Interview With a Ghost Hunter

Interview With a Ghost Hunter

A group of people with a passion for encountering the supernatural wait patiently in an allegedly haunted place. Devoid of fear, they try to control their excitement as the EVP, a ghost hunting tool, detects a voice nearby. L’aura Hladik Hoffman, founder of the New Jersey Ghost Hunting Society, explained that the hobby is largely a waiting game. “You know you’re sitting in the dark waiting for something to happen, waiting to capture it,” she said.

Hoffman wanted to stress the reality of ghost hunting was nothing like you see on television. “They infuse a lot of drama, you know, in order to keep viewership,” she said. Meanwhile she said if people were to witness it in reality they’d probably think it was pretty boring. Hoffman feels as though these portrayals can add to the stigma surrounding ghost hunting. She specifically mentioned that many times, the investigators on TV antagonize ghosts in an attempt to get the reaction they seek. “You don’t want to incite a fight, you can’t see the punch when it’s coming and you put you and your teammates in danger,” she said. Though, the thrill is no different. “Once in a while you hit, you get that shot, that video, that sound and it’s what keeps you coming back for more,” Hoffman said.

Her Story

The investigator shared a bit of her story to help untangle how she got where she is at now. She said she was always interested in this field but recounted a specific experience with her husband that really struck her. On a Halloween ghost tour, Hoffman recalls being taken aback by sensitivity to the paranormal presence in one part of the tour. “I had this sucker punch feeling and I was ready to throw up. The couple reported what had just happened to the guide, a New Jersey psychic, medium, Jane Doherty. She told them this was the path of a revolutionary British red coat. “That was my first time actually experiencing a ghost walking through me,” Hoffman said.

She began transcribing séance tapes for Doherty and got to hear her first ghost voice loud and clear. It was a little girl despite kids not being allowed at these events. The rest was history. “My husband and I formed our little ghost hunting thing, did some with Jane and then on our own,” Hoffman said. All things considered, it is also impressive that my interviewee is a leader in this field. “The paranormal it’s like the engineering of the ghost world because you have very few women going into it,” she said.

The media largely plays into presenting ghost hunting as a male-dominated field. “Even when you watch those TV shows, it’s all arms crossed looking all authoritative, and the women are the ones in the background like little mouses,” Hoffman said. Even if its image is misconstrued by the public, there will always be those, like Hoffman, who are zealously committed to the study. “I love the research, that I will never walk away from, she said.


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