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bh34465

Screaming In My Sleep

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When I was 28, I bought my first home. After several weeks living there, I started to have anxiety at night. The first time it happened, I sat up in bed and yelled, "I don't want to die." Afterwards, I began to have anxiety about dying almost every night, and I often repeated my yell.

As I got older, this fear of dying went away, but I would frequently yell/scream/holler in my sleep. Sometimes now, I will go for months and never have an episode, then I will start to do it two to three times a week. Sometimes the screams are fear that I am being attacked; other times they are angry screams, laced with lots of profanity (which I don't use that much when awake.)

I was sexually abused by two different neighbors by the age of 13. In the second incident,

I was beaten up by an older boy who was the abuser's daughter's boyfriend

, because I threatened to tell. Also, my father was very intimidating and controlling, and verbally abused me on the regular.

I have often wondered if these sleep episodes could be PTSD.

Edited by lindahurt

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I'm not a professional, but you could be suffering from PTSD.

I encourage you to see a doctor and a therapist to help you deal with all this.

((((Hugs))))

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I agree it sounds like it could be PTSD. PTSD can be triggered by anything, maybe buying the house brought out some stressors you didn't even know were there (ironically, my own PTSD flared shortly after buying my OWN first house last year, but I was also hospitalized a few months later so it could be that too). I agree with AquaViolet, consulting a professional would be a smart thing to do. Keep us posted and good luck to you.

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Yes professional advice would be good. I have a very minor case of PTSD and I know (from personal experience and what my therapist told me) one of the prominent symptoms is recurring nightmares/flashbacks. Have you experienced these things? If so then it sounds like it could be the case, and you should definitely get professional help because it is not going to go away on its own. What you described here sounds painful and I'm sorry you had to go through it. Hope you will feel better soon.

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Maybe the readers have read other posts describing some of the things I've gone through, both in childhood and adulthood, but I think they did cause a great deal of trauma.

Here are some of the things I've been through:

sexually molested by two different neighbors at age 10 and 13

was beaten by an older male for threatening to tell about the abuse at 13

pedophile father who did not protect me from the older male who beat me up

was forced into sex with an older sibling

  • was a bedwetter until I was 19, and was berated, cursed, and threatened almost daily for it (but never taken to a physician or counselor)

Once I was sharing a hide-a-bed sofa with a friend's son who had been in Desert Storm. I had an episode of yelling in my sleep at the top of my lungs. He had PTSD and he was freaked out by "my" yelling. I don't have flashbacks where I see the things happening over again to me, it's more just that sense that someone is attacking, threatening, or that danger is near. Then I yell, and sometimes punch. I have punched former partners before in bed (in my sleep, not intentionally :detective2: ).

Edited by lindahurt

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I'm so sorry to hear this, bh...What happened to you is so terrible and I can't imagine what pain you must have gone through over the years. Please just know that we are so glad you are here and thinking about seeking help. I think a formal diagnosis and professional help would be necessary and great (it could also get you benefits because ptsd is often covered by disability policies), and you should definitely consider it. I'm not a professional so I don't know how to give medical advice, but I have to say that therapy and medication combined have helped me tremendously with my case of ptsd. Therapy works much better for this than for depression, and you would learn the tools to deal with your experiences in the future, which is why I think it is even more valuable than medication alone. My trauma is very different from yours, but it also involve an extreme fear of dying, and I know how terrible it can feel when it comes. Hope you will be in good hands soon, and we will think about you. Please know that you are not alone in this.

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Hi bh34465,

You've suffered a lot from the trauma you endured as a child. I'm so sorry you were not protected as I can imagine the how much you are suffering now from the painful memories. Indeed, you can use some professional help. Often it take years sometime to recover and be able to live a life fulfilling life without so much torture the memories bring. I don't think they will ever go away but you can learn how to manage them.

From personal experience of having to deal with PTSD, I know you can recover and experience happiness in life. Please get help for yourself.

Wishing you the best.

Lindahurt

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I don't know if it will help you to know you are not alone in it. I've had the screaming nightmares most of my life, started quite young. Am currently having awful nightmares every single night without fail.

The screaming in my sleep is really creepy at times, it's very loud, and sometimes I wail in this scary 'ghost-like' voice, scares me, I can hear myself, but, can't get myself to wake up.

Sorry, didn't mean to ramble about myself.

I hope you have relief from yours soon. And that you can rest easy. Maybe even wake up happy without any night terrors.

Wishing you the best.

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Whimberry - thanks for telling me about your experiences. I have always had sleep disturbances and sleep issues. As an adult, I surmised that the reason I fought against sleep was that I was a bedwetter until I was about 19, and that the worry about that, and the resulting tongue-lashing that I was going to get, maybe me have negative feelings about sleeping. Also, I saw a program on t.v. the other night about kids with mental disorders, one of which was hallucinations about snakes. When I was between maybe nine and eleven years old, I used to have nightmares about my bedroom being completely covered with snakes, or that there were snakes in my bed. I always had vivid dreams, even as far back as four or five years old, and my sister told me that I would often tell her what I had dreamed.

Anyway, sometimes my yelling in my sleep (sometimes I hear myself do it, other times others tell me how it sounded) sounds like wailing, moaning, ghosty, sometimes it's profanity-laced, sometimes my words are slurred because the horror I'm "experiencing" is so great, I can't speak, but only try to get words out. Sometimes my dreams are so traumatic or horrible that it bothers me throughout the day (not so much the dreams themselves, but the trauma of them.)

I've spoken about sleep problems to counselors and physicians, but they don't usually take it too seriously. I don't really put much faith in dream interpretations, it's more that I know my sleep is messed up and not very restful that concerns me. So much is made about getting a good night's sleep, but so little is done to study or understand why I don't sleep well.

Now I'm rambling :)

Thanks.

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lol, ramble on, hee hee. i really do like the dream interpretation thingy. seems pretty accurate half the time. snakes, yuck. it seems there should be a medication specifically for nightmares. with all this incredible technology, you'd think they could come up with something. hugs about the ghost sounds, shivers... hate that here.

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i just googled why we make those ghost sounds during nightmares, and it called it sleep paralysis. this is what i found, and seems to really make sense. " Explanation

- Inability to move is the main symptom of sleep paralysis. Here’s what happens. As most of us know, we dream during the deep REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage of sleep. During this stage, the brain turns off most of its body’s muscle function. This is done to prevent a person from actually acting out his/her dreams. This way dreams remain dreams and don’t become actions. This is called muscular atonia. It basically means that the body becomes temporarily paralyzed. But sometimes when we wake up during REM sleep, the brain does not come out of the dream state. This is what leads to sleep paralysis. So the person is conscious but is unable to move. "

also, it said to sleep on your side, not on your back.

half-awake, half-asleep. blech.

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