Saturday, November 8, 2014


Is there a link between PTS and being in a haunted situation? I thought this was something interesting to bring up given the thousands of people now becoming involved in the popular practice of "ghost hunting" and people reporting haunting in their homes, business; and the many "haunted tours" conducted at historical locations, various battlefields, old prisons and former mental hospitals and institutes.

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a common reaction to traumatic events. In researching this topic I found it is (suggested) that PTSD becomes persistent when individuals process the trauma in a way that leads to a sense of serious, current threat. The sense of threat arises as a consequence of:
(1) Excessively negative appraisals of the trauma 
Example : possible overcompensating and overreacting to a situation that was a threat or may not be an immediate threat.
(2) A disturbance of autobiographical memory characterized by poor elaboration, strong associative memory and strong perceptual priming.
Example: reacting to something or someone that reminds you of the cause of a traumatic incident-over and over again.

Although we think of PTSD associated with soldiers in combat: Think of the fight or flight reflex to a serious threat or dangerous environment, and originally applying only to extreme experiences that people would not expect to encounter every day, it has come to be associated with a growing list of relatively commonplace events: accidents, muggings, a difficult labor (with healthy baby), verbal sexual harassment, or the shock of receiving (inaccurate) bad news from a doctor even in cases in which the incorrect diagnosis has been rescinded shortly afterwards. 

So, I have been wondering what the effects are building up on people who are long time paranormal investigators? 
Or, long term exposure to a haunting situation without a final solution in sight. These is not listed in the above as a possible causes of PTSD. But I think they should. 

I think the ensuring stress that it has on the physical and mental capacities of the human body manifests as this recognized disorder and how with certain individuals coping with their own individual experience. Like a haunting! So it can't be generalized in too broad a manner.

With the constant pursuit and interaction in possible dangerous places with unknown supernatural encounters, one wonders if this will cause negative impact in their lives in the future. Indeed, they may not even be aware of the cumulative psychological effects until much later, even long after they no longer are involved in paranormal investigations.

There was a scene in the recent "Annabelle" movie that mentioned a horrific encounter that Lorraine Warren had suffered during an exorcism that went terribly wrong. Now she was a trained and experienced person who dealt with the paranormal and demonic entities for years along with her husband, Ed Warren, and yet she saw and confronted something so unspeakable that she would never reveal it even to her husband. Although shaken for months after the exorcism she continued to help others and still does today. But as her husband mentioned in the movie, "it took a piece of her" that could never be regained. 
 Scene from The Conjuring Movie

The real Lorraine Warren (on the left) and actress Vera Farmiga who played her in the movie, The Conjuring.

What about people who are not as trained and able to handle the supernatural? Like people who are foolish to think this is an entertainment venue and fun to "hunt ghosts". So they buy a camera or two, and other equipment and set out to confront ghosts, spirits, entities, demons and whatever at their local cemetery, an abandoned house, hospital or school, etc. 

Do they know what they are doing? How about they get in a situation that leaves them traumatized because of lack of experience, training or even common sense? What are the long term effects?

One of the long-term effects of extreme stress can affect sleep, dreaming and Hyper Awareness! 

Sound familiar Paranormal Investigators? One only has to see current participants in many popular TV shows in this field that exhibit these traits. Whether it's acting or the real act of investigating the unknown there is hyper awareness to sounds, smells, seeing shadows in the peripheral vision or sensing something unnatural behind or even touching you.

Once the show has aired for its contractual 60 minutes what happens to the people on the show when they go home at night? Do they have nightmares? Do they have insomnia?
Do they literally take their work(i.e.ghosts)home with them?
Does long exposure to the paranormal field pose serious 
consequences for the investigators? 
*Can it change the way they approach the field?
By this I mean:
*Can they feel a sense of power by believing they have contacted dead people? And want more! Intentional provoking the dead comes to mind. 

*Delving into more dark areas-like people using Ouija boards- and justifying it by saying it's a good way to communicate with ghosts or spirits? 
Be so very careful!

*Do they overlook basic safety rules because they have had success in dark and damaged buildingwithout incident? 

*Do they think and feel they"know it all" because of the amount of time spent doing the many investigations and the newcomers looking up to them for guidance? No one knows it all until you cross the veil. Just putting it out there!

I know from my experience what my son and I confronted
in my deceased friend's "haunted house"  truly had a
trans-formative affect on us as people and our lives.We feel we have experienced  some form of PTSD. 
That long term of exposure (we are talking 10 months of constant activity over thousands of hours in his house) to terrifying supernatural events made us almost "numb" to scary things. Yet, we are super sensitive to spirit activity and extremes of atmospheric changes in our home environments, phantom smells and sensing fleeting shadow people or entities in our homes. It keeps you on guard, unbalanced to a ordinary simple routine and always makes you doubt yourself "did I just see that?"

Many of us who have confronted and lived through paranormal encounters and have been subjects of their attacks and attachments can tell you it is very hard to keep grounded in reality. But you have too! You have to fight back! Our weapon of choice is to use a sense of humor and firmly telling our ghostly visitors who is boss! 

Could you be awaken to loud bangs in the middle of the night and investigate the basement at 3 AM,see a shadow figure on the wall and then go back to sleep after that! We do!
Or hear children laughing, or play with your things and make them appear and disappear? We have!

              Artist recreation of the manifestation

Especially my son who has become a psychic medium after the trauma of being at my friend's house that seems to have brought out latent psychic abilities that he always had.
We are lucky to have the support and love of family, friends, fans and the continued blessings of our dear minister friend.

So how can you exorcise your demons?  Both figurative and literally?
Our weapon of choice is to use a sense of humor and firmly telling our ghostly visitors who is boss! We don't show our fear which at times is almost impossible. 
We don't hide our thoughts or feelings. Talk about it to others who have been though the same unique things. 
I write this blog! I wrote a book which was tremendously   cathartic for me and and now the sequel. 
Also we have a deep faith (know that we are protected by divine messengers )and keep the "light on" in our hearts and souls!

Our lives are not normal, but paranormal!  But, don't be afraid! Don't go it alone! The whole paranormal community is here to help and we are with you! Blessings to all!


  1. Bravo, dear lady. Another well written fact of who we are and the very possible "hazards" we face as paranormal investigators. Those of us who understand and accept this mantel of responsibility do so to help others who can't help themselves. I'm a fan of Blue Oyster Cult and the song that best describes us is "Veteran of the Psychic Wars".

    1. Hank, thank yo so much. I have enjoyed being on your show and am honored you consider me a Veteran of Psychic Wars! Keep up your important work, my friend, as you are the voice of reason in a sometimes dangerous and unknown territories. Certainly the most unique line of work to be on this planet!

  2. Anita Jo, this is fabulous! You sound so much like me. I would love to talk to you again, I have found out so much over the last few years and you seem to hit the nail right on its head here. I have been an investigator since 2009, and have a house full of activity and we had this house built 29 years ago, no one has ever passed away here. I do a lot of what you mentioned in here and work hard on helping families who are having paranormal issues. Over the years it has come to teaching them how to not be afraid and just set house rules for the spirits to follow, teaching them to keep their vibrations up and making sure they are strong and letting spirit know 'they are the boss', but in a firm and kind way, never mean! You and I have spoken before and maybe we can do it again sometime. This is great work! Janie Daum

  3. As always Janie your thoughtful and excellent comments are so appreciated. Yes, I believe we have much in common and the way you are handling your experiences and learning and helping others is wonderful! Too many times people who have had paranormal experiences keep it is hidden from others and hopefully the climate is changing and they feel vindicated by people like you and from (information I try to provide) who are there to help and tell them they are not alone.Well done!