Last Updated on May 31, 2021
When it comes to hauntings, many cultures seem to differ on their beliefs about ghosts. Some believe ghosts look like people, others think they look monstrous. Some believe ghosts are demons, others just wayward spirits. With all the differences in beliefs, seeing stories that have similar elements in every culture is all the more striking.
The concept of ghosts following people home, for example, is incredibly widespread. Every culture seems to have a folktale that involves a person disrespecting a burial ground or sacred item, only to end up being followed by an angry spirit. Even modern stories and paranormal reports involve this theme.
The overall consensus seems to be that ghosts can follow living beings around, as can spirits. But, like with all things paranormal, there’s more to this than meets the eye. Here’s what researchers about the paranormal have to say.
Not All Spirits Can Follow People…
Paranormal researchers believe that there are two main types of ghostly hauntings that occur. They are residual hauntings and intelligent hauntings. Because these hauntings have totally different natures, what each can do will differ. This even includes ghosts’ ability to follow you home!
Residual hauntings are like tapes played in a loop. These are hauntings that are created during extreme moments of trauma and duress. It’s said that the energy from those moments can be so intense, it can literally imprint itself on surroundings.
The ghosts from these hauntings relive those moments, completely unaware of their surroundings or people nearby. They aren’t really conscious or aware of life nearby, so they can’t follow a person home or interact with them.
Intelligent hauntings have an actual being’s energy behind them. Intelligent hauntings occur when a ghost or entity is aware that they are there, that others are nearby, and that time is constantly passing. In other words, these are hauntings that can interact with you and are conscious.
Most intelligent spirits have a personality and a reason for doing what they do. If angered, an intelligent haunting’s entities can choose to follow you home. Similarly, if they like you or have unfinished business with you, they can also choose to stick around.
Is Having A Spirit Follow A Person Common?
Not really, no. In fact, it’s rare to hear about ghosts following people around unless they had ties to them prior to their deaths. It makes sense when you think about it. If you were a ghost, would you really spend your eternity following around a random stranger? Probably not.
Most ghosts seem to fall into the residual energy category, or choose to spend their hauntings around places that meant something to them in life. It’s where they have the most energy and where their memories of life are, so they generally don’t seem to be interested in leaving.
Why Would A Ghost Or Spirit Follow Someone Home?
Generally speaking, it’s difficult to understand why ghosts and spirits act the way they do. That’s part of their mystery. That being said, if an entity is displaying signs of intelligence, there’s often a reason they followed someone home. Just like people, the reasons can vary from the benign to the malevolent.
Folklore suggests that these reasons are the most common:
- Unfinished Business. If a person dies while they were trying to help someone out, pay back a debt, or otherwise wrap things up, they may choose to follow a person home in hopes of making things right.
- Ghosts and spirits are a lot like people. If they feel disrespected or wronged, they may go after a person in order to get revenge.
- Protection or Guidance. Some spirits will follow people home or just visit loved ones because they want to protect them, communicate with them, or guide them.
- Some ghosts and spirits don’t really have much of a reason to pursue people other than just causing harm to others. These are malevolent entities, and may even be demonic in nature.
- Can’t Cross Over. Whether it’s because they’re lost or unaware that they’re dead, some ghosts and spirits can’t fully cross over. They may need help to make it happen.
- Ghosts can get lonely too! If they feel they can find friendship from a person, they may continue to follow them.
Signs You Were Followed By A Spirit Or A Ghost
The paranormal realm has a way of making itself known, especially when you’re dealing with ghosts or spiritual entities. Most people who are followed by paranormal beings tend to have a feeling that something’s up. These signs below are some of the most common indicators that you may have a ghostly follower with you.
You Gave A Ghost Reason To Follow You
The vast majority of people who have spirits follow them home did something that gave the spirit a reason to want to haunt them. Did you recently go to a graveyard and mess up the area? Did you go to a sanatorium and say something disrespectful? Did you use a ouija board without closing the session?
Doing something stupid or disrespectful is often what kicks off a haunting that travels with you. If you started to have strange happenings after a major spiritual gaffe, you probably ticked off a spirit.
Similar Experiences, Different Locations
Ghosts can differ greatly from one another, especially when it comes to the way they make themselves known. Some are full-bodied apparitions. Others will haunt dreams. More might end up causing chills or tossing things of shelves.
Regularly experiencing the same kinds of strange events over and over again, regardless of where you are, is a good indicator that you’re haunted by a spirit. For example, having recurring dreams of a ghost or regularly seeing a family member’s doppelganger in different homes could be a sign of a personal haunting.
Psychics Claim You’re Haunted
Do psychics and people sensitive to the paranormal mention that they see something “around you” at all times? Though there’s always a chance this could be a coincidence, hearing multiple accounts from others describing entities around you is a serious sign something is up.
If people regularly describe similar entities around you, then it’s almost certain the spirits are following you rather than sticking to a single location.
Animals Act Out Around You
Animals can see and hear things humans can’t. Most paranormal researchers believe that animals are capable of seeing paranormal entities and ghosts. They just seem to have a sixth sense for it.
Every animal tends to react strangely when they see paranormal entities. They bark, growl, watch it with their eyes, or otherwise freak out. So, if animals regularly act strange around you or follow unseen things near you, you might be haunted.
Your Luck Is Terrible
If a ghost decided to follow you out of vengeance, it will often work to make your life miserable. Most cultures believe that spirits have a way of changing luck for the better or worse. People who are haunted by beings that want to harm them, therefore, tend to see their luck take a turn for the worse.
A little bad luck once in a while might be explainable, but if you notice a steady barrage of problems, you may have a haunting. The worse your luck is, the more likely it is that something’s wrong.
There’s A Weird Vibe Around You
Being in a haunted location definitely gives out an eerie feeling, often compared to being watched. Some would even call it an oppressive or heavy atmosphere. If a location is haunted, that energy will dissipate the moment you leave the area.
When a ghost haunts a person, that very same spooky vibe tends to stick around the person. If people remark on your energy being a little unsettling, a haunting could be to blame.
What To Do If You’re Followed
Unless it’s the spirit of a loved one, no one wants to have a ghost or spirit follow them. It’s terrifying! The good news is that people who are haunted by spirits can get the hauntings to end if they have the right help and a little luck on their side.
If you are lucky enough to have a friendly (or just confused) spirit following you, getting it to leave you alone will be easy. A benevolent ghost will typically leave you alone after you ask it to politely. Most ghosts that are lonely, friendly, or just lost on the way to the afterlife will quit if you are respectful when asking them to stop.
If your ghost is looking to hurt you, then you may need to call in a spiritual practitioner to get them to leave you alone. You can’t really get rid of a ghost that’s haunting you on your own, since it’s literally attached itself to you. You need someone else to clear the energy and help you sever the spirit’s connection to you.