From Communion To Dreamland! Alien Accounts Of Whitley Strieber

Marcus Lowth
Published Date
February 18, 2019
Last Updated
November 22, 2021
Estimated Reading Time
11 min read
Posted in
Aliens, Abductions

All alien encounters are intriguing. And some of the most credible have come from people of the world’s populace who are just everyday folk, previously unknown to all but their friends and families. However, when someone a little more well-known – a celebrity for want of a better word – comes forward with such an account, the story travels much further.

Whitley Strieber blended into a picture of an alien

Whitley Strieber

And, at least to begin with, those outside of the UFO community appear to take these “celebrity accounts” a little more seriously. That is certainly the case of author, Whitley Strieber, who with several successful horror novels behind him and a bright future ahead, began experiencing incidents that would change his life forever during Christmas 1985.

Beginning in the family’s isolated log cabin in the picturesque woodlands of upstate New York, and then continuing at the family’s apartment in New York City, the encounters of Whitley Strieber would result in several books, many claims, and a divided opinion in UFO circles. [1] Indeed, many today are wary of the claims made by Strieber, and what his motivation might be.

Regardless, they are certainly intriguing, and most definitely worth our examination. And still of importance to the UFO and alien question. Incidentally, the beginnings of these incidents would result in the book, and ultimately the film Communion. The book is most certainly recommended reading (if only to gain Strieber’s perspective) and you can check out a trailer for the movie below.

Going Away For The Holidays, Christmas, 1985!

Before the Striebers even arrived at their log cabin in the quiet country regions of New York, a state-of-the-art security system had been put in place. For reasons he couldn’t explain at the time, Strieber had become increasingly concerned about such security measures, fearing “intruders”, both in his apartment and in their country retreat.

This is an interesting point, as many alien abductees, before they are aware of anything of such an extreme nature taking place, often have similar feelings. Such as checking and rechecking locks on doors and windows at all times of the day. Or, albeit on a smaller scale, investing in extra locks and security measures.

Indeed, this sudden fear and need to increase one’s security, as we will discover in Strieber’s case, is very likely the subconscious mind’s awareness that such “intruders” were real. And, if the accounts are to be believed, were not human.

For the Striebers, Christmas 1985 just outside of New York City began ideally. Snow arrived on Christmas Eve. And Christmas Day brought the usual joyful festivities, as well as more snow. Indeed, it was an ideal Christmas for a young family. The 26th December began much the same way, with a walk in the snowy woodlands and an evening of food and music.

Strieber writes of the incident at length in the opening pages of Communion. He states:

In the middle of the night on December 26 – I do not know the exact time – I abruptly found myself awake. And I knew why, I heard a peculiar ‘whooshing, swirling noise coming from the living room. This was no random creak. No settling of the house, but a sound as if a large number of people were moving rapidly around in the room! [2]

Strieber shot upright in bed, listening intently.

Anxiety, Mood Swings, Paranoia, And Partial Memories!

The following morning, Strieber remembered the “nightmare” he had the previous evening. Of something entering the room. A strange figure, smaller than a child with large, black eyes and an O-shaped mouth approaching his bed. As he would discover over the coming months, the nightmare he had suffered was far from merely a dream.

After returning home to their apartment in New York City, while casting the incident to one side, Strieber’s mood began to change noticeably. He was perpetually anxious, a state of mind that caused his mood to fluctuate greatly. Furthermore, he began noticing pains, and markings in various places around his body.

After this behavior continued for the several weeks, interspersed with partial memories of instances that he couldn’t quite remember, or even tell if they were real or not, Strieber would contact fellow author, Budd Hopkins, whose work had dealt with such strange incidents, all of which were apparent cases of alien abduction.

It is through Hopkins that Strieber met Dr. Donald Klein, who was an expert in hypnotic regression, a method used to unlock forgotten or hidden memories. An experienced psychiatrist, Klein would eventually take Strieber back to the night of 26th December 1985, several hours after the family had gone to bed just after 10 pm.

First, however, he would take him back to an evening several weeks earlier on 4th October 1985. To an incident where something strange took place and “all hell broke loose”. And what’s more, the incident was not only witnessed by Strieber, but members of his family and houseguests.

Even stranger, despite the sheer bizarreness of the evening, all of those involved had simply put the incident completely out of their minds. They didn’t “even discuss them”.

Still frame from the 1989 movie, 'Communion'

Still frame from the 1989 movie, ‘Communion’

The 4th October Incident – “The House Is On Fire!”

The first hypnosis session took place on 1st March 1986 in Dr. Klein’s Manhattan office. After several moments, Klein had taken Strieber back to the evening of 4th October. Once more he was in bed and had again woken suddenly in the middle of the night.

He suddenly realizes there is something in the room with him. In Communion Strieber writes:

When he sees I see him he comes over to the bed. He looks mean. He’s little. Goes up to about the top of the lamp. Got Eyes. Big eyes. Big slanted eyes. A bald head. He’s looking down at me. He’s got a ruler in his hand. Has a tip of silver. Touches me. I see pictures…I see pictures of the world blowing up when he touches my head with this thing…It’s a whole big blast and there’s a dark red fire in the middle of it. And there’s white smoke all around it!

Then, in a state of confusion but still hypnotized, Strieber began exclaiming that the “house is on fire!” It was around this point that he came out of regression. He did, however, recall the events that caused him to believe the house was burning down.

He would tell Klein that the creature took a “little thing like a needle” and then struck in front of Strieber’s face. It immediately made a “big pow!” in front of him. This “explosion” was also heard by others in the house. Strieber recalled he was fully awake at this stage, with he and his house guests making their way out of their home when they suddenly stopped.

The next morning, after they had all returned to bed, they simply didn’t mention the bizarre events of the previous evening. As if their minds purposely blocked them out.

Regression Back To The Night After Christmas!

Several days later on the 5th March in the same Manhattan office, Klein would regress Strieber back to the evening of 26th December in the log cabin.

Strieber recalled waking up with a jump and then hearing movement downstairs. However, instead of getting up to investigate, he lay back down. Then, the door to the bedroom began to open. Next to him, his wife remained asleep. A figure was visible “edging around the door”.

This entity was the same as the one described in the October incident, however, this one was wearing strange coverall with “blue cards on the front”. He also wore a facemask and a strange round hat. Suddenly, Strieber, shocked into paralysis, watched as more of these strange creatures entered the room, all of which were dressed in blue coveralls.

He got out of bed and began to remove his clothes, seemingly due to a command that he had no idea he had received. Then, he began to move, as though these creatures, who lined up on each side of him, were passing him down a line causing him to float somewhat. This continued down the stairs and out on to the front porch of the property.

There, in front of him, was an ominous looking “black cot”. Strieber would state under hypnosis (voicing his feelings) that he “didn’t like the look of that thing”. Nevertheless, he lays down on this iron crib-like bed. He recalls how he must be dreaming as he appears to be flying. So high, the log cabin became tiny and minute.

Then, in the blink of an eye, he is somewhere deep in the woods. And what’s more, these strange creatures are all around him. They appeared preoccupied with placing his arms and legs in “molds” designed to hold someone.

“I Just Shot Right Up Out Of The Woods!”

He noticed how one particular creature was carrying out some kind of procedure on the right side of his head. He couldn’t fully see what. And what’s more, around this time, a strange numbness began to overtake his body, and his mind.

The next thing he knew, he was in a strange “sitting position”. He began to feel unnerved again as he was all alone, despite the creatures being here just seconds before. He writes:

….Whoosh! Right up! Just shot right up! That scared the dickens out of me. I saw the trees down there. Now they’ve got a floor under me again…I just shot right up out of the woods. In this chair, this thing. I just went ‘Whoompf’ right out of the woods!

Strieber’s next clear memory is of sitting on some kind of bench in a “strange round room”. He immediately recalled how bad the smell was in the room, as well as how unclean it was. Incidentally, this description of a “round room”, dark and dingy, is one that surfaces in numerous alien abduction cases.

Then, another entity enters the room. Strieber gets the sense that this one is female. She wears a tan body suit and her head is a similar color, as well as being wrinkled “like leather”. He feels immediately uneasy.

The creature informed him they would do an operation on him. He immediately began to scream. Although he eventually calmed somewhat after assurances that they wouldn’t hurt him, he still insisted that they had “no right” to operate on him.

To this, the female entity offered a most disturbing reply, “We do have the right!” We will come back to this ominous sound response shortly.

Whitley Strieber

Whitley Strieber

“You Are Our Chosen One!”

Strieber would describe a sudden “bang” happening behind his head. The memories here are blurred at best. There is a flurry of activity and more of the strange creatures are in the room. He feels a “prodding” around his torso and notices that they keep putting their hands into his mouth, placing and extracting instruments.

While this activity continues, Strieber managed to glance around the dimly lit room. There appeared to be a “pile of laundry” crumbled up against the wall. As well as another door, closed, further along. Then he hears the “female’s” voice, but he didn’t hear what she said. She repeated once more, “You are our chosen one!”

Strieber’s mind began to break down somewhat here. Obviously confused and on the edge of terror he begins to say on the regression tapes that:

I don’t belong here! I don’t know how I ended up here!

His memories began to become jumbled. He recalls attempts to make his penis erect as if this was part of the procedure these strange creatures were carrying out. Then, he experienced a rolling, falling feeling as he were “going backwards in a movie”.

The next thing he knew, he was alone and naked on the coach in the log cabin. He realized how cold he felt and contemplated building up and lighting the fire. Instead, though, he made his way upstairs to the bathroom. That’s when he saw “two people” at the top of the stairs. Then, they were gone.

He would dress as quickly as he could in a pair of pajamas and then return to his bed where his wife, Anne, remained sleeping. He would lie down and attempt to sleep.

A Long Family History Of Alien Abduction?

Klein would regress Strieber back to the incident in order to extract more details. However, as he did, they would uncover an apparent string of abductions that had gone back years, at least to when he was a young boy. What’s more, some of these involved members of his family, including his parents. It could very well be the case that the abductions of the Strieber family line were taking place long before Whitley Strieber was even born.

For example, he would recall an incident when he was a young boy with his sister and his father when they were “on a train, except it wasn’t a train!” His father was “scared to death” which made he and his sister feel scared. On this “train” there were lots of other creatures, “like soldiers” all in the same strange uniforms.

Strieber would elaborate that the incident took place at some point in 1957 when they were on a train from Wisconsin. Suddenly, he and his father and sister were on the strange craft. Strieber writes:

I have no idea how I ended up there from being on a train!

Perhaps the most chilling part of what Strieber could recall from the incident was his father in the distance “screaming and screaming”. He would also recall, something that all three of them had bizarrely forgotten, was how they were all extremely ill for the remainder of their journey home, vomiting violently for several hours.

Over the following years, Strieber would continue to research and delve into these strange incidents that permeated his life in an effort to understand just what was unfolding around him. And why. As he did, many skeptics began to point out what they would see as “contradictory” statements and claims.

Below is an interview with Streiber.

Links To Demons – An Evil From Another Realm!

Like several others in the UFO field and those who examine cases of alien abduction, Strieber began to examine links between his experience and such concepts as demons and even religion. It should be stressed, however, that for the most part, these comparisons were exactly that, simple changes of perception regarding his strange experiences.

For example, he describes an encounter in the follow-up to Communion, Transformation: The Breakthrough as being like “Hell on Earth”. He also went on to state:

…whatever was there seemed so monstrously ugly, so filthy and dark and sinister. Of course, they were demons. They had to be!

It became an increasing notion to Strieber that rather than aliens from another part of the Universe in the great beyond of outer space visiting and terrifying him it was an evil from another realm. One of darkness.

What further makes Strieber’s case stand out more is how, through his works, he documents his own changing perspectives on the case. And his changing emotions. He did, for example, express what many would describe as Stockholm Syndrome where he appeared to express “love” for these strange visitors. Despite the fact they were “implacable predators”.

Perhaps it is these conflicting and, at times, contradictory stances that continue to lend Strieber credibility?

Whether the demonic angle is one that he himself still subscribes to or not is open to debate. As the twenty-first century progressed, however, and more and more research produced more answers, not just about space but the mysteries of our own world, Strieber would evolve his thinking even more.

Scientific Advancements Alters Perception!

Although his account is one linked immediately to alien abductions, Strieber himself, particularly in later years claims he is not completely sure that his encounters were the result of cosmic visitors. Aside from his exploration of the possibility of demonic influence he would increasingly lean towards, fringe as they are, scientific explanations.

For example, in his 2011 book Solving The Communion Enigma he would offer that advancements and altered perspectives in the scientific world now entertained the notion of parallel universes as seriously real. Even that, in theory, such things as time-travel was also possible.

Perhaps echoing some of the new-wave spiritualist movements of the 2000s, he would offer that the entire human race was edging towards a “higher level of understanding and existence” by entities and energies from a “multiverse” that surrounds all of us. Indeed, it is a notion that many subscribe to. Both inside and outside of the UFO community.

He would even question his own perception at the time – not necessarily something a “hoaxer” would do so publicly – when he admitted to “drinking himself to sleep” with regular top-ups of vodka after the 1985 Christmas sighting at the log cabin. While this certainly doesn’t mean the incidents didn’t take place, it is a frank admission that something other than extraterrestrials could have been responsible for them.

Strieber would also highlight such military facilities, the alleged ‘Dreamland’ most noticeably, which has a long history with conspiracies surrounding aliens, and alien technology. He reasoned in 2003 that it could be the case that he was, against his will, part of a secret military or intelligence experiment. One that either continues today or the residue of the encounters remained into adulthood.

This is particularly interesting. Especially when we consider again the reply from the “female alien”.

Should We Read More Into The Chilling Statement, “We Do Have The Right”?

Earlier we mentioned how in response to Strieber stating these strange entities didn’t have the right to “operate” on him, he was informed matter-of-factly that “we do have the right”. What, If we assume for a moment it is accurate, should we make of this statement?

Is this an arrogant response of an alien race so far in advance of ourselves that they merely assume a “right” to do as they please with us collectively due to their perceived superiority? Do they view us much as most of us view cattle?

Or might such a statement offer corroboration of an incident we have examined previously – the alleged meeting between President Eisenhower and not one, but two groups of aliens at a secret location in February 1954? While we will not dive into the finer details of that case here, needless to say, one offer of clean energy was rejected in favor of advanced technology of the grays. In return, they received the “right” to abduct American citizens and perform tests and experiments on them provided they were returned with no memory of the encounter.

Or might that right, if we subscribe to Strieber’s suggestion of some kind of secret military experiment to be behind the bizarre experiences, by one retained by the military and the United States’ government?

It is perhaps interesting that Strieber himself makes no other mention of this statement. And certainly doesn’t draw, or even mention, the apparent deal between Eisenhower and the “gray aliens” he himself was now at the mercy of at random but persistent occasions. Perhaps that is, as speculative as it is, makes this otherwise “throwaway response” so intriguing.

Check out the video below. It features Strieber speaking at length of his findings and theories on such intriguing incidents.


1 The Paranormal Conspiracy: The Truth about Ghosts, Aliens and Mysterious Beings, Timothy Dailey, ISBN 9781441 269355
2 Communion: A True Story, Whitley Strieber, ISBN 9780380 703883

Marcus Lowth

Marcus Lowth is a writer with a love for UFOs, aliens, and the Ancient Astronaut Theory, to the paranormal, general conspiracies, and unsolved mysteries. He has been writing and researching with over 20 years of experience.

Marcus has been Editor-in-Chief for several years due to his excellent knowledge in these fields. Marcus also regularly appears as an expert on radio talk shows including Troubled Minds and Unexplained Radio discussing these topics.

Read Marcus' full bio.

You can contact Marcus via email.

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