Grabbing partner in sleep

PTSDisaster

Confident
I'm usually a very calm sleeper, but the last week I've been waking up in the middle of the night sitting straight up and agressively grabbing my partners arm. I wake up after I grabbed him. Normally I can remember every dream very clearly but I also can't tell what I'm dreaming about anymore. I don't know if it has anything to do with my ptsd or not. I am a survivor of sexual assault which most of the times happened in bed. Anyone familiar with this?
 

Freida

MyPTSD Pro
oh ya -- I've been smacking hubby in my sleep for years 😁

I never remember the dreams that lead me there, but sometimes they are bad enough that after hitting him I'll I wake up standing in the middle of the room and have no idea why. I do know that if he (or anyone) touches me I'll punch them in the head, so he usually just calls my name until I wake up. One of the things that finally made me seek help was waking up in the middle of the kitchen armed with a knife and I had no idea why.

He also says sometimes I reach out to pat him, like I'm making sure he is there but I'm sound asleep.
It's definitely related to trauma, so it gets way worse when I'm triggered.
Thankfully therapy has helped a ton at getting it under control - much to his relief!
 

PTSDisaster

Confident
oh ya -- I've been smacking hubby in my sleep for years 😁

I never remember the dreams that lead me there, but sometimes they are bad enough that after hitting him I'll I wake up standing in the middle of the room and have no idea why. I do know that if he (or anyone) touches me I'll punch them in the head, so he usually just calls my name until I wake up. One of the things that finally made me seek help was waking up in the middle of the kitchen armed with a knife and I had no idea why.

He also says sometimes I reach out to pat him, like I'm making sure he is there but I'm sound asleep.
It's definitely related to trauma, so it gets way worse when I'm triggered.
Thankfully therapy has helped a ton at getting it under control - much to his relief!
Wow that must have been hard for the both of you! Thank you for your reply:) how do you know it's trauma related? I've never had a fighting response when my trauma happened and since I don't know what I'm dreaming about i'm not sure if it is trauma related
 

Freida

MyPTSD Pro
ow do you know it's trauma related?
Best guess?
I don't remember the dreams so it's hard to prove its trauma related - but it gets worse when it's an anniversary or when I've done some big therapy, or I'm under a lot of stress or blah blah

Just because you didn't have a fight response then doesn't mean you can't be dreaming about having one now, if that makes sense? You might keep track of what is going on during the day then see if you can connect it to what's happening at night to see if there is a pattern
 

PTSDisaster

Confident
Best guess?
I don't remember the dreams so it's hard to prove its trauma related - but it gets worse when it's an anniversary or when I've done some big therapy, or I'm under a lot of stress or blah blah

Just because you didn't have a fight response then doesn't mean you can't be dreaming about having one now, if that makes sense? You might keep track of what is going on during the day then see if you can connect it to what's happening at night to see if there is a pattern
Yes that makes sense thank you so much!! :))
 

Sanctuary

Confident
Hello
I believe it is totally related to your trauma.
I too wake up screaming in bed, then I try to go back to sleep and it happens again. ( but have no partner just a cat)
I've also woken up crawling across the floor trying to escape and screaming.
It's hardcore and very frightening.

Are you under a lot of stress at the moment?
I think it's our brain's way of making our bodies fight back.
Can you reduce any additional stress in your life at the moment?

Is there anything that makes you feel safer?
I have a cross and a bible by my bed. Or a picture of someone who has passed that you trusted and cared for you.

Is it possible for your partner to say "it's only me" when you do this?
To comfort you and let you know it's over and that was the past and this is now.
Even though your body remembers it like it's happening now and physically reacting to it.
I don't have the answer but I can tell you hand on heart it's a PTSD symptom as we have survived a similar trauma.
 

internal

Sponsor
this is something i struggle with as well. it gets bad enough that he will fall asleep with me (i can't sleep unless he's there, ha. he really puts up with a lot from me.) and then gently dislodge him self to go sleep on the couch or he will sleep in his car.

i feel bad but it at least some times is better then if i am not doing so good he knows i could hit him in the face by mistake. this one is the worst because of you feel like a real pece of crap you are hurting your spouse! i mostly do not do this though i just bad at him and pet him and things.

some times i have whole conversetions with him. i grab at him a lot. and burrow. and climb all over him. human jungle gym. 🐤 due to my medicine i some times get adult night terrors agitated and yelling and he couldn't wake me up.

some times i sleep walk/cook/drive too. sleeping is a night mare for him! because when i am half sleeping my brain doesn't work right so i do repetive behaviers again and again (check he is breathing, pet at him, talk to him, age regress, babble on and on).

the sa part of it is real hard to when i get triggered from dreaming i will grope him in my sleep which is bad. he says that usuelly when it happens when he moves my hand i don't keep doing it so that's good. and this all gets worse the worse i am mentelly that he knows when he has to sleep out side the bed.

a lot of compounding sleep issues mixed together. which some of it is trauma. night mares and because of hypnagogic sleep state (half asleep, half awake, ready and alert, very light sleeper.) and i think some of it is my pills as well, they cause some pretty serious sleep side effects with me.
 
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