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Advice on recurring dream

So this isn't weight loss / health related at all, but since I can't afford a therapist :-) I thought I'd ask my fellow PTers for their thoughts.

I've had a recurring dream for about 3 months, and now I'm dreaming it every night. I wake up crying, and it's pretty distressing. Yesterday I figured out why I'm having the dreams, but last night I dreamt the same thing again.

Background: My first boyfriend and I dated in highschool. I broke up with him when he was in the army. We remained close, and he wanted to get back together. Finally, when he moved on and found another girlfriend, I was devastated. I realized I'd made a big mistake, and tried to reconcile. He refused, but we continued to be friends for about seven years. The scenario of him wanting to reconcile and me not being keen, and vice versa, went on for seven years! I had other boyfriends in the interim, but he remained a big issue for me.

When I left my home country, I felt the need to call him up and ask him one final time if he thought we had any chance of a future together. His answer was no. I grieved for about 2 days, but that was followed by a HUGE sense of relief that it was finally over. And it is. I will always care for him, but I no longer regret that I messed things up.

Now I'm in the US, and am engaged to the most wonderful man. He adores me, and we're getting married quite soon.

In my recurring dream, I do something to piss him off (I never remember what it is)... He withdraws from me completely, I realize what I've done, but it's too late. He is very dismissive, refuses to talk it through, avoids me, and starts spending time with his ex-wife. I try in vain to make things right between us, but he eventually leaves me, saying that he no longer loves me.

My question / request for advice is this: What do I need to do to reassure my subconscious that this scenario isn't going to happen? I really want to stop having these dreams, because I usually can't get back to sleep, and wake up exhausted in the mornings.


Fri. Sep 29, 9:22am

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maybe discuss the dream with him? he may provide the reassurance you need.

Friday, September 29, 2006, 9:42 AM

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Based on what you've said, it doesn't sound like your dream is based on your first boyfriend at all. Though you sound very happy, you might have some doubt about whether your relationship will work (perfectly natural before getting married). Perhaps you're concerned about this & releasing it in your dream because it's not a conscious thought (at least not right now).

I agree with the above poster & I think you should bring it up to your fiance (if you feel comfortable doing so & hopefully you do if you're in such an intimate relationship). Maybe try foreshadowing it with telling him what you need: For him to listen & maybe even reassure you.

In the meantime, on your own, try writing down this dream on paper. Then look at it & ask yourself what you would do if this did happen (let's call it the "worst case scenario"). Would you grieve, then move on? (hopefully!) Now what's the best case scenario? (Paint a beautiful, PERFECT picture.) Now what's MOST LIKELY to happen? (Have normal fights, get annoyed with each other, love each other, etc.) This might help you face your anxiety (if that's what it is) head-on & dismiss the "worst case scenario."

I might be all wrong, but I'm just trying to help based on what you've shared. Hope this helps & your nightmares go away!

Friday, September 29, 2006, 11:00 AM

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To the OP -- I think you are in one of my teams? J

Friday, September 29, 2006, 11:11 AM

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To 11:11, quite possible. I'm also a J :-)

Thanks to the above posters... I have actually talked about it with my fiance many times. He reassures me each time that it's not going to happen, and on an intellectual level, I know that's true.

I really do believe it's based on the first boyfriend thing... feeling like I'm too late to rectify the problem, and grieving that he no longer loves me.

Will try writing the dream down, although by now I'm veeeery familiar with it, cos I've had it so often.

Friday, September 29, 2006, 11:20 AM

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could this be a self-esteem issue? or a codependency issue? or a fear of commitment? an abandonment issue? as far as convincing yourself that this isn't going to happen, i don't know that you can. it's a faith thing. you might want to list all the reasons you believe this relationship WILL last instead of focusing on trying to rid yourself of the subconscious feelings you can't seem to control. you know, positive self-reinforcement. and while you are exploring around in your head, think about what your course of action would be if this did NOT work out. the fear of the unknown is sometimes overwhelming-try to create a real-life scenario and write down how you might pick-up-the-pieces, so to speak. this exercise might show you that no relationship is the "be all, end all" in your life, and take the pressure off.

Friday, September 29, 2006, 12:02 PM

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