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I dream of my ex every single night

This topic contains 7 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  allison123 2 days, 19 hours ago.

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  • #47676

    allison123
    Participant

    It’s been 5 months since the breakup, 3.5 months since I’ve seen her, and 1 month since I have had any kind of contact.

    My ex was a narcissist / possible sociopath and i’m ready to move on and not look back. However, she haunts my dreams almost every night. Most dreams consist of me seeing her, speaking with her, and things being normal and good like when things were good in our relationship. Some dreams consist of her telling me about a new partner and I get upset.

    We ended on a very bad note 5 months ago, she left me sobbing at her door while she slammed the door in my face and laughed and apologized to her company that had over. Since then I have felt every emotion you can feel, and I’m mostly in a better place except for the dreams (that usually affect my day).

    Am I doing something wrong? How can I move forward & stop seeing her every night in my dreams?

  • #47678

    emilie18
    Participant

    Allison123 – I believe dreams are your brains coping mechanism to “clear out” the debris from the day – the stuff you don’t want to consciously think about or remember. The more you don’t deal with it, the more your brain dumps it on you at night. Unfair and mean, if you ask me! I learned a technique years ago called “directed dreaming”, or “lucid dreaming” where I can somewhat control where my mind goes at night. I also write down disturbing dreams and look for patterns. I have learned that it is not so much the details that matter, but the feelings and emotions. When you analyze those, you can deal with the underlying causes while awake. Sounds “new age”, I know – but it works. Toward the end of my relationship with the narcissist who robbed me, I was having all sorts of weird dreams – running away from monsters, drowning, falling into holes, getting lost in mazes – and I realized my subconscious was warning me to pay attention to the danger that was HIM – so I started investigating and found out all sorts of truths I did not want to see.

    The memory dreams you are having might have some clue to your healing. Pay attention to the emotions and write them down. Learn lucid dreaming techniques (look online or in the library) to redirect the path those dreams are taking – specifically, imagining how great your life is without the ‘spath in it. I still have dreams about my ex at times – but I make sure he is suffering in some way before I wake up – or that I am not.

    Hope your next dream is all about YOU being happy, successful and whole!

    • #47704

      allison123
      Participant

      Maybe so. It seems that sometimes certain things trigger the dreams – driving by where she works, seeing her friend in public, etc…

      Most of my dreams lately have been rather sad though. It’s mainly me expressing that I miss her and how much pain I’m in. It’s like my brain is still in conflict with how I’m feeling. I KNOW she was not good for me, but I still miss her and I suppose I’m still grieving the loss of who she was at her best (which wasn’t even real) and what I hoped for in the relationship.

      My biggest struggle is that on the days following the dream, I just feel bleak and depressed…she held such a high place in my life I’m having trouble finding meaning in other things.

  • #47679

    slimone
    Participant

    Allison123,

    You are not doing anything wrong. You are traumatized. As a result you are processing full time. It can be very painful to not be able to escape into sleep. It can also feel so unfair that the feelings and experiences just won’t leave you alone. Hang in there. It will resolve.

    I did the same. And, I still have dreams so many years later. Sometimes he is cured, normal, kind, apologetic. But more often than not he is up to something, only in the dream I can see what he is lying about.

    After a time these dreams stopped being painful. Now they are just interesting, and I have no feelings about them one way or the other. But, I do think that initially they are about very deep processing. Now I tend to feel like it is because something that traumatic is now a part of me, and always will be.

    Also, the dreams no longer feel like they are about him. They are more about the context, revelations about myself, disordered people in the world, and deeper levels of closure.

    I do wonder if these initial dreams are also a way that we protect ourselves from further harm. Like our brains are reminding us to stay away from the person.

    Hugs, Slim

    • #47705

      allison123
      Participant

      It’s encouraging to know that the dreams are no longer painful for you. I’m glad that you’ve been able to come so far and heal so much after your relationship.

      It’s confusing because my dreams lately have not been about her hurting me or flashbacks from traumatic events. It’s about me missing her and expressing that to her. And then the days following the dream I miss her, feel depressed, and have trouble focusing on things at work. It’s almost as if someone has died. She disappeared from my life & I know that she can’t be a part of it anymore because of who she is and how she manipulated me for so long.

      • This reply was modified 1 week, 1 day ago by  allison123.
  • #47707

    regretfullymine
    Participant

    I started dreaming dreams involving the ex, after I divorced him. Never dreamed about him before (except one dream about him and his glasses!)..I still dream about him, and its been almost 20 years since the divorce. Dreams are often about strange built houses/weird coloredhouses,, rooms either empty or full of clutter, and he is in these. A recent dream involved me being in a luxurious guest home, with settings of exquisite china; in a room with a huge round table, I was in a corner with our oldest son, and his boy, my grandson. Suddenly the ex appears, grabs the grandson and takes him away. Last night, it was about a chicken house?! made of plastic webbing under a tent! I don’t understand these; they don’t happen often, but they sure are weird!!

  • #47724

    slimone
    Participant

    allison123,

    This represents the ‘bargaining’ part of grief. IMHO. It is about negotiating a better outcome than the one you experienced. And, it is totally normal.

    The stages, which are not by any means successive, are: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

    Our subconscious processes these stages of grief when we are asleep. So, we have dreams where we are sad, angry, hopeful, relieved, etc…as we work round and round to process our loss.

    The good news is you are doing it. You are processing, feeling, and healing. Even though you feel (probably) like you are just being tortured! It is staying with, examining, and letting go (every day, step by step) of these feelings, as they assist us toward acceptance and neutrality, that is the path of healing.

    It is difficult, protracted, and can be really confusing. I know I felt like I would reach a little patch of peace, only to find myself hurt, sad, and lonely all over again.

    It will get better. Promise. The more time and distance (no contact) you maintain, the more you heal. The more you are able to stay with what is REAL, and not sink into too much fantasy about what you are ‘longing’ for, the more you heal. It is HARD to stay present with ourselves when we are in pain. It is HARD to keep our attention on our own lives when we are experiencing lots of negative feelings. But it is critical to do so.

    Your dreams cannot really harm you. They are fleeting. The feelings they create will pass. Try your best to observe, feel, consider, and then move on.

    You can do this. I did it, and I thought I was going to be destroyed by my experience and feelings. You will survive (and hopefully THRIVE) too!

    Keep being kind to yourself. You deserve your own tenderness and understanding.

    Hugs and love,
    Slim

    • #47742

      allison123
      Participant

      Thank you for the kind response. I haven’t had any dreams about her since the last extremely painful dream I had nearly 2 weeks ago. Even if this is temporary, it’s nice to just have a break from it.

      Although I haven’t spoken to her in a while, her plan was to move to a new city in January. I live in a small town, so it will be a huge relief to not worry about running into her in public. Maybe I can finally have some peace and move on.

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