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    Thread: I keep dreaming about my ex.

    1. #1
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      I keep dreaming about my ex.

      Hey guys,

      so for some time now I have those dreams in which an ex girlfriend of mine plays a major role.
      We broke up 10 years ago and I have long moved on since but because she keeps returning in my
      dreams I always wake up with a hard to describe feeling which often ruins my mood and all the bad memories come back.
      It's like a mix of that feeling of getting cheated on and feeling jealous and sad. Also those dreams usually occur when I felt great before.
      Today it happened again and I will try to explain this dream as well as a recurring pattern which I noticed as good as I can.
      The pattern I noticed is that whenever I dream about her I always have this huge feeling of unworthiness and end
      up getting hurt by her (emotionally).
      It usually starts off with me and her spending time together. We were on a festival which took place in a forest with
      very vew people and it was nice weather. We were making out and just doing couple things. After some time we were holding hands,
      taking a walk and talking tho I don't remember what we were talking about. While we are doing this in the dreams i have about her
      i pretty much always feel abandoned and alone and she always has different characteristics. I remember that in my last dream I left
      her alone for a while and after I came back she was making out with someone else. It was a complete stranger.
      Then I woke up with the above described feeling.
      One thing to note is that while i am awake and go on with my daily life i never think about her.
      I was thinking about talking to a therapist because I fear this is not normal. I just want her out of my mind.

    2. #2
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      you guys are prolly having shared dreams which wen both of reach lucidity at a certain point that you both still have feeling for one another try harder you guys are meant to be together even if its jus a dream

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      in my opinion reoccurring dreams always show something not integrated or unfinished business. it wont help to wish or will it away because the more you dont accept and push it away the more it will come during night when your conscious cant push it down anymore.
      maybe its something you never talked about to a finish. maybe you have the urge to tell her how you feel or how she made you feel. and i dont talk about find a guilty one or point with the finger on her but just tell her how you felt and what it make with you. you could write her a letter or an email. you might not even have to sent it but just the fact that you sit down and accept the feelings you have and reflect about them might be enough.

      for me atleast i think that sometimes things with exes can stuck over decades. the moment one talks to you about her or you think about her and have a body feeling like a faster heart beat or a lump in your throat or something like this it tells you there are unresolved things and they might be big or small or obvious or subtile but something you didnt integrated fully yet...

      or maybe you have an momentary situation about someone that triggers same feeling or fear of getting treated like this and it shows in an old situation (aka while stress in waking life one often dreams of getting to highschool again and have to pass exams or something like this)
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      Although in order to provide a more accurate interpretation it would usually be best to have some additional general background information about you (and a description of events just before the latest dream), it looks like your ex keeps appearing in your dreams, causing an unpleasant feeling, because she represents in some basic way an ongoing problem in how you feel about yourself and other people.

      So it isn’t probably the image of your ex in the dreams as such that you’re seeing but instead, a kind of metaphor of this inner “feminine” feeling side of yourself which “hurts” you emotionally. This idea is supported by the fact that you broke up with your ex 10 years ago, you don’t think about her in your daily life, and you apparently aren’t in any kind of contact with her. Also, you mentioned that in these dreams, she always has different characteristics; that is, it appears the image of her in the dreams isn’t a photographic likeness of your ex which adds to the conclusion that her image is symbolic in nature.

      The dreams might recur after a certain attitude, action or situation etc. was present and which on the surface apparently made you feel good, but your feeling side underneath was somehow not quite right. If so, the dream which appears at those times is possibly trying to balance your outlook by saying something like “It’s best not to forget what you’re really feeling deep down in this type of situation”.

      For example, something might happen which actually could potentially make you feel “rejected” and sad, but instead, these feelings are immediately shoved out of your awareness because they would understandably be too painful, being replaced by acting like a “nice guy” for instance, or in playing down what happened etc.

      This maybe slightly false “sunny attitude” might be symbolized in the latest dream by the festival, the nice weather and making out with your ex in the forest. Her “betrayal” by making out with the stranger could represent some self-hurting feelings about yourself that you maybe aren’t really aware of enough. That is, certain bad feelings might be catching up with you in waking moments of feeling depressed, “abandoned”, “alone”, and unworthy.

      So I would say that it’s normal that your ex keeps appearing in your dreams because the overall circumstances of how you handle your feelings (which led to the bad memories related to her) haven’t maybe been dealt with well enough so far in your life. In that sense, it could be worth a try to finding a trusted therapist who could help you realize more clearly what’s going on in your feeling life. Doing so would probably result in your ex not appearing in your dreams or at least not as often.

      Anyway as mentioned, without knowing anything much about you, this way of looking at your recurring type of dream might not fit your personal circumstances very well, but I hope that these ideas can be helpful in some way.

      Please feel free to comment on, or to ask any questions about, this particular way of looking at your dreams.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Athanor View Post
      Although in order to provide a more accurate interpretation it would usually be best to have some additional general background information about you (and a description of events just before the latest dream), it looks like your ex keeps appearing in your dreams, causing an unpleasant feeling, because she represents in some basic way an ongoing problem in how you feel about yourself and other people.

      Please feel free to comment on, or to ask any questions about, this particular way of looking at your dreams.
      Thank you for your reply.
      I will describe a bit about the time during our break up. She was the first girl in my life who i sincerely loved and the break up was painful. We did not really end on good terms and shortly after our break up i found out she cheated on me several times and was saying bad stuff about me. There were also people i called friends back then involved. Lets just say they were not really supportive. From then on i was going through a period of depression and extremely low self-esteem which is still present to this day tho not as intense as the years before. This affected the future relationships I had. Because i feared to experience the same again i would constantly worry and push them away with my behaviour. It never lasted longer than a few weeks.

      And as for the events before this dream, a month ago I was dating this girl who had the same name as my ex and I think she triggered something inside of me.
      It started off well but ended badly because she was not over her ex and I got rejected by her. She also didn't treat me well because i didn't set boundaries.
      I was disappointed that it didn't work out but I got over it quickly.
      Last edited by GoodIntentions; 08-21-2018 at 06:11 PM.

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      Hi again. From what you’ve written, it looks like you might not have seen a therapist so far in order to help you work through the feelings of low self-esteem that persisted after the first very painful break up with your ex (which apparently also included a bad betrayal by your friends at the time who didn’t even hint that she was cheating on you). And now recently, you’ve experienced another very painful blow with another girl. In between, an understandable fear existed that kept you from entering into relationships in a successful way.

      So what you’ve written seems to support the idea that the latest dream appeared probably as a reminder that maybe you haven’t really gotten over your disappointment and hurt about this latest break up and that some feelings of low self-esteem might flare up again too much over time.

      If you don’t feel comfortable seeing a therapist, or doing so isn’t feasible for whatever reason, you might like to try reading a couple of books that I often recommend such as “Nothing’s Wrong: A Man’s Guide to his Feelings” by David Kuntz, and “Emotion: A Very Short Introduction” by Dylan Evans. And if you happen to be a quiet, inward-looking person and you believe that this isn’t going to change very much at this time of your life, I also would recommend the book “The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World” by Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D

      In any case, if you have any other comments or questions, please let me know.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Athanor View Post
      Hi again. From what you’ve written, it looks like you might not have seen a therapist so far in order to help you work through the feelings of low self-esteem that persisted after the first very painful break up with your ex (which apparently also included a bad betrayal by your friends at the time who didn’t even hint that she was cheating on you). And now recently, you’ve experienced another very painful blow with another girl. In between, an understandable fear existed that kept you from entering into relationships in a successful way.

      So what you’ve written seems to support the idea that the latest dream appeared probably as a reminder that maybe you haven’t really gotten over your disappointment and hurt about this latest break up and that some feelings of low self-esteem might flare up again too much over time.

      If you don’t feel comfortable seeing a therapist, or doing so isn’t feasible for whatever reason, you might like to try reading a couple of books that I often recommend such as “Nothing’s Wrong: A Man’s Guide to his Feelings” by David Kuntz, and “Emotion: A Very Short Introduction” by Dylan Evans. And if you happen to be a quiet, inward-looking person and you believe that this isn’t going to change very much at this time of your life, I also would recommend the book “The Introvert Advantage: How to Thrive in an Extrovert World” by Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D

      In any case, if you have any other comments or questions, please let me know.
      I havent had a Therapist so far yet due to financial and other reasons tho I will try to consult someone soon.
      Also I am currently reading "Awaken the giant within" by Anthony Robins and it has improved my life so far and shown we ways to make better decisions about myself and relationships.
      This might sound crazy but has there been any research that you can communicate with the Person you dream about on a subconscious/mental level or have something like shared dreams?

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      Regarding your question about whether there has been research if it’s possible to communicate with a person one dreams about, as hinted at before, the answer hinges on whether the image of the person in the dream is mostly about the dreamer himself or herself (called a “subjective” dream), or whether the person actually represents the outer person whom the dreamer knows and regularly interacts with (called an “objective” dream).

      Analyst Dr. Marie Louise von Franz who was a decades-long collaborator of the famous psychiatrist Dr. Carl Jung describes in the book “The Way of the Dream” how to distinguish between mostly objective dreams from subjective dreams.

      An example is given of a man who dreams his wife is stealing his car and he asks how does one determine if it’s referring to an outer problem in his marriage or a problem within himself. She writes:

      “That is the most ticklish problem of all. The dreamer will often be inclined to think ‘There, you see, that’s exactly what she is doing. She is forever taking away my ways of moving about. She is always interfering’…

      To interpret these dreams correctly, one has to know the whole marital situation and have an idea of the wife’s objective behaviour. Then one can evaluate whether it is a projection or whether it refers to the wife. Sometimes it refers to both…

      Generally, I would say that about eighty-five percent of the dream motifs are subjective, and therefore I recommend interpreting most dreams subjectively. One should always ask ‘What is it in me that does that’ instead of taking the dream as a warning against other people.”

      Analyst Mary Ann Mattoon in “Jung and the Human Psyche: An Understandable Introduction” adds that if the person’s image in the dream is an exact photographic likeness and not “different” from the outer person in any way, then it’s more likely that the dream is somehow commenting on the actual person and her or his relationship dynamic with the dreamer.

      But if the person is “different” in any way, and especially if she or he is not really currently involved in the daily life of the dreamer, then this points to the image being mostly about an inner aspect of the dreamer.

      If the dream is “subjective”, then the dreamer can “communicate” during waking hours with the image of the person previously seen in the dream who stands for a part of the dreamer’s psyche. The method of communication is called “Active Imagination”. In “Jung Lexicon”, analyst Daryl Sharp writes:

      “The object of active imagination is to give a voice to sides of the personality, particularly the anima/animus and the shadow, that are normally not heard, thereby establishing a line of communication between consciousness and the unconscious.”

      The “anima” is the technical name that your ex in your dreams would be given in this case.

      However, an active, critical attitude is needed on the part of the ego when verbal dialogues are entered into and they are not totally safe without professional supervision because the psyche has two sides, one beneficial but also one that can be deceptive and harmful if the ego isn’t aware enough about how to deal with what the inner figure says in a knowledgeable enough way.

      Having said that, analyst Robert Johnson’s book “Inner Work” describes the method of Active Imagination (as well as how to approach looking at one’s own dreams) in a clear and reliable way. Other books about Active Imagination include Mary Watkins’s “Invisible Guests” and “Waking Dreams”. The technique is also described to some extent in “Man and his Symbols” edited by C. G. Jung.

      A more recent book, “Imaginal Figures in Everyday Life: Stories from The World between Matter and Mind” by analyst Mary Harrell, is also very good.

      Regarding dreams that in the end relate directly to objective people you know (as in “shared dreams” etc.), unusual ones are technically called “telepathic” dreams (that is, not ones whose meaning is connected to the correction of an attitude or lack of insight etc. about an actual relationship with an outer person). Although there are all kinds of theories about this topic, probably the most reliable are Carl Jung’s thoughts on this subject:

      “Another dream-determinant that deserves mention is telepathy. The authenticity of this phenomenon can no longer be disputed today. It is, of course, very simple to deny its existence without examining the evidence, but that is an unscientific procedure which is unworthy of notice. I have found by experience that telepathy does in fact influence dreams, as has been asserted since ancient times. Certain people are particularly sensitive in this respect and often have telepathically influenced dreams. But in acknowledging the phenomenon of telepathy I am not giving unqualified assent to the popular theory of action at a distance. The phenomenon undoubtedly exists, but the theory of it does not seem to me so simple. In every case one must consider the possibilities of concordance of associations, of parallel psychic processes which have been shown to play a very great role especially in families, and which also manifest themselves in an identity or far-reaching similarity of attitude.”

      Anyway, I hope that these ideas can help to answer your questions and please don’t hesitate to ask any others that you might think of.

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