Can a Ghost Touch You? Can People be Touched by Ghosts?
Probably one of the biggest fears people have about ghosts is being touched by something unseen. Many wonder if a ghost can touch them. The answer is “yes” but let's take a deeper looking into how (or why) ghosts may touch people.
Stories of ghosts touching people go back hundreds, if not thousands, of years. Some of the ghost stories we have received affirm that ghosts are able to touch human beings. Know that most occurrences of touching typically are NOT negative; ghosts of people who are unseen may just want to make their presence known, or it is entirely possible that some touching could be incidental, accidental even, such as when two people (you and the ghost) are occupying one space.
Occasionally, ghosts may touch us in a way that can be considered negative, but most touches by specters are felt as 'tingles' or 'goose bumps' and not something negative. People have also experienced the presence of a spirit breathing or touching the back of their neck. Is this something to fear? No, it really isn't. Is it odd and can it be frightening? Sure.
Accounts of Ghosts Touching People
There are stories of ghosts whose touch may have gone a bit too far. Sometimes, an innocent push to gain a person's attention may be perceived as ill-intent. Other times, ghost behavior can be purely negative and vicious. I know ghost investigators who have been purposely scratched and pushed by ghosts out of anger. The following is an account of an ill-willed ghost purposely pushing a person, as told by Rodney Hummel:
“As we were walking down the flight of stairs to the downstairs door, we turned around to say goodnight to my aunt; and as we did, my mom and I saw a shadow behind her. Then, she seemed as though she was pushed forward, right down the stairs head first, where I caught her at the bottom.”
Although an attack by a negative, earthbound spirit is possible, it is not typical ghost behavior. Most ghosts want to be heard, so their desperate attempts at communication can lead to innocent touching of the living. Their touch can be misunderstood as being rude behavior.
In another example of ghosts touching people, Terri was investigating the haunted Queen Mary ship and experienced the ghost of a child touching her:
“I was standing at the far right side of the pool, and I first felt a tug on my blouse. I of course turned around fast to see who was next to me, but no one was there...the feeling of not being alone was over-powering, and I felt someone touch my left arm. I again turned around and no one was near me!
While I was talking...someone was playing with my purse strings. It felt so weird. I just stood there while this little person was playing with my purse and my blouse. I could feel someone or something touching my back. I told Tommy, 'It keeps touching me,' and the tour guide said calmly, 'Our little girl, Jackie, is playing with you. Say hello to Jackie.' I felt a little weird knowing that someone was touching me and playing with my blouse but at the same time it was outstanding! I was not afraid at all.”
Ghosts Make Their Presence Known
Occasionally, ghosts may choose to touch people or things to let people know they are there. It is not uncommon for hair to be lightly caressed to make a spirit's presence known. Ghosts sometimes want to express love to those around them through their touches, especially family members. Keenan shared an experience of this with Angels & Ghosts:
“Often, I will feel someone sit on the foot of my bed when I am the only one home. I have felt a warm tingling sensation and pressure as if someone is stroking my arm, my back, face or hair. I know that they are just the spirits of the ones I love, who have passed over.”
If we should ever be surprised by the touch from an unseen person (e.g. a ghost), we should attempt to remain calm and not make a rash judgment about the experience. Take a moment and consider the entire event. Could the ghost's touch have been something playful or loving? Even though the experience might have been frightening or seem strange, could the ghost have a reason behind the behavior such as wanting someone to know he or she was there? Have you taken the time to communicate with the person in spirit who may need help?
Always let a calm mind prevail. You could find out later that the 'ghost touch' might have been from a loved one who cares for you (Grandma Betty, is that you?)!