Everyone knows that you should never wake up a sleepwalker because they’ll freak out and hurt you, but what if it’s more dangerous to let them sleep? Sleepwalking is more than just strolling around the house and mumbling embarrassing secrets to your bed-mate. It’s a potentially dangerous disorder that can lead to horrendous things, like climbing a 130-foot crane or noshing on cat food.
Fatigue is one of the main causes of sleepwalking, so try and get a good night’s sleep. If you’re staying in a hotel, make sure you choose one with comfy beds so you won’t sleep drop out of a 3rd story window, like one British tourist did while on vacation in Majorca. Here are some other bizarre things people do while sleeping:
Most sleepwalkers do harmless things like go to the bathroom, get dressed or just sit with their eyes open and creep everyone out. But one 15-year-old girl from London took sleepwalking to a whole new level—literally. While fast asleep one night, she climbed a 130-foot crane, crawled 40 feet across the arm and curled up on the counterweight. Someone finally noticed her at 2 am and called police, who brought her down safely. The girl was reportedly a “frequent sleepwalker,” but this was her first time climbing a crane. No word on how embarrassed she is.
I know this is a dog, but the same principle applies to humans. Sleep running equals looking stupid and smashing your head into a wall. At least it’s good exercise.
Ever woken up to find a mess in your kitchen and your gut hanging over your pajamas? How about the lingering smell of wet cat food on your breath? Or a greasy chicken carcass under the covers? If that’s the case, you might be sleep eating. Sleep eaters tend to not only eat unhealthy things, but also things that are bizarre and/or dangerous, like household cleaner, medication and cat food sandwiches.
Sleep cooking is more elaborate than slapping together a cat food sandwich. The same lady
who ate half a can of cat food also managed to cook a baked potato in the oven. A baked potato! That takes over an hour! That means her sleep eating episodes take up a good portion of her night. What did she do while it was cooking? Oh yeah...eat cat food. And the only reason she knew it was baked in the oven was that the oven was still on when she woke up. That’s safe.
By day, Lee Hadwin is a nurse and a terrible artist. But while he sleeps, he produces amazing works of art that have sold for up to £5,000! He first started producing sleep art in his teens, and would draw on everything from walls to tablecloths. As he became older, he smartened up and started leaving art supplies next to his bed. It might sound like a great use of time to produce art in your sleep, but Hadwin pays the price. He spends anywhere from 20 minutes to 1.5 hours working on his art, and always wakes up with an excruciating headache.
Also known as “extreme sleep walking,” sleep dropping involves falling off a high place while asleep. A 17-year-old German kid, who had a bad sleepwalking habit, climbed out of his window after using a cardboard box as a step stool. He fell 10 metres and broke some bones, yet never woke up.
As you’ve seen, people do all kinds of crazy things in their sleep, but most only harm themselves. However, sleep occasionally leads to homicidal activities, and it’s not easy to pull of the ol’ “I was asleep when it happened” excuse. The “sleepwalking defense” was first successfully used in 1846, when a man was acquitted of murdering a prostitute. Even though he almost decapitated her and set fire to the brothel, the jury found him not guilty.
More recently, in 1987, a man got out of bed, drove 14 miles to his in-laws’ house and stabbed them both with a kitchen knife. His mother-in-law died, while his father-in-law survived. Due to the man’s history of sleep activities, plus the fact that he didn’t notice he’d severed tendons in both hands during the attack, led to the jury finding him not guilty.