Nightmares Everynight.

by Rochelle

I don't know what happens when I go to bed but I can't sleep without having an uncomfortable nightmare. I often have the same dream nights in a row or years apart. Some I have been having since I was young. I'm 24 now. Most of the time the dream consists of me hiding, running from something or someone. However it's not in a panic or like the world is ending. It's like I'm silently being chased or stalked by something that keeps trying to sneak it's way into my home. Meanwhile everyone around me in my dream is living without fear and seem to be unaware that I'm in trouble. I'm constantly running to all the doors and windows trying to keep the bad thing from entering my home. Sometimes I'm in houses I've never seen before in real life but has the same layout every time as if it's a real memory. However no matter who's house I'm in, I'm always hiding or running from something. I have other themed nightmares that involve traumatic situations that I have experienced before. but those are more rare.
I wake up feeling deeply disturbed every morning. At night when I know it's time to start getting ready for bed my mind triggers a familiar feeling that reminds me I'm going to have a nightmare. Almost like I know I'm about to go to a bad place. It's haunting. What does it mean?!

Ben's Answer:

Before I suggest any kind of interpretations, let me just clearly say that only YOU can definitively know the meaning of your own dreams. There are many typical meanings of dreams symbols and themes, but any authentic dream psychologist should tell you it is not for another person to tell you what your dreams mean...

That being said, I can offer you some general ideas to think about. Think of your dream house as your self - your consciousness. When scary things are threatening to enter your home, you might look at this as scary feelings or memories threatening to emerge into your conscious mind. Those things might be scary because they have been suppressed and thus are unknown and mysterious. Or they could actually be things that are disturbing to remember. By the way, this kind of theme is very common. In fact, as a child, and sometimes in my early adulthood, I used to have a very similar dream as yours. It was terrifying.

The fact that other people in the dream seem oblivious, could indicate that family or people close to you in your life have been detached or checked out or in denial, so they are unable to protect you or empathize with you - but that's just one possibility that I would consider if it were my dream...

I have found that most clients I have worked with, such as those who come in to work on trauma, and who have repeated, frequent nightmares, stop having bad dreams after just a few sessions. I imagine this is probably true for many therapists. I don't know if you've had any therapy, but I would suggest that you try. Usually just having a place to share private feelings begins to remove some of the fears that lead to having nightmares. This is especially true when doing good trauma work with a professional. Living with this every night must be really exhausting. It's not necessary to go on that way.

Take Care,

Ben Schwarcz

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