I tried to jump off from my bed.. But i couldnt get off .. The dreams was suffocating me….days after i havent slept properly .. It was all disturbancees in my home.,i couldnt look back.. Scared.. Returned to family for few days

    But yesterday i found this pic in facebook.. Researched about it… Lead to this

    I used to dream about a girl. I dont know.. Whether she is my dream girl now.. I doubt it.. I cant get off her from my mind… She is every where.. When i simply lay on my bed ..she start appear… She is like a female dominant character…. She has been there since 2013…

    Now im sure she isnt my blue print
    I dont watch porn much..
    But i do notice when i sleep of hands are kept above my penis.. So i changed my sleeping positions
    Nocturnal emissions are less…
    But now when i have ejacularions… I get awake..
    I think there is a difference between nocturnal emission and ejaculation caused by the demon…
    I believe in god ..i do prayer..
    But its still here.. Like a parasite..

  27. Just had this experience one hour prior to reading these articles. I went to bed around midnight after I composed a song list then headed off asleep. I was dreaming I was with my family in there apartment as I walked in the living room passing the doorway my body felt like it was being pulled away then eventually I was pulled away as if my astral body was returning back but as soon this happen I was paralyzed and couldn’t open my eyes but heard a female moaning as I struggled and as I tried harder the moaning intensified to where my thoughts though only of God then suddenly broke free. I was panicked then started playing Skyrim for awhile until 5am.

  28. God, I am ashamed and confused. I found this through googling sex sleeping etc.

    It happened a day I was stressed. I never thought this stuff was real until I woke up in the middle of the night with my shirt lifting up exposing my breasts.
    I saw it lift! It floated like magic. It was then I screamed but I couldn’t move. Couldn’t shout. I was laying there exposed. I saw a figure of man standing. I tried to scream. I struggled to move my fingers. I wanted to fight but I couldn’t. My fingers did not move. They felt like weights. I kept thinking if I moved my fingers then I could fight but I couldn’t, not one bit. I was powerless. I wanted to run.I saw his chin and shoulders, he wore all black, black everything and he had pale skin but his face was hidden.It was covered with a black hood. He looked evil from what I saw over me. I couldn’t stop it, I felt something in me, thrusting between my thighs actually affecting my body. Sexual thrusting. I felt it, it was violent and fast in me. It felt very real. He would blink out and then flash back and I could see him before he flashes away but the constant thrusting went on. I was frozen in terror. I wanted to run. I remember asking for god to stop this but I couldn’t even move. I’m not religious either. I kept trying to move until it grew too fast to where it actually made move along the bed. It went on for a long scary five minutes, maybe shorter but time seemed so slow. I don’t know how long. I could only watch this thing violate me, I felt like I was imprisoned in my own body. I wanted to scream but the thrusting went on. Until I my legs were parted in a horrible sexual position. I went on like that until I orgasmed.

    I feel so ashamed because I orgasmed and I was frightened and praying to god for it to stop. I feel like I betrayed me. I didn’t mean to. It left me humiliated. I don’t even think this stuff exists but if it does, I feel evil for reacting that way to something evil. I still think about that now. How? Why? After that and he was gone. It was gone. I could move again. I started crying. So I laid there and hugged my pillow and just fell a sleep. I was frightened.

    I don’t want to tell anyone because I fear that they’d call me crazy and put me on pills. I don’t hallucinate and not into this stuff. I feel like I was raped or something. I don’t want my boyfriend to think I’m crazy.

  29. Bellaloop you need to look at what you have taken, bought from anyone before the occurrence. Get rid of any item that has suspicious origin. Especially gift items from people you may not know so well. These spirits invade people’s home using some of these things.

  30. So at what age can someone encounter them?

  31. After reading this I think I was sexual assaulted as well in my dreams. A Caucasian woman that resembles a ex I had many years ago was the woman and she had a drug problem as well. This woman kinda looked like her but her face looked creepy a little and you can see the drug use in her face. But anyway she just laid her head down with her pale face long her looking like it could easily be pulled out open her mouth as she seduce me into letting her give oral. She looked drugged upped maybe lifeless is a better term and in her eyes she looked like she was just there not to enjoy. In my mind I’m looking at her disqusted but my body was aroused and extremely satisfied. Than I woke up thinking this was a spirit or some dirt trying to take my sexual energy or make me to get back into pornagrahy so it can survive. Any thoughts?

  32. Ryan,

    I love your post. Just started reading and will write more but wanted to mention that I took an online course with Robert Moss called ‘Quantum Dreaming’ which was amazing.

    It was a 6 month course and I learned a lot. Highly recommend it!

    Thanks for your post!

  33. Succubus are real demon i felt several time counter with her.. she’s erotic dreamer men are her desire.

  34. season of witches are mostly winter and succubus are waked for victims she’s fatal desire. i wanna feel her presence in dream.

  35. The vision of night lady has more lustful and desireful fantasy world. one night i felt 13 time paralysis sleep i could’t sleep probably distrubence occured. then i wish for god for good sleep,but it work while and soon i feel her apperance once again this time i commet for talk with her…latter 2 nights i saw naked women differ look. it was strange,but excited too she try seduce me in differ image.

  36. She came back last nite,I was falling asleep when it starts .first I can’t move and my eyes are open.i know what to expect because it happens couple times a year.I never see her face but last nite I got a glimpse of what look like a beak,black and somewhat long.I could feel her body pressing on me with great pressure.The thing is that when I fight back I always win.I try to speak but I only make muming sounds and I’m fully aware in my mine to think clearly so I try and summon my mother and Jesus and then only than that I break free.Last nite I called out for my wife and she came for me as I told her succubus came back wife stayed with me for some time until I fell back to sleep.I think I could let it go farther it I wanted to but why when something doesn’t seem right,right? Please share what you think .Thanks

  37. Years ago i had exactly the same ‘hag’ encounter too! Another encounter was that the demon Said that she wants to eat me, i Woke up and something was pulling on my face

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