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To stay at my dm house to try and hear this

(64 Posts)
Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:05:48

My elderly dm lives on her own and sleeps downstairs on the sofa.
She says it doesn't happen every night but she has been experiencing a sound of 3 knocks like somebody is at the door it's at random times but always during the night.
It's always 3 knocks as well and she is too scared to actually get up and look out of the window.
What could this be I am so tempted to stay there on the odd night to see if I hear anything.

Singlenotsingle Sun 07-Apr-19 22:06:56

Is it the wind rattling the door? It's been quite windy recently.

CastleCrasher Sun 07-Apr-19 22:08:08

If it's bothering her and you can easily stay for a night or two to ease her mind, I would. Could it be her heating system? In my last house the pipes sounded exactly like a door knocking!

toomuchtooold Sun 07-Apr-19 22:08:33

I know everyone on here says "might it be dementia" about everything but one of the first symptoms my gran had of vascular dementia was thinking there were people coming up to her window at night. By all means stay and try to listen out for it but say to your mum to go to the GP's for a checkup as well.

S1naidSucks Sun 07-Apr-19 22:08:36

Sounds like some fucker is getting a kick out of upsetting the poor soul. Is there a back food that you can enter so no one knows you’re staying? Can you buy a cheap security camera and hide it in a plat or something? Hopefully catch the fucker at it.

EmeraldShamrock Sun 07-Apr-19 22:10:48

Possibly the knocker, she is probably on full alert.
Is she frightened alone, Is it why she sleeps downstairs.
When DP is away I hear every creek I wouldn't normal hear, my senses are peaked.

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:10:59

My ds was on about installing a camera in case it's somebody playing abt

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:12:08

She said she doesn't like sleeping upstairs because you can't see what's happening downstairs.

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:13:49

My cousin has been staying with her for a few nights but slept upstairs my dm said she heard it again last night but my cousin didn't

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:15:07

Her stress levels are bad at the moment

BlueMerchant Sun 07-Apr-19 22:18:45

My dear Grandfather complained that he had people knocking on his door through the night. Next door neighbors had CCTV and kindly checked it. There was never anyone around through the night.
I sometimes wonder if it was down to my Grandfather feeling vulnerable as he hated being alone at night.
I would maybe stay over a couple of nights and see if he complains of these knocks with you there or indeed see if you hear it.
Either way, I'd make a G.P app for a check up.

BlueMerchant Sun 07-Apr-19 22:19:15

she. Sorry.

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:21:04

I think she has been thinking about her own mortality for a while my df died 18 months ago then her ds died.

Butterymuffin Sun 07-Apr-19 22:21:51

It'll be something else creaking or rattling but that doesn't stop her being genuinely frightened. I would deal with it on a number of fronts - I would stay over yourself to find out what you hear, I'd also look at getting a camera installed, and I would get her to have a check up at the doctors for stress and anything else.

azulmariposa Sun 07-Apr-19 22:22:14

There's something called exploding head syndrome (not as bad as it sounds!!!) where you hear noises or see flashes as you are dropping off to sleep or waking up.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Explodingheadd_syndrome

It can happen in times of stress, so might be that?
I get it quite often, never know if I've actually heard anything and then it takes ages to get back to sleep.

danadas Sun 07-Apr-19 22:26:36

I get this and it is always three knocks - apparently it is a 'thing'. There are some differing views depending on what you believe in - personally I don't believe in any of that and think that it is something to do with being between sleep states or something. It is so realistic though that I have gone to answer the door before now. www.nosleeplessnights.com/exploding-head-syndrome-harmless-but-disturbing/

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:27:02

That's interesting azul

LL83 Sun 07-Apr-19 22:27:02

Your poor mum. I would stay to rule out possibility someone is knocking.

After that I would try to help her feel secure and calm at home again. Panic alarm? Additional locks? Meditating? A dog or even cat? (When I had a cat I always assumed any noise was the cat) Sheltered accommodation? Or move in with someone if practical.

danadas Sun 07-Apr-19 22:27:19

Sorry cross posted with azul

Notcontent Sun 07-Apr-19 22:27:33

Your poor mum. Do you think she would feel safer if she moved to a small flat? Or some supported living setup?

Lordamighty Sun 07-Apr-19 22:28:48

My DM said exactly the same thing after my DF died. She was so convinced someone was trying to get in that DH stayed there for a few nights to reassure her. It was the central heating firing up but it was also the start of her dementia.

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:29:03

I don't want to turn it into a paranormal thread but she has also mentioned somebody held her hand whilst she was sleeping

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:30:41

She seems okay otherwise with no sign of dementia and still very sharp minded etc

LarryGreysonsDoor Sun 07-Apr-19 22:33:17

I get oral hallucinations when I am half asleep. I can be convinced that someone is knocking at the door.

Would it be a pain to stay over a couple of nights just to put her mind at rest?

Cherrysoup Sun 07-Apr-19 22:35:00

Something in the water tank did this a while back. The plumber replaced the ballcock, I think. If I ran the water afterwards, it stopped it. Pretty echoey and freaky the first few times til we spoke to the plumber and asked him what he thought.

Springisallaround Sun 07-Apr-19 22:35:36

I think this might be a parasomnia, or disturbed sleep, hypnogogic or hypnopompic hallucinations occur as we go off to sleep or wake up, so they feel completely real but are not. Auditory ones, especially the three knocks are really common, I've had it myself and gone to answer the door and there's no-one there. So annoying as I order a lot on Amazon so it's quite plausible there will be knocking if I have a nap in the day.

Perhaps try to reassure her by reading about this on the internet, the sensation of holding hand sounds similar. I think they are worse when you are tired, in the first 90 minutes of the night and when you are stressed.

Hope you manage to calm her about this, I don't think staying over will make you hear the knocking but it might reassure her psychologically.

WhoTFIsAlanBrazil Sun 07-Apr-19 22:37:34

This happened to the elderly mother of an acquaintance. It turned out to be the TV aerial which had been dislodged from the roof and the wind was making it knock against the house.

She was convinced that someone was trying to break in and she was terrified, poor thing sad

Worzilgummidge Sun 07-Apr-19 22:37:40

My ds thinks this is down to a form of anxiety and stress. She is on antidepressants already.

Dippypippy1980 Sun 07-Apr-19 22:38:39

Could she be dreaming it?

I had a period of incredibly high stress and I dreamt someone was whispering my name. It really sounded real, and each time I woke up terrified. It stopped when the stress became manageable.

Some medications also cause very lucid dreams.

Carpetburns Sun 07-Apr-19 22:39:30

The central heating pipes is a plausible cause. Ours "knock" in the same way (more than three times though)

GregoryPeckingDuck Sun 07-Apr-19 22:40:26

Has she heard about the superstition? She may just be imagining it as a result.

Dippypippy1980 Sun 07-Apr-19 22:40:27

Antidepressants are strongly linked with very lucid dreams.

I have taken antidperessants and the dreams were crazy, like watching a movie. I had no idea my mind could create such intricate stories - bizarre

Absolutepowercorrupts Sun 07-Apr-19 22:41:46

I'd stay over with her if you can, just for a night or two to reassure her if she is under stress.
I've suffered with exploding head syndrome and this is the first time I've ever seen anyone mention it. It's very frightening and disconcerting. I would jerk awake in a panic and not know what had awakened me.

EmeraldShamrock Sun 07-Apr-19 22:42:10

She said she doesn't like sleeping upstairs because you can't see what's happening downstairs
It sounds like it is her mind playing tricks on her.
On old neighbour use to sleep downstairs for the same reason, she eventually changed her body clock to sleep in the day instead, she was to frightened to sleep at night. It is awful people scared in their own home. Is she in HE housing, are there any suitable places nearby with similar age neighbours and security, I know they have them in NI, not sure where you are.
A camera is a good idea for peace of mind.

EmeraldShamrock Sun 07-Apr-19 22:43:35

Can she rent a room to a kind person, if she has space.

ScarletBitch Sun 07-Apr-19 22:44:57

My side gate rattles as does my letter box as soon as there is a little bit of wind, but too put your DM mind at rest I would stay for a few nights to eliminate the problem. It could even be a neighbour knocking or something just as innocent.

Cranky17 Sun 07-Apr-19 22:45:44

Hi op,

I suffer from exploding head symdrome, I’ve heard banging which sounds like people banging or knocking on the door a lot, and because you’re not quite awake or asleep you can’t tell if it’s real.

It is much worse when I’m over tired, or when I’m stressed.
I remember once hearing what I though was someone knocking on my door, and sitting bolt up right being absolutely terrified but dp who was awake and in the kitchen had heard nothing. But it’s sounds so real and is such a shock.
Knowing what it is and putting a name to it makes it easier to deal with and it happens less.

Bookworm4 Sun 07-Apr-19 22:45:50

My DP elderly GF says he hears his door being knocked, locks and relocks it, DP has been there when he claims its happened and there's definitely nobody there. It is bewildering as he will argue DP is wrong. I have no explanation.

GnomeDePlume Sun 07-Apr-19 22:46:49

I was regularly hearing knocking coming from just outside the house. Took me a while to realise that it was next-door neighbour's rabbits.

donajimena Sun 07-Apr-19 22:49:27

I get this when I'm dropping off too. Sometimes its the door being knocked but I've even heard my doorbell ring. There is never anyone there. Its creepy until you know what it is.

SnowyAlpsandPeaks Sun 07-Apr-19 22:52:48

When my stress levels go up I get auditory hallucinations when I’m falling asleep, usually knocks which scare the hell out of me, but lately music has come on my amazon echo then I wake and it’s all silent. Also get sleep paralysis. Now they are horror movie stuff that scare the shirt out of me, and leave me crying, petrified and unable to sleep.

minniemoll Sun 07-Apr-19 22:56:57

I hear knocking when I'm asleep, usually in the early morning, but there's never anyone at the door. I used to hear the doorbell ring too, but that stopped when I moved and got a bell with a different ring, my subconscious mustn't be able to replicate that noise. It's very strange but I'm mostly used to it. I do jump when it wakes me up though.

Holidayshopping Sun 07-Apr-19 22:58:38

I get oral hallucinations when I am half asleep.

What are they? Oral as in mouth/speaking?

quizqueen Sun 07-Apr-19 23:03:19

It could be something to do with the piping or just her imagination. If you do stay, don't park on her drive as, if it is a prankster, it will put them off and then you won't believe her. I sometimes hear strange noises but I always investigate (armed!!!), but then I'm not an easy to scare person. Sometimes I look at the cat sleeping next to me and, if she doesn't react to what I hear, I think it must be nothing. Would she want a pet?

JaneEyre07 Sun 07-Apr-19 23:05:02

I've woken up several times and thought I'd heard the doorbell ringing. Have gone down and no one is ever there, plus our dogs go mental when it does actually ring.......

It's so so real though.

Your poor DM, I'd be really worried that she's sleeping on the sofa.

Hecateh Sun 07-Apr-19 23:07:32

I get aural hallucinations.
Sometimes it sounds like my phone, sometimes my doorbell and sometimes knocking.
I had many times I reacted and got up looking for the source before I did some research, realised this was a 'thing' and was more able to discount it. It still brings me to full consciousness though and, although I know it is not real ... I do hear the sound ... as if it is real. It's really annoying but in some ways I am glad it has started when I am still able to understand and rationalise it rather than later, as an older person, I was convinced it was real.

GirlcalledJack Sun 07-Apr-19 23:09:43

When drifting off to sleep alone in my room I absolutely heard someone whisper my name in my ear, I even felt my hair move and the breath on my ear.
It was a hallucination but that didn’t stop it being terrifying and completely believable for a few minutes. Tbh it only happened once and seems strange that it is a regular thing with your DM.

I think staying over and a camera are really good ideas.

QueenoftheIceAge Sun 07-Apr-19 23:12:04

We have birds making nests in the eaves at the moment, and they seem to do a ‘three-knock’ sound, which often wakes me up at dawn as I think it’s the door.

rightreckoner Sun 07-Apr-19 23:12:29

My tenants’ neighbours complained that my tenants were knocking in the night like this. Tenants were totally bewildered. Turns out it was something to do with the central heating. So yy to staying over to try to get to the bottom of it.

WaxOnFeckOff Sun 07-Apr-19 23:33:16

I get the doorbell ringing when I am over-tired or stressed. I woke with it when staying with my sister the night before my wedding - she doesn't have a doorbell...

I also think it's down to stress OP as is the hand holding thing. The mind is a very powerful thing. I hope you can explain things to your DM and she gets some peace.

BlatheringOn Sun 07-Apr-19 23:57:05

I went through a phase of hearing doors slamming when dozing and more than once an explosion outside - but it wasn't real. What has been real is birds knocking and scratching on the roof tiles, even very late at night.

It doesn't sound like your DM, but:
One of my neighbours opened the door to the police one evening - his elderly neighbour had called them because she said he was constantly banging on the walls. She could hear it but the police couldn't. It was tinnitus.

ChipSandwich Mon 08-Apr-19 00:07:00

Sometimes its the door being knocked but I've even heard my doorbell ring

I've heard the telephone ring, really loud, which I imagine has woken me up but it isn't ringing when I wake. I can tell from the call record that it hasn't rung at all. I've just put it down to dreaming, although it does sound pretty real.

Ilovemypantry Mon 08-Apr-19 00:09:44

I’ve had this too and now feel reassured that it’s not just me! Sometimes I’ve been woken up from a deep sleep by hearing knocking on the front door or the door bell, but of course there’s never anyone there and it’s obviously a hallucination of some kind.
Your mum is obviously feeling lonely and vulnerable now she is on her own and her stress levels are probably high atm. Perhaps stay with her for a couple of nights to reassure her. Sleeping on the sofa will not be good for her long term.

Justaboy Mon 08-Apr-19 00:16:20

I bet as much as you like this is the house doing it! How?, most doors and windows have steel lintels to hold up the brickwork they heat up during the day and cool at night in doing so they move ever so slighty.

In doing so they can and do least ours does make a knock sometimes more of a "crack" as they cool. Heard this in more than the one property.

Water pipes can do it but they are much quieter.

ashvivienne Mon 08-Apr-19 00:16:42

My DM has been on her own a while now and was like this at first and very anxious at night. We bought her a ring doorbell and an amazon echo show to keep by her bed showed her how to use it etc on her mobile and on the show. She’s much more comfortable being upstairs now and we’ve added a camera round the back due to a few attempts at back doors on the street in the last few months as well.

whatwouldyoubelikeat28 Mon 08-Apr-19 00:28:56

It's interesting when people say dementia or Alzheimers, one of the problems if a disorder like this is present is that the phenomenon can be present but the person is disbelieved because of their mental health.
My grandmother had this and she told us stories of being shot at in the back yard, which we dismissed thinking it was throwbacks to the war or whatever. Later on after she moved, we found air gun pellets in the shed in the back yard and realized that one of the neighbors had been shooting at stray cats.
Technically she wasn't being shot at, but also, she really was.
I think it is always best to investigate kindly and with an open mind, she is likely hearing something that is waking her.
Def go stay over for a night or two here and there.

WarCat Mon 08-Apr-19 00:30:28

This was the first symptom of my grandpa's worsening health. It was very distressing for him. I'm sorry but I would assume similar for your mother.

SofiaAmes Mon 08-Apr-19 00:46:01

Which anti-depressant is she taking? Some of them can cause delusions in the elderly. I think sertraline is one of those. It's complicated because it doesn't happen with everyone and some are greatly helped by the antidepressants.

EmeraldShamrock Mon 08-Apr-19 16:44:56

I went through a phase of hearing doors slamming when dozing
I get this too, usually when I am alone with the DC.
I hope your DM finds the source, It is horrible feeling to be frightened.

Dana28 Mon 08-Apr-19 18:57:51

I hear things when I am overtired

EggysMom Mon 08-Apr-19 19:02:52

I occasionally hear phantom doorbells, but never knocking ... I also hear phantom mobile phone text alerts (when mine is the only phone in the house).

padfootprongs Mon 08-Apr-19 19:12:58

I was going to say exploding head syndrome but see it's already been mentioned. I get this and growing up I often complained to my mum about someone throwing stones at my bedroom window...it always seemed to happen as I was about to fall asleep! She obviously had no idea what I was talking about and just said it was the house making sounds. It sounds so real though i never believed that.
I've only realized recently that i have exploding head syndrome and that is what those noises were. Now it either sounds like gunshots or someone knocking at my door. It happens as I'm about to fall asleep, it's something to do with your brain shutting down for sleep I believe.. any way It could well be this that your dm is experiencing. It does sound very similar!

bridgetosomewhere Mon 08-Apr-19 19:26:29

I hear cars and feet crunching on our gravel driveway. It really freaks me out but it must be a dream as it always the same thing in the same place!
And only ever three footsteps. So unless a very heavy footed fox runs across our drive I'm not sure!

hazell42 Mon 08-Apr-19 19:29:15

Could she be having auditory hallucinations. I had an elderly friend who was very deaf during the day but who swore that her neighbours were playing hymns really loudly at night
She lived in a block of flats for the elderly and it is certain that someone else would have heard it too.
Turns out it was an auditory hallucination, common in people who wear hearing aids and people with early alzheimers.
Could either of these apply?

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