I've said that the first thing one needs to do when dealing with alien (or whatever they are) abductions is to start writing everything down. The second thing that needs to be dealt with is the overwhelming fear…
One aspect of being an abductee that is nearly impossible to explain fully to a 'civilian' is the fear, which is beyond the fear of facing a firearm held by a hostile person in the middle of a violent earthquake while knowing a bomb will drop any second. Unless they've felt that level of fear, let alone multiple times, most Westerners have no context with which to grasp what reality shattering fear actually is…
In fantasy novels with traditional, scary dragons, many describe a fear so profound upon facing a living, breathing dragon that it causes a paralysis of the mind and body, called “Dragonfear.” Facing aliens means dealing with something very similar (though paralysis is most often imposed from the aliens, not our own fear) and so my ex husband came up with this term to describe abductee fear.
From the outsiders' perspective, aliens don't seem all that scary. Compare the way a Grey looks to most of our movie monsters and it seems downright silly to be scared of a short, skinny, bald dude with large eyes! But that's only because if you've never faced a powerfully telepathic being with incredibly sophisticated weaponry that can bend time and space– you can't imagine how utterly petrifying it is until you've actually done it. Therefore, I attribute the lack of sympathy for this fear to a lack of imagination for most people.
Regardless, that fear is incredibly destructive and crippling, even long after the abduction is over. It causes weird, specific phobias, anxieties often related to being watched and overly vulnerable, and even Complex Developmental Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I was diagnosed with this officially myself. “Developmental” means the PTSD was acquired during childhood and/or adolescence (which means the brain is more firmly hard-wired and therefore its extra hard to treat.) “Complex” means from repeated, personal assaults– for example, prisoners of war get Complex PTSD, or women trapped in extreme domestic violence. The worst of the worst is CDPTSD, and THAT is what alien abductees often get. Sadly, for most, it goes untreated because most of us know better than to admit what is causing our fears to medical and psychological professionals!
When I first faced Dragonfear in a conscious manner at 16 because I at last SAW what had made me so scared at night my entire life, I was suicidal. I decided that I would rather take my life than be taken by Them again.
I discussed my own battle dealing with Dragonfear here: spirals-end.livejournal.com/40686.html
What complicates matters is that the fear comes from 3 different sources:
1. The animal, physical fear of immediate harm.
You get the adrenaline rush whenever something happens that you know means “They” are either coming or there. This makes sense because you know you're about to be either knocked out and abducted or rushed at and overwhelmed. You know you have almost NO defense against it. It will happen and you're nearly helpless (I say 'almost' and 'nearly' because there are a few options you can use. More as posts continue.) Such a fear is expected. Its like being a prisoner of war– you're going to get messed with, and you just have to brace for impact, because you can't fight, flee, or freeze. Its coming. THIS IS TERROR.
2. The sophisticated, intellectual comprehension of your deeper, more personal, vulnerabilities.
By this, I mean the realization of how your very MIND can be manipulated and overcome. The 'multiplying echo' effect of mutual mind reading when facing a powerful telepathic being described in the post indicated above is just one aspect of it. Its difficult to describe how hard it is to be mentally naked and utterly stripped of your innermost privacy. Beyond that is realizing that the same being who can see right through your soul can also make you do things against your will and even strip your memories so that you can't build an adequate understanding and defense. Once you know how helpless you are in the face of this, there is a stark fear for the most precious part of what makes you– YOU. An incredible existential fear for the loss of agency one will undergo, over and over. THIS IS HORROR.
'Dragonfear' is when extreme forms of both fears come together for a perfect storm of AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!
The last one is the hardest to describe, but well worth mentioning because its fascinating…
3. Artificially created 'Fear Zones' designed to prevent humans from entering an area, or to herd them towards another.
Generally speaking, the aliens try to calm us down from the first 2 types of fear, by projecting a type of 'holy calm' effect. After all, we're hard to control if we're trying to run away or attack them! The only exception I've run into or heard about is this third type.
John Keel in Mothman Prophesies found evidence of “fear zones” like a projected area where a human brain would automatically react with extreme fear. He could step into it and think he was going to die, take one step out of it, and be fine again. He experimented with it. In that case, it was a 'zone of fear' the Others put around an area they were working in to prevent humans from coming in (at the height of the Mothman case, people were running all over the countryside at night trying to see the Mothman.) Interestingly, later researchers ran into a similar effect that could be created using a type of infra-sound (or subaudible frequencies in sound waves.)
I've heard of several cases of abductees who ran away from aliens only to run into a 'fear zone'- then finding themselves running back in the direction of the aliens! I've had a couple of episodes of this nature myself. It seems rarely used, but as its associated with the Others, I think it deserves some attention.
Okay, so you're scared– NOW WHAT?!?
Chronic fear is bad for us. We all know how chronic anxiety wreaks havoc on our physical and emotional well being- just try to imagine surviving on a much higher level of fear and its obvious the damage is inexcusable.
Over time (especially since most of us are taken regularly from infancy) our brains are re-wired to detect threat far too easily and we just get scared more, more often, and too quickly. Then we're also much more difficult to calm afterwards. Our bodies deal with constant chemical cascades that damage immune systems and basic functioning. Our personalities can become difficult to deal with for others. Our ability to negotiate the normal ups and downs of life are compromised. We may be more likely to succumb to addiction or suicide.
Sweet deal to get that contact with intelligent life from other places, eh? Sign me up!
Seriously, many of my Coping Methods posts will be about various ways to deal with the overwhelming fear and subsequent general disability that arises from this set of circumstances. For now, I want to address the most overt things.
~ Realize that your fears are both natural and animal, but also sane, reasonable, and inevitable!
You cannot help your fear. Your reactions are the rational and biological reactions to very real threats that you've had to face since you were very young and even more helpless than you feel now as an adult. No one will automatically be able to shut that fear off, no matter how big and tough and intelligent they are. Your fear is real and powerful, and you'll be dancing with it probably forever.
You are not alone in your fear. Anyone in your shoes will feel the way you do and– trust me!– DOES feel the way you do. Small children sometimes cope better than buff, trained military men with intimate knowledge of firearms and combat tactics, probably because they don't understand what only an adult can regarding what alien contact means, given what's been explained above.
So don't bitch yourself out for daring to be scared to death. Don't pile self-censure and shame on top of the heaps of pain the fear-reaction is already guaranteed to give you in spades! Accept that your reaction of fear is expected and normal. Start there.
~ Take steps to confront and control as many aspects of abduction experiences as you can.
I'll be specifying more in future posts, but I've already outlined one: write down every memory or suspicious dream as soon as possible. You are dealing with an intelligent threat, and so communication and concession is possible. Also, there are techniques for getting around amnesia and building up emotional resistance that I'll be sharing. Too, most of the abduction experience takes place after you've been calmed down and the fear has already been subdued via artificial means.
No, we can't turn invisible, or move in sped-up time, or phase through solid objects– but neither are we without resources. Knowledge is power in this case, and the more you know (and can learn!) the better you can shift up the power dynamic in your favor. You'll likely never be 'in charge' – but you don't have to be waiting helplessly by for the next abduction 'attack' either.
~ Address the stress your brain is under and take steps to remedy your anxieties and panic attacks.
You probably don't want to admit your alien abductions to a therapist (although there are lists of abduction-accepting ones if you can find one near-by and afford it) but you CAN admit you have anxiety and panic disorders. If that means therapy and medication, so be it! Ask for results-oriented therapy instead of cathartic (sharing memories and emotions) therapy, and if you feel you need to hedge and not address abductions, then don't. I never have! Instead, I've addressed “medical and dental traumas” without going into too much detail (although I DO have a couple of bad incidents that way I CAN discuss) and that seems to work just fine.
I also think using medication is entirely justified. Your traumas came from outside of you, so why can't treatment come the same way? Anti-anxiety meds seem more useful than anti-depressants (though doctors will push for the anti-depressants, they also often cause a flattening of ALL emotions as well as deeper sleep, which may make anxiety higher because you can't respond in an emergency to fight back). If you fall into an actual depression, then by all means get medicated help– again, I did! But for general fear based upon REAL and ONGOING events and encounters, I don't find it particularly useful. (Unless, as stated before, you get overwhelmed and crash into clinical depression.)
Xanax and Ativan are the go-to anti-anxiety medications, and they work after 25 to 45 minutes and last a few hours. Take only when needed, don't overuse (or they lose effectiveness.) Its better to address extreme anxiety or fear (regardless of the source) rather than allow your brain to keep compounding more negative memories and reactions. Every panic attack makes another easier and worse. My biggest bitch with the pills is that they take a long time to work, and panic attacks are sudden and powerful.
If you live in a “Green State” or nation that allows marijuana legally, though, I've found the BEST medication is sublingual (absorbs through tissue) cannabis tinctures made to spray under the tongue! They work in 5 to 10 minutes and knock a panic attack out in its tracks. If you live where cannabis is only available medically, PTSD is covered and its worth it to get a prescription. Get one that's based on an INDICA (think “in da couch”) strain, and some come with additional herbals like Kava kava or Valerian root, which is also helpful. The mouth sprays come in tiny canisters the size of lip balm, and are easily popped into a pocket or purse, very discreet, no smoking required to get the effect needed. By far, I've found these to be absolute miracle lifesavers when out in public! Highly recommended! And yes, I will give myself a spray when I think 'They' are coming so I can keep my cool as much as possible.
A little alcohol is okay to 'take the edge off,' but you have to be careful, and its not easy to take enough alcohol in a flask to shunt a panic attack away while out in public, although I know many people resort to this. Likewise, be careful of any other kind of 'downer', because you don't want to incapacitate yourself. Also stay well away from any stimulants, as they will compound and exacerbate any fear issues. Even be careful with caffeine! Drugs can be medicine or they can be poison, so proceed with caution! However, keep in mind that the natural fear your brain produces is also a kind a poison that causes damage, so don't avoid getting help for your poor, beleaguered brain!
For extreme, Complex PTSD, they are starting drug trials in some places of therapy combined with MDMA, MDA, and MDHA — all forms of Ecstasy. Keep an eye out on research on this front, as I think there is real hope for many of us in this direction. I'll say no more, since these illegal drugs are a Class A controlled substance for now. Factoid: Ecstasy was actually developed after the Vietnam War specifically to help returning veterans with what we now call Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. 'Nuff said? Yeah…
~ Realize that though fear is natural, it does you absolutely NO GOOD with abductions. You can't fight or flee, only wait.
Which is to say, finding ways to inoculate yourself to fear and to adapt to functioning in the face of it is important. See what you can do to reduce it, but after that, learn to deal with it. Easier said than done, I know! –but there's really not much choice in the matter. You have to learn much of this by trial and error. Everyone's private coping methods will be different and suited to them.
Things that have helped me:
- Humor and whimsical silliness, including singing & dancing inappropriately while in waiting areas.
- Watching the scariest movies I could find, over and over (not slasher flicks, the 'other beings' kind.)
- Daring myself to do things that scare me (but are safe) until I move my comfort zone a little further out.
- Making sure I have flashlights & glow lights in several places in the house, including my night stand.
- Finding other abductees to talk to so I don't feel alone in dealing with these matters. Very crucial!
** Finally, a caveat to all above advice: Please don't sue me. I am NOT a medical professional and have NO business telling you what's best, yadda yadda. I'm just sharing my personal opinions based upon my own experience and am not legally any kind of expert. Use ideas with caution, etc. Blah blah blah, you know the drill. At Spiral’s End: What’s Left After the Paradigm Shatters is the personal paranormal blog of a woman that follows not only current odd events in her life, but recounts incidents from her past, including lifelong alien abductions, encounters with ghosts and other spiritual beings, and premonitions from either waking visions or dreams. She reacts and speculates about the deeper meaning behind these incidents and wonders– what is the ultimate reality or intelligence behind it all?