If a night “mare” was originally a very specific type of frightening nocturnal visitor, today our nightmares are bad dreams, night terrors, and all sorts of fears that bubble up from our brains to haunt the dark hours. And sometimes, we dream dreams so frightening that they stick in our minds for decades, inescapable but inscrutable windows into our deepest fears.
We want to hear about those dreams and terrors, the ones that stay with you for years. What’s the dream that scared you as a child and still gives you chills? What was the worst dream you ever had? If you’ve experienced hallucinations during sleep paralysis, what did you see? What dream made you whimper in the night and wake the person sleeping next to you?
Please tell us all about them here or use the form below.
Here are some from the Atlas Obscura staff:
Being eaten by ant. Grandpa also eaten by ant. A very big ant.
Falling asleep in math class, having sleep paralysis, and thinking all of my classmates were staring at me and their eyes were just holes. I could hear them making yowling noises like cats.
Going to jail for the rest of my life and I’m on my last day of freedom just wallowing in a sea of dread.
Sitting in a field covered in grass, flowers, and other plants and keep hearing an approaching thud in the distance. Each night, the thud would get louder and the field would shrink around me. I’d grow increasingly frantic about it and wake up. Then, on the last night, there was one patch left right in front of me, and I looked up and saw a giant robot leg coming down to stomp it—and me—out.
Being chased by wolves or sharks.
This recurring, inescapable image of a giant, inverted pyramid, balancing on a single stone. And I was filled with dread that if I moved or let my mind wander for even a second, it would collapse and destroy everything and—specifically—make a deafening, roaring sound as it came down.
We’ll be collecting these dreams and publishing the most strange, frightening, and hallucinatory among them next week, just in time for Halloween, when nightmares come alive.