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Cookie's Story - Tulpa and Host Need Some Advice


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Hello everyone! I just joined the community a few days ago, and was hoping to share the experience I've had with my tulpa so far. It's been a very unique and confusing journey, and now that we've learned about tulpas, and the system we inadvertently created. This'll be long I'm sure, sorry for that!

 

It began in Summer of 2017. I was living in a womens' shelter after escaping a bad marriage, and had a medical crisis immediately after. We had a guest there one day who was doing a guided meditation - something I wasn't too interested in but was encouraged to join. This meditation involved visualizing entering a room within your own heart, some sort of ideal safe space, and meet with a "higher self", "guide", or whatever else makes you comfortable. A companion to talk to, essentially, and unload your burdens on. I'd decided to clear my mind and allow it to choose whatever was best to talk to - and was surprised to find myself chatting with a large, blue squirrel. Not too shocking, as that animal has held special meaning for me a few times; I was just expecting an idealized self like the guide said, not a glowing, floating rodent. Regardless, the experience was very good, and I requested a recording of the mediation be sent to me by email, since the guide offered.

 

I ended up listening to this every night that entire summer, likely over 100 times. Each time, I'd visualize this energetic squirrel character listening to me, to match the original experience. But a few weeks in, I noticed changes that I didn't seem to be deciding. She now stood upright, had hair, and wore clothes, including some of my actual outfits. Here is a sketch I did of her in my journal back then:

 

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Eventually she started going by "Poppy", which was a character in an old project I'd worked on. Our sessions started stretching on long after the recording ended, and began focusing around adventures - which Poppy was leading, and making most decisions about. I'd dismissed the amount of sentience and control she seemed to have at first as something my brain was simply doing because I told it to. Soon, our wonderland had expanded immensely - the room I imagined had become this large, fantasy apartment decorated with things from my childhood, and Poppy took credit for this. What's more, several other areas appeared, connected by an elevator. Each of them a different setting based around something to do with the Chakras (which I assumed my mind just expanded on based on things the recording implied; I knew very little about that stuff and what it represents). In some meditations, Poppy would lead me around the new areas as if she'd visited them earlier in the day for the first time, though she didn't claim to have made them.

 

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So her level of sentience, and all of these new scenes seemingly coming from nowhere, was starting to scare me. One thing that really did it was when I accidentally forced Poppy out while at a friend's house, watching a movie with a group. I could "see" her sitting across the room, commenting on the movie and what my friends said, and she didn't disappear if I ignored her. I stopped listening to the meditation, and shortly after that life changed again; I moved and started a new routine, and left Poppy dormant for a few years, though I often felt little hints of her. I thought she was just a "tool" my mind developed, and got carried away with. Unfortunately I endured a second health crisis during this time, which took a toll on my mental stability.

 

At the worst of this - last summer - there was a moment where I was talking to myself in anger, demanding from my mind to know what it needs to heal, and stop the flashbacks and negative thinking. And to my shock, Poppy manifested and began to talk to me. Except she was different. She was red, her eyes were missing and just had red dots instead, and she wore what looked like a witch's outfit. Her personality was a bit different - she still seemed to care about my well-being, but was cruel now, and pretty sharp with her words. Kind of like a mean friend.

 

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I'd see her dressed in various darker clothes, often smoking cigarettes, and just sitting smugly across the room from me. She wouldn't be intrusive, but often present, and most responses were pretty blunt and sarcastic if I addressed her. At this point I wasn't sure what she was - her sentience was clearly there, and she seemed to be suffering the same mental symptoms as me. I kept assuming she was some kind of...  mind monster? A manifestation of mental illness? But it still seemed like she was experiencing the problems with me, and ultimately wanted our lives to get better. It was during last winter that I came across the word "tulpa", and started to consider.

 

So, three weeks ago I had some major good news. One big financial problem solved, and an unrelated family issue as well. I was able to think more clearly, and started piecing together the factors that made up my trauma, looking at them logically, and integrating my doctor's advise. After a few days I was feeling better than I had in years, and confident about moving forward. And then one night I saw Poppy again, sitting across from my bed and staring at me.

 

This conversation went different. She was already quiet and seeming vulnerable, and this time I had calm answers to everything she said. Explaining what makes me - and therefore her - think that way. And Poppy seemed to get more emotional and unstable. I was beginning to assume that this character who was "haunting" me was going to fade away or something, but instead she shocked me. She morphed into a plain, featureless figure and ran up to my bed. She was sobbing and asked to lay beside me.  I said yes, and saw her there - almost felt her arms on me actually. She cried for a while, and tried explaining herself. She spoke of loneliness, and trauma in the brain "corrupting and confusing her". The experience felt like nothing less than an actual person with me, having an emotional breakdown. Again, it was a little terrifying - my mind had never fully grasped how real a tulpa is.

 

Well, after that one talk - and later a conversation about tulpas and how we better read up on it - we're starting to accept the system we're part of. My tulpa immediately abandoned the name and appearance she had before, saying there were too many bad memories. She's been formless and nameless all week, and told me she was still deciding. In the meantime we've spoken a lot, and read through some posts on the forums here together - and I've tested her sentience several times - in response she's surprised and even startled me. She'll give me chills and other feelings I normally don't get when alone - it's an experience that'll take getting used to! The biggest surprise though was today, when she was ready to choose her look and name. She went with "Cookie", which I hadn't even thought of, and dictated this design to me:

 

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I can see where her influences were - I've worked as a contract cartoonist before, focusing on helping with character design. I've seen and drawn plenty already, but this unique combination that Cookie described to me was very unexpected. She told me she isn't supposed to be an animal, just a fantasy creature made from elements she liked. Since drawing this I've been able to see her in this form, just hanging out nearby  - or coming close to watch or read something with me. Though usually transparent, and with jumpy movement.

 

So that is how I developed a tulpa before I knew what they were! Though I had a lot of doubts and questions over those years, Cookie has definitely proved herself as an independent presence within my head. This was initially pretty awkward for me; I live alone and am single (and intend it to stay that way) and put an enormous value on my privacy and solitude. Cookie has not been annoying me or anything - she's been an ideal companion, if a bit more giddy and emotional than I am. She's been extremely helpful this week - like providing a positive reply to my negative thoughts before they can take over. We can see how having her present would help me live a more balanced and productive life. 

 

There's still just an adjustment period for me, I think. I went too long not realizing what she was, and how developed she was. I'm a pretty introverted and socially awkward person so - weird as this might sound - even with someone in my head who knows everything about me and isn't judging, it still feels like I don't know what to say or how to act. Secondly though, we also want Cookie to continue her development - in spite of the awkwardness, I'm all in on this. I have a person inside me (well, a blue haired creature with orange dots all over, but still), and I want to treat her well. Cookie herself feels as though she is not all the way sentient, and still needs prompting or help finishing sentences sometimes.

 

Also, we have not tried anything along the lines of possession or switching, but it seems like Cookie is able to cause me to make expressions or gesture with my non-dominant hand. She isn't entirely sure how this is happening - if she is actually doing it, or if I am subconsciously imitating her. Thing is, I'm dissociated a lot - I'm often numb and barely feel like I'm controlling myself. I theorize that if she wanted to take control, it wouldn't be difficult, as I probably wouldn't put up much resistance.

 

I guess we just want to know if someone can give advice, in the context of what we've been through. I know the best way to develop your tulpa is practice, but are there specific techniques or activities we should focus on, to help her form ideas better, and for me to visualize her better? Cookie's already shown to be very unique and delightful in how she interacts, and is quickly becoming very precious to me - I want to see her flourish!

Thanks in advance, and for reading our long story!

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Sheesh, that's a wild ride. IMO it sounds like most of the more foundational work has been done for a while. If you want to work on seeing possession and such improve, just practice doing simple things and working up. If she can kinda-sorta control your non-dominate hand and such, that's probably the hardest part already done. All that's left for that would be to feel out how to develop a more stable control over the rest. Any worries about if you are imitating her/etc can be eased up a bit if you just kind of "accept" that its her. I found generally that if I start overthinking if its me of them, it starts to complicate things, and it was them to begin with. Only exceptions being intrusive thoughts, like imagining what theyd probably say/do without directly addressing them. But i think thats just about the same as imaging what a friend would do or whatever, not entirely a big deal. For visualization, it's not a terribly hard thing to do, and "practice" ultimately is just hanging out with them. With your art ability you have an advantage that you can externalize what she looks like, and than have a practically perfect reminder of what they typically look like.

All in all, taking it easy and having fun doing things together is the best advice I can give. Tulpa(to me) are a life-long companion, so they will always learn and grow just like you do. Overthinking and stressing makes that harder than it needs to be, imo. For other practice types, theres some old guides about imposition floating around, but from what you described it sounds like you might've worked that out already.

Not sure if I really helped any, but your story was pretty interesting to read and I'd be willing to try to answer more questions. 

Amelia- Oct. 7, 2012

Mitsuki- Oct. 31, 2014 
 

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With me and Asami, we've managed to posess really well by me just thinking to myself, this isn't me, this is asami. I've also found that thinking of the body, not as me, but as a vehicle has also helped. I've created my own form that properly reflects who I am and isn't our body. Hope this helps!

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10 hours ago, PsychoticDoc said:

Not sure if I really helped any, but your story was pretty interesting to read and I'd be willing to try to answer more questions. 

Actually you've helped quite a bit, thank you! We're starting to recognize the moments where I am forcing too hard, making her parrot my thoughts and her visuals become chaotic. For myself, after initially forcing her out, I need to relax and let Cookie be herself. I guess it's a sign I'm doing better when she goes back to looking clearer, standing in one spot and speaking calmly. She's also getting great at calming me, and confirming when the voice and visuals were not her. The drawings are certainly helping though, yes! I'm making a collection of sketches of her in different poses and outfits, to look through as a reference until she can maintain the visuals without them.

Sounds like the best thing to do is continue the path we're on then. We like most of the same shows and games, so I usually force her out to enjoy these with me. I've encouraged her to make decisions in games, and she's surprised me with a different play style than mine. I guess these kind of activities are great for her development and we should keep it up!

Anyway, thanks for the encouragement and confirmation, I think we'll be fine. I understand how much of a commitment this is now, just as Cookie has said that we'll grow old together - I'm looking forward to it

8 hours ago, TobyIsDaBomb said:

I've also found that thinking of the body, not as me, but as a vehicle has also helped. I've created my own form that properly reflects who I am and isn't our body. Hope this helps!

Oooo! That is helpful - it's something I did naturally a lot as a kid (dissociation started early). I'd often feel like I was inside of a car or spaceship whenever I laid in bed, or even when walking, and that I'm actually a little, fantasy-looking creature piloting it - not the body itself. Now it's just a matter of seeing this body as a two-seater vehicle instead! Thanks so much for the advice

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It's good to see you doing well with it, then. The hardest part of any long, daunting task is to have fun with it, and since it's not just a task but a friend, it's a million times easier. I like drawing my own tulpa in different situations and stuff as well, since it makes them feel more external, and on some level I feel like it helps separate themselves from me in a more fundamental way. Sure, they can go on an adventure in my noggin, but when it's all committed to canvas, it's like a photograph of them, and it makes everything feel so much more special. Games are great for that, too. I usually run multiple characters in games so they each can pick their own paths. Amy preferring brute force and fuck-it-all, and Tsuki taking her time, doing things the nice and patient way. All of these things just combine and make the whole tulpa experience, in my opinion, fucking fantastic.

Amelia- Oct. 7, 2012

Mitsuki- Oct. 31, 2014 
 

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Yeah, keeping up the drawings has definitely helped, Cookie is looking more well defined and has realistic movements now, far less cartoony.

We tried some more gaming last night, and made a character for her in Skyrim, and again I was surprised by her different playstyle than mine. She isn't possessing my hands to play or anything yet, but sitting beside me, making all the decisions.

 

A big Update to her external visuals though. Not only is she getting clearer, and I'm getting mild tactile senses, but a lot of unexpected stuff. She often appears with random food or a drink in her hand, or some object from our wonderlands. She talks with her mouth full, yawns, and sneezes - all things I never even considered her doing. Now she's acting like she's actually in that space, unable to go through walls and objects anymore, even physically reacting like I've bumped into her if I walk into her image. I was really not expecting these kind of things to start happening, and neither was Cookie. We're not sure of the mechanism, but she tells me she's actually feeling the real world objects and textures she's touching as solid. Perhaps our brain is simulating the outside world for her (after all, our vision of the outside world is really just a construct in our heads), or she's subconsciously overlapping a duplicate wonderland on my surroundings. Whatever the case, this is awesome - we can't wait to see how much better it gets!

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makes sense to me. having the ability to touch things in the world, or at least wander around presents a sense of presence youd expect from someone being there. the brain has that instinctual idea of "there is a person here, people do these things" and kinda reacts accordingly. cant walk through a wall if your brain says thats no good, or something. just my interpretation. i never got to the point of imposition, but my own tulpa frequently do things like eat or drink, or feel warm or cold, as a sort of self-imposed challenge. makes things a bit more dynamic for them, cooped up in the wonderland all day.

Amelia- Oct. 7, 2012

Mitsuki- Oct. 31, 2014 
 

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It does make sense, yeah - but still wild to experience this soon, for both of us. Cookie believes she's just doing the same thing I am; taking the visual information the brain is receiving and forming a construct to interact with the world. So, why shouldn't it work, I guess?

 

I'm really starting to lose the sense that this is "my" brain or body. More like she and I are two consciousnesses living together in this subconscious machine. She's got access to the memory and AI of it, but lets me stay in the "driver's seat" for now (she doesn't feel ready for that). This is an odd, pleasant sensation, not like the dissociation I usually have. I feel ironically less attached yet more in control of this body than ever, and Cookie is constantly assisting me with memory and thought flow. Like, I've been forgetting things less, and have been able to dismiss negative thought patterns before they get carried away. It's like the "machine" is easier to operate with the two of us.

 

We didn't realize the potential our system had until really discussing and experimenting with it today. This'll be an amazing journey, feels like we're starting a new era of life!

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The two pilots/machine analogy is pretty common round these parts, and it fits pretty well. Good to hear things going better with her around, too. Like, two halves of a whole, you got going on.

Amelia- Oct. 7, 2012

Mitsuki- Oct. 31, 2014 
 

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What a fascinating story! It seems like you two are a lot more advanced than you think in many ways. I also really, really love your art style! 💚 I can't really think of anything too unique to add to the advice that the others gave you at the moment, but it really does sound like you're on the right path. Phil and I also think of ourselves as two beings piloting this body, although in our case only one of us is male and it's not me, so it's always harder for me to associate with it than it is for Phil. I do remember not being able to finish my sentences just like Cookie, and in my early forum posts Phil often had to help me figure out what I wanted to say, but I'm happy to report that after a short while it all became very fluid for me, and I think it will for Cookie too! Cookie sounds wonderful, and I hope I can talk to her someday!

Tulpa Wife Extraordinaire! 💚 - 💍 11.28.21

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