Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Haunted Houses and Ghost Stories

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In honor of Halloween, I’m re-publishing this post from a few years ago about that time in college I lived in a haunted house.

Back in college I lived in an apartment for two years that was crazy haunted (it was right across the street from a large cemetery. I used to find piles of dimes and single earrings (that didn’t belong to me or my roommate) everywhere, but those were the least of the weird things. Appliances would turn on and off — once, when I was home alone watching “Unsolved Mysteries,” my hair dryer turned on in my bedroom upstairs. Sometimes the outgoing message on the answering machine — this was the 90s, remember — would just randomly play without anyone touching it. I used to find shaving cream lining the entire bottom of my bathtub in the mornings. Once, when I was putting some tator tots in the oven, I felt something down the back of my leg–I looked down and saw a dime drop on the floor and roll across the room. As I was watching that, I felt a tator tot hit me in the shoulder. These weren’t even the scariest things.

I lost my glasses once. I’m sure I put them on my nightstand as I always did before going to bed, but in the morning they were gone. I looked everywhere. Everywhere! I called my mom and told her I thought the ghost took them. She was the only person I could say that to and not get laughed at. “You need to ask for them back,” she told me. So I did. I said, “This isn’t funny! I need my glasses back! They were expensive and I can’t afford to buy a new pair and I need them!” Suddenly, something compelled me to look under my bed. I lifted the lid off a shoe box and there they were, my glasses. That wasn’t the scariest thing.

The scariest thing happened one weekend when my roommate was out of town. These things always happened when she was gone, and in fact, if you were to ask her even now, I wouldn’t be surprised if she’d tell you she’s convinced I made it all up. But I didn’t. These things all happened. And the scariest was that weekend she was gone and I woke up on a Sunday morning in my bedroom and the bedroom furniture had been rearranged during the night and right beside my bed, just inches from where I slept, was the rocking chair, facing me, like someone had been watching me sleep. I get chills even now just thinking about it.

What about you? Have you ever lived in/stayed in a haunted house? Have you had any run-ins with ghosts?

10 comments… add one
  • avatar

    Another Jen October 31, 2016, 12:59 pm

    My sis agreed to house-sit for a friend who was deployed in Afghanistan. She had just filed for divorce, so she was grateful for a place to stay while she sorted out her finances. It was a small, older home with just two bedrooms. Basically, it was perfect. My sis moved in a week before the friend took off for Afghanistan…and everything was fine.

    Once the friend left, my sis moved into her bedroom, and that’s when the scariness started. First, she felt like she was being watched all the time, but coming out of a bad marriage, she attributed it to the newness of being on her own.

    Every night, after she fell asleep, the closet light would come on and the closet door would open. The first couple of nights, she thought she must have forgotten it and just shut the light off and closed the door. But, once she started making sure the door was closed and the light was off, she freaked out. She’d wake up in the middle of the night, or the morning, and the closet door would always open with the light on.

    One night, she heard the light come on, sat up in bed, and watched the door swing open. That was it, she moved to the living room couch and left the bedroom door shut. When her friend was finally able to get in touch from Afghanistan, my sis told her what had been happening. The friend’s response: “My mom’s ashes are in that closet…maybe she’s mad I’m gone.”

    Seriously! My sis didn’t have money to get another place, so she stayed there. She moved the mom’s ashes into the garage and slept on the couch for the rest of the time. True story.

    jt

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  • avatar

    TheHizzy October 31, 2016, 1:04 pm

    You’ve read stories about people coming in to watch people sleep. Maybe that’s what happened at your old place?

    Either way still freaky as crap.

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    • avatar

      RedRoverRedRover October 31, 2016, 2:48 pm

      It’s even scarier if it’s a real person coming in!!!

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      • avatar

        TheHizzy October 31, 2016, 3:42 pm

        I know. Hopefully it was a ghost and it thankfully didn’t hitch a ride to NY with Wendy.

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  • avatar

    ktfran October 31, 2016, 1:07 pm

    I am 100% convinced my parents house is haunted. Only the upstairs though. And I’m the only one in my family that thinks so. When I was young, I swear I heard someone call out my name in the middle of the night, and I swear it came from the our little attic door, the one that’s located in my childhood bedroom. The middle sis and I were the only two that slept upstairs in our 1892 (or something like that) home. I’m in my mid thirties and I still don’t like to go upstairs alone, especially at night.

    Granted, I’ve suffered from night terrors my entire life, and still do, so I’ve always been frightened of the dark. It was probably a night terror, but I remember waking up and it feeling so real.

    There is something about that voice that I still think about and it still scares me.

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    • avatar

      ktfran October 31, 2016, 1:10 pm

      Oh, and to another jen’s point about sleeping on the couch. Ever since I left for college, I will only sleep on my parent’s couch when I come home to visit. I will not sleep upstairs.

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  • Moneypenny

    Moneypenny October 31, 2016, 3:57 pm

    Ok, I’ll share a weird thing that happened to me, 4 years ago on a work trip to Chicago. I was checking into the hotel (The Congress Plaza), and it was early evening- the place was pretty empty, and it was cold outside so I had on a coat. I go over to the elevator and hit the up button, and wait, all by myself. THEN. I feel something brush my side/hip area, as if I was being bumped into or someone touched me. This happened underneath my coat. And there was nobody around me. I literally abruptly looked down at my side, like “what was that?” and there was nothing that could have caused it, and it wasn’t a muscle spasm (I know what those are like). I could not explain it at all.
    A couple of nights later, I went on a “Haunted Chicago” tour that I’d signed up for ahead of time. And where was one of our stops? Why, it was my hotel! And apparently it has had some strange, creepy stuff happen, and some people have died/committed suicide there. Considering it’s over 100 years old, I can only imagine! Definitely a creepy experience for me!

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  • avatar

    Ange October 31, 2016, 7:14 pm

    My dad was a real estate agent back in the day and he’s also hugely practical and no nonsense. He had a rental that he could never keep tenants in because they claimed the place was haunted. He laughed it off until one day he was checking it after it was vacated and as he went back to his car to leave he saw the heavy old curtains twitch open exactly like someone was looking out at him. He now says it was the ghost making sure he was really going. He never really did manage to get long term tenants in there.

    Another funny thing is many years later I was living with my aunt for a bit while going to uni. We had this little cottage that was quite old. I used to always wake up at night feeling like I was being pushed out of bed. It happened really frequently and it was a really specific feeling, like hands on my shoulders and back behind me. I never mentioned it to my aunt and we moved out separately. Years afterwards we were talking about that house and my aunt asked me if I ever felt strange in the house and, you guessed it, told me she used to wake up feeling like someone was pushing her out of bed.

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  • TheLadyE

    TheLadyE October 31, 2016, 11:07 pm

    Wendy…those stories are absolutely terrifying. What did you do when you woke up to see the furniture had been rearranged? I can’t even imagine. I’m such a light sleeper I would think I’d wake up if the furniture was moving, but…wow.

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  • Cleopatra_30

    Cleopatra_30 October 31, 2017, 12:07 pm

    My grandpa died almost 15 years ago. After his death my grandma cleaned out the basement of her house, which had a room for his woodworking and carpentry. I always hated going in the basement as I had a weird feeling about; bounding up and down the stairs each time to avoid long trips.

    This summer my parents went to visit my grandma, as they usually do several times during the summer. My dad called me a few days later and told me about an experience he had in the basement, in my grandpas old woodworking station. He was downstairs with our family cat, he was letting him wander around, while keeping an eye on him. Suddenly he sees my cat go to the corner of the room and start ducking his head as if he is being petted. My dad watched this as it was happening not really sure what to make of it. I believe he walked over after to check it out in case there was something physical there, but he couldn’t find anything. He thinks it was our grandpa petting the cat. There are lots of stories of pets being able to sense and see apparitions that humans cannot sense or see. Never told grandma as I am sure she would not be impressed with the knowledge haha

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