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  1. #1
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    Oct. 26, 2005
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    Default Bad dreams and unwanted dreams

    I have, on a regular basis, bad dreams and unwanted dreams. Sometimes the dreams are downright terrifying but have no basis in reality, nor do they have a noticeable repeating pattern other than I get hurt. For example, I've had dreams I've been shot by bullets. In another dream, I was in a Medieval version of a Nazi concentration camp and I had to choose to either volunteer to be executed to spare the rest, or watch the line of people ahead of me be executed. In other ones my house is burning down around me.


    The stuff that I really don't like, though, is the fairly regular occurrence of dreams where one or both of my horses die. It's not quite a weekly dream, but it certainly happens at least monthly. Other than the fact I love my ponies (and who here doesn't) and I'm pretty sure I'll need to be medicated when they cross the Rainbow Bridge, I can't figure out why I keep having dreams like this. In the dreams, the death is unexpected though not necessarily traumatic. Sometimes I have to choose to euthanize. Once I couldn't get there in time because I couldn't paddle my canoe down the winding creek fast enough. Emotionally, though, it's exhausting and horrible. I spend most of the dream crying hysterically and my boyfriend reports that at least once he's seen me literally crying in my sleep.

    I want to stop having these dreams because, well, THEY SUCK. I wake feeling unrested, and it really gets me down. My day starts awful. If they happen in the middle of the night, it takes me a while to feel (emotionally) safe sleeping again.


    The other, unwanted dreams aren't unpleasant DURING the dream per se, but when I wake up I'm forced to remember a painful time from the past. Specifically, I have dreams about my ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend (they became my exes when they started dating each other, among other very hurtful things (ps, I am not totally innocent in this, but my olive branches have been shat upon. Yes, shat. It's past tense.). In the dreams, the reality of the past is acknowledged, but over the course of the dream I gradually become more relaxed around the ex best friend. Mostly they center around her, but sometimes he is there. These dreams happen about as often as the dead horse dreams, but there is no correlation between them.

    I want to stop having these dreams because I want to stop thinking about them. I don't want to be reminded of them when I see a car that kind of looks like the car she had in college. I defriended them on Facebook, which was a HUGE help, but I can't erase everything (nor, of course, should I want to). I want to "move on" though, and I feel like even though my consciousness has moved on (I have a great bf- waaaaay better than the ex on so many levels, my real The One, I have a great life, and the best revenge is to live well and forget them IMHO), my subconscious hasn't gotten with the program and it bugs me. It will be 3 years this April that it all exploded and ended.


    A therapist I once saw suggested I try thinking about the dream I don't want to have before I go to bed. Try to think it though start to finish. He said he's never known it not to work. I've tried- there are too many variations on the bad dreams for me to plan ahead, and they don't repeat

    I also have plenty of nice dreams, and I enjoy those immensely.

    Anyone either been in this boat and can offer me a "welcome to the club", or offer me the trick of how to get out of the club?

    Yes, I realize investing in some therapy may be helpful but this is not really a good time for me to be spending money or sitting in an office for an hour each week, so I'm hoping I can do something on my own first to try and help myself. And, I also know that I am a fairly anxious person who feels emotions fully (the good and the bad) and though I've gotten a LOT better about anxiety in my consciousness... maybe this is my subconscious addressing subconscious anxiety?

    If nothing else, knowing I'm not alone with my brand of crazy would be nice.



  2. #2
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    Dec. 17, 2007
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    I used to have a weird and unpleasant dream about my first horse. She would be in my parents' garage, and I would suddenly remember I'd forgotten to feed her-as in days/weeks.
    I'd go in to see her, and when she turned around, her whole side had no hair and was like a dry, gray leather. It was really upsetting, although she wasn't bad off as in weak and skinny. I still haven't figured that dream out.

    Are you on any medications that would make you have these dreams?



  3. #3
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    Oct. 26, 2005
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    Birth control (implanon) is inserted in my arm. It's interesting you ask this- I can't say for sure how the onset of the dreams times with the bc being placed. I have been on various forms of bc since 2005 or 2006... and the dreams started after that. But so did the rest of my life, ya know?

    No other meds, though.

    Hmmm.



  4. #4
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    Jun. 7, 2006
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    Can you stop the dream in the middle and just wake up?

    That's what I do.
    If a dream goes somewhere I don't want I say, "Erm, nope. Ixnay on this one," and wake up.

    Real life is stressful enough without having to put up with crap while I am trying to sleep.



  5. #5
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    A TRUE life real MURDER that happened in 2003 was related to a repetitive nightmare I've had since around 1977...

    Well, I used to have a repetitive nightmare starting when I was about 14, until I was around 24. I'd have it every 5 or 6 months. Some men were chasing me with guns, and I'd run into a large 2 story home, that I just assumed was my parents' home (since the dream started when I lived at home, and I had no concept of "my home"). The men would be running after me, and I'd run upstairs to my parent's room, go into the walk in closet and pull down a secret hidden trap door. As I was climbing up in there I would hear the footsteps of the men with guns running up the stairs, into the master bedroom. I'd get the door pulled shut and be safe, and wake up.

    I had the dream often enough, that eventually, I would know in the back of my mind, what I needed to do. So I got a little less scared...

    Then, the last time I had the dream, when I ran into the closet, and could hear the men coming, I went to pull down the hidden trap door and it was locked, and the men burst into the closet and fired! I woke up panicked...And never had the dream again, and forgot about it UNTIL....


    Now Here's the weird part. In 2003, when I was 40, my husband and I bought a house as part of an estate where an 82 yr old lady was murdered by her 62 yr old Schizo son. The day it was being inspected, I was in another room upstairs, and the inspector yelled to me "Hey! You've got a hidden room!" I was kind of excited and said "really? Where?" He said, "in the master bdm closet". And I started over there and then the whole dream came back to me. THIS was the house from my dream! Right down to the location of the stairs.

    After talking to the neighbors, one of them told me that the mother was once chased by her son up to the bdm, and he shot at her. There was a bullet hole in the Master bathroom wall. They tried to get her to call the cops but she refused.

    We never did have any problems with the house, but I did get a little wigged out if I was there by myself.

    So no help for you, OP, but that's my weird dream story. (I will note I had more nightmares when I was a teen to late 20's, in general.)
    Last edited by jetsmom; Mar. 20, 2011 at 11:55 AM.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
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    Aug. 12, 2008
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    I have always had vivid and intensive dreams. My first nightmare that i remember was when i was about 5 or 6 and my friends and I were sitting in a circle with legs stretched out with no shoes on. Some man walked by and lit our toes on fire.

    My dreams (nightmares) have never gone away. I have them in varying degrees, but when I get stressed they come out more.

    I've had therapy (for reasons unrelated to my dreams, although the reasons were in every aspect of my life) and it didn't help.

    If I think about it before I fall asleep, then I will dream about it. My dreams usually do not have an end, so they can (in theory) go on for a long time. They intermingle with other dreams a lot. I get déjà vu a lot in my dreams. I can be half awake and still be dreaming and know i'm dreaming but can't stop it.

    I can't help in getting rid of the dreams, but at least you know you aren't alone!



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    Can you stop the dream in the middle and just wake up?

    That's what I do.
    If a dream goes somewhere I don't want I say, "Erm, nope. Ixnay on this one," and wake up.

    Real life is stressful enough without having to put up with crap while I am trying to sleep.
    I know I don't currently recognize that I'm dreaming while I'm dreaming. My dreams are so very, very real. When I dream in foreign languages, I have the SAME conjugation problems in my sleep as I do in real life, lol. I wonder how I could train myself to know...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kat_Renee View Post

    I can't help in getting rid of the dreams, but at least you know you aren't alone!
    That's helpful, to know I'm not alone



  8. #8
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    Oct. 31, 2009
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    I dream a lot and go through phases when I remember what I dreamt pretty well, at least upon waking. Usually good dreams, and some lucid ones as well, (not as many as I'd like, and seems like everytime I realize I'm dreaming and I can do what I want, I decide to "fly around", then pretty quick I wake up, which is always a bummer... I'd like to enjoy those dreams!).

    I've had 2 really ugly, bloody, violent nightmares recently and can't remember ever having dreams like that before. Neither made any sense and both involved large groups of people (and animals) dying. Both were quite long and very clear in my mind (the second is STILL very clear in my mind). My boyfriend was with me in both, and we both lived, so that's a good thing!

    One wasn't scary until the end- there was a huge, tall bridge spanning a river and it had tons of levels, (kind of like a bridge/parking garage combo). We were among a big group of people on one side and there were tons of people/horses crossing towards us. Most were driving horses, pulling people in carts. All of the sudden I heard this "clicking" that I realized was a lever on the bridge counting down the seconds until the bridge collapsed/folded up. Too late to do anything but panic, and then the bridge collapsed, (but didn't just collapse- it dropped/collapsed on itself, one layer at a time). Crash, crash, crash.....It was extremely gory and traumatic

    The more recent involved paddling across a lake in the dark, running from something, with lots of other people. A tentacled monster grabbing my leg and trying to pull me back once we reached shore. Then running down an aisle, indoors somewhere, with people and animals all over, trying to get away from whatever was behind us. All sorts of animals, a Collie pulling a child in a cart, (wtf?) and someone tossing me up on a HUGE Belgian who was part of a team also pulling a cart. Finally getting to some sort of gymnasium where we had to wait for a "green light" to cross and follow a curved track to the door on the other side. The door across the room was "safe", if we could get through it. Coming up to the line and watching the group of people ahead of us on the track, with a timer counting down at the far side- when the timer wound down and the people weren't across yet, (the track was full of people) table saws popped up from the floor and tore through the group. Blood everywhere. It was our "turn" to go next, and my bf and I both made it, but WTF???

    I woke up just terrified from both dreams. I don't even know why I bothered to type them out, (sorry for the long, probably not interesting post!) but am glad I did because until I wrote this I didn't see the small parallels in the dreams, (other than both being over-the-top gory). What's with the timers counting down and both dreams having driving horses, (not to mention the driving dog?!). I don't even drive horses and can't think of any reason I'd be dreaming about it!

    The only recurring dream I have, (and I haven't had it in a while, knock on wood!) is about my teeth falling out. I'm just doing whatever, then suddenly I start spitting out pieces of tooth and whole teeth. Lots of teeth. Freaks me out, then I wake up. I read in a dream dictionary once that "losing teeth" dreams happens because of stress?
    The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to themselves, "You know, I want to set those people on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done".



  9. #9
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    Sep. 1, 2006
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    About two weeks ago, I started having pretty graphic, terrifying dreams. Either I'm the victim of violence, or the perpetrator of. In my dreams, I've seen the most horrible things, stuff I can't even watch in movies. If I've been lucky enough to wake out of them in the middle of the night, I have to turn on the lights before I go back to sleep.

    It's very unsettling, and it takes a day or two to fade. After the fact, they seem ludicrous, of course. The plot lacks cohesion. But at the time, it's just horrible.

    (I've also had the loose teeth dream, and I've had the rare recurring dream about tornadoes ever since I was a kid. I used to have a series of insect-related ones, but it's been more than a decade since I had one of those. Whew.)



  10. #10
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    Nov. 22, 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaideux View Post

    I can't figure out why I keep having dreams like this. In the dreams, the death is unexpected though not necessarily traumatic. Sometimes I have to choose to euthanize. Once I couldn't get there in time because I couldn't paddle my canoe down the winding creek fast enough.

    The other, unwanted dreams aren't unpleasant DURING the dream per se, but when I wake up I'm forced to remember a painful time from the past.

    I want to stop having these dreams because I want to stop thinking about them.

    , and I feel like even though my consciousness has moved on (I have a great bf- waaaaay better than the ex on so many levels, my real The One, I have a great life, and the best revenge is to live well and forget them IMHO), my subconscious hasn't gotten with the program and it bugs me.
    You've answered your own problem.

    Unresolved issues; resolve them and you're DONE.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  11. #11
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    Aug. 20, 2006
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    Pa-eternally laboring in the infinite creative and sustentative work of the universe
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    http://dreaminterpretationsguide.com/

    http://www.dreammoods.com/dreamdictionary/

    http://www.meaningofdreams.org/
    >this site has a very nice forum

    By understanding the dream itself, you then have the knowledge of the dream. Most often, then, the dream will change or altogether leave since it has fulfilled it destiny.

    Depending on whether you acknowledge spirit guides, this may allow more of a dream to unfold. Most likely, there are other messages within thesame dream --example: if there are other people..what is their purpose?

    Fascinating subject. You can actually draw dreams to you.
    IN GOD WE TRUST
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  12. #12
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    Oct. 28, 2007
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    I've had the long lines of people dreams, only sometimes they are on highways. And the bridge collapse dream I had was the George Washington bridge (and I did NOT make it).
    Different periods of my life have been punctuated with intense sometimes violent chaotic dreams. It makes daytime hard if you get no peace at night. And sometimes I have wonderful dreams which always seem filled with evergreen trees and snow.
    Anyway, you aren't the only one



  13. #13
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    Not trying to make light of your situation but I found that if I remember a dream when I wake up I look it up in the Dreams A-Z dictionary online. It sounds hokey but some times a "simple" explanation of what happened in my dream really helps me feel less freaked out about a bad dream....



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1sock View Post
    The only recurring dream I have, (and I haven't had it in a while, knock on wood!) is about my teeth falling out. I'm just doing whatever, then suddenly I start spitting out pieces of tooth and whole teeth. Lots of teeth. Freaks me out, then I wake up. I read in a dream dictionary once that "losing teeth" dreams happens because of stress?
    Quote Originally Posted by Paragon View Post
    (I've also had the loose teeth dream
    Every specialist I've seen for my TMJ has asked me if I have those teeth falling out dreams. Apparently it is a VERY common symptom of people who grind their teeth at night. I don't have those dreams... but I do grind.

    Definitely going to check those out. Hopefully that will give me some insight into resolving the dreams!

    Most other dreams I have I can identify why I might be dreaming about that topic or I can identify the symbolism (I make my own meanings, I don't use dream books or anything). But clearly I need a leg up on this one, so thanks for those links!!



  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kat_Renee View Post
    I have always had vivid and intensive dreams. My first nightmare that i remember was when i was about 5 or 6 and my friends and I were sitting in a circle with legs stretched out with no shoes on. Some man walked by and lit our toes on fire.

    My dreams (nightmares) have never gone away. I have them in varying degrees, but when I get stressed they come out more.

    I've had therapy (for reasons unrelated to my dreams, although the reasons were in every aspect of my life) and it didn't help.

    If I think about it before I fall asleep, then I will dream about it. My dreams usually do not have an end, so they can (in theory) go on for a long time. They intermingle with other dreams a lot. I get déjà vu a lot in my dreams. I can be half awake and still be dreaming and know i'm dreaming but can't stop it.

    I can't help in getting rid of the dreams, but at least you know you aren't alone!
    I could have written this, minus the therapy, haven't tried that yet. I occasionally have recurring dreams/nightmares, and I work on trying to recognize that it *is* a dream and I *can* wake up, but most of the time it stops coming back and I haven't really mastered waking myself up. Again, I'm of no help, but you definitely aren't alone!



  16. #16
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    I've always had very vivid, awful dreams. Getting trapped in the house by terrorists, being lost in a burning building, chased by angry bears, all my teeth falling out, you name it. I have never noticed any pattern or connection to real life. I learned early on that I can't watch horror movies, because if I do, those will inevitably show up in my dreams.

    I am a happy, secure, no-drama type person with no remarkable trauma in my life. (Really lucky, I know!) I recently got to the point where the inability to go to sleep/stay asleep was impacting other areas of my life.


    I guess I finally decided to stop thinking about it as "no big deal" and talked to my doctor. I had tried Ambien and some other sleep aids before with zero success. She prescribed a 'serotonin modulator' that I take about an hour before bed. Best sleep I've had in my entire life. I have not had one upsetting dream since I've been taking it. I guess in 'normal' doses it's an antidepressant, but in low doses, it's used to treat insomnia. It's not habit forming - if I'm tired and relaxed, I can easily get to sleep without it.

    So, moral of the story... if your sleep issues are that troubling for you, talk to a doctor about it. Medicine may or may not be the answer for you, but either way you don't *have* to live with troubled, inadequate sleep. I wish I had done something about it a long time ago.
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  17. #17
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    As I was plagued with night terrors from childhood, I began picking my dreams as I was falling asleep. This works about 95% of the time, although the odd nightmare will sneak in when it can. My nightmares would cause me to wake up screaming, which would almost put my husband into cardiac arrest.

    One of the dreams that is reoccurring is the one about my teeth falling out. I actually had a front tooth knocked out many years ago and I think it stems from that. Upon waking, I've actually ran to the mirror to see that all my teeth are still intact.



  18. #18
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    How old are you? Disturbing dreams are said to peak in your early twenties, and then to wane with age.

    I'm only 24 and I have far fewer weird dreams than I used to. I also make sure that I sleep soundly and completely so that I don't wake up and remember the dreams. I don't really like the experience of dreaming very much.

    Of course, I'm sure that healthy habits like:
    * Lots of exercise so you're good and legitimately body-tired, and can release internal stress.
    * Eating small, regular meals and not too close to bed time.
    * No coffee or stimulants after 2pm
    ...have helped me. But I'm sure that goes without saying

    Anyway, I'm really sorry that you're experiencing these awful dreams. I hate to visit disturbing alternative universes in my sleep! All the best.
    Disclaimer: My mom told me that people might look at my name and think I had an addiction other than horses. I don't; his name was Bravado.



  19. #19
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    I also have really bad dreams quite often and can't help on how to get out of them. Sometimes I will wake up and convince myself it's not real, but then fall back asleep right into the same dream, even though I'm protesting against it. I have tried picking my dreams but it doesn't work at all.

    I also dream my horses have died and my bad dreams are often combined with a 'late dream' where I couldn't get there in time (very stressful!).

    You are definitely not alone! I also will dream in the foreign languages I know - I can't believe my brain is working that hard in my sleep! Why can't it just let me rest?!

    Two things I've noticed that seem to trigger bad dreams: going to bed with wet hair, and eating something sugary right before bed (dessert, cold medicine).
    Blugal

    You never know what kind of obsessive compulsive crazy person you are until another person imitates your behaviour at a three-day. --Gry2Yng



  20. #20
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    Jaideaux, with the dreams regarding your ex-boyfriend and ex-best friend, it sounds as though the ex-boyfriend issue has been resolved but the ex-best friend issue has not. An ex-best friend is hard to replace too and it sounds like you still miss her.

    Regarding the other bad dreams... the only thing I can think of is perhaps meditation before you go to bed, maybe? I don't really have nightmares but my husband does. When my mare died after foaling several years ago from a ruptured main uterine artery her death played in my mind in an endless loop during the days. My husband was off the farm at work and able to push it out of his mind during the day, but the events surrounding her death haunted him at night. He finally got over it by concentrating on her foal, who we still have.



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