Nightmares of Children being Kidnapped or Chased

August 4, 2013

The dreams in this category all have to do with bad guys, monsters, scary animals or other malevolent forces abducting, chasing, harming and tormenting the dreamer’s child or children.

This category of dreams could be called “Shadow” dreams insofar as they may be dealing with our own dark places, the aggression and cruelty that lurks somewhere, if not in the “heart,” at least in the reptilian realm of the human brain.

Often these dreams arise when we have some sort of hurt feelings, perhaps related to our own past, perhaps because our child has hurt our feelings or made us angry (and, of course, children are quite challenging and we DO get upset time to time).  When our self-concept is “loving parent,” our “bad guy” self has to be relegated to the dungeon of our minds, the unconscious.  And when it comes roaring into consciousness during the night in our dreams we wake up horrified beyond measure.

It is hoped that readers might see that they are not alone in their nightmares, and that becoming more aware and honest about ALL our feelings, including our anger and our wounds, we may become happier in ourselves and actually more patient and compassionate toward our children.

Of course real people really do hurt children, and this is something we must all work together to protect children from.  Yet it bears keeping in mind that abuse and harm tend to follow cycles across generations.  Understanding our pain and working it through can help stop cycles of pain and contribute to a more compassionate culture all around.

The dreams, and potential interpretations, in this Shadow category are as follows:

[Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]



Magdalena October 18, 2012 at 8:22 am [edit]

I was reading about people dreams and there children. I didnt really get the answer I was hoping for. I had the worst nightmare about my 2 children. I was wanting to know if someone out there could give me an answer on the meaning of my dream.
I dreamed that I walked away from my car and my son and daughter were in the car. An officer walked up to the car and said ill move it. I felt this funny feeling in the pit of my stomach and told him the car was fine and the kids were ok. As I was walking towards my car. He got in and started to drive away with my kids. I freaked out and went after the car. Next thing I new I was talking to the police about my kids missing. I found myself at the dog track looking for them. I found a clue that they were there. The whole time I could hear my daughter calling out for me. I found myself picking up some change and I said that was my daughters money. I remember saying im getting closer to her. Then I found myself in a pool with water surrounding me and all I could say was I know im getting closer to you. mommies coming and I woke up crying and my daughter was laying next to me in my bed. I grabbed her and ran to my sons room and he was there tossing and turning in his sleep. I felt as if I failed them in my dream cause I never found them. Wehn I took them to school this morning I didnt want to let them go. I felt as if they werent going to return. Can some one help me on trying to figure out the meaning of my dream? Thank you for all your help and reading about my dream.


Bruce October 18, 2012 at 4:47 pm [edit]

Hi Magdalena,

Perhaps the car symbolizes your own self and the walking away from it, and your kids symbolizes how you are struggling to stay with parenting sometimes, especially to set limits. I say this because the cop comes and offers to “move your car” maybe meaning that your inner authority figure shows up, but turns out to be a Shadow figure—powerful but untrustworthy regarding your inner children.

Your Shadow takes control, and that is symbolic for losing your temper possibly, but the Shadow self “wants” the children. As hard as parenting is, as soon as we are separated from our kids we desperately want to get them back and protect them.

You go searching for you inner children and it leads to the dog track. Perhaps this symbolizes the animal part of yourself (and also, dog spelled backward could hint at the spiritual aspect of your natural self).

Your inner kid is calling out to you, to be aware of her. You “pick up change” which is both money/something of value, but also to become different or change ourselves.

You “get closer to her” which is physically close, but also emotionally and psychologically closer. Then you are in water, symbol of the mother, feelings and the unconscious.

You are going into the past, the unconscious and the relationship between past hurts, natural instincts and your own power (the cop self). By realizing that you must heal the pain of the past, you may start to have a better relationship with your inner cop self, kid self, money and even animal selves to become the mom and person you would have been, perhaps, if you were parented by someone like yourself who is so committed to keeping your children safe.

All Best Wishes

^ * * * ^



E.E. September 28, 2012 at 7:10 am [edit]

I’m 7 months pregnant and I have a 10 month old baby girl. I’ve had lots of nightmares but last night’s was the worst. I dreamed we (my husband and I and the baby) had moved near the beach (we already live in Los Angeles) in a crowded neighborhood and early in the morning I’m walking outside on the patio awake because some loud neighbors are still up and partying. Suddenly a huge earthquake hits and as soon as it ends I see my brother (we were close when we were little but drifted because of an extremely abusive household- he became an alcoholic and I live across the country, so we don’t see each other now.) he walks up to me and I ask him if he’s been able to find or save anyone. He mentioned something about my cat and then shows me a minor cut on his hand and jokes about how he was injured. I’m terrified about my baby so I move past him and as I’m getting closer to where she is, the destruction worsens. There is debris and water blocking my way and it’s nearly impossible to climb over. I think I can hear her crying faintly as I enter my demolished home, but I can’t find her anywhere. Then the crying stops. I see a man with two young sons looking at me, they are on a roof above. They said they saw a baby being rescued by a man and that she looked happy (she always is) but I’m not sure I believe them, I think she is still there, in the debris. Then everything disappears and I’m alone, standing on a very narrow ledge over what looks like an endless well that opened during the earthquake and I wonder to myself, if any of that happened, or if it was some delusion I had because I am near death.


Bruce September 28, 2012 at 11:50 am [edit]

Hi E.E.,

I don’t know if you read through any of the other comments and responses, but if you do you will see that you are not alone in this sort of dream.

I this case I would view the situation as the unconscious conspiring to get your own self and your “brother self” back in contact (this might not need to happen in “real life” but it does need to happen in your inner psychology). You are trying to come to terms with the pain of the past, of childhood and hurt and abuse, and this felt like an earthquake and disaster when you were little. The destroyed house might symbolize the destruction of your self as a child, and the baby might symbolize your baby self who was both destroyed, but who was also rescued (by the you you have become now, the mother and the survivor and the more conscious and loving being). The endless well is a symbol of the despair of your very early childhood, the unremembered past.

The ledge is the line between being and non-being, reality and insanity (for we leave our bodies and float away, not just when we die, but when we are abused). The well is both the pit but it is also the wellspring of new birth, and alas you are pregnant, soon to birth the second child, which symbolically is also yourself in relationship to an older sibling.

You are also Mother earth, the earthquake, and you are the water, symbol of mother, feelings, tears and the unconscious. You are angry because you have been hurt, but you are also alive, safe and able to stare into the abyss and wonder what this life is all about.

None of us can say for sure, but we can give compassion to those who suffer, and accept compassion from those who love us, wherever they may be (i.e. even if they are ancestors, the spirits of those we carry in our hearts and minds, but who we team up with to love and protect not just our own children, but each others’ children too—this is the beginning of community, culture and true civilization).

In your dream you stand alone at the ledge, but when you share the dream you stand with all of us and you are not alone.

Warmest Regards

^ * * * ^



Hanna October 18, 2012 at 8:26 am [edit]

Hi, everyone. I just had some awful dreams about my three week old son. In the first dream he got hurt in a mall when a man was trying to shoot people. He was breathing the whole time but he was bleeding from his diaper…I can’t explain it but I could never seem to get him help. It was the most helpless feeling I’ve ever felt. I just felt that he wouldn’t make it but thankfully I woke up. The next dream, I was at my friends house and all of a sudden he started to turn purple because he wouldn’t breathe. He did it twice while I was waiting for an ambulance. I don’t understand why I’m dreaming about him almost dying. It’s scaring me though.


Bruce October 18, 2012 at 4:54 pm [edit]

Hi Hanna,

It sounds like having a newborn is possibly triggering deeply held body memories about what it might have been like for you as a newborn. We see the Shadow figure here as a shooter in a mall, the collective place. Bleeding from the diaper suggests trauma in that area of the body (possibly sexual; and a man with a gun and a baby bleeding in the diaper is a very horrible thought indeed).

While I’m not suggesting that you were abused, I am suggesting that being a baby for you may have felt like being very helpless (as we are all helpless when newly born).

Another take on this is that having just given birth, you may have had some bleeding and pain in that region and you may unconsciously feel like the baby hurt you by being born. This is nature, but perhaps your birth experience had some trauma involved and you are trying to work it out in your dream life.

There are no right or definitive answers in dream interpretation, but if you think about all the aspects as aspects of yourself (including the purple faced one who is not breathing, again making me wonder if baby, or you as a baby had any cord issues or incidents of trouble breathing) you will likely have insights into what YOU are feeling and thinking, and if you get it right in your own opinion the bad dreams generally become better.

All Best Wishes

^ * * * ^


Lala July 28, 2013 at 1:50 pm [edit]

I had a horrible dream last night, I was sitting at a restaurant with a friend and “Sara”, “Sara” was kind of dismissing my portion of the conversation and ignoring me then coughed in my face. I hate other people’s germs, so I said to her don’t you ever f!!!ing in my face again. “Sara” replied with I can do what I want and started choking me, I started chocking back. Then she tried to kick me and she was wearing my 4 yr old daughters dress shoes. I started punching her in the face and kicked her to the ground, I slammed her face on the floor and was yelling at her “keep your hands to yourself” I let her up and when I did she resembled my 4 yr old in hairstyle only, I guess as we were fight we somehow ended up on my home kitchen, and knocked a knife off the counter, “Sara” picked it up and started coming towards me. I picked up my counter stool and hit her hand with it, she fell and dropped the knife but the handle broke off. I don’t remember if I told her to get out, but as she was leaving my grandma said to her “I guess there goes our cookbook”. I said to “Sara” I didn’t have to be like this but she ignored me and kept walking down my drive way. Now as she is walking away she has fully transformed into my 4yr old, realizing its my daughter I say out of desperation for her to come back in our home “your not even gonna tell your sister bye” she turns around and runs back in the house towards my mom and 7 yr old daughter. Then I wake up. I immediately run into their room and kiss her and tell her I love. I returned to my room but by this time I am in full blown hysterics and balling like a baby to the point I wake my husband who is asking what the hell is wrong. Feeling ashamed,guilty and embarrassed I just say I had a bad dream but didn’t want to talk about it and that I would tell him in the morning. I could get back to sleep so I went back to daughters room and layed with my 4 yr old for a while. Now, for the reality bits…… My grandmother has never met my 4yr old, me and “Sara” went to High school together but never talked besides the occasional wave o hi when passing each other in the halls, I saw her a few months ago and she asked how have I been and how is my brother, I told her and that was it.
What does this mean? I am completely terrified, and need answers. Please can anybody help??!!!


Bruce July 28, 2013 at 9:53 pm [edit]

Hi Lala,

Whatever this dream means to you is what it means. I can give some ideas to get you thinking, but whatever makes emotional and logical sense depends on what you think and feel.

That said, my mind goes to the idea that you might have felt rather abandoned when you were 4 years old. Perhaps you’re a younger sibling and now that your younger child is four it might be triggering you to think about your feelings from the past.

“Sara” sounds like a person who you did not have a connection with in the past, so perhaps she is, symbolically, a part of you who hurts your feelings or makes you feel judged or insulted (she coughs at you, threatening to infect you and even the germs might be symbolic of “cooties” and not fitting it, or of “catching” bad feelings of inadequacy).

It also sounds like you are having some unconscious feelings of conflict with your 4 year old. Obviously you love her a lot, but perhaps she is starting to become more independent, giving you challenges and power struggles? Sometimes our secret anger at our kids leaks out and up to the surface in dreams, then we are mean or hurtful and wake up guilty.

It’s normal to have some angry feelings. Kids are frustrating and we don’t give much voice to the truth that parenting is very hard and sometimes makes us pretty upset. On this count my hunchi is that being consciously aware that you have some angry feelings, some hurt/ignored/insulted feelings, and also that you feel a bit attacked (knife, etc.) might help you have awareness of your full feelings instead of any more bad dreams.

It seems like you’re trying to be the “perfect mom” and none of us our anywhere near perfect so try to relax and realize that you have not actually hurt your kid, rather you feel hurt and probably from the past more than from your child.

The fact that your grandmother has never met your 4 year old suggests that this makes you feel abandoned or rejected. The idea that she might have been working on a cookbook with Sara implies that your inner Great Mother and your inner “sara” might be able to come together in a nourishing way… if you can realize they are symbolic parts of you (in your dream) and not the actual people in waking life. This is just as true about the 4 year old child part of you.

Notice how Sara becomes your kid Self through shoes (empathy is putting ourselves in “the other person’s shoes”) and hair (which, since it grows out of our heads, can be symbolic for thoughts).

Finally, the fight with Sara, and then her running away in the guise of your child, could help you realize that you are fighting with yourself and then the part you fight becomes the hurt child, and then it runs away from you and leaves you feeling guilty and lonely.

Try to imagine you are back in the dream, but that Sara as your enemy and as your child is really you, as with your grandmother figure. Ask them what they really want from you; recognize them as parts of you and maybe suggest that you want harmony and maybe suggest you all cook something together that can feed you with love and security and healing, realizing that the past may have hurt but that you now have a family, are safe and loved and loving.

Maybe it’s a little bit like “Wizard of Oz” where you feel orphaned and alone and need to realize (with the help of shoes and guidance) that there really is no place like home—and you are blessed to have a loving home. It doesn’t help to bear grudges, so working toward understanding and forgiveness, in the service of loving your children, might help you feel better, less guilty, angry or ashamed and more loved and less alone.

Sweet Dreams

^ * * * ^


Destiny May 25, 2013 at 11:44 am [edit]

So today my and my son joshua (11months old) layed down for a nap. I sleep when he does lol. I had a dream that i was laying in bed and looked into my hallway and noticed my cat sniffing and walking around my sons empty carseat wich was laying in the middle of the hall, not were it usually is. So i got up to check on him. I looked in his room were i keep the door cracked and seen him breathing and ok then the door slammed in my face! So i opend it up and walked in angry. Screaming “Hes my baby, leave him alone!” The door slammed mehind me and i heard growls and screams but saw nothing then sudenly a force yanked me off of my feet and was pushing me out my sons bed room widow which is two stories up. I was still screaming “hes my baby, you cant have him! Leave us alone!” Then i woke up but still couldnt move like i was being held down. Finally i calmed myself and checked on him


Bruce May 25, 2013 at 4:50 pm [edit]

Hi Destiny,

I’d give some thought to how life was for you when you were 11 months old. Did your mother experience a loss at that time? Was there danger around you or affecting you?

One way to take this dream is that the cat is the animal part of you, sniffing around the empty car-seat as if the child has turned magically into a cat (which has 9 lives by myth, and can survive falls, etc).

The “force” that slams the door in your face is the Shadow–the dark and scary part of your own personality. As you joke about sleeping when your kid does, parenting is exhausting; we love our kids, but must push our frustration with them, and our sometimes wish to not have to take care of them, out of our conscious minds and into our unconscious… where it turns monster.

When the Shadow slams the door in your face it is expressing your forbidden wish to be relieved of parenting responsibility (just for a nap of your own). You can’t easily admit this, as it would make you feel like a “bad mother,” so you force your way in, but that old Shadow fulfills your deeper wish to not deal with the baby by throwing you out the window (but you slip and say it through you out “my sons widow”)… sometimes parenting feels like it kills us :)

I suspect that the simple acceptance of your “Shadow” and the mischievous “bad” instinct to protect you (not particularly harm the child you) might help you normalize your mixed feelings, ask for a little help, consider if you’ve had any trauma in your own childhood and talk that through with someone (, and tell that old trouble-maker part of your own psyche that you love and respect it, and are willing to learn from something so powerful, perhaps learn how to love both your baby AND your own Self.

Sweet Dreams

^ * * * ^


Melissa March 4, 2013 at 9:43 pm [edit]

Hello Bruce! Let me start by saying how relieved I am that I am not alone in awful nightmares that don’t make any sense at all. Like many others you’ve responded to, I am hoping you have some possible insight into my nightmare….

It starts at my mother’s house. My husband and our 4 children were staying the night there, which in real life we have done every now and again when helping her with packing things up and such. In the dream, I’m locking the doors in her family room (she has 3 sets of double doors), and I’m having a conversation with my 9 year old son about what tasks we’ll be working on the next day, and I also am holding my 18 month old daughter. I am aware that my other two daughters and husband are in another part of the house. As I’m walking to the middle set of doors to lock them, the door bursts open and this ghost of a very old man with very bright and scary blue eyes and a long beard tries to grab my daughter out of my arms. I’m screaming and terrified as we have a slight tug of war, and my son and daughter are screaming, terrified. The old man is screaming at me “You need to stop this, No! No! Enough!!” and then I’m able to pull my daughter away, slam the door and lock it, and he disappears. I’m scared, of course and then my son is asking “What happened, what was that, what was I doing?” terrified. Confused, I ask if he saw the ghost try to take the baby and the situation that just happened, and he says “No, Mom, I just saw the door open and you screaming, and the you shut the door and locked it, and Kendall’s [my 18 month old] with Dad…..what happened?” Now, really freaked out, I run into the room where my husband is, my son right behind me, and find him asleep in a chair with our daughter also asleep. My son says, “See, Mom…she’s okay….” I feel a wash of relief come over me, but at the same time uneasiness about being in the house. And that’s where the dream ends.

I talked to my husband about this, and while he has done his best to comfort me, I am still a bit uneasy about this dream. My moms house in the dream is the same that I grew up in since I was 2 years old…and am now 30. It is a large house, and old, with some history to it, but I’ve never been afraid. I’m still not afraid of the house…it’s more that I’m afraid of the old man with the beard and piercing blue eyes…I can’t get the image of his face out of my head. I don’t know anyone with a beard, nor eyes like that that frighten me. I don’t have any reason to fear anyone, and certainly no reason to be worried that someone is trying to take my baby, or any of my children, away from me. In short, I have no idea what in reality could have brought this nightmare on……

So, any words of wisdom, thoughts…..prayers……would be greatly appreciated….Thanks!


Bruce March 4, 2013 at 10:12 pm [edit]

Hi Melissa,

While I find myself repeatedly reminding readers that I have no definitive idea about what these dreams mean, only a shared curiosity and wish to be of some comfort.

Let’s start with a “rational” take on the dream: it is classic to experience feelings of either sinking or of floating in dreams because of the random firing of neurons. Knowing that you are in bed, but experiencing floating sensations, it could be that the brain makes a story out of the conundrum and hence—a ghost is born!

What we project onto the neurons may reflect residue of the day, of our past experiences or become a place to work out unresolved emotions the way we might “see things” in an inkblot, but in reality it’s “just an inkblot.”

Once we get into inkblot interpretation, it’s more art than science, however I would offer some symbolic ideas and see if they click.

Mother’s House might be symbol of the deeper self and all the parts it contains: self, children, mother, husband and whatever “ghosts” connected to “the house before it was your family’s house” and as well, family secrets, traumas and thus any “ghosts” you all bring along with you.

The doors in the “family room” could symbolize portals to past and future as well as present; it could symbolize the “doors of perception” (written poetically of by William Blake, cribbed by Jim Morrison).

The family room itself could symbolize the “family psychological situation” as it exists within you. The key struggle here would be the “hungry ghost” and the 18 month old daughter.

To a certain extent dreams can represent forbidden wishes, and here it could be that you find your daughter a little difficult. She has three older sibs to inspire her to grow up quickly to keep up with them, and yet she may be your last child and her growing up represents a death of sorts, of that magical time of having little babies.

The ghost in this sense might be a symbol of the part of you who is suddenly feeling very old at 30, a sort of Father Time symbol who is taking your baby from your arms.

Time is demanding that you must let the baby grow, but it is extremely painful. This is the part that is not understood, the part where in real life you feel alone.

The the symbol of your 9 year old rational self who sees no ghost and no baby, just you “shutting the door” on this tender and beautiful chapter of your life.

18 months is, interestingly, when the brain begins to be able to form narrative, and to form memories as opposed to sense memories. This is a time where the baby differentiates that next step, beginning to explore her world (and needing you to be there when she returns, just as your mom, all these years later, must tolerate the pain of all you guys departing again from her house after her treasured moments when you guys show up).

You do not mention the father. Perhaps you have lost your father and wish he could have met your daughter? Perhaps this is another take on the conflict of the dream, the wish to share the baby and the dread to share her with spirits.

Turning to myth and archetypes, you might like to look up the story of Bluebeard, an old man with a long beard who keeps a little girl hostage in a fairytale. The psychological aspect in this involves female individuation, and she must pull the old man’s beard, or trap it in the window, in order to escape (and make her way to the palace and the prince).

Finally, you might like to ask your mom, now that you are 30, if there are any family secrets, tragedies, old ghosts she knows about. Sometimes the traumas get transmitted to the kids without them knowing even that they know them…

Hope these ideas help. Sweet dreams

^ * * * ^



Vivi December 17, 2012 at 12:40 pm [edit]

Hi i just stumble upon your great sites after i had bad dream with same theme two nights in a row.

In my dream there is an intruder come and try to kidnap my 2 yo daughter. It never finish since i always wake up shivering and found her sleeping with her dad. I have 6yo old son and 4 of us sleep together every night since the day they were born.

I don’t recall to have bad experience nor overprotective towards my children. But i do carefully teach them to pick and use words when they talking to the adults and friends. I’m living in Japan so i kinda have some sort of invisible pressure to raise my children.

Can you please help me. Thank you in advance.


Bruce December 17, 2012 at 5:44 pm [edit]

Hi Vivi,

I’m pleased to hear from you and thank you for sharing your dream. Maybe the two-year-old in your dream is a symbol of your own two-year-old self. If we think about it this way, then the intruder is your Power but also your Shadow.

For many women it can be a struggle to differentiate the darker aspects of our power from the positive aspects. Since your intruder self may have become frustrated in his/her struggles to bring you your power, perhaps this Shadow is claiming your child for instruction in empowerment?

I might invite you to imagine talking to the intruder, saying something like: “I know you are my power and we both love the child me very much. Now that you have my full attention, please instruct me on how I might be a great and powerful mom in the service of my children, and also in the service of all our children, especially those children inside us grown-ups who have felt unseen or disempowered… Help me to use my power wisely and for love.”

Since you are writing from Japan, it makes me think of some great images of power used wisely by the feminine aspect in the films of Miyazaki, particularly “Princess Mononoke” and “Nausicaa.” Your children are young so start with “Totoro,” but you yourself might watch the others for guidance and inspiration.

Finally, you may be very sensitive and although you recall nothing particularly “bad” from childhood, sensitive children can be overwhelmed by things less sensitive people might find to be no big deal. It’s not important to figure out in anything scared you, but it is useful to trust the animal that is your body. If you wake trembling, allow the trembling and trust that it is natural. The gentle trembling, or perhaps tears, or whatever emotions you feel from your body may be ways that the unconscious is teaching you to get back to the soft safe freedom of child-mind.

Finally, sometimes parenting is very frustrating, and thus another way to think about dreams (as Freud was keen on doing) was to see the unconscious wish in the dream. When we have bad dreams about our kids (or others) we are well-served to consider our frustration with those people, however small and lovely they may be. To the extent this is true (and it is very natural) when we are conscious about it the dreams have no need to bring that into consciousness and they evaporate with our rising consciousness.

All Best Wishes & Pleasant Dreams

^ * * * ^



sara December 28, 2012 at 4:20 am [edit]

I keep having dreams different dreams about my two year old buy being kiddnapped, beaten, running away and other people killing him these dreams are so vivid and scary that I cant go back to sleep. I tell myself over and over its only a dream but that doesn’t seem to work.

Last night I had a dream that , people were taking my son like a day care / hospitial/swimming pool ( confusing I know) and little did I know they were taking him to the back and taking out his blood with an iv . I heard him screaming I was powerless to stop it.

How do you make these dreams end?


Bruce December 28, 2012 at 10:04 am [edit]

Hi Sara,

My first instinct is that you simply need love and compassion born of deeper understanding. Your two year old is likely triggering the feelings and forgotten memories of your own experiences around that time of life where you are first separating and individuating, hence the “child part” of you feels like she/he is being taken from you (kidnapping as unconscious defense against feelings of abandonment, and perhaps your fear your baby is growing up and the strivings for autonomy feel like leaving you and this triggers unconscious anger, and hence the “beaten up” as abandonment feels like being beaten and killed because our souls can’t truly live without love, and that means security and safety that we can venture forth and be received with open and loving arms whenever we come back, be it from the world or from the sandbox when that is our world).

The confusion between swimming pool (womb/waters of Great Mother) and hospital (place most moms give birth these days, but also a place of healing) suggests your own wishes to go back in time and also your need for healing—not with medicine and procedures but with accurate understanding, patiences and compassion (for your own self and your experiences).

parenting will teach you again and again that it’s all about transition, and that transition is hard. You are in transition and when you make it through your dreams will be fine again… until the next transition.

Hoping the transition to 2013 brings better dreams and a much needed transfusion of abiding spirit

^ * * * ^


mommy January 28, 2013 at 4:45 am [edit]

Hi, last night I had a dream me and my 2yr old son were walking in the park and he began running toward a small lake I yelled to him no, stop!!!!! He then fell in but never went under water he ended up in the other side and say in a stair, I told him wait for mommy then a women yelled no there are crocodiles in the lake. As I waited for her to grab him I saw a crocodile swim towards him he jumps back to into the lake the women then jumps in after him and swims fasterthen I have ver seen anyone swim she returns him to me unharmed. I then thank and praise her.the night before I dreamt that two detectives tried taking him from me while he was outside waiting for as I ram inside the house to grab something.I don’t understand why I am having these dreams.
waiting in the car while I grabbed something from inside the house it was very cold outside


Bruce January 28, 2013 at 8:36 am [edit]

Hello “mommy”,

If you read through the other dreams above you will find many with water imagery. Perhaps this symbolizes the unconscious itself, but also you and the idea of being one with your baby (like back in the womb).

At 2 years old kids are showing more autonomy. This scares us because they can run into danger, and it also can hurt our feelings because they are beginning to run away from us, toward that future time when they leave us and live on their own. Ouch.

The boy is also possibly a symbol of you when you are little, and in this case your inner kid can cross to safety and even make it to a stair, a symbol of climbing to higher consciousness than that of the water.

But along comes the two halves of your unconscious psyche: super mom who can rescue the baby from the monster, and the crocodile who will eat the boy up for she loves him so (rather like the monsters in Where the Wild Things Are.

As for the detective dreams, perhaps you secretly find parenting exhausting (and so the unconscious wishes to be relieved of the responsibility) but of course the detectives are also then part of yourself, the part that knows all about your “badness”. The kid would symbolize the part of you that was left out in the cold, perhaps a way of picturing your own childhood that could have been less safe or happy than the one you provide to your own child?

It is normal to love our children but also feel overwhelmed and frustrated. I suspect that if you realize these feelings are not bad but natural, and that you trust that writing to me is a way of bonding and communing because our very best parenting is probably done when we feel supported by other parents, the family, the community, a shared world, etc. maybe your nightmare is a signal to join the group and heal the mistaken idea that any of us should be super-parents, rather that none of us, much less our children, should feel alone or out in the cold.

Sweet dreams

^ * * * ^


jen March 20, 2013 at 11:55 pm [edit]

I need help, I just cannot stop dreaming about my 2 yr old son being kidnapped, or hurt by someone. I am currently pregnant with our second child and the dreams are more frequent than when I was not pregnant.
Its 2:40 am and I just woke up by a dream where my son and I are playing in the front yard where it is a bit wooded. My son who loves to throw rocks and sticks is about 6ft away from me when all of a sudden a man appears within the woods and starts to watch us in particular my son, I immediately called my son to run to me as soon as possible as i tried reaching for my phone, but he was walking to slow and i felt a sence of desperation while the man watched us with a smirk on his face. I then woke up scared and making sure he was still in his crib.
I just cannot stand it anymore, I wake up in fear and extremely tired since it takes me a while to go back to sleep again. :(


Bruce March 21, 2013 at 3:07 pm [edit]

Hi Jen,

If you read through other comments you will see that the theme of kidnapping is quite common.

One interpretation could be that you feel overwhelmed by the thought of a second baby (perhaps you are having some discomfort with the current pregnancy and your rambunctious 2 year-old challenges your patience and endurance) and so the forbidden wish of a need for a break becomes a nightmare of your child being taken away.

The woods are nature, and it’s nice you live near them, yet out of our nature also comes the Shadow, the man in the dream who could also be seen as symbol of your natural and powerful (and inscrutable) self, the part you do not see as yourself, but who “wants” your child. This could symbolize that even in your forbidden dark corners of your psyche you love/want your child so much.

Another option to consider is whatever was happening with you when you were 2 years old. You do not have quite as much energy to devote to your kid, being pregnant, and his being 6 ft away means he’s not as close as when he was nursing, and certainly not as close as when he was in utero. The dilema of distance and danger, wanting to stay close and his need to grow some autonomy and explore create conflict and concern. But also, kidnapping can be a defense against feeling abandoned or unwanted. If you had felt neglected when you were very little, or might be feeling that a bit now for some reason, that could also motivate a kidnapping dream where the child is a symbol of yourself as a child or your inner 2 year-old.

Waking up and being relieved helps you remember how much you love your kid, but the dream might be asking you to make more room for all your feelings, including some natural exasperation and exhaustion. I suspect that realizing this will let the steam out of the nightmare and it, hopefully, will not return.

All Best Wishes for better dreams

^ * * * ^


hannah May 14, 2013 at 4:00 pm [edit]

Hi I had a nightmare about my 2 year old daughter she got kidnapped by a group of young kids then we found her in a garden calling slumped on a chair calling out to me their was 2 dogs attackin her and then someone came out and cut off her foot… I woke myself up shouting dont touch her really worried now and wondered if u knew what this meant also in my nightmare when I found her I couldn’t move jus stood their couldn’t even help her! Dont want to fall asleep tonight


Bruce May 14, 2013 at 5:15 pm [edit]

Hi Hannah,

You can look through other people’s dreams for various different ideas on how to approach the symbols, but I’ll venture a couple of thoughts, taking the dream as a reflection of your own Self.

Think about life when you were two, and try to imagine how you felt then. Perhaps there was some feeling of abandonment, as this can be an underlying trigger for kidnapping or persecution. It is very scary to be alone, so we dream about a sort of diabolical “wantedness” as a way of not facing our feelings of unwantedness.

The garden could be symbol of paradise gone wrong, and also a symbol for the part of us that is natural and wild. The group of kids could be a symbol of older siblings that made you feel left out, or or your own frustration with your child, as it can be a lot of work and frustrating to deal with a 2 year old every day. Yet our anger is forbidden, and so it can leak out in a bad dream. It’s normal to not be perfectly delighted to take care of others with every waking breath… and certainly it’s exhausting to dream about kids being hurt.

Just as you are reaching out for help with this comment, your inner child is calling out for help from within your own feelings. The two dogs attacking could also be symbol for the animal part of your own self–instinctive and hungry. Perhaps you must feed and love your inner animals so they won’t have to try and feed on your baby (the animals might be jealous of all the love your actual child gets, when you might not have been so lucky when little).

Think about the type of dogs, etc. for clues on what they might symbolize for you.

The foot being cut off could symbolize being immobilized, unable to run from harm. You might have felt this way as a kids, but since you’re not grown up, you find yourself revisiting your own unresolved feelings by way of your child as symbol. You feel helpless (“i couldn’t move”) and this may be showing you how you sometimes feel, or felt in the past–but it is not how things really are when you are awake.

My hope is that by thinking about possibly meanings, the very act of contemplation makes it more conscious and creative and the dreaded nightmare is much less likely to occur.

Sweet Dreams

^ * * * ^


Tiffany May 25, 2013 at 3:10 pm [edit]

I have dreams quite frequently about my son being in danger. I am currently expecting my 2nd child (also a boy) but its always about my 2 1/2 yr old. In the last dream I had I was at the house my grandma lived in when I was a kid. All my family was there along with my husband and my 2 dogs. my dogs being there was odd to me even in the dream as my grandma is frightened by them. We were in the kitchen standing around the table talking when my husband opened the back door to let our dogs out to pee. We always look around first to make sure no other dogs are loose or outside. He shut the door turned to yell for the dogs and all of a sudden we hear a wolf howl. I ran to the door looked out off the 2nd floor deck and behind the house on a hill at the edge of the woods we see a pack of wolves laying there, waiting. I say forget that they’re (my dogs) not going outside they can hold it until later. I then turn back to the others at the kitchen table to continue the conversation when I hear loud thumping on the back deck like someone running up the back steps. I run to the door thinking its the wolves and as I reach to slam the big door I see my sons face appear on the outside of the screen door. I frantically open the door and grab him to pull him inside to safety.

Generally at this point in the dream I wake up just before something happens to him. I never actually see him get hurt but it freaks me out enough I have to go touch him in bed and make sure he’s ok. Then I generally never get back to sleep.

My husband’s opinion on it is because I always consider the negative things that can happen. He says I never look at the positive end of anything I am challenged with. Could this be related?


Bruce May 25, 2013 at 4:35 pm [edit]

Hi Tiffany,

One take on this dream (and I am in no way saying this is any sort of “right” interpretation) is that “grandma’s house” represents the psychological self of the Great Mother. The dogs represent the animal aspect of yourself, but domesticated. This part of you is “pissed” (has to pee; and you are able to see this as natural) and your instinct is to let it go out the back door (i.e. water under the bridge and in the past).

HOWEVER… the wolves show up, and this is the animal part of you that is not domesticated–like Max in “Where the Wild Things Are” it’s the part of you that “puts on the wolf suit.”

“You” in the dream is your conscious self—up on the 2nd floor (suggesting a more mature view of things than you might have had as a child).

Think about “The Three Little Pigs” and how the wolf there symbolizes the devouring mother, or Shadow in the personality. The pigs must build their house/Self strong… and in the end capture, cook and eat the wolf (i.e. integrate the Shadow into the full personality).

Think about “Little Red Riding Hood,” and how going to grandmother’s house is where Little Red meets the big bad wolf. And remember how the hunter (husband) kills the wolf and cuts granny back out of its belly (i.e. brings the human aspect of the Great Mother back in to consciousness when she had “turned into a monster”).

In other words… you are working out how the “child part of you” (symbolized by your current child) is “left out” (i.e. he’s not in your womb, safe and cozy where the little one is). You may have had some anger and jealousy as a kid that is getting stirred up now by the imagined situation where the older one will become a “wolf” and threaten the younger one. You put the hungry (for you, for the “great” mother who is all loving) part of you out the back door; and then realize it’s with the even older, or more primitive, wolf part of you.

Healing ideas: read “Where the Wild Things Are” (let the wild rumpus begin, for you all love each other so much in your family you’ll eat each other up, but in a playful way); also, imagine the wolves as a noble, “Jungle Book” part of you and use your imagination to talk to them, to commune with them under the full moon of your goddess power; howl, be with your sisters (your “girl wolf pack”) and let your husband be a man and run with his wolf pack time to time.

Watch “Dances with Wolves” and then put on some music, light some candles (and maybe Neal Young’s “Harvest Moon”) and commune with the wild and natural and protective and hungry awesome love of your husband, your grandmother and your growing family.

And let me know if your dreams turn sweet and your feeling of self grows just a little more powerful, wise and natural.

All Best

^ * * * ^



Tasha July 23, 2012 at 5:26 am [edit]

Okay, so, this might be long, but here it goes. I’ve been having nightmares since I was a little girl for as long as I can remember. I have been through a lot in my life & had great times & bad just like everyone else. Well I will soon be 23 years old & these nightmares have never left. I have 2 children. Ones 3 & the other is almost 1. I have been having horrible dreams about my 3 year old boy. It aches my heart to have these dreams & I can no longer fathom this pain. I’m seeking for help & I don’t want medicine or have someone just be like “your just depressed” or “you need to just get out & do something with your friends” & sort of things like that. I just want these dreams to go away & I never want to think if them again. I’ve had so many I don’t even know how that would be possible. However I will share a dream or 2 with you & am praying & hoping that you could be my help I’ve just stumbled up on. Okay, one of the many horrible dreams I’ve had is, while I was sleeping in my own bed my lil boy was sleeping in his crib in the same room, then my dreamed just turned into me turning over to find that my lil boy was turned backwards (like doing a back flip kind of backwards) just tossing & turning with his head backwards too & just looking at me like the “exorcist”!!! & I just remember staring at him like I was so helpless to help him. This was my dream. It aches so much in my heart & body that I just cry & have trouble breathing. Now for a second dream I’m going to share is one I just had last night, me & my husband & some more people were there that were all family & friends where at a hotel/castle looking place. All of a sudden this guy (which turned out to be a girl) was running dressed in a scary mask of some sort & all black. That person would come & get someone then run back to hurt/kill them. That person would then come back for the next person that failed & the one that he chosen was a lil boy thus next time. I was shocked & horrified to see this such scary person coming for my child. In this dream I even glanced to see this scary person in a room hurting people. It was like keepers creepers/Blair which project. I want to let you know I have not watched a scary movie in a very long long time. & I LOVE my children with all my heart. I just need help & I can’t handle having these dreams of my son & me getting hurt or even dying. I even had a dream my son stabbed someone. This pain is unbearable now. I can’t talk to anyone but I was able to type this.


Bruce July 23, 2012 at 1:10 pm [edit]

Hi Tasha,

Firstly, I am very sorry you have been bothered by nightmares—and for such a long time. It’s true that telling you to “take medicine” or that you are depressed or need to go out and have fun don’t much help, mostly because we need to be truly understood in order to feel better.

In that spirit, I would invite you to trust your own wisdom, and particularly the power and importance of these dreams. While we live in a shared “reality,” the emotional and psychological power of dreams hints at another reality, our inner psyche (or soul).

Dreams can be seen in a number of ways, but they speak of an emotional/psychological “situation” that is trying to make its way into consciousness. When we are conscious of our fears and wounds, of our desires and our impulses, we tend to be freed of our nightmares (sometimes even freed in “real” life of our painful pasts or painful current situations). It is essential that we take our dreams, just like our lives, seriously; and that we try to understand these realities, even if painful, rather than trying to deny them or chase them away.

Our children take us back through the feelings of our own early lives—through feelings that we may store in our bodies but not in conscious memory. In this way, the image of your 3 year-old in a “back flip” suggests a child whose heart is completely exposed, and against that child’s will. The crib is a protection but also a sort of prison. Being “possessed” as in the exorcist is, strangely enough, the opposite of being “dispossessed” (i.e. being persecuted by bad energy is, in the child’s mind, preferable to complete abandonment, which means death to a small child).

I would think your 3-year-old would find both “Hansel & Gretel” and “Where the Wild Things Are” very interesting; I think you too would find them mysteriously soothing (for helping put forbidden fears into a collective imaginal space—that of the classic children’s story).

While we have all experienced good and bad things, we have not all necessarily come to terms with those bad things. Perhaps you were hurt, neglected or intruded upon (either physically, but also psychologically) when you were a little baby?

It would be amazing and transformative to remember that if something outlandish is happening to your child (back-flips, knives, etc.) you are very likely dreaming. If you tell yourself this before sleep, you just might realize you’re dreaming next time the bad thing happens (hopefully the nightmare will never return, now that you’re thinking more consciously about it, but just in case, it’s good to have a plan).

If you do find yourself aware in the middle of a nightmare, you can say to the baby: “I realize that you are the part of me who seems possessed and scared and hurt. I love you so much I am willing to feel what you are feelings right now, and you can be safe and calm. Once upon a time I too was a terrified baby, but now is not that time, and you have me, your mom, to understand, love and protect you.”

Sometimes the tormented child will then transform into a magical, wise or compassionate figure that turns out to be your inner strength, purity, eternal power of love. If you are fortunate you realize that you are a container of hurt and lostness, but also of Love and foundness. Then you can dedicate your own tranquility and safety to helping others feel safe and good—which is all you really want right now for your children (and it is your profound love for your children that offer you this golden opportunity for healing and for making the meaning of your own past pain be all about helping others who suffer… not telling them they need medicine or to go and have fun, but hugging them in your mind and intuiting that pain can be a teacher of compassion and a love that forms us into true families).

Now for the second dream: this is a classic Shadow dream. Thus the “bad guy” in the “mask” (the hidden self, the destructive self—that which is NOT understood and turns to hate because they were wounded in love) could be understood as that very part of your own self. When a woman has this dream, this is her own power coming to meet her. If a woman has been hurt, or has been taught not to be powerful, then she rejects her own power; upon being rejected, the hurt bringer of power has no choice but to become the intruder, the haunter of dreams.

Again, if you meet a guy in a mask (or a girl acting as a guy wearing a mask) then you are very likely in a dream. If you say to that Shadow: “I recognize that you are my power, and you are frustrated that I have run away and rejected your gift. I am ready to understand what you are all about, but I am a little afraid that if I accept my power I, because I am so hurt and angry, might become scary and destructive like you. I’m particularly afraid about what that would mean for my children.”

The Shadow is very likely to look less scary when respected and understood (you see, running away and hating on the Shadow is like telling her to take medicine or to go have some fun and lighten up). I know you think you’re fairly old now at 23, but we don’t really begin to grow up until 26 or 27. Your brain isn’t even finished developing (even though, like your kids, you have a wise old loving spirit).

Perhaps, as long as we’re playing around with imagination, you might discover a Wise Old Woman in your imagination, as sort of “good witch” who can do a little magic and help you keep yourself and your kids safe, loved, happy and trusting. She is the you that, over years, you will surely grow up and into. For now I think you need to be safe, protected and understood so you CAN become free of your fears and so you will indeed end up having fun, but also meaning and purpose.

Finally, the setting of the second dream, a hotel or castle, hints that this is not just about you and your pain, but about the collective situation for humans. Whether or not you were hurt when you were a child, humans have done many terrible things to each other. It is precisely the “waking up” out of ignorance (ignorance that we are, ultimately, each other—and to hurt anyone, even by way of unconscious hurt, is to hurt one’s own Self) that we may find a way to truly heal our children, love them and protect them and thus transform our Selves and learn to treasure life and its mysteries (those of shared reality and those of our inner mysterious journeys that still somehow might connect with the private journeys of others).

Even if these ideas prove less than helpful, my wish is that you will feel better and be able to sleep safe and sound (and to awaken feeling just as good).

Warmest Regards

^ * * * ^



Heather December 11, 2012 at 4:28 am [edit]

I’ve been awake for a while from a bad dream. I just found your website, and im a very private person but because these dreams have been so disturbing, i thought id give this a try. The problem is that I’ve been having bad dreams (sometimes multiple times per night) about my oldest child for about two weeks strant ight. Every night. The dreams are about a wide range of situations, but each deals with me trying to save or protect my child. I should also mention I am pregnant with my third and I know dreams become more vivid with pregnancy. My oldest is only 3.5 yrs. old.
The dream that I just had disturbed me quite a bit. I live in a cold climate, and its snowy a lot. So, my child wanted to play with a back neighbor. I bundled my child up and sent them to the friends. In reality, I know the child is 3 and i would never send them alone even to a few houses away. A little later in the dream my husband and I are looking in the backyard (we don’t have a fence at our house) and we see someone hunting something. The hunter is a teenage girl riding a horse, trying to catch a mouse. The older girl whips at the mouse as it runs around. We watch as the chase gets closer and the mouse turns into my 3 year old. But my child is without snow gear, shivering, crying, helpless. The child is right at our back door and the hunter is about to take a fatal whip when I yell to my husband to save our child. He does. My child runs in the back door, into my arms crying. I hold then briefly while I cry as well. I then go and get the hunter (probably
17) and take her home, finding out who she is, trying to ask why, promising to call the police. I get to her house and talk to her father. He is diss appointed and agrees I should seek justice. I don’t know if this part of the dream was significant as it felt more of an attempt for my brain to make the dream end well, me being able to carry out a mother’s justice. I woke up upset. This dream wasn’t great, but its also the fact that I have dreamt things like this for weeks, every night. I am starting to think it must have to do with insecurity about my relationship with this child, whom I love beyond description. Maybe the pregnancy is doing weird things. Any help would be greatly appreciated.


Bruce December 11, 2012 at 4:04 pm [edit]

Hi Heather,

Perhaps the mouse is a symbol of your developing baby inside you, or perhaps of your younger child? Perhaps the mouse is a symbol of the timid you, or you when you were a frightened child?

Perhaps the teen on the horse is a symbol of you as a sexual and powerful being astride your animal self, powerful and natural.

If any of this could ring true to you, then you see your adolescent self tormenting your infant self. Perhaps you feel unconscious aggression at the children you have to care for, and maybe anger and contempt for the part of yourself that carries fear.

The whipping motif seems both suggestive of punishment, but also of sexual dominance (I skipped “Fifty Shades of Gray”, perhaps you did not?).

Your ego self bears witness to the conflict between sexual and mousy selves, and then seeks justice from the “gir’s father” which is symbol of your own inner father or masculine aspect.

Maybe this dream is like a window into different parts of yourself and offers opportunity to integrate them. Maybe you could imagine yourself in the middle of a circle of horse, mouse, teen girl, father figure and honor each for their perspective and right to exist so long as they don’t hurt the others. As Queen of this dominion you can encourage your loyal subjects to each play their role in your kingdom with grace and honesty—the mouse free to nest and be safe and cozy, the horse respected for her power, the teen for her passion and yet understood in her spite and rage, the father in his need for guidance so his girl won’t go unprotected or unsupervised.

I suspect you are a good mom and it is the childhood you have left behind that holds mice and wild teens; gather these parts with love and you will continue to grow solid and, I hope, your dreams will turn more tranquil.

^ * * * ^


Alanna March 13, 2013 at 8:14 am [edit]

Last night I had the most terrifying nightmare I can remember. In my dream I was at the home where I grew up. My daughter (3 years old) slept in the room that used to be my sisters room. I was in the kitchen after putting my daughter to sleep and I heard a scream coming from the end of the hallway where she was sleeping. I went running down the hallway and opened the door to find a man standing with her, holding her in his arms like an infant. He was just looking at me, holding my blood covered daughter and I screamed and screamed and ran for the phone to call 911, when i came back into the room he was gone, and so was she. I woke up then, so shaken I started crying and immediately went into my daughters room to check on her. Of course she was fine, sleeping like a rock, but I couldnt sleep at all after that. This is not the first dream I’ve had about my loved ones being hurt by someone else, but it is the first dream where the person who is nearest to my heart was killed. I’m even today shaken, remembering the dream. If anyone has any idea as to why I’ve had such a terrible dream please let me know. Thank you.


Bruce March 13, 2013 at 9:22 pm [edit]

Hi Alanna,

I am sorry this was so disturbing, but it probably has more to do with the past than the future—suggesting the need for healing more than fear.

If we consider the house where you grew up to be a possible symbol of your childhood self, then the “man in your sister’s room” could be a morphed version of your sister.

I’m wondering if you felt that your sister was cruel to you? This would make sense, since the “stranger” is no longer a man or an “other” but the Shadow or destructive aspect of your own personality. Still this could reflect an internalized image of some dark figure you encountered when you were small.

The bloody infant would then be a symbol of you as an infant, metaphorically killed by the Shadow… and yet the Shadow holding the hurt or dead infant shows a sort of loving destructive bond between the two aspects.

My guess would be that you are overtly gentle, but have often been attracted to unpredictable and volatile partners. But perhaps I have it all wrong.

Your ego self witnesses the death, calls for help (symbolically new response, since when you were very small you could not call for help) and when you return both are missing, symbolic that when you witness (i.e. allow into consciousness) and call for help the danger evaporates like scary shadows when you turn on the lights.

What’s important here is to realize that your child is not in danger based on what you share here, but you may have ghosts of the past that need to be put to bed through compassionate awareness of past pain.

What I say is totally speculative, but in the spirit of helping you feel less afraid and more empowered. The Shadow holds your power (and it holds in its arms what is “closest to you in your heart”). Realize that you are all these figures, tell the Shadow that you will hold the baby now and protect it, and perhaps you will have much better dreams ahead.

All Best Wishes

^ * * * ^



Rick August 7, 2012 at 10:38 am [edit]

Hi. I am a father of five. four girls and one boy. I have never had any nightmares about my three oldest girls that I can remember. there is quite a bit of age differance between the two youngest and the three oldest. I had a nightmare last night about my two youngest children that is so disturbing, I woke up angry, more angry than I can remember being in a long time. I am kind of uneasy about sharing it, but I hope that you can give me some kind of advise so maybe I will not have another dream like this again.
I want to give you as many details as possible. It was so vivid.

In my dream I am cutting the grass. My 4 yr old daughter and 3 yr old son are playing in the yard where I can see them. I turn the mower to head in the opposite direction. As I turn around again to head in there direction where they are playing, they are both gone. I am looking for them in the yard and do not see them. I can feel the panic start to set in. Then I see 3 men standing on the other side of the road in a straight line. Like the are waiting in line at the bank or something. I do not know who the men are. All I know is that they are mexican migrant workers. I want to be as detailed as possible. I hope this don’t make me look bad. I can see the head of another man just over the hill. I run over the the 3 men thinking that my kids have been hit by a car. I get to the men and my kids are no where to be found. I ask the men if they have seen my kids. They do not answer me. They just look straight ahead as if I was not even there. No expressions on their faces,nothing. Then I hear crying and I run down the small hill where I see the 4th mans head. I get to him and my little son is sitting behind the man. He is sitting on the ground with his arms around his knees. I pick my son up and lay his head on my shoulder. He is still crying but not as heavy. I ask the man what happend to my boy. Once again looking straight ahead. No words, no expression. Now this is the part that is hard to talk about. I can see around some bushes another man. As I walk around the bush. My little angel is laying on the ground limp. Not moving at all, and this man is zipping up his pants. I remember yelling NO what have you done. I ran after this man with all my force,all my rage, but this man knew I was there. He grabbed a large stone and threw it and hit me in the head. Evetything when black. I could no longer see anything. I remember thinking if I am dead God please help my children. Let no more harm come to my children. Then I came to. I could no longer see, but I was kicking, punching, biting, clawing, yelling. Doing anything possible without my site to harm, kill, and hurt these men. Then I woke up. This dream angered, disgusted, and scared me. I mean I was angry. I was angry at the people in the dream though I have know idea who they were. I was angry at myself for something like this coming into my head. I was even angry at God because I pretty much pray the same prayer every night and it always starts with lord please protect my children and let no harm come to them. I was pissed. I went to my litte girls room scooped her up and put her right in between me and my wife. Just knowing she was there calmed me down. I could smell her, hear her breathing, touch her hair.
Is there something I can do to ease my mind. some sort of interpretation will be great if you could do so.



Bruce August 7, 2012 at 5:16 pm [edit]

Hi Rick,

Firstly, thank you for your courage in sharing this disturbing dream. It’s good to take a moment to realize that it was a nightmare and did not “actually” happen to your sacred children. Perhaps that is our first, and ultimate prayer: Thank You.

Turning then to your inner world, we can consider this dream as a depiction of events within your unconscious. From this perspective you are cutting the grass—this is possibly a symbol of man vs. nature (cave man vs. civilized man; terrorist and predator vs. God-fearing and law-abiding man). Your children represent your own self in both feminine and masculine representation; they are “playing” (i.e. innocent) and all is good.

And then they are “gone” (i.e. your innocence, that which you love beyond measure) snatched away by something you did not see (i.e. of which you were unconscious).

There are five men (a quintessential number). The first three are standing in line, as if at the bank. This could imply that they are the conformist part of the psyche, but you don’t recognize it as a part of own darker aspect, that which doesn’t seem to see or care (this is what “unconsciousness” is all about, individually and at the social or collective level). Standing in line at the bank, although I realize this is not “actually” what they were doing, evokes taking something out, withdrawing funds, energy, attention. The fourth man is barely seen at first, only his head… he is in physical proximity to your boy, who is crying.

It does not seem as if the fourth man hurt your inner boy, but rather is one more figure who does nothing and says nothing (symbols of powerlessness and indifference, and indifference could be closer to evil even than anger which, like hate, probably lives right next door to love, for at least it cares).

The crying boy is the part of you who is filled with emotion, but is powerless to stop “evil” or violent oppression. I would encourage you to consider what life was like for you when you were three years old. I imagine you remember very little, but perhaps you witnessed, and could not stop, some sort of abuse (physical, sexual, emotional even) maybe of a sister, your mother, or even yourself. It might not be as gigantic of an attack as in your dream upon your little girl aspect, but it might have FELT that big when you were so small.

Then again, nothing might have hurt you when you were little, but you might unconsciously carry some trauma of your parents from when they were three, or your grandparents when they were little. I’ve worked on many cases involving actual abuse, but also on others where “family secrets” involve protecting kids from trauma that happened to relatives in the past. Oddly enough, children come to somehow psychically know about the pain in the family.

Then again, maybe nothing happened in your family, but you are a highly sensitive and caring man and you are picking up the collective trauma and sorrow of the parents who in reality have had harm come to their children (perhaps in a movie theater, perhaps serving our country, perhaps just walking home from school, maybe while being babysat by a disturbed uncle or step-father or mother).

Anyway, you come to the horror of all horrors in your dream, but it is really the confrontation of the 5th man and what he has done to your own innocent, feminine aspect. You see this man around some bushes. Symbolically the evokes “the Thicket” which snags the sacrificial ram when Abraham is spared the sacrifice of his own child; this foreshadows the Christ story where the child is literally sacrificed (which, as you pray, is to protect others from this very worst of situations).

Whatever God has in mind for humanity, we find ourselves living in a situation that could be hell, when we hurt each other and our children, or it could be a sort of heaven, where we care deeply about ALL our children.

To crack the code of this dream, imagine that your daughter is miraculously resurrected and her violent assault “undone” (for isn’t this the “real” Truth when you “wake up”)? Then imagine these “immigrants” as parts of yourself that have “crossed a border” in your consciousness. Imagine turning back the clock upon these men, until they are boys, perhaps abandoned, abused, unwanted, shaped into indifference and hatred. Imagine they are the part of your psyche that needs compassion and understanding, because they are the most primitive.

Think about how Luke Skywalker confronts Darth Vader to discover it is his own dad turned dark; or Harry Potter and Voldemort; even imagine Job and Satan whispering into God’s ear that he can turn any man against God, who for reasons quite beyond human understanding destroys and restores Job.

When human beings are able to look into the darkness of their dreams and instead of seeing terrorists and devils, criminals and nuts, see the hurt and twisted remains of their own wounded love and innocence, human beings may then come to true compassion and stop the cycle of abuse and hurt that may not threaten your children, but threatens SOMEBODY’s children right now. Perhaps your dream is a way to heal whatever pain has haunted you, your family and our family of man.

Perhaps you, in your love and compassion, have grown mature enough (this didn’t happen with your first three, but the son, being an echo of the self, maybe tripped the wire on your own unconscious pain) to recognize that while you are no monster, we all have a bit of a monster within us. It’s the projecting it onto others that perpetuates the cycle of pain and turns real life into a sort of hell.

Men, and I am a man, have a habit of trying to “save the world” while women, historically, tend to the children and are much less likely to be abusers or behave violently compared to men. It seems no accident that the girl child is the victim and the “bad man” the perpetrator.

Dreams like this bring us to our knees. You come up swinging and enraged. Rage is a defense against sadness. When we are in our rage we are like dinosaurs, unconnected from each other, purely about survival and fighting and running away.

It is in our tears that we are connected to each other, and in our tears that we come closer to our hope for a better way: for our tears and our happiness (in our brains) operate in the same area. From rage we cannot get to the higher mind of compassion, love and understanding, but from sorrow and rising consciousness we can.

I strongly suspect that you will not have a dream like this one again any time soon. I would encourage you to treasure your children, as you already do, and then deepen that compassion, as you are able, to people who might seem “other” or strange or different than you. We all need to do this, for then we will do right by many more children, and those children will grow up to be loving and not indifferent, they will be tender and caring (just as they are also strong and brave) and not unconscious, violent or abusive.

We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, and we must put ALL our kids up above us (providing protection, education, nutrition, medicine) or we cannot be truly free or happy. The consequences are not economic or political, but rather all about what we feel when we wake up from our worst nightmare—perhaps when we wake up to the realization that we can heal and do better.

Oddly enough, this sort of strange thinking may heal your own inner child at the same time that it strengthens the very best man within you: the simple and humble man who loves and looks out for his fellows.

Wishing you really fantastic dreams as salve to your psychic wounds, and really great waking life too.


Note:  “cutting the grass” and smoking weed?

^ * * * ^


Rah maingot April 16, 2013 at 7:21 pm [edit]

Hello! I was just looking for an interpretation of my dream and stumbled on this. I have had nightmares about my kids aged 4 and 3 I just dreamt we were being chased by zombies and were desperately tryin to get away. The danger was imminent and I Wa trying to protect them from getting bitten bit failed to do so.. My heart sunk… We were with a group of my close friends and family and all managed to stay together but would have intervals where my girls appeared ro have savage bite marks and bleeding… I felt in my dream despair and disappointment and sorrow I was gonna lose them to being Zombies and the oldest said to me it’s ok mom! You tried… It’s now 3:18 on the morning and I feel so unsettled any ideas what this could mean? Thanks


Bruce April 16, 2013 at 11:16 pm [edit]

Hi Rah,

For a deeper look at my thoughts on Zombies as symbols please see my post “zombies on the couch”

A good way to think about this dream might be as a psychodrama about your own Self. In this perspective the “zombies” are the parts of you that feel dead, that are starved for love and whatever you think your life lacks (perhaps compassion, abundance, enough sleep, more time and money… parenting is tough and our overly competitive world may leave all of us feeling a bit zombified in our “race to nowhere”).

Your children might symbolize the child parts of yourself, and a sort of living memory of who you were at 3 and 4. Perhaps you felt a bit neglected back then? Perhaps, like Max in “Where The Wild Things Are” the zombies represent the monster that will “eat you up” because it loves you so… but in an unconscious and hurt form right now.

Thus your hungry monster is both resentful of your actual loved children (as they get the love and affection now that you might have liked to get yourself back then or even now, leaving you hungry for love… and love made hungry can look a bit like a monster, at least in bad dreams).

You were with close friends and family, and it’s great that you have that, in your life now—again perhaps in contrast to painful memories of the past?

Your feelings in the dream of “despair and disappointment and sorrow” probably represent the “secret” feelings that you try to hide, the lonely feelings that are the very place of potential connection, love and healing… if only we can bravely admit that we have those feelings and need love and closeness to be alright.

I love that your child-self affirms you, saying “it’s ok mom! You tried..” Trying our best IS the essence of a winning attitude, it’s all we really can ask of our kids and of each other, and thus it’s all we can ask of ourselves.

I imagine that your parents also tried their best, just as you do.

Finally, if you want to get playful, imagine going back into the dream in your imagination and saying to the zombies, “Okay guys, so you’re the hungry traumatized unconscious part of me. You can’t eat my children, but I can get you some better nutrition that doesn’t hurt anyone (just make something up to feed them).” Then add, “You are the powerful, but unhappy part of me. You are trying to help me own my power, and you probably have something to teach me, or perhaps some sort of gift to give me… I’m open to what you have to offer or say.”

Just be playful and let your imagination run with it. Once you are actively pretending you are in no “real” danger nor are your kids. At the very least i hope this would mean no more zombie dreams; better yet you might come to some new insight or creativity or power or happier feeling, and if that happens you will see how your dreams really can be a teacher and guide.

In the meantime, Sweet Dreams and All Best Wishes

^ * * * ^



Geetika October 4, 2012 at 12:10 pm [edit]

I dreamt of wild dog following my 4 year old,suddenly a miracle happens and my boy was protected by bunch of cows,all cows joined their legs and all dogs were standing aside…..I was thankful to cows in dream…..


Bruce October 4, 2012 at 4:11 pm [edit]

Hi Geetika,

Perhaps the wild dog symbolizes your “animal” aspect in terms of hunting, devouring, related to wolves (and “wolf suits” as in “Where the Wild Things Are”)—the part of you that might have unconscious aggressive feelings toward your child, but more likely toward your own child-self, the part of you who you were when you were four (maybe something “bad” happened to you at that age, a wild dog sort of person might have scared or injured you?).

The cows might represent the alliance of powerful mothers. In your dream the inner mother becomes a herd that protects the child from danger.

This is a good dream, and you might like to throw the dog a bone and tell it that it must go back to being man/boy’s best friend, because if it doesn’t it’s going to be in trouble with the mommies.

At the collective level, I love this dream as it says that the feminine principle is indeed coming together to stand strong against the lone wolf masculine principle where it’s every dog for himself. As the mothers rise (the cow jumping over the moon in “Goodnight Moon”) the children are safe and the dogs will just have to deal with it.

Best Wishes

^ * * * ^


mr February 4, 2013 at 12:40 pm [edit]

I have had 2 disturbing dreams about my 4 year old possibly getting shot. Several months ago, my brother’s friends would stop by and ask for him. One night i had a dream that it was late and someone came knocking at our door looking for him, my 4 year old was out in the living room watching tv and i was in my room, when i heard the knock i looked out my bedroom window to see who it was and saw that one guy was standing out by his car with a gun aiming towards our front door (as though he was just going to shoot as soon as the door was answered)..when i seen the gun, i painiced thinking my son was about to be a victim of a shooting so i quickly ran out to the living room to get my son. As i ran into the living room, my son was barely opening the door! then i woke up. I right away felt for my son who was lying next to me and double checked that he was breathing which thank god he was. But i was just so distrubed by this dream for a few days.

I live in a different state from the shooting that took place last summer at the movie theater nor do i know any of the victims or suspect involved. Well last night, i had a dream which was similar to that specific shooting. I was dreaming that i was at a theatre with some freinds to watch a batman movie when all of a sudden we heard a loud shotting sound….we didn’t know if it was from the movie or if someone had really fired a shot…Some people laughed others got up and left and i sat there with my friends not knowing if what we heard was real….Within a few minutes a worker came in and began to ask us to evacuate the building…she started escorting the entire crowd out at the same time but by the time we got outside, it was just the worker, myself and my 3 kids…i dont know how my kids even came into the dream or what had happened to my friends and the rest of the crowd. The worker was guiding us where we needed to go. We kept walking and walking, then we got to the corner of a fence facing a street but managed to be hundres of feet away from the cinema…just when we thought we had reached a safe place, a man pulls up on the side of the street and comes out with a gun and camcorder, as he’s recording, he starts firing several rounds and as i quickly try to run for my kids, my 4 yearold starts to grab his stomache and begins crying hysterically. I then wake up before I have a chance to get to my son. I don’t know if he was crying from being shot or was crying because he was scared. Once again i wake up and immeditley feel for my son who is sound asleep next to me and thankfully still breathing.

My kids are my everything, I treat and love them all equally and would give my life for them. I can’t even imagine my life with out my kids and get so distrubed by this dreams.


Bruce February 5, 2013 at 9:58 pm [edit]

Hi mr,

One way to think about this first dream is as a Shadow (or dangerous figure who is both potentially destructive, but also who holds your power) in relationship to your symbolic child-self. The curious and fearless part of you is ready to head out the door into the world, but the darkly disturbe aspect waits with a gun.

In some sense it could symbolize how you disavow your power, and in rejecting it that power aspect turns destructive, angry BECAUSE it is out in the cold.

On the other hand the dream, and the second one as well, speak to our collective fears about shooters and public places. While it may point to the real societal issue, the dream is also possibly symbolic of how you relate to these themes.

In the first dream it is a personal house, more in line with a personal self (even with the characters of child and Shadow) while the movie theater could symbolize the collective psychology, as cinema itself is a bit like a realm of collective dreams.

Here you struggle with themes of reality and imagination. Batman himself is a character who saw his parents killed, and this is at the root of his psychology. Perhaps we all struggle with the important issue of feeling safe, and in your dream you are trying to get to a safe place when even far from the theater a man who is both cameraman (one who sees) and shooter (one who hurts) attack.

This makes me wonder about whether you felt like you got the wrong sort of attention as a child, or if you witnessed things that have disturbed you (and which sometimes feel unreal, or like movies or nightmares)?

While I cannot presume to know what your dreams mean, I encourage you to think about what the various elements might personally mean to you (Batman, gunmen, camcorders, etc.) to see what your awake creative mind might make of it if you trust your own instincts.

Certainly the dreams made you feel unsafe and scared, yet your child is fine when you wake up. It is possible that although you obviously love your children, there may be no room in your mind for anger and negative emotions. This could cause them to go underground and surface as bad guys in your dreams.

Finally, camcorders and our current culture of everyone being preoccupied with being seen and looked at (i.e. Facebook, youtube, etc.) could make you feel attacked by your children’s needs for lots of attention while you are left feeling scared, alone and in the dark. Thus being in a horrible shooting scene might be a way of dramatically depicting how you feel when you are overwhelmed by negative feelings as a parent.

The idea here is to be more conscious about all our feelings and hope that this decreases the bad dreams and also helps us be at our best as waking parents to our children.

All Best

^ * * * ^


Cherise July 31, 2013 at 9:52 pm [edit]

Hello I had the most horrible nightmare it seemed last night about my 4 year old little boy, it had started out my boyfriend and I were watching a movie in our home then it jumped to my uncle and my brother and I leaving to go find my son that had been kidnapped and the man that kidnapped him was some sort of powerful being and lived in this hug black house and told all of us that came to see my son that if we brought cops then he would continue the job on my son. When we arrived at the house he taunted us saying he didnt know if we were ready to see my baby or not and that my son was clearly not ready to see us because he wasnt finished with his work, and it frusterated us so bad we took off running looking for where my boy was and when we finally reached the room he was laying in a bed with pjs n the lights were very dark and dim and when I walked around to the bed to see him his arms and legs were stitched as if like he was a ragdoll with stitches from being sewn together and his neck was like this too and the kidnapper walked in flipped a switch and a set of dimmer lights came on and my son woke up and the man threw him one of those voice things people use when they cant talk and my son started to speak into it and said hello to his two uncles and myself and told us that we werent supposed to see him and i leaned in to kiss his forehead and i told him yeah but i love you and noticed his head was on his spongebob pillow like if he were at home..and i remember thinking in my dream i have to get him out of here and get him to a hospital and also thinking i wanted to hold him to bad but the man wouldnt give us a chance to escape. ive had bad dream before about my children but never had i had one that has woke me up crying made me go check him and then fight back tears all day and still bothering me enough im scared to sleep again.


Bruce July 31, 2013 at 10:26 pm [edit]

Hi Cherise,

If you read through some of the other dreams you may get additional insights into how to think about your own dreams, but my overall thought is that the symbolism of this dream might have to do with your own emotions, quite possibly having to do with feeling traumatized when you were younger.

Kidnapping as a theme could be about wantedness and unwantedness; if we feel unwanted, we may “fantasize” (i.e. imagine, dream) about being chased by kidnappers, monsters, etc.

You start “watching a movie” with your boyfriend (i.e. distracting, escaping) and this is not with the father of your boy, so unconsciously you imagine you are already abandoning your baby by being with your boyfriend. This could mean that the grown-up you is into your boyfriend, but the child you feels alone and hurt.

Your uncle and brother are involved once the child is missing, thus it’s about your family of origin once the inner child is hurt. The kid has to be kidnapped to be noticed.

The bad guy in the huge dark house could be a symbol of the part of yourself that feels overwhelming. This could also be called the Shadow and it holds your power; it holds your inner child and thus you have to enter your Shadow in order to rescue your child.

The “work” that is diabolically done seems to be about turning a real child into a sort of doll—an object used by people rather than a real human being with a spirit treasured by loving parents and family.

Perhaps something happened when you were 4, maybe parents’ divorce or conflict, moving, death of a loved one, etc. that made you feel like you or your world went to pieces?

The main point of this dream seems to be dealing with your own pain, anger, feelings of loss/abandonment, hurt, and confronting the effect this had on your own self-concept as a child. Sometimes the child in us (or rather our identification with the child in ourselves) has to “die” in order for our identification with a more grown-up Self to come into being.

In waking life you help your child by really seeing and understanding him, particularly when there is no crisis, just really loving him for who he is, and sometimes by giving our kid what we did not get as a kid we heal ourselves.

As for the Spongebob pillow, I might recommend another blog post/interview with the voice of Spongebob, who has a healing and caring spirit, and this might be why kids everywhere respond so well to him:

Sweet Dreams

^ * * * ^


On Mar 22, 2013, at 8:39 PM

Dear Bruce

I keep on having bad dreams about my 5yr old daughter, just now I dreamt that as if I am her teenage sister and there are other siblings as well and we are busy playing next to someone’s house ( a guy, around 20 something) and he keeps on calling me and giving me stuff like ear phones etc and my daughet looks so hungry eventually we get home ( without parents) and try to quickly prbuyepare porridge and spinach (all we have and last food) but my daughter passes out or dies because of hunger and i woke up.

P.S. My sister inlaw is visiting her parents with her kids and she’s taking my daughter, do you think I should cancel the trip? I have had another dream about my daughter , where I think she is dead but she comes around again.

Your response will be really appreciated.


South Africa

Hi Verdi,

You can read through my other ideas on various dreams for more ideas, but one way to think about this dream would be in terms of symbols of various aspects of your full Self.

In this context, your daughter would be the child part of you.  I’m wondering if your mom was a teen mom when she had you, or if her mom was this.  I ask because being a teenager in charge of a child could be a symbolic way of representing how you feel—like a mom on the one hand, and like  a teen who is overwhelmed by responsibility on the other.

The 20 something and his house might be the male aspect of you and a house, or larger Self, to contain it.  He is “calling” you, meaning he is trying to connect, communicate and bond, especially ear-phones to drive home the message of hearing and talking.

The child part of you “looks so hungry” because she is hungry, but not for food so much as love, protection, understanding.  Perhaps you were neglected as a child and this left you vulnerable to inappropriate male attention?

You “eventually get home,” meaning coming back to your fuller Self, where you have limited resources (i.e. you are exhausted) but you find nourishment for the child aspect—porridge which is basic sustenance and spinach which is strength, iron, earth, healthy nutrition (actually and symbolically/in terms of love).

The child “passes out’ (goes unconscious) or “dies” (possibly meaning that your long identification with the hurt child, starving child or victim must “die” for your next self to be born as an empowered grown-up woman and mother).

As to what is best for your daughter in “real life” I have no idea, but my hope is that if you are more aware of your own hunger and pain you will be more clear about discerning the past, however painful, from the present and having a better time of things in waking and sleeping life.

If you are happy and well-nourished at every level this will benefit your daughter.

All Best Wishes, Bruce

^ * * * ^



Rachel August 18, 2012 at 5:55 pm [edit]


I have a 7 year old son and had a very disturbing dream about him last night. In my dream he had done something wrong-I don’t recall what it was, but I do remember knowing it wasn’t a great offense (possibly something along the lines of sneaking cookies before dinner or something silly). However in the dream, whatever the minor offense was my dream-self was enraged and kept trying to slap my son in the mouth. Over and over again I would attempt to pop him across the mouth but the slap landed softly and would not hurt him. In my attempt to punish him I was unsatisfied with the strength and force of my slap-as there was none- and kept hitting him. All the while he is smiling and clearly wanting my love while tears rolled down his cheeks. My dreamself continued to try and hit him harder and felt helpless that I was powerless to do so. I am so completely upset by this dream. What could it mean for my relationship with my son, or his view of me, etc. ?

Thank you for listening.


Bruce August 19, 2012 at 10:56 am [edit]

Hi Rachel,

While I realize this was disturbing, my instinct was very positive and suggests you’re in a very good place now, in contrast to how you likely felt when you were 7 years old.

If the dream has a bit of a wish buried within it, then your wish is to be powerless to hurt your child, powerless to slap or pop the mouth (i.e. to stop your child, or your child-self, from being able to speak or express himself or herself).

While you hold the powerless position, your child-self now holds the tears (the emotion of sadness, which is evolutionarily higher than anger, which is all about fight-flight, disconnection, alienation, loneliness and using others as objects). Perhaps you yourself were used as an object to hold powerlessness, or sorrow, when you were a little girl.

This happens a lot, and it’s little use hating on our parents; it is useful to recognize the limitations of our caregivers and then band together with our inner selves, and with real other humans in the world, particularly other caring parents, to hold our fears with compassion, to hold our sorrow with understanding, and to heal ourselves and our children through community, consciousness and actions consistent with our more secure and sophisticated understanding.

Your psychological work here is to recognize the Shadow (that which wants you to be powerful, but only powerful to love, help, prosper, play, contribute, learn, connect, etc NOT powerful to hurt yourself or others, which is not real power after all).

Your psychological work is also to gaze, in your mind’s eye, into the tear-filled eyes of your child-self and tell him/her that you are a mom now and that you will cry his/her tears for him/her if tears are on the plate, and that your child is not, and never will be, alone. They are a part of you, they live with you and they die, if ever, only when you die. Perhaps even in spirit, in dream-time, all of it is true at once—the pain of the past that makes possible the compassion and joy of the present.

It takes a lot of consciousness to hold opposite feelings at the same time. I like to think of the self as a bowl, and I have much to say about how to help that grow strong in ourselves and in our children in other posts at this blog, and in my book.

Your child is smiling and crying at the same time in the dream: this is the eternal child archetype, and it ALREADY holds the opposites of life being fully lived in compassionate understanding. Meditate on that face and see your own glory reflected in the mirror of your deeper Soul-Self.

All Best Wishes :)

^ * * * ^


Stephanie May 20, 2013 at 7:10 am [edit]

I had a dream last night that my 7 year old son was kidnapped by two men that lived in the same apartment complex as we do. (In real life I have never seen these men before). I knew where he was but I couldn’t save him for some reason. I would just wait outside their apartment until I knew it was time that I could save him. Then the two men come outside and have other kids with them, and my son, but it still wasn’t the right time for me to save him, It was like a rule in the dream or something. So I asked if I could hug him, and one of the kidnappers told him yes, but not below the gut. When I hugged my son, he told me “becareful mommy, it hurts me down there”, I whispered to him that I was going to save him and that it would all be okay soon, but not to say anything. He started to cry but stopped himself so the kidnappers wouldn’t see. Then I woke up. I have been crying ever since. That was the most awful dream I have ever had. For some reason I was helpless, I couldn’t help my baby.


Bruce May 20, 2013 at 3:32 pm [edit]

Hi Stephanie,

Please read through some of the other dreams for comments about “Shadow” and about dreams possibly being interpreted as reflecting aspect of your own Self.

In this perspective, the kidnappers are the part of you who holds the “child self” part of you hostage. The idea of it hurting “down there,” could mean a “gut feeling of pain or sorrow or abandonment or loneliness…” and it could have some sort of sexual connotation. Not going on witch hunts of abuse, but if you did carry wounds, particularly around age 7 yourself, one way to consider the dream is that it is now “time” do deal with it. The dream talks about waiting (i.e. you couldn’t deal with your pain when you were little…) and now you are old enough to be a mommy not just to your son, but to your own self of the past.

You must ask yourself if your 7 year old is in deep pain and this dream is making you see that; more likely your kid is benefiting from the love you have for them and it’s your own “gut” instinct that it’s time to heal that makes your dream a teacher, helping you wake up, seek help, gain consciousness.

The “apartment complex” would then be a symbol of your total Self, with all the “good” and “bad” parts. The kidnappers are the part of you who love your kid so much, your inner child that is, that they are “baby-sitting” until you are truly ready to integrate the grown-up mother and the sad child into one person.

Your motivation to do this is your love for your child, as they benefit from your happiness. Now is the time for that!

All Best Wishes & Sweet Dreams

^ * * * ^


Gemma February 10, 2013 at 7:08 pm [edit]

Hi, it is 3am.. I have a very bizarre nightmare to relate that I am hoping to get some logical solution to. Firstly, I have 2 daughters- 7 and nearly 5. They were both in this dream along with me, their dad, various unknown people and mythical creatures!
The details of the dream are sketchy but I was being chased by evil, unidentifiable an various people/creatures, one of whom was my youngest child. For reasons unknown, it went that if i pressed a button which played ‘whistle while you work’ these people would stop being evil and turn normal again. this did not work for my daughter who was bright red and kept trying to bite me (her teeth were sharp, though she looked upset by the ordeal and my reaction to her, which was scared shouting and trying to swipe her away from me). flick then to a scene of my elder girl in bed (not same place or type of bed that she actually has, but same room). There is a man (who weirdly looks like steven seagal!) in her bed with her, seemingly not harming her, but stopping me opening the door to go to her. I ask for the door to be opened and he says she doesn’t want me there and i have to go away. I then shove the door open and physically remove him from the bed (with standard dreamlike superhuman strength) but he grabs my daughter, meaning that i also throw her, and he lands on her. I do not see my child at all during this incident but the man repeats over and over ‘you did it to her as well [as himself]’. then i keep getting switched between the images of my youngest ‘evil’ daughter and my eldest ‘silent and still but with a scary smile’ daughter, which is when i woke up and have not been able to stop thinking about it. work that one out!! :/


Bruce February 10, 2013 at 9:28 pm [edit]

HI Gemma,

As I try to emphasize in my comments here, I make not claims to “know” what dreams mean, but rather to offer ways of seeing and thinking in the hope that you may gain some new ways to consider your dream.

Feel free to read through other comments to see similar dreams and various perspectives on them.

That said, perhaps this dream represents different parts of yourself, and your different feelings… and some attempt by your deep unconscious to bring it all together into some coherent whole.

You are being chased by “evil” which, although diffuse, is a general symbol of Shadow—of your own darker aspect, that which has not been understood, that which as not felt loved, safe, free and happy. This part, out of frustration, turns destructive and is intent on getting you.

This may look like the threat of being eaten by the evil child self (which might be better understood as the very hungry and frustrated part of your total Self). Being chased could symbolically reveal the wish to be “wanted” even if as an object closer to dinner (that which we eat) than giver-mother (that which gives to us).

Think of the Maurice Sendak “Where the Wild Things Are” idea of, “I’ll eat you up I love you so.”

A button symbolizes something you can control (hinting that you actually feel like you are not in control). A button that makes you whistle while you work could be a symbol of a good attitude.

You are trying to have a good attitude, but you actually feel deprived and this makes you both angry and “hungry” for understanding, compassion, attention, love, etc.

While one child-part of you has sharp teeth (perhaps symbol of the part of you that has some aggression in her mouth—that what she might “say” could hurt others) another important (to be conscious about) part of you is silent in the face of danger. Perhaps this is a window into a past time when you felt you had no voice to speak up for what was right?

The two girls might symbolize your own dilemma between opening your mouth and risking rejection (by mother…? how might your relationship with mother make you feel angry, hungry or misunderstood?), or keeping quiet and getting hurt.

Steven Seagal might have some personal meaning for you, but your “silent” (or lacking in voice) child self is in bed with this symbol of masculine power, suggesting a need to blend the innocent and the empowered aspects of your Self.

Seagal might relate to the child with sharp teeth in being symbols of power that show aggression to your ego-self. In this part the shadow blocks the door, symbolic of how your unrecognized power causes you to be blocked from connecting in a healthy way with your child aspect.

Your innocence and your power are indeed strange bedfellows, yet they are all part of you.

The blame of “you did it to her as well” shows how you struggle with feelings of guilt and self-blame and in finger-pointing and outward blame. Blame is a problem as it blocks connection and understanding, and it fuels anxiety (which might be a source for this dream).

With your unconscious “switching” between your “evil” (i.e. hungry and desperate) and your “silent” (i.e. disempowered or blocked) Selves your unconscious might be showing you the situation (a split between parts of yourself that are powerful but bad and innocent but powerless).

The superimposition of switching could be a clue that you need to see them both as parts of a common unity of personality—the silent but scary smile (because it knows things about you), and the “evil” part of you who is starving for love born of accurate understanding (and a good night’s sleep).

Finally, you might like to think about life as it was when you were 4, turning 5, and when you were 7, in order to see if issues from the past are being re-triggered by your children’s passing through these stages.

Hope you have good dreams moving forward

^ * * * ^



Sharise December 29, 2012 at 6:33 am [edit]

I dreamt that someone unknown was blackmailing me to do a job for him. An “enforcer” was sent to my house during a get together and my 8 year old was in her room upstairs. I heard her scream and my husband and I ran to her only to find her curled up in her bed and that the “enforcer” had cut the tip of her tongue off to force me to do the job. I attempted to fight him and sent my husband to get our 2yr old. Obviously this was a devastating scenario and I couldn’t return to sleep…. even got both my girls and slept with them


Bruce December 29, 2012 at 9:53 pm [edit]

Hi Sharise,

We could think of the enforcer as a Shadow figure, meaning it represents the part of you that you would consciously not think of as any part of you at all (the Shadow is what stands behind us when we face the sun).

Your children would be the child parts of you, and the 8 year old is “upstairs” possibly symbolizing that she resides at a higher level of consciousness than you, at least in the symbolism of your inner psyche.

If the Shadow cuts off the tip of the child self’s tongue, it suggests that your Shadow is “forcing” you to find your voice and speak up. But speak out about what…?

this takes us to your second dream


Sharise December 29, 2012 at 6:46 am [edit]

Another dream I had a few weeks ago was that I was with my girls in the car and it broke down. Samuel Jackson (crazy I know) offered his help. We followed him inside of his house to call my husband for help and after I got off the phone he locked us in. He then revealed to me that we would never leave. He tied me up and made me watch him take my 8yr old’s panties and he smelled the crotch (graphic I know) and I begged him to leave my girls alone. He had the most eerie smile. I charged him but had no strength and woke up. Now I can’t see him on TV or even heat his voice without having a panic attack. My girls are the most cherished thing and I dont like having these disgustingly, horror dreams. I would also like to know why the “bad stuff” only happens to my 8 yr old. Please help


Bruce December 29, 2012 at 10:10 pm [edit]

Here we have amplification about what the Shadow/enforcer wants you to speak up about: abuse of a child.

Now it may be a way that your unconscious shows how terrible you can sometimes feel, and it may not be abou litteral abuse, however, if you have been hurt as a child it would make sense that you would be triggered by your child turning 8, particularly if something bad happened to you when you were 8. And particularly if someone threatened you if you would “tell.”

The car might be a symbol of the self, the self that contains your conscious ego identity (Sharise) and also your child self at 2 and at 8.

You might want to think about which Sam Jackson movies come to mind to gain more illumination on why him; but your inner Sam Jackson might be thought of as the movie star part of yourself. Certainly Jackson is very talented and smart, but whether it’s “Shaft” Sam or “Snakes on a Plane” Sam or whatnot may give you clues about his significance for you.

The unconscious is often funny, truth-telling and wickedly wise. Maybe you think Sam Jackson is great and a part of you would like to be locked in a house with him?

But when he turns Shadow, and sexualizes your 8 year old self, it begs the question about someone in your past charming and tricking you into some sort of sexual situation.

One way to work with this dream material would be to find a quiet place and use your imagination to go back into the dream. Confront Samuel Jackson and say something like, “I know you are my Shadow and you’re trying to get me to own my power and understand how to grow and heal. What is it that you want me to do? I might not do it, but I am interested to hear what you say. Why would you hurt a child? Are you the part of me that wants me to understand how helpless my mother was to protect me, even though she was horrified? Or are you just a metaphor for the way I feel when I’m triggered to feelings of helplessness or loss?”

If you can get a dialogue going with your Shadow, you will come into more of your personal power and your Shadow will turn into more of a help than the hindrance it seems like now.

For more information on how trauma in our own past can affect our children’s feelings of security (and how your parent’s past trauma might have influenced your sense of safety) see:

Sometimes just thinking a lot about your dreams can help them resolve and the nightmares stop.

Certainly wishing you better dreams ahead and good waking time too

^ * * * ^


andi February 5, 2013 at 11:03 pm [edit]

Dear Bruce,

I woke up the other night from a horrific nightmare. My 9 year old son was being kidnapped. I went after the kidnappers and found my son with a plastic bag over his head. A portion of the bag was in his mouth, he was sweating, I tore open the bag and he began to breath. We got out of the truck and I attempted to hit the kidnapper in the face but it seemed to barely touch him. Now after two nights I am waking up to the vivid vision of my son being suffocated. I go and check on my son and reassure myself he is safe but the vision just is so right there. I am not sure what I need to do to rid myself of this vision as it is horrifying to me. Thank you for any solutions…interpretations.


Bruce February 6, 2013 at 1:23 pm [edit]

Hi Andi,

There are many different ways to think about dreams, and I invite you peruse some of the other dreams for similar themes and various ideas I have suggested. The main point, however, is that no one knows better what your dream means to you than you do.

In that spirit I would invite you to think about plastic and plastic bags, as well as the theme of suffocation. One hypothesis could be that you were having a bit of trouble breathing in your sleep and in order to make sense of that sensation your brain made up a story about your child being the one who could not breathe.

Whatever the stimulus (i.e. a choking experience in life, a past memory, a pillow over your head in your sleep) the dream could be about how the child part of your psyche is feeling neglected or unseen. I suggest this because the kidnapping theme could be understood as a defense against an even deeper dread which is of being abandoned or unwanted.

Did you, by chance, feel neglected or unloved or otherwise hurt when you were 9? Sometimes our children trigger us to re-experience our childhood as they take us back through it year by year.

The kidnapper might symbolize the part of you who has the power, dark as it may be, to truly connect to the angry kid hidden away in your unconscious. The ripping the child out of the bag could be a symbol of new birth, emerging from a toxic womb.

My hope is that by contemplating these symbols as parts of yourself you might learn why exactly the kidnapper wants the child part of you and how the child part of you feels in need of not just rescue, but compassionate consciousness—to be seen in her hurt so she can stop being hurt (in this case by the scary content of the dream).

Feel free to let me know if the bad dreams stop, change or even become empowered and good dreams.

^ * * * ^



Louisa Mart October 9, 2012 at 2:25 am [edit]

Hi Bruce,

I wondered if you could interperate 2 recurring dreams for me.

The first i go to collect my child from school the class she’s actually in now and notice the left side of her face and neck are badly bruised and she cant talk. Realising no-one has bothered to contact me i drive her to hospital where she has a broken gaw, i have the police called in along with media as no-one can offer and explanation to why my child is hurt, when it happened and why i wasn’t contacted. i then withdraw both my children from the school and wake up.

The second dream is there’s a knock at the door, i go to open it and a man forces his way in and while im screaming for help, as my girls are sleeping only yards away he plunges a screw sriver into my left side under my armpit into my ribs as he does this i wake up.

After these dreams i have an overwhelming urge to go check on the girls and see if there ok

Thank you



Bruce October 9, 2012 at 8:31 pm [edit]

Hi Louisa,

If we consider the different people in the dream as symbolic of different parts of yourself, then you have your child self injured on her “left” side (left as in abandoned or rejected). Your parent self is able to see the injury when no one else paid attention (suggesting that in your past you might have felt both neglected and hurt, and then neglected about your hurts). You have the media and police called (the part of you that are the authorities, and the public eye) and this shows your wish to be seen and to have justice.

In the second part the bad guy (who, symbolically, was the one who hurt your kid in the first part) shows up face to face and now HE hurts your own “left” side, with a screwdriver (phallic object connected with “screw”).

Your unconscious is pushing you to be conscious about your hurts in the past and to confront the Shadow. The bad guys are now older and weaker men and you and your child are safe, in reality. Your unconscious is also having you confront your own power. This “bad guy” part of you needs a little rehabilitation, as it has power, and has “tools” but needs to use them to build and to contribute rather than to hurt or abuse.

My hope is that you will feel more empowered as you think about this dream as an inner landscape. Consider dialogue with the scary guy and see what he says he really wants (most likely he wants you to own your power and he can disappear like shadows after you turn the full lights on).

Warmest Regards

^ * * * ^



Cheryl August 21, 2012 at 9:41 am [edit]

Hi Bruce,

I had an awful nightmare which I made myself wake from at 5:30 AM. I was at my sisters farm, she and her husband have a sustainable hog farm, chickens, etc… I was walking around, talking with her and my oldest son (who has high-functioning autism) was running around feeding the pigs, etc… What he usually does when we go out there. Suddenly he starts being atacked by one of the pigs, it has him in its mouth, swallowing him whole, spitting him out, picking him up again and shaking him around with its mouth. I am trying to get to him but I can’t, there is a fence in the way, a familiar fence I have seen before as I was raised on a farm, but I could not get to him. I would yell for him, “Jacob get away, Jacob get up!” He wasn’t moving, then as the pig was about to grab him again my son’s leg moved and I forced myself to wake. I am trying to figure this out because I know it has to do with my son, the struggle of making the right choices for his schooling as school is about to begin. The struggle I have with my and his relationship with his father. His father was abusive to me, verbally, mentally, physically, he is still verbally abusive and we are no longer together as a couple. My son’s father is very inactive in all three of our children’s life and I feel sometimes he’s like having a teenager when he’s around. He’s always crabby, and mad at me. Although he behaves this way he thinks he has a say in these important choices in life but I don’t trust him, nor his input. I have been struggling with whether I involve him in a coming up school meeting, or do I go on my own because I know he’s against my decision with this place which I think could help our son a ton? Am I right on, thinking that my ex is the pig and does the pig attack represent all the struggles I worry about for my son? Me not being able to get to him is me worrying whether or not I am doing enough or my fear of not making the right decisions for him?

Thank you.


Bruce August 21, 2012 at 7:01 pm [edit]

Hi Cheryl,

I like that you are trying to interpret your own dream, and you’ve made a good start.

Now comes the hard part: the pig is how you SEE Jacob’s father, and his behavior may well be less than optimal (I’ll pass no judgment on this), but the pig in the dream is also the “pig” part of your own self—devouring, destructive, dangerous—in short your Shadow.

Thus the pig holds your power as well as your terror. The son that is being hurt is not only Jacob, but your own child-self, the part of you who struggles with “differences” and who suffers from being in a triangle between his mom and dad.

The fence is a boundary, thus is could symbolize the demarcation between your conscious and your unconscious, between your nurturing and your destructive selves.

Given that you were attracted to a man you saw as “crabby” etc, perhaps you were attracted to something familiar, similar to your own family in some way?

And perhaps Jacob’s dad has a “ghosting” of Jacob’s own neurological make-up, and this might account for his lack of social grace: lack of mirror neurons.

Please see my other posts on Aspergers and Autism for some different perspectives on spectrum disorders.

I think perhaps you too are “on the fence” about the best school for Jacob, and you have divided the Hamlet like inner turmoil into a farmyard psychodrama (not in any way to minimize that you may have truly been hurt by Jacob’s dad’s behaviors).

And now the deep part. The pig is also a symbol of the Mother Goddess, and it is this wild boar who wounds the young male hero in the groin, a pre-figuring of the Fisher King story in the Grail Legends.

While I have no idea your religious background, Jacob is a name from the Old Testament, and he was a Jew… thus there is some irony in “Jacob” being attacked by a pig (which is not kosher, according to Jewish tradition).

While your family has a sustainable farm, the pig in relationship to Jacob is not a sustainable relationship. While you are hurt and angry, this dream gives you a chance to meditate on the dark power that you do have, for this pig is like the monsters in “Where the Wild Things Are” (“I’ll eat you up I love you so”).

If you can have a conversation, in imagination, with the pig, perhaps you will learn that it too loves Jacob in its own strange way, and if you can integrate this dark power into higher consciousness (pigs are actually rather intelligent) then perhaps you’ll have the higher wisdom it takes to support Jacob in the right school while no longer vilifying his father who might benefit from deeper understanding and compassion.

After all, when Jesus’ followers are shocked about him eating non-kosher food Jesus clarifies that it’s more important to be loving than to follow mere rules of conduct.

Warmest Regards

^ * * * ^


Bruce January 14, 2013 at 9:38 pm [edit]

Hi Carol,

Snakes could mean a lot of things but they are classic symbols in dreams and in myths.

On the one hand you have the snake as tempter that tricks Eve and Adam out of paradise; on the other hand the snake is a very ancient symbol of wisdom, and of the feminine aspect of the Divine.

The bath could represent the womb, or the unconscious.

Snakes can also be phallic symbols, and the idea of a snake in a bath with a child threatening that child could symbolize a situation of sexual danger or threat. If there is any history of abuse in your mom’s past it could be coming up into consciousness by way of her dream; on the other hand it might have nothing to do with that.

The snake’s mouth open or closed seems to be a symbol of hunger, of the devouring dark power of the primitive animal part of ourselves, of our psyche. The snake in a tub threatening to eat a child could be symbolic of your mom’s own hunger, her love for you and her grandchild at the conscious level, and perhaps her unconscious envy and wish to get the sort of love when she was a kid that your child is getting now?

Perhaps your mom is ready to heal from her past? Perhaps she gave you a better childhood than she herself had? Maybe you are breaking old patterns across the cycle of generations and this gives you a chance to be close with your mom as two grown women working together for the well-being of your child (even if that child gets a better experience, ultimately, than either of you?).

All Best Wishes


^ * * * ^


Tori February 7, 2013 at 12:11 am [edit]

So I just woke up from a bad dream, and this is the second one this week I have woke up from. Both dreams my two young children are in harms way of sorts. In the fist dream earlier this week a bad man was trying to get into my house so I locked my children in my bedroom closet, grabbed my gun and waited for the man. I shot him and killed him when he entered my room but I woke up feeling like my children were unsafe, I had to check on them then watch cartoons to feel better. Tonight I dreamt my daughter was calling out to me and I went to get her and she said the ghost was going to get her, while I was trying to calm her I heard a noise from my sons room. I went to check on him he was on the edge of his crib and looked like he was about to jump. I woke up after I heard my daughter saying “daddy daddy” in my dream. She sounded so scared. My daughter is staying at my friends house tonight with my friends daughter, but I still got up to check on my son. The dreams are very intense I wake up heart pounding and sweating. And it takes me some time before I can go back to sleep. Help!


Bruce February 7, 2013 at 1:31 pm [edit]

Hi Tori,

While I am sorry you are suffering with nightmares, I think these offer great opportunity for insight and healing.

The first dream is very classic, in that the “bad guy” is coming into the house. This could symbolize your own Shadow (dark holder of power) entering the “house” as symbol of the total personal Self or psyche that contains all the parts (child, conscious self, bad guy, etc.).

Locking your child (symbol of innocence, of who you once were, and who you remain to be in the eternal archetype of renewal) in the closet is symbolic of making something secret in order to protect it. Hence skeletons in the family closet (in your case, ghosts in the next dream).

But now you bring the modern woman’s empowered twist to the classic dream. Typically the woman cannot deal with the Shadow and is helpless to defend her kids. In your case you have a gun and you are not afraid to use it (symbol perhaps of masculine power and aggression, of sexual dominance and of bully culture).

If this were real life perhaps you would have saved your kids, but they still might need a bit of therapy after mom shoots dead an intruder while they cowered in the closet.

And hence the follow-up dream; the ghost is a symbol of that which cannot die (or at least that which had died but not yet moved totally on from the realm of the living, of so-called reality).

In the second dream your daughter is threatened, but now by a ghost… by an entity that will not be stopped by something as blunt and obvious as a gun. This is where your own brain runs out of ideas as to how to cope with inner, imagined, ghostly or vaguely remembered danger and so you start surfing the web in search of other ideas. And I’m honored to meet you in such circumstances :)

And I want to offer you the respect to acknowledge that I have no definitive idea about what your dream actually means, only my own perspective that I offer in the hope that it will contribute to your own deeper insights and realization about what really scares you (is it hurt in the past? is it an anxious mind? it it the current state of fear of shooters in our midst?) and how you might come into more conscious understanding about it.

One way to re-think this dream might be to imagine you re-enter it and say to the ghost that you are sorry you shot the bad guy, you didn’t realize it was a disturbed (perhaps rejected or misunderstood) part of your own Self. Make is clear that no one under any circumstances will be allowed to hurt your children, but now that it is a not-altogether-real aspect of you, being a ghost, you are open to hearing what the ghost is trying to tell you. Often it is about healing the past and about owning your real power, which is not the power to shoot and kill, but the power to love.

All Best Wishes

^ * * * ^


Leslie February 19, 2013 at 2:34 pm [edit]

I too am so happy to happen on to this website. I had a very disturbing dream a few nights ago involving my family and mother. Most of it was hazy except the end. My family including my mother are vacationing in NYC and are on the roof of a large skyscraper at night. Somehow a madman is attacking my family with an ax and I’m fighting to protect everyone. At some point policemen are helping us, but the madman gets to my two year old son and he is mortally wounded. I remember one of the policemen coming up to me and his face is bloodied by the attack and he says I’m so sorry about your loss. I woke up completely freaked out and am fearing something bad will happen to me or my family as it felt so real. I’ve done some research on death in dreams and I know it doesn’t necessary mean what is shown in the dream. I am hoping to make a job change this year, perhaps it is a sign of my old career dying and a rebirth with a new job?
Thanks for your help.


Bruce February 19, 2013 at 10:28 pm [edit]

Hi Leslie,

I like your instinct about the dream and that you are already creatively engaged in possible meaning. In that spirit I offer some ideas to help amplify your own creative process…

This dream could arguably be about the conflict within you between career and childcare; and/or about the conflict within you between your identification with the child aspect and your identification with the parent/authority figure.

Depending on what NYC means to you, it could be a symbol for the big city, the collective aspect of the Self that includes money, power, drama/Broadway, glamour… or it could mean ill-gotten gains, as settlers pretty much stole it from the original inhabitants (and while this is not likely your association, I mention it because you have a nightmare set in this place) or it could relate to a strip of land between two rivers (two states of mind).

The skyscraper could signify higher consciousness, or power and ambition; in NYC it could symbolize a target for destruction (vanished towers) or the ego which builds towers that it hopes will give immortality but which vanish all the same upon the sands of time.

You are with Mother and Child, which could symbolize the older and younger aspects of your own Self. My suspicion is that you are not resolved in relationship to your mother—that somehow you carry resentment, or perhaps guilt… perhaps she was ambitious and you did not feel adequately seen as a kid, or perhaps she sublimated her needs to you and you carry her ambition which adds to your own.

The “madman” might be the part of you who is angry and the ax suggests a blunt drive not just to kill but to cleave or separate one thing from another. In this case the unconscious madman kills the child, which could symbolize that you have felt stopped by men, father, or by the male principle in the psyche, which is analytic, and analysis stems from the latin word meaning to cut, or be able to finely discern elements from each other (light/dark, city/nature, greed/generosity, etc.)

“Madman” might also be the singular of Madmen, and your inner wish to fullfil whatever Don Draper means to you, the sex and ambition of seeking our fortune in the Big Apple (or, like Lena Dunham, seeking it in the raw, naked terrain of artsy Brooklyn, the girl answer to boy power). Riffing in the spirit of creativity, you may see the resonance in a Mad Man killing a Child. Here is the Peter Pan vs. Wendy dilemma, the grown-up who insists on reality and responsibility is like death to the eternal child, but we contain all the parts and thus the conflict is within us.

The mad part of you certainly has an ax to grind, and the inner cop, the authority figure is smeared with blood, perhaps suggesting that you link the cop and the killer in your unconscious (this in light of recent news where the former cop turned killer of cops, at least in LA).

Perhaps a good way to go with this dream is to call an imaginary conference in the spacious offices atop the skyscraper. Imagine the child, the mother, the cop, the madman and yourself all around a conference table. Imagine the deep Self as the whole city, or at least the building, and your ego as in service to the deep Self as chairman of the board and yourself as potential CEO, if you can truly serve all the team and get them to work together. You start by listening to each one and honoring their position. This puts you in the King Solomon position and you must figure out a clever way so that no one hurts the baby (based on figuring out who loves it so much that they are willing to let it go sooner than see it killed).

Then you might consider your mission statement as a psychological corporation: what is it you all wish to serve? This unifying principle might help you broker a deal where child care is provided, executive function is utilized, power is channeled to good ends and abundance is cultivated—reaping reward not based on raw ambition but on true service.

Finally, a skyscraper and an ax brings to mind Jack and the Beanstalk, where a “giant” symbol of father, threatens to hurt Jack, the naive and innocent child, who must cut down the whole beanstalk (symbol of phallic power, hubris, grandiosity and greedy anger) in order to live happily ever after. But that is a Grimm tale indeed. Perhaps a post-modern, compassionate feminist twist on the old tale is that the madman is recognized as one’s own Shadow, and this better integration of dark power brings about a growing up of the little girl rather than a cutting down of either the parent/authority or the identification with the little girl.

Out of this death does indeed come new birth, but new birth calls for new and more attuned parenting so that the child within you can grow to fulfill her fullest and most authentic potential. And as for what that might be, you must go on your journey, live and tell your own stories and make your own discoveries.

New York is a great city, but it’s a grid… paths well-travelled by others. The true path looks more like being lost in the dark woods, or the night sea journey… the path you forge for your Self, for no one can have already cut a trail for you if it is to be your own true path, whether up to the sky in a building you will build, or into a future you cannot see until you architect it by living it.

Certainly wishing you all the best with it.

^ * * * ^


joyce March 3, 2013 at 2:37 am [edit]

Hi Bruce,

I just woke up from a nightmare, where my 18 year old son is apparently suppose to be shot in the penis. I can”t remember too much ahead of the dream but all l know l was talking to some guy (suppose to be someone that knows my son but l have never met) tells me that my son was shot in the penis. I asked who by and he said this guy that was in the dream. He was apparently a bad guy that apparently was in the dream that somehow l knew or I can’t seen to remember how l was suppose to know this person. Please help me with this dream it scares me. Oh yes l did see my son earlier that is why l was questioning the guy that told me that he got shot, that is why l asked him when he was and who did it..
Thank you.


Bruce March 3, 2013 at 9:59 am [edit]

Hi Joyce,

I might start with imagining all the figures in the dream are aspects of yourself, thus there is the mother who loves and wants to protect the son, there is the son whose masculinity and power and ability to have pleasure and procreate is threatened, and there is the “bad guy” who plans to shoot the son in the penis.

The gun is a phallic symbol here, the penis that can only hurt when it shoots, a penis to end life but not begin it.

Perhaps you have mixed feelings about your son growing up? Perhaps he is pulling away from you and your unconscious hurt and perhaps jealousy brings out your inner bad guy?

Perhaps you have been hurt by men (literally/physically, sexually and/or emotionally) and so you are inhibited from being powerful for fear of being the “bad guy” and you end up feeling too often like a victim?

Perhaps you fear aging (I have an 18 year old son myself) and if your son would lose his penis this might symbolically stop time and prevent you becoming a grandmother one day.

My hope is that you could imagine talking to the bad guy as your own inner hurt and angry self and your son in the dream as your own threatened self and realize that you love, and must integrate, both these people into your own personality.

This will allow you to become the fully mature, powerful, happy Great Mother who is forming within you and rising to the surface of lived experience.

Finally, if you have issues with men, but love boys, you must better understand this so that you can help your boy become the man he is meant to be—and that is just what all of us parents might work together on, and in return gain a more peaceful and pleasurable society.

Sweeter dreams we hope!

^ * * * ^



Jodie September 22, 2012 at 1:12 am [edit]

My 23 year old daughter just moved to London. I am having a recurring dream that keeps getting more horrifying every time I have it. At first I just was dreaming that she was missing, but every night the dream would get worse, I awaken with increasing feelings of horror and urgency, in the dream I suspect something terrible had happened. Now tonight I have awoken after a horrific nightmare that my daughter was in Chicago missing for a long time and I never did anything about it, now I find out that a serial killer is on the loose and they are finding young girls bodies, I see a map and I am struggling to see if I know the area. I am certain she is gone forever and everybody around me agrees-I feel destroyed


Bruce September 22, 2012 at 7:11 am [edit]

Hi Jodie,

I’m sorry you are being rattled by your unconscious, but perhaps better insight into this dream will end the nightmare.

The first way I would view this dream is as a tableau reflecting your fuller Self back to you. In this perspective you are your ego-self (a mother who cannot find her daughter) but you are also the daughter (the girl who has gone missing, which could symbolize that now, with a 23 year old daughter, you are no longer in the phase of the girl, solidly in middle age; I am too, so I get to say this without being rude :)

You would also be the “serial killer” in the dream, the unseen Shadow who carries dark power. In mythical terms this is the devilish fiend and in “real life” it might be the deeply disturbed criminal, but in psychological terms it is our unconscious, hurt and destructive Power.

In this perspective we might understand that the little girl must die so that the full and empowered woman can be born. This takes as long as it takes, but we do have a culture where growing up is much longer journey than in the old days.

I know you feel “destroyed,” but perhaps you are also being re-birthed in a new chapter?

To better understand this dream you must also contemplate London and Chicago more deeply for what they mean to you personally, and perhaps also what they signify for the collective.

Being Chicago born and bred myself, I find the city of big shoulders evocative of gangsters, prohibition, spirits and ghosts of Native Americans…

London, being a great world city spanning Druids, Roman conquest, Shakespeare, Dickens, Empire, War, Banking, Art and philosophy, is also where Sherlock Holmes plied his fictional sleuthing. In an intriguing fiction it has been suggested that Jack the Ripper stopped killing when Holmes appeared in the collective imagination, perhaps because Holmes (or his author) was the killer.

Facts in this sense are beyond my ken, but psychologically speaking this tracks nicely. It takes a thief to catch a thief; it takes a killer to catch a killer.

Rage is love made hungry. Perhaps deep down you, like almost all of us humans who want nothing more than to have love, family, community and safety, are nothing less than hurt that your little girl has grown up and moved away.

It is unacceptable sometimes to allow us to acknowledge that our hurt makes us angry. Thus your secret self becomes exaggerated into a full blown serial killer in your dream all because you can’t say to your daughter, “I love you so much it makes me sad and even angry when I have to miss you and worry about you.”

You are “struggling to see if you know the area” of your true Self. And you are in a profound transition. My vote is that after we build nests and they turn out empty, we might realize that we’ve built the ability to care and to love; even if your daughter doesn’t need the nest right now, your inner, lost, forgotten girl can benefit by being held lovingly in the space of your rising consciousness.

This might not be pleasant to think about, but as you do you will likely find the dreams evaporate… and before you know it you’re walking through the Tate Modern with your daughter and having lunch in London and the nightmare is transformed into waking, perhaps eternal, love.


Jodie September 26, 2012 at 4:21 am [edit]

Thank you Bruce, I believe you are correct. After reading and reflecting on your lovely response the nightmares have ceased. I had not thought of myself as the serial killer and I think your interpretation is correct. My (smothering)maternal instinct is screaming to keep her locked in the house where she can be safe:). My logical mind tells me that is wrong and I need for her to leave the nest and soar. What a conflict! Thanks again for giving me back a good night’s sleep.


Bruce September 26, 2012 at 8:30 pm [edit]

Hi Jodie,

I am very happy to hear you have found relief from the nightmares. Perhaps this supports the importance of us parents connecting, and supporting each other through difficult transitions as a way of furthering our growth and coming together, by way of consciousness and compassion, to forge a gentler and safer world for us and all our collective children.

Warmest Regards

^ * * * ^



Claudia September 12, 2012 at 1:24 am [edit]

I don’t remember most of my dreams, but when I do, all senses are involved and I wake up fully engaged in the dream. I have premonitory dreams before which lends more power to my nightmares and gives me quite a bit of anxiety. I usually try to analyze them myself but this one had so many off-the-wall elements, I could not make heads or tails of it, and I would love to know what you think about it. In my dream, I work for the First Lady and the First Lady is Anne Rice (the author, my favorite author). We are taking walks around an empoverished area somewhere and suddenly small tremors begin. These tremors begin building up to the point where people are beginning to panic; we head to the school where her daughter and mine attend school and a few people are keeping us from reaching our girls ( I don’t know why they won’t let us near them, though I believe it’s political, one of the people is my sister in law although there is no acknowledgement of that relationship in the dream). As the earthquakes strengthen, I can see my daughter through a glass and I notice (in detail) her reaction: her fear, her anxiety and I beg the people to let me in! I explain that she has a very anxious personality and that she needs me and they laugh, they begin mocking my feelings and her distress. Finally the earthquakes begin turning destructive (in my dream someone screams that was at least a 6!) and the masonry begins to crumble and the glass shatters and I reach in for her and I woke up, as if thrown out of the dream; sweating, my heart rate elevated and after checking on my daughter at least three times in the last 20 minutes. I will be grateful to any insights I may gain from your interpretation. Thank you!! Claudia


Bruce September 12, 2012 at 10:42 am [edit]

Hi Claudia,

While you may have premonitory experiences, at least Jung suggests that by becoming conscious of things they may be somewhat less likely to materialize as our fate. And while the unconscious is powerful, our thoughts and dreams are not the same as our shared social reality, and thus I think you’re on firmer ground to interpret this dream as being about your own psyche than about your daughter’s danger.

In the dream you “work for” the “first lady,” which symbolically could suggest you in relationship to your own higher Self. Ann Rice writes about vampires, so the part of you who is associated with the undead, or immortal (both tortured and super-human) finds herself in the same predicament as you. Thus your “favorite author” (i.e. your “creative” and “famous” unconscious aspect) has to come down from the wealth and fame and remoteness to get in the trenches of being scared, and of caring deeply, right alongside you. (this is why she walks with you through impoverished areas, coming down to reality on the ground, but also visiting the areas within your psyche that feel neglected and abandoned… think of all the children left behind by our culture… and the anger in your deepest unconscious that starts to shake the world up).

Earthquakes are forces of nature much bigger than human ego and architecture. You see your daughter through the glass (at first we see through a glass darkly, then face to face). This represents the unseen barrier (i.e. level of consciousness) between your ego-self and your child-self (which is that part that was left behind, or not fully reached, by your mother aspect, perhaps that narcissistic aspect we all carry who would rather star in the play than sit in the audience and clap)

One of the forces that stop you from getting to your child is your sister IN LAW, in other words your brothers and sisters who make laws (congress, legislators) are not letting us get to our children, not allowing us to do what we know is needed (fairness, compassion, community). Thus the dream is personal AND it is collective: it is where we are at, and we need to wake up and do better for all our collective children.

Our child self has an anxious personality, this is a lack of basic trust, this is an artifact of our own childhoods, personal, collective, political, economic. We are in the process of becoming more conscious, and we are well-served to learn how to help children become secure and safe (this will set the foundation for a better world).

Perhaps you dream is more than just a nightmare, but a call to action—a million moms all fed up with the BS of competitive, cruel and duplicitous times and thus tearing it all down as Mother Nature says “enough already?”

In waking life we need no such big or biblical drama. We don’t have to redeem ourselves and our children with jazz hands or with Charlton Heston parting the seas… it shall probably suffice to simply realize that we are a community of caring, that we have been anxious and scared and that has made us vulnerable to exploitation and to being “trapped” in a sort of school of life where we’re not learning the real lessons that are not new but eternal: give love when you can, reach out for love and understanding and compassion when you are scared. Through this we discover that we are the people, we have the power, and that power is the power to love and to care.

This is the unstoppable end to the personal nightmare and the beginning of a much, much better waking life. Who doesn’t want this to be true?

All Best Wishes


Note:  consider tremors in context of Peter Levine and healing trauma


{ 126 comments… read them below or add one }

Kenzie November 17, 2013 at 7:38 am

I’m 12 years old and ever since I was younger I’ve had dreams about me getting kidnapped like not getting kidnapped but the person tries to take me and I some how run off. But then yet the rest of the dream as I stay by my parents side so the kid napper cant get me he still follows me around. And then I wake up once he goes away


Bruce November 17, 2013 at 11:07 pm

Hi Kenzie,

I’m sorry you have had these scary dreams, but perhaps they are really about times you have felt a little lonely? Maybe it’s like you are a good kid and your parents are busy and so in the dreams there is this “bad guy” and so you get to stay by your parents’ side (sort of like not having to grow up and be more independent which can be a little sad and a little scary, even if it’s also a little exciting).

Sometimes the “bad guy” is a symbol of our power, the grown-up power we are not ready for as children (and so we run away, and so, because it is a part of us that want us to be powerful, it chases us, sort of like to help us. But then we run away so well it gets frustrated and angry and then seems like a monster).

If you have the dream again, just try to remember you are dreaming and say to the kidnapper: “I know you’re just a part of me, sort of like the monsters in “Where The Wild Things Are” that say, “I’ll eat you up I love you so!”

Maybe your dream will then turn fun (I love that old book, “Where the Wild Things Are” and recommend it to parents and to bigger kids). It just might help you feel safer and more calm.

Finally, if the dreams don’t get better, maybe invite your parents to read some of the bad dreams here at this blog and some of my comments and maybe they’ll better understand your fears and be able to talk with you about your dreams and maybe that will make everyone in your family feel good and safe and cozy.

Thanks for writing and I hope you have good dreams now!


Tex November 26, 2013 at 8:31 am

I had a nightmare where I was home with my family and someone knocks on the door so I open it no one was there I close the door and lean on it thinking that was odd. Then suddenly an Hindi man opens the door and looks at me pushes me down, runs up stairs grabs my 2 year and trys to get pass me and the door…I hear my husband playing music and has my youngest I try to get him to help…I am not sure if he left with her but it felt like he did and I wake up screaming…:(


Bruce November 26, 2013 at 9:07 pm

Hi Tex,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Please do read through the other dreams and comments and you will get the gist of how to approach your own dream.

Certainly wishing you better dreams ahead


Kelli Hembree March 24, 2014 at 4:58 pm

I had a dream about my lil girl being kidnapped from me. I woke up crying and upset .. then a week later my friend has the same dream but in her dreamy daughter was kidnapped,rapped and murdered… why are we having dreams like this. It make s me really upset


Bruce March 24, 2014 at 5:01 pm

Hi Kelli,

Please read through the thread of dreams above and my responses—I think you will see the pattern (and also that you are not alone in these dreams).

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… if you read through the dreams of others and then still have questions about your (and your friend’s) dreams then write another comment here with more details and what you are thinking it could mean based on what I’ve offered about similar dreams combined with your own ideas and insights on your own dream and personal situation.

In the meantime, wishing you… Sweeter Dreams!


mis June 21, 2014 at 1:26 am

Hi. Last night i had a dream my middle child and youngest were with me but not my oldest and i had a third younger baby we were at an apartment type house and my friend was there there were guys hitting on us o decided to leave my kids went first and my friend and i argued she stayed i felt the stairs were slippery then o relised my children were already down there i rushed down lots of stairs got to a front park type thing calling them hysterically and asking people to help me i rushed round crying where’s my babies in a state and rembered another child was kidnapped from that same park i woke up to my self saying where’s my babies it was so vivid and horrible in my dream it felt like i wasnt goin to get them bk any ideas on what it could mean we are moving house in a week.


Bruce June 21, 2014 at 10:18 pm

Hi Mis,

as noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… see if you get any clues from the other dreams

A couple of hints… the “oldest” is missing (this could symbolize yourself—the child part of you who feels she is overwhelmed or left behind); while the the “third younger baby” could symbolize the baby part of you who is needing to be loved, understood, etc.

Slippery stairs could symbolize the danger you feel might be in exploring your “deeper feelings” or your “unconscoius” (i.e. downstairs of our conscious or awake mind). Yet your children (symbol of what you love/need) are “down there” and so you go, find courage.

Sounds like you’re anxious about “moving” as transition is difficult and you might not have been really dealing with your emotions and so your unconscious gives you a dream to “make you” go into those feelings, perhaps things that hurt you in the past. The point is to find the courage to trust that the love you have for your kids is teaching you the power of love to heal, even to heal the parts of you that still need to be understood, and loved, and not left behind.

Sweet Dreams and good luck with the move


Sam June 28, 2014 at 3:08 am


I had a dream last night that my 3yr old daughter was having a afternoon nap and when I walked into the room then she was slightly holding onto a material belt and something unseen was pulling the belt slowly into the cupboard and when it saw me it pulled faster so I ran and kicked the belt then it disappeared. . Then when I walked in the room the 2nd time round it was pulling again but did not see me and it did not see me this time so I ran again and when I got there it went back into the cupboard and disappeared again and then I woke up very sacerd that something is going to try attack my daughter or try take her away from me.. please help me understand that?


Bruce June 28, 2014 at 11:06 am

Hi Sam,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Nevertheless a couple of hints… What does a belt mean to you? It keeps our pants up (i.e. a boundary that protects the child-self in the dream from our potentially destructive or sexual self. A belt can be a tool of punishment. Were you spanked as a child? Perhaps around age three? Or did you just feel punished for some reason?)

If you read the other dreams you will see the possible interpretation of kidnapping as an unconscious struggle between your deep love for your child and you wish to be free of responsibility (not to mention that horrible vulnerability to loss to which loving our children exposes us.)

I prefer to think of the parts of the dream as parts of our own self, projected into symbols of what we love and fear. Thus your child self is threatened to be pulled “into the cupboard” which could mean back into the dark of unconsciousness, or into a secret place where one is hurt.

In our own minds it is the ego that attacks, and it is the higher self (the symbolic parent who protects, rescues, loves) that does not attack. We attack our own self, our child self, vulnerable and innocent, and the dream shows it. If only you could be lucid in such a dream and say: The belt and the force in the cupboard is just my own imagination, and there is nothing to it, and the “turning on the lights” of clear and unafraid seeing reveals that it is just the “boogie man” in the closet, in other words, the monster of our own imagining.

The truly awake situation is that you wrote to me, and despite my promising myself that I’ll stop “interpreting” all these nightmares, I know in spirit you are kindred, as we all are, and I don’t want you to suffer or for your child to be hurt… and so let’s realize that we are both awake, and whatever has happened in your past it is not what’s happening today, and your child is safe today (thank goodness) and so trust your waking reality and celebrate today with your kid, and in being a great and loving dad you heal whatever pain the past may have held, and which it need no longer hold.

Sweet Dreams, Sweet Waking Life!


Kirsty June 29, 2014 at 10:43 am

Hi, its 3am in the morning and I just had the most horrific dream/nightmare. I cant sleep and am really needing to know what it is all meaning. I woke in tears and havent been able to settle.

I was dreaming that I was in my house and it was morning. The night before my daughters father came to house but I asked him to leave. When I opened blinds I noticed he was in a gold car out the front with his girlfriend and her 3 sons. I panicked as I knew this was bad. I rang the police and spoke to a female who was understanding and sent a car out to my house. In that time he noticed we were awake and grabbed my 2 year old and drove off with me chasing her in a car. I then woke in a horror and in tears.
This might help? My daughters father decided not to be in her life for 3 years however recently has wanted to come back into her life. Which is ok but I need a smooth transition for her as she doesnt know who she is. He is a very angry man and his girlfriend is also an angry person. I fear greatly that this will occur as I know he is capable. Should I be concerned by this dream? Is this mothers gut telling me to be worried? Thanks you for taking the time to read.


Bruce June 30, 2014 at 7:47 am

Hi Kristy,

As I noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Nevertheless, a couple of hints (and then you can read the other dreams and contemplate for yourself what your dream might mean).

You are hurt, and that makes sense given a man you once loved has left you and your children. He may want to repair, but you are not just ready to forgive and forget.

If the dream symbolizes your own self and the different feelings, perhaps the “angry” part of you is encased in a “gold car” symbolizing the treasured part of you. I often notice that the “gold is in the shit” so to speak, but in this case the shit is in the gold :)

Your child is the True Treasure, symbolically: unquestionably lovable. Thus it is “kidnapped” (or wanted at any cost). Thus there is a part of you that your angry ex-lover self (really your hurt ego) wants to reconcile with.

So you call the cops, symbol of your “higher authority” but enemy of the kidnapper couple.

Why can’t we all just get along? So sad, so many kids suffer, so many so-called “grown-ups” suffer.

In real life I don’t know you guys, so I’m in no place to say who is “wrong” or “bad” (and I’d rather not think that way even if I did know you guys—I’m a psychologist not a judge or cop).

So… Remember your goal is to love your kid, and by loving your kid as if they were your best Self, you find compassion, understanding, and also limits and fairness (not just “okay fine, you hurt me, welcome back, it’s all cool” but rather, “I was hurt, and angry, and confused, so I’m working on getting past this for the good of our child and I do want OUR child to have a loving dad in her life, and I want to get along with you and your new girl and I want to have love in my life too”)

Anger is really about injustice. Your ex probably had a tough childhood and parenting is tough too; a man (or woman) may feel like “hey this isn’t fair! No dad stayed when I was little… no mom rose to the occasion and protected me even if it hurt her feelings a little bit” And so kids grow up and then repeat the pattern.

You have a chance to break the pattern, but it takes love. Love from you and love for you. Look around and see if there is any love for you to help you be your best Self.

Hope this helps a little. Wishing you Sweet Dreams and Sweet Waking Life too!


Kirsty July 1, 2014 at 4:44 am

Thanks for your reply. I didnt mean to make it sound like a horrible family break up situation that my daughter is suffering. She is the most happiest of little girls she just never had her dad in her life. This is mainly due to many reason one being depression and anxiety. This has created him to not be himself and turn to very negative peers who influence bad behaviour. I have worked my entire life and career helping broken down families and disadvantage children so I know all to well how important it is to show love and not anger regarding my daughter and ex. I hope that with time he can see that its better for her to me kinder and forgiving to me and himself. Anyway just wanted to apologise it was very early hours, I was in a panic from the nightmare and i dont usually have nightmares to begin with so wasnt explain the best way it should have. I more wanted to know what the dream meant or represented. However you have explained a little to that representation.
Thank you kindly though


Bruce July 1, 2014 at 2:59 pm

HI Kirsty,

No need for apologies! Perhaps if we can all be more mindful of how our own minds (if not cultivated to safety, love and compassion) will tend a bit toward fear and aggression. Thus perhaps your dream is actually about realizing the negative aspect within your own mind SO that you can cultivate loving kindness toward your own self (as it’s always clearer how to love our children than it is how to love ourselves; in this way loving our ex-lovers, our kids, other people’s kids, strangers just might be the rising consciousness we all would like—a movement toward an awake world that is not a nightmare).

As far as I can tell there are no rules on this, and when we practice compassion toward everyone we seem to feel better ourselves.

All Best :)


y dava July 16, 2014 at 6:26 am

Hello i am 6months pregnant and last night i had a horrible nightmare. I dreaamed i was in the kitchen with mt husband and a lady i do not know.. she started talking to us about how God and how we needed a change in our lifes that she saw a dark shadow in our lives.. rhen my husband started to see something in the corner and he just stared and the lady said “you are seeing something right, thats what im saying” so i turbed to see if i could see something but i couldnt i could only presence something was there then something jumped on mee and knocked me down my eyes closed and i couldnt open them. I could only hear people saying to get it off me … i also felt like if that sonething was trying to get my baby inside my stomache because it would move really bad and crazy like.. :( i am now really scared and want to move out


Bruce July 16, 2014 at 10:37 pm

Hi y dava,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

It sounds like you might have seen a few too many horror films, not to mention the hormones that might cause extra vivid dreams in your pregnancy.

So… please read through the other dreams for some ideas about how to think about your own dream.

A couple of hints: some part of you is saying you need to change, and having a baby is a big change. You might have mixed feelings about it, and so your unconscious acts out all the parts. The “lady” is the part of you that sees what you yourself don’t yet see (maybe just the baby that is still inside you).

Something knocks you down (like pregnancy “knocks you up”) and then you couldn’t open your eyes (theme of not being able to see your own mixed feelings, anger, fear… and then “wanting to move out” as symbol of wanting to get away from your feelings.

Maybe your early life was hard and you are not eager to revisit those feelings, maybe your life now is hard and you feel overwhelmed by being pregnant?

If you can think about understanding the “lady” as a part of you who needs to be seen and listened to (and maybe the idea that God is love and not punishment and that your child is innocent and deserves love and protection) you might “wake up” to the better and more loving life you and your husband and your baby might build together.

Nightmares are ultimately just made up stories by our worried brains. The real light makes the nightmare disappear; maybe love and compassion will turn waking life into a sweet dream.


scared July 19, 2014 at 3:16 am

I have a dream I was in my bedroom with a guy whom I just started a relationship with and we’re talking about the extinct of the relationship. My children are in the other room asleep and my bedroom door is closed when I hear a noise. I get up and open the bedroom door and I can see my front door is open, all the lights are still off and I walk to the front door peak my head out and see a kind of familiar man walking with my son still sleep in his arms. I scream out and he starts to move faster but trying nor to wake my son. I can see headlights and I sense he is moving to the car and when I had screamed out and began to run out the door I woke up.


Bruce July 19, 2014 at 9:10 am

Hi Scared,

As I note above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Yet I really do wish for you to feel safe and well, thus I encourage you to actually read a few of the other dreams and gain some potential ways to think about your own.

A few hints in the meantime: Your dream might be about the conflict inside you (inside all of us) between love and hate. The guy in your bedroom could symbolize love, but you’re talking about the “extinct” of it… the death of it.

Yet dinosaurs go extinct (and humans could too, if we don’t stop acting like dinosaurs, which are things that get so big that climate change brought by meteors kills them off, making it possible for mammals to thrive, which are creatures that take care of their young). Thus we must “evolve” from that which goes extinct (that which is alone unto itself) to that which evolves toward love (that which truly relates to things).

In the dream your children (symbol and reality of that which you love more than anything) are asleep (ironic to dream of someone sleeping within your dream, asleep within asleep; this could symbolize the way we think we are awake in real life but may yet be “asleep” to our potential to truly love). Your kids are not with you, thus your mind seems to divide mother love from romantic love, suggesting that you can only have one or the other.

The front door is open, and if the house is a symbol of your whole self and all your thoughts and feelings, then a part of you has “left the door open” to a new experience, to connecting your “house” to the larger world.

You “peak” your head out. I know I’m not the best speller either, but you meant “peek” and yet “peak” is like the top of the mountain, a symbol of higher consciousness. Maybe your conscious mind has a little trouble spelling, and maybe your unconscious, or higher mind “spells” like Harry Potter—a little movie magic to help you truly wake up, and aren’t dreams a bit like personal movies we make?

Also, the unconscious is kind of funny, making puns. So instead of lights on nobody home you make it lights off somebody home.

You see a “Kind of familiar man” walking with your son in his arms. This is disturbing at first glance, obviously; yet… “Kind” also means nice, caring, thoughtful, and “familiar” is not stranger and also connects to “family” thus a “kind family man” is holding your son. How lovely… it’s only you who are scared.

So you “scream out” (obviously it seems like he’s stealing your child), but yet maybe he is the kind and family part of you who can hold the sleeping you safely in your arms and protect him from the “screaming” mother whose fear needs love and compassion, but also the light of day, the light of love, so that she can wake up and realize that she loves and she cannot be stopped from loving.

You “can see the headlights” and that is another symbol of paralyzed fear: the “deer in the headlights”. You ran to your child, no longer paralyzed, and then you “woke up.” So… take a moment to realize that you are awake now, you love your child now, you are safe now, and that it’s okay to have a bad dream, to ask for a little help, to realize you’re a good and loving mom, and that it’s perfectly safe to love. “Bad things” still can happen, that’s true, but there is no point in making up nightmares and scaring ourselves. If you think lovingly about this dream I very much doubt you will have another dream like it.

So… here’s to having Sweet Dreams, and a sweet waking life too. Maybe that’s how we can truly “wake up” whatever that means. For today I’ll just go for a good and happy day if possible and wish you no less.


Erin July 24, 2014 at 9:21 am

So this morning I woke up crying from my scary dream. I have been having a few scary dreams on and off when I have often woken up crying. First, the surroundings in this dream is dark with dirty and old buildings. It started with me needing to take my dog to go get checked out but a man said I need to be prepared for someone to hit my dog before I came into the animal hospital. I don’t understand why someone would hit my dog? Then before I could take my dog a group of people came and killed my dog. Then, these groups of people started to kill other people with a line that would burn to cut their heads or other body parts off. (this I remember was from a tv show, teen wolf, which I love watching) Next, the scene changed to my family being caught by these people so we have to kill ourselves. I looked over and mouth the words to some woman, Help Us. What was weird is that before we had to kill ourselves a small lizard thing was in the water and were having fun chasing it with my grandma. (Strange) After, I began to see one of my brothers drown himself and then I was beginning to say good by to my other brother and I was telling him how much I love him. I had my arm wrapped around his body not wanting to let him go. Then I look over to my grandma screaming to her to help us and that she can’t let his happen. It was so scary and the dream was so real, so I woke up crying and having a scary feel in the pit of my stomach.


Bruce July 24, 2014 at 8:32 pm

Hi Erin,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Truly, if you read through other dreams you will get clues about how to think about your own.

Just a couple of hints—watching horror shows plants ideas in your head, and you can then see what your own mind does with them, perhaps using symbols to represent your feelings.

Maybe your dog symbolizes the non-thinking part of you, the instinctive “best friend” who has been hurt. The violent people might represent your own anger and destructive (or self-destructive feelings). A lizard might symbolize your even more primitive (than the dog) reptile part of the mind—the part “in the water” which might symbolize the unconscious (things just coming up into your conscious awareness). Your grandmother could be the wise older mother/nurturer part.

Do read the other dreams, give yours some deeper thought (take the time, think for yourself… this will help you grow and take more loving care of yourself).

Hope you have Sweet Dreams ahead


Briar July 31, 2014 at 8:07 am

I had a dream that my daughter went missing. She is now 6 months old but in my dream she was older. Probably around 2. She was able to run around. But in my dream everything was fine until I asked my mother where my daughter was. We were at a park or somewhere public and there were a bunch of people. She said she didn’t know and that she thought my daughter was with me. Strangely I knew almost everyone there and as I asked around no one knew where my daughter was. No one had seen her. So I started screaming her name “caroline” “Caroline” !!!! Everyone did. But nothing. No one could find her they’d all randomly come up to me asking if I’ve found her but I couldn’t. I was crying. I was crying so hard I remember my jaw hurting and I was trying so hard to wake up but I couldn’t because it was so real. And then I got a text on my phone from my ex boyfriend and it was a picture of something so in order to read I’d have to zoom in. And I was so scared and couldn’t take the time to read it all I started calling him but I remember reading something like “he has no idea” and then I woke up….someone please help me. What does this mean???


Bruce July 31, 2014 at 3:16 pm

HI Briar,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Fear makes us rush around, miss-read things, distort our experience. This is what a nightmare is.

So… please read the dreams above and see that you are not alone, and that you need to stop acting so helpless and participate in your healing and your empowerment.

Still, a couple of hints on your dream: Think about life when you were 2. Sounds like you felt emotionally abandoned or neglected by your mom, and that you still have anger toward your mom. Now is a chance, as a mom yourself, to make a deeper bond with your mom and meanwhile stop resenting her and stop resenting yourself. And stop resenting your boyfriend for having “no idea” (i.e. being clueless). All these figures symbolize aspects of yourself—feeling like a bad mom, feeling like a lost child, feeling like a clueless abandoning lover… and then yourself feeling overwhelmed and misunderstood.

Like I said, other dreams and comments above will give you ideas about your own dream. Then you will not have “no idea” and rather realize that you have always had the best idea: love.

Sweet Dreams


Kelly August 3, 2014 at 9:03 am

I thought I was strange by having recurring dreams..and to remember it , oh gosh no likey :(


harley August 11, 2014 at 9:11 pm

Hello. I would like to add my dream, and see if someone could help me figure out what it meant?

Today when I was napping with my 2 and a half year old son, I dosed off and started dreaming.

My dream was me sitting in the car with a friend at night, and we had both of our kids with us in my building parking lot. And this lady came out to take her garbage out and also had a son with her about 4 or 5 years old. She through her garbage out and then started walking towards my car, and opened the back door and took my son out so casually and my son wasn’t fussing or anything, and she replaced my son with her son, or a boy, and shut the door and started walking away with him holding his hand. Her son sat quietly in the back seat and I was panaking trying to open the door, but because it was child proof it wouldn’t open from the inside. My friend started panaking and trying to find the button to unlock it and she got out of the car and tried to open my car door and it wouldn’t open still, so she runs back into the car shuts her door and starts looking for the button to open it for me, I’m still panaking trying to open the door while she is walking away with my son.

The weird part is my friend kept trying to open my door, and even got out of the car to try to open my door, while she could have gotten my son from the lady..

Like I don’t understand why my son was taken and we couldn’t do anything about it, and my son just walked away so calmly with this stranger.

Why wouldn’t she worry about running after the lady??

Why was it so important for her to open my door?
Anything helps!!!!!!!!! Please post a comment


Bruce August 12, 2014 at 9:34 am

HI Harley,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

And I really think if you read through some of the dreams you will get new ideas about your own.

In the meantime, a couple of hints:

Dream as wish. This is Freud’s idea. Not sure if it works, but in this context you have an unconscious wish to not have to deal with your kid, but you are guilty about it and thus it becomes a nightmare in which you can’t get to your kid instead of you abandoning your child. From this point of view the woman who throws away garbage might symbolize the part of you who “throws away your child” and gets a 4 or 5 year old (who is QUIET), thus the unconscious wish for an easier, quieter, more mature kid. This is consistent with the friend who focuses on helping you, and not your child, because your wish is to be rescued from your stuck place, symbolized by being trapped in a car that is “child proof” (you are thus the child, or wish to be the child and have someone understand and help you). No shame or guilt in this. The idea would be realize you love your kid but also you are suffering a bit, you need love and friendship and a little bit of “rescue” and I hope you get it… in your mind and heart, as you don’t really need it in the “reality” of waking life.

2nd approach… Jung: In this view all the parts of the dream are symbols of you, and then it is about the relationship between the strange lady who throws away trash and gives away her kid (the wicked witch, the step-mother, the Shadow) and the impotent friend who can’t open a car door (your not powerful self, bumbling but trying), and the child you (who is taken away, maybe symbolizing some trauma or loss that you had at 2 1/2 that rendered you quiet and feeling like an unwanted kid by 4 or 5) and your ego-self, trapped in the car (also a symbol of the status or branded self in our society… and all in the context of the apartment building, which is symbol of the Collective Self that contains all the parts of us, even if they don’t all work together ideally, at least not yet.

Finally, a rational science approach: our bodies shut down the muscles when we are asleep, and then we literally cannot move (hence dreams of running and getting nowhere). In this case your mind feels trapped because your body is immobilized in sleep. It makes up a scenario to explain it (trapped in a car); then the more scared you get, the worse you feel—more trapped; your mind makes up stories to go with the feeling, thus your worst fear, of course, is losing your child if you are trapped, and so that’s exactly what the mind creates. This is probably both the essence of nightmares and of anxiety.

Conclusion: You love your kid. Parenting is very hard. Like all of us, you need love and understanding. Like all of us, you want to feel safe, loved and empowered. You asked for a little help. I’m trying to give you a little help. Maybe we share a community and a genuine concern about each other and all our children. Maybe we’re “awake” to this idea and there will be no more need for nightmares. Then you can be part of the solution by being safe, loved, supported and part of an unbreakable community. That would be better than a good dream—that would be a good life :)

Sweet Dreams


Jessica August 21, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Hi Bruce,

I could really use your advice and it will be greatly appreciated. My mom and I used to live with my grandparents in Irvine, Ca on the Irvine Ranch. My grandpa worked there up until they closed down the ranch. I was about 5 yrs. old when we moved out of the Ranch, I am 26 now. While we lived there, almost every night I would have a dream about being kidnapped. I was always being kidnapped from right outside our house and it was always the same guy. I have no idea who this guy was, Ive never seen him before in my life. The guy was about 5″10, skinny, light skinned latino man, he had black hair and a black mustache. He drove an older 2 door truck, like an older toyota with just a bench seat. He was about from late 20s-mid 30s. He would always kidnap me and throw me in his truck. He would start driving and a little bit later I would hit him with a bat that I found in his truck, and would take off running through the orange groves that surrounded the Irvine Ranch. I could hear him yelling for/at me. Like I said, we moved from that house in 1994, I was about 5. I am 26 now and havent had that dream since we moved out of that place. What could this possibly be or mean?


Bruce August 21, 2014 at 9:38 pm

Hi Jessica,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… please read the other dreams and comments and it will give you some options for thinking about your own dream.

A couple of hints: Given that it was a recurring nightmare, perhaps you can ask your family if there were any real things that happened to anyone in the family, just in case you somehow picked up on that and then dreamed about it (i.e. if you overheard it in a conversation; or maybe got the idea from a movie or TV show).

As you will see from reading other dreams, it might also be about feeling abandoned and thus dreaming of abduction as an unconscious representation of being “wanted” or cared about, but in a twisted way.

The good news is that you are safe and those bad dreams were long ago.

Certainly wishing you well in waking life and hoping your dreams will be good ones


Theanna September 14, 2014 at 12:30 am

I don’t have children, but I had this nightmare where a man was chasing me and tryin to kill me. Time lapse to a few years later and I have a daughter. She’s roughly 3-5 years of age now. The same man is chasing us. Us now, not just me. He finally catches up to us and kills me. Even though I’m dead, the dream continues. It moves to a car. My daughter is in the back seat crying for me. The bad guy is in the front seat, laughing like a maniac. He turns towards the passenger seat, there is an object there with a sheet placed over it. He pulls the sheet off of what is my corpse. He laughs like a maniac even louder, but his laugh faded out as all
I could hear was my daughters screams as she stared at me, her dead mother. And then I woke up. WHAT THE HECK DOES THIS MEAN?! I woke up with some maternal instincts to kill a man and get my child back. Again, I don’t even have a kid. I’m not
Pregnant. Nothing. Please help me out here. Thanks!


Bruce September 14, 2014 at 1:15 pm

Hi Theanna,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

I really think that most of these dreams parents are having about their children are really about themselves and their relationship to their own innocence and childhood.

So…. Please read the other dreams above and the comments and you will get insights into your own dream.

A couple of hints to get you started: The man symbolizes your power (that you have run away from because you associate it with evil). The child represents your new and emerging self who is in relationship to power. The corpse represents the old you who must “die” symbolically for the new you to be born.

Death and rebirth is an ancient theme in many stories. We live in a culture that is both denying of death (youth obsessed) and yet it is also paralyzed by death (lack of spirituality, love, imagination, compassion, honesty).

This is probably the way culture has always been. The big question is if we might evolve to care about our kids, even if they are not our biological kids, and find a better way to enjoy living and loving.

I’m glad you took the time to share your dream. Why shouldn’t you heal from the past? If “men” hurt you in the past, realize we are all “men” at some primitive level of the brain. This is not a moral story, it is nature.

BUT we are all potentially “moms” or “parents” at another level of the brain (the higher brain that does love, appreciation, happiness).

Thus the urge to kill the man is not “maternal” but patriarchal, or primitive. It is the man’s lonely despair, and women feel it just like men.

The potential to love, to care, to connect and to come truly to life is something men and women yearn for. Something very young children just know instinctively until we talk them out of it.

You must contemplate your dream, but I see hope and rebirth in the symbolism and hope you will come to feel the dream helped you grow and heal. Then you start to trust your loving heart more than “men” (by which we mean ego-driven humans of either sex) and come into your true power which will never hurt anyone, for the power to love is what we’re all trying to learn together.

Wishing you Sweet Dreams and a Lovely waking life too


Caylin September 18, 2014 at 12:38 pm

Hi had a dream of my children be kidnapped. The dream happen like this i was standing out side my home with family and one our friends who i do not know in real life was selling drugs to some young kids and this car and motorcycle pulled up shooting be-be pellets at my car and saying you are wrong now i will take our kids now i didn’t actually see him take them i just seen him drive away on his motorcycle with them and i chased him yelling i will get my AR 15 and put a bullet in your head when i find you, I then seen the car coming toward me and i reached inside the car drug the man and car back to my home as if i had super human strength and tried to question him but he disappeared, i remember we had been looking for them and i was having a hard time finding them I question the “friend” his name was Jeremiah and i kept telling him to admit the he fucked up (sorry for the profanity) and he did, then i was in a house fire/ raid and i was trapped and i remember my kids riding bikes playing in a dark hallway saying bye mommy and im telling myself i couldn’t find them and now they will never have me again, at this point i stopped my dream and went back like i pressed rewind and i was talking to a lady who lived next to me and she was telling me about how her son was killed by her husband for a crime he had committed in her country of Israel but her son was only a child and as she told the story of his throat being cut i lost my emotions and couldn’t stop cry, she then told me to wait there was more and to hold on just wait that’s when i told her sorry i just want to find my kids i miss them. then i woke up crying and had trouble breathing please help me i have dream like this one of my kids frequent but they are always different dreams but there is always some harm that comes to my kids. What do they mean.


Bruce September 18, 2014 at 4:43 pm

Hi Caylin,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… please do read through the dreams and comments and you will get ideas about your own dream.

A few hints to get you started:

A man selling drugs: symbol of changing consciousness the fast/easy way that leads to poverty, addiction and continuance of oppression

bb pellets: child attack (symbol of the angry kid in you who is angry at injustice but who doesn’t feel powerful, so resorts to kidnapping, a weak move)

Voice telling you “you are wrong”: symbol of your own inner critical self, (you may have been criticized and hurt as a child, now you dream this as a “bad guy”, but still it’s just a symbol of your own power turned destructive

AR 15: not sure if you actually have this weapon, but as a symbol is is the dangerous and vindictive part of you, the negative Shadow that will murder as response to violence. Understandable, but as the dream shows, it does not work

“super human strength”: symbol of the love that is above your ego, your fear, your vengeance. Yes you want justice, peace and love, but it must come from your soul, your spirit, that which is beyond human, which is the simple aggressive brain that has no real solutions to our problems of violence, injustice and hurt children

Jeremiah: symbol perhaps of the biblical Jeremiah, who was a prophet. God’s message to Jeremiah was that he would be attacked, but that he could not be overcome. Maybe Mother Love is that force in our world?

” at this point i stopped my dream and went back like i pressed rewind “: this is GREAT. You already have a sense of lucid dreaming. Next time you have a bad dream hit rewind again, go back and say to everyone and everything in the dream: “you are just parts of me. I created this whole dream out of my own psyche. I am now here to learn, so if I fucked up I’m sorry, but teach me to love, to be safe and to be a force for compassion and peace and justice for my child and for all children” Your dream will then teach you with more kindness, and you will find guidance from your own psyche and the bad dreams will stop. Then, hopefully, all us reasonably sane, worried, disenfranchised parents who look at the world and ask, “WTF?” may gently wake up to some better way of being and loving. I have no idea what that might be, but I have faith in the moms around the world who are just trying to love their children.

The Woman Next Door: could be a symbol of yourself, but who you don’t realize to be yourself… the part of you you distance from?

Father killing his son in Israel: this could be symbolic of the idea of sacrifice. Abraham was ready to sacrifice his son and God, according to the story in the bible, stopped him. The Christian story is about God as Father sacrificing his child… Perhaps it’s time for mothers, or at least feminine compassion and common sense (i.e. NOT guns, NOT murder, NOT vengeance) to take the stage.

Crying: this is symbolic of letting your emotions fully impact you. Tears are ok, they are not weak. Tears are a proper response to hurt (your own, whatever it was about) and anger is appropriate too (it means something is not just), but you realize that you “just want to find your kids” which is symbol to “find yourself” your innocent and hurt self so you can love her, heal her and then “wake up” empowered and happy to more fully participate in “real life”

Hope these ideas help. DO read the other dreams for more ideas.

Sweet Dreams


juana rodriguez September 21, 2014 at 6:57 am

So I just had this crazy dream that had me crying .it was one of those location jumping dreams I left the place where I was staying and went back to the shelter with my six year old and in one part I couldn’t find her then she just appears in the lunch room with me thenin my dream I wind up coming out a room asking where is my kid and I get dirty looks form other mothers and their telling me she’s in some guys office while I was gone so I went in the office that’s also this mans room and their is a door and I here her then she comes out half way and I am calling here yelling baby you OK come here and I here her yelling for help and he kills her …crying as I type that’s how real thisfelt …iI am all ways with her one minute and she’s lost the next plz help


Bruce September 21, 2014 at 5:44 pm

Hi Juana,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So, please read some of the other dreams and the comments to them, as you will get understanding from what others dream—and to see you are not alone.

A couple of hints to get you started: the main feeling of the dream is that you have sudden loss. Perhaps this is the way you felt when you were six, and maybe it is still the way you feel in your life—uncertain and unsupported by other parents, the society, men, etc.?

If your life is good, but your dreams are bad then you want to think about the symbols in the dream, particularly the “man” as symbol of your own aggressive self and the child as the “disappearing” self.

On the other hand, if your life is hard and your dreams are like your life, then you probably need social support and love and compassion so that you can be there for your child. In this sense you may feel like you are not able to be there and so you dream about your child disappearing.

If you “disappear” through checking out, losing temper, getting overly emotional then maybe the dream is trying to tell you to get out of that place where the moms are mean and the men are killers. But if this is a “shelter” then where can you go?

Symbolically you need a safe place, so perhaps in your dreams you can start to build a safe place where you and your child are protected.

As far a a society that is actually that way… maybe we can think about the idea that people who feel safe and good about themselves are generally kind. So if any parts of us, in our minds or in our lives, are not nice then maybe they need the help/love/understanding. After all, why would a man want to kill a child unless he is himself tormented?

Finally, the fact that the man (symbol of your destructive power) kills the child could symbolize the fact that the child, symbolically, has to die for the woman to be born. In this case it could mean your identification with the child, feeling like a helpless child, has to “die” so you can own your power—which is ultimately the power to love.

Please do read the other dreams.

Hope this helps & Sweet Dreams


Kirsten October 1, 2014 at 3:47 am


I’ve had a couple of bad dreams over the past year about my 4 year old.
The first one was we were at a school or community centre. My son (4year old) was beside me, the place was crowded. Then all of a sudden I couldn’t find him and I started to panic. Next all I could hear was a blood curdling scream I child. I run to where the screams where coming from and found my child laying there with half his face burned by chemicals. I cried as I picked him up and started looking for help. No one would help. Then I awoke. And my husband was asking me if I was okay. He told me that I was crying in my sleep. I reached up and my face was wet with tears and I had to go snuggle my sleeping child in his bed. The dream felt so real and was very scary to me. I’m not sure what it means but it was definitely unsettling to me.
Then I had another nightmare tonight. I don’t remember much of it except we were outside of a house late at night. There were lots of people walking around. The next thing I know someone is pointing to something in the shadows of a tree asking “what’s that, it looks like some animals got a hold of a child and dragged it back here.” In the dream I walk over to where they are pointing and I see that it’s my son. I started screaming “oh my god, it’s jakey! Jacob hunny are you okay?” While I am crying I rush over and scoop him up. His clothes are all torn and his body is covered in blood and scratches. His body is limp while I carry him and his eyes very slowly open and I see the fear and weakness in his eyes. That’s when I suddenly awake from the dream and have to calm down and check on him. I’m not sure why I am having these dreams. I wish they would stop. Please help me, what do these horrible nightmares mean?


Bruce October 1, 2014 at 4:17 pm

Hi Kirsten,

Not sure if you read the post above, but it says:

[Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Please read through some of the dreams and response/comments and if you still have further questions leave a follow up comment.

Just a couple of hints to get you started. The first dream is a “community center” suggesting that the problem is with all of us, all our children and the “chemicals” could be a symbol of toxicity.

The key to unlock what the dream means for you is to consider what is a reflection of our bigger situation, what is a reflection of your personal situation/family and what is a reflection of your own self, split into parts or characters that symbolize the pieces of you (i.e. the vulnerable child, the monster/Shadow, the helpless parent, etc.)

Trees can be symbols of soul or spirit, and animals can be symbols of instinctive parts of ourselves. Thus an animal inside a tree could relate to your instinctive hurt/anger/need inside of your true self, your spirit Self. The taking of the child can also be your unconscious wish to take your projections back in (to integrate the child self into the grown-up self by way of the instincts, and bring them harmoniously into the spirit self, the tree with deep roots/relationships to ancestors and to branches or your future grandchildren reaching into sky or higher consciousness).

Please read the other dreams, contemplate the different perspectives and work to discover the true love which is your very deepest truth, that which connects you with your child in a protected and unbreakable bond, a bond that could prove antidote to the toxic situations our hurt and frightened and angry brains cook up in our disturbed sleep.

See other dreams for comments on lucid dreaming and ways you might take action within your dream should you happen to have another nightmare.

Best of luck in the meantime and Sweet Dreams


Diana October 8, 2014 at 10:26 am

I dreamed my daughter was kidnapped along with two other kids my friends kids, in a split of a second I freaked out screaming and running around looking for them as I noticed a bunch of people outside the building I was in, I ran out and seen 3 bodies covered in dirt I ran to the first one and noticed it was my friends daughter lying she gone, I ran to the second body and it was my friends son lying their lifeless, as I looked to the back seeing the last body covers in dirt I ran screaming and crying I got in my knees and begin to clean the face, it was my daughter tears coming out her eyes, I graved her out the dirt and caring her in my arms I was screaming and crying going crazy yelling, mybaby was lifeless and her eyes kept tearing. This is not the first time I dreamed my daughter dead and so has other family members dreamed her gone. What does this mean?


Bruce October 8, 2014 at 8:17 pm

Hi Diana,

As I noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

A couple of hints to start you off: this could be about your own self and the different parts/feelings. Maybe you had a very painful childhood and you’ve tried, metaphorically anyway, to bury it or not look at it.

Then your unconscious wants to heal and so you dig up the part of you who seems lifeless (i.e. the part of you who is depressed) and yet it is tearing, perhaps meaning that you cried, or felt like crying, or now feel like crying but it doesn’t seem like anyone really saw your pain.

Your conscious self was “going crazy yelling” and maybe that means your are crying out for help, for compassion, for understanding and healing (in a way you are crying out with your comment here).

Please read some of the other dreams as there are some other ways to think about your dream, and about yourself and how you might heal.

Finally, the dream could also represent your heartbreak at the way the world can be sometimes, children being hurt and it feeling like no one cares. Perhaps just sharing our dreams, our nightmares and caring about each others’ children is part of a shift in consciousness that we all need and yearn for?

Certainly wishing you Sweet Dreams


Sandra November 15, 2014 at 5:26 am

Hello there,

I just woke up from a horrific dream about my four year old. Mind you I have a two month old son now. I had a dream last night about her being kidnapped at church by someone(male) who worked there. When I found out she wasn’t there I immdiately start to look everywhere on the church. The church was very weird and confusing with rooms and doors everywhere it was almost like a maze. There where two girls with me helping me look and dig for clues. Apparently the male that took my daughter lived at the church and was in some relation with the pastor and I came across his room before leaving. I took two envelops of information stuck them in my pocket and searched to leave. Yet again confusing and the two girls helped me out. Once I got out of the church I started to look around and ask people for help. The two girls weren’t there anymore. And everyone acted like something was wrong with me like I was crazy. A yung man had told me the pastor warned everyone in the ongregation that I was crazy and promiscuous so I couldn’t tell them about my daughter because they wouldn’t listen. Then I woke up.


Bruce November 15, 2014 at 11:28 pm

Hi Sandra,

I’m not sure if you read the post above, but it says: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… please do take a little time to read some of the other dreams and comments and you will get some tools for considering your own dream.

A couple of hints to get you going: kidnapping can signify an unconscious reaction to feeling not seen or abandoned; instead the “child part” of you gets taken (wanted) by someone, but in a nightmare scenario. The child or innocent part of you gets taken by some “male” person, perhaps symbolizing the power to hurt and also the power to want or care.

Consider if you feel unseen or unsupported by some male figure now in your life, or in your past (parent, teacher, etc.).

Church… could symbolize the collective spiritual self, perhaps you have some mixed feelings about religion, about authority, about sexuality?

The church, in symbolizing your total Self, is like a maze, and you are “exploring” or getting to know your full Self, including the dark corners and the unconscious “digging for clues” (underground/not in the open… thus not held consciously yet)

There is a lot to consider in your dream and it deserves attention… your attention. Whatever the envelopes signify, it implies information linked to the mystery, thus digging for clues, reading more, learning about yourself and your own feelings can help you be a more conscious and empowered parent and a happier person.

It is for you to know if you have been hurt or mistreated in the past and to determine if you need healing, insight, to forgive others or yourself so you can redeem the child part of you, the part you are now clear is lovable, innocent and deserves honesty, compassion, protection and boundaries.

It would seem like some negative part of your mind feels threatened and judged. Don’t give away your power. Read more, think, learn, grow and see if your dreams (and then your waking life) change… hopefully in good direction.

Hope this helps a bit. Sweet Dreams


Honorata November 18, 2014 at 12:06 pm

Hello, I just woke up from a nightmare and I am still terrified from it. So, in the dream I was in some sort of theatre which reminded me about the one that was in all my other nightmares that involved a theatre, so then I saw these people around me, most of them were sat down and some stood in the audience, I was in there too, then some girl said ”Oh my god look at that spider!” and I saw this spider going down its web above a mother and a baby, it had a peachy colour and it was a bit clear, the weird part is that it had little white hooves instead of spinnerets. But I reckon it was a tarantula because a spider couldn’t be THAT big.
After that it landed on the baby’s head and then it crawled onto its face and bit it, then bit the mother and started to attack everyone else. The bites weren’t killing anyone it just left these big bite marks on them. And you see my problem is that whenever I see a spider from a distance its okay, but when it comes closer I get terrified. So yes you are guessing it, it then got on its web and chased after me, I felt my legs shaking from terror and I just ran for it trying to dodge it’s attempts to land on me, it did when I got to the exit, so when I saw it I kinda woke up..
I don’t know about this nightmare, I’m getting more of them these days. Currently I’m in high school and I have exams coming up, and sorry that you had to read a lot. xD


Bruce November 18, 2014 at 10:04 pm

Hi Honorata,

As written above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… I would ask you to read some of the other dreams and comments for ideas about dream interpretation. Even though you are not a mother, many of the basic ideas would apply.

Still, a few hints to get you started: Theater. This is a potential symbol of your “dramatic” self, and in this sense (see Pirandello’s “Six Characters in Search of an Author” for an existential play on this theme) all the “characters” in the dream are you, and the audience might symbolize your wish to be seen (i.e. if you feel unappreciated, not understood, lonely, etc.).

The spider likely represents the spider part of you. Spiderman has powers. Indian legends speak of a spider weaving the universe into being. Charlotte in “Charlotte’s Web” is very wise. AND humans are born with an instinct to fear spiders (and snakes)

so partly your dream is about instinctive survival.

The tricky part is that the spider bites a baby and a mother. You are in the middle and so perhaps you feel frustrated that babies seem to have it easy and mothers have the power to make rules so you unconsciously want to bite or hurt them.

If you know the children’s book “Where the Wild Things Are” you would recognize the concept of “I’ll eat you up I love you so,” and thus the biting motif could be about love, hunger for love, frustration and the wish your “spider” self has to incorporate both the mother (future self) and baby (past self) and have them co-exist in you in human (i.e. conscious rather than primitive or unconscious) form.

The white hooves could symbolize an evolving tendency (from arachnid to mammal; from child to adolescent to adult).

Finally, you have exams. school is stressful. You felt anxiety and then came up with a dream to “explain” your feelings of fear, being chased, “trapped” by your obligations, etc. Thus you literally dreamed up a theater and a spider and a situation.

If you see a giant spider again, ask yourself if you might be dreaming. Then if you have a lucid dream, tell the spider: I know you’re my spider self, what do you want me to learn? (or some version of that. Use your instincts and imagination).

Hope this helps a bit. Wishing you Sweet Dreams and a good waking life too


Nacole November 30, 2014 at 3:20 pm

Hi Everyone!

I just had a dream that this guy I was dating stopped by and as he was here we kissed hugged and said we miss each. Well he walked up my stairs and I was telling him to leave…he didnt. He came down hugged me laid his head on my chest and wept. Then we begin to talk and some children…that I don’t know…came to me talking and they were in my house too. Well I was talking to them some people came and was trying to get in my house looking for him. When I turned around it was 2 yrs later and I had just realized he stole my 2 yr old daughter. I’m freaked out right now.


Bruce December 1, 2014 at 5:31 pm

Hi Nacole,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So, please read through some of the other dreams and comments and see if you get some ideas about interpreting your own dream.

A couple of hints to get you started: perhaps the “man” is your masculine side, but it weeps… maybe you feel disempowered and sad, and yet the child could represent your own child-self. Those two seem to end up with a relationship, leaving you out. Maybe you feel left out of things?

Maybe you fear that if you trust love you will somehow lose your child self. Read some other dreams and start to consider for yourself what your deeper Self might be telling you with this dream. Fully growing up, emotionally and psychologically, can be a lot of work, and we sometimes get stuck in wishing for others to take care of us, figure things out for us… but then feel powerless like lost children.

Certainly wishing you best of luck and Sweet Dreams


Anitah khan December 2, 2014 at 3:08 am

Hi every one, i have a two months old baby boy called Kieran. Ever since i gave birth to him i have been having sleepless and scary nights, i am having this wierd dream over an over of someone very dark for me to identify fighting with me, pulling my baby wanting to take him. Am worried that one night he may over power me and take my Kieran away. Please help.


Bruce December 2, 2014 at 4:16 pm

Hi Anitah,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Do read through some of the other dreams and you will see your dream resembles many other dreams.

A possible idea is that the “dark” figure in your dream represents the part of yourself that is largely unconscious: your power and your aggression.

Parenting is hard, and that can make us have mixed feelings of love and also frustration and even anger. That’s a bit forbidden so it goes “underground” and shows up as a “bad guy” in a dream.

The kid may be Kieran or it may represent the child aspect of yourself, the one who didn’t necessarily get the love that you are now giving your kid (provoking unconscious memory of your own childhood and any pain that may reside there).

Can’t be sure, just some ideas. Read more and think for yourself about what your unconscious might be saying (including the possibility that it doesn’t “mean” anything, just a harmless bad dream)

All Best Wishes and Sweet Dreams


courtney December 8, 2014 at 7:13 pm

My kid told me tonight that’s she have dreams about a man that stands in the woods in front of our house and watches her play. She doesn’t know or have seen what he looks like and no one else can see her m but her. Her just stands out side and watches her play with her friend. And hs dressed in all black hat does this means…


Bruce December 9, 2014 at 8:48 pm

HI Courtney,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

Also, these dreams are mostly parents’ dreams. Your child’s dream could mean different things, but a couple of hints: a man watching her could mean the wish to be seen (meaning she wants more attention?).

The “bad guy” could symbolize her own power, and her challenge to deal with her own feelings of aggression, anger, power, etc. The “black” and the “black hat” are pretty obvious symbols of “the bad guy.”

Sounds like she mostly needs to be understood (that she is scared, but also interested in being seen, particularly by a “man,” which could mean her dad isn’t around, or paying attention, and so she dreams of him as a bad guy?).

Hope this helps, and hope your kid has Sweet Dreams


Leslie December 17, 2014 at 11:45 am

Hello I am posting today because I keep having this horrible dream that is leading to me sleep-walking. Last night I woke up crying in my living room, and that was when I became very concerned. As my husband works third shift and I am the only one here at night with the children. These dreams started shortly after the birth of my daughter who is now 6 months old. At first the dream wasn’t so extreme but over these past two months they have gotten worse. So I’ll keep it short, The dream has the over-all same concept but the dream situation varies night to night. The dream is that for whatever reason I leave my 3 year old son at home alone, just him but I always take the baby (or that she never appears in the dream). And shortly after leaving the home I start to panic, me and my husband rush back to the home to get him. But by the time we get back he is gone, we spend what feels like months in the dream trying to find him. I always find him but he always (this is morbid) covered in blood and screaming my name, he isnt hurt but just has blood everywhere. The stranger that had him willing gives him back and as soon as I get him in my arms is when I wake up. Its rather odd and my conclusion is that I am having these dreams b.c I feel as if I haven’t given my son the attention I did before the baby and this is my minds way of playing it out. So I have made some changes and make sure we have one-on-one time everyday and do something fun together. However even with doing this the dreams havent stopped and are only getting worse. I am really at a lost on what to do here, im not sure if this could possibly be a form of PPD or what. The doctor really hasnt taken this seriously when trying to talk to him about it. Thank you for your time.


Bruce December 18, 2014 at 9:02 pm

Hi Leslie,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… I really do think if you read some of the other dreams and comments it might help.

One hint to get you started: it could be that you feel overwhelmed by the 3yr old, and by the baby, and by husband working late shift and so your natural emotion might be the wish for a break, and to be understood and supported. If the wish for a break is forbidden (i.e. it doesn’t fit with your concept of a “good mom”) then you have to deny this and consciously want MORE time with the 3 yr old. Of course you want the best for all your family, but if your real, but unconscious, feeling is anger (understandable, really about the situation feeling unfair) you end up casting your anger as the “bad guy” who actually wants time with the child, but ends up covering him in blood (not the child’s… so, symbolically, your own?)

I’m just guessing here, but if you got some validation, some time with friends, a good nap while someone else watched your kids, and an acceptance that your feelings of anger (and then loss and fear) are normal, perhaps then your dreams would be done because the message was received.

One last thought, if you have the dream again, try to realize you must be dreaming. Then maybe you can dialogue with the parts of you that the dream figures represent, particularly the “bad guy.” Something like: I know you’re the part of me who I have watch the kid when I can’t take it any more, and then you give him back when I remember that I love him so much I can’t live without him, so maybe you can just be a nice babysitter and I can get some rest in my sleep and then I’ll watch the kid when I wake up. And maybe you can say to the child in the dream: I know you’re my child self, so I’m sorry if you feel bloodied by having to be a parent of two kids with a late-shift husband when you feel overwhelmed by it all and sort of unwanted (then you are dealing with your own sadness of the past, and that will help you ask for love and connection now, no matter what the past holds). I really hope this helps and that you have Sweet Dreams


Amy December 19, 2014 at 9:42 pm

I had a dream that I was kidnapped. Let me tell you in full detail.
I was walking down the road and suddenly this man came up to me and my brother and told us get in the car. So me and my brother got in. After that he drove for a long time and he wouldn’t give us any food and I felt sick and hungry and angry that I was letting someone kidnapp me. So I quickly jumped out of the car and saw a hotel in front of me. The next second my brother was next to me. We tried to get in quick but we saw the kidnapper in his white dodge following us and he said I’m gonna get you tommorow. I ran in the hotel and saw my mum there. I told her everything but she wouldn’t believe me. So I gave in and went with her into her room. The window was from the floor to the ceiling so I was scared that the kidnapper could break the glass and kill us. The next day we (except my mum) came down to have breakfast but the kidnapper(I will just say guy for now) walked us to his car. I dodged him and went the other way. I went up to a random guy’s car and went in. Later my brother was running up to the car so the let him in. Then the gu was following us. He followed us until he caught us. For the last time I jumped out of the car and started walking then I saw my bro coming towards me so I said let’s take the risk and get in another car. But the guy was still following us so I jumped out with my bro and saw the same hotel that we went to in front of me again!
So I went in and screamed someone has been trying to kidnapp me and my bro!
So then my brother joined me and the a massive crowd formed. Then there was this big desk that you have at court that they told me right stand behind and say what I want. So this is what I said, “it’s unfair no one is doing anything. This guy has been trying to kidnapp me for the past two days”. Then someone pointed out how my finger was bloody. The truth was I bit it, but I pretended the guy did it and everyone believed me. So then suddenly we were with our parents at a construction site where everything was collapsed. Then I saw the kidnapper. The was looking sly and uneasy and wary as he tried to steal a baby. But then I caught him and told my dad look here his is trying to kidnap babies now. So we rushed over to him and said what do you think your doing? Then a desk with a phone appeared and I called 999 and I took away the baby that he stole and put it on the desk. Then the police came from behind me and arrested him. Then something to do with numbers happens but I don’t remember except the numbers 71 and 72

Thanks for reading


Bruce December 19, 2014 at 11:27 pm

Hi Amy,

I’m not sure if you read the post above that says: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

If you read the dreams and comments you will get lots of ideas on how to interpret your own dream.

A couple of hints to get you started: the unconscious “wrote” the whole dream, so maybe your fear of kidnapping is your unconscious response to not being heard and seen and thus feeling a bit unwanted or uncared about.

The theme of avoiding (white dodge, dodging the bad guy) and eventual justice and arrest (your wish for fairness) stands in contrast to your biting your own self (continuing to hurt yourself with negative thoughts about yourself and bad dreams) and blaming others (not taking responsibility for your own life) are some of the symbols you need to contemplate and learn from. It may be informed by your past experience, but the dream might be best understood as a picture of the different feelings and how they relate to each other in your own head, particularly the misunderstood power figure and his relationship to your baby self, the parents who don’t protect you and the judge who gives consequences.

Hope this helps & Sweet Dreams


danielle January 6, 2015 at 11:19 am

I just had a dream where everything was good in the beginning. I was at a bowling alley with my boyfriend & we ran into his sister there.(I’m going to call her Bianca) And bianca was with her 2 kids, a 3 year old boy (izayah) and a 2 year old girl (laylah). Then some members of my family came in but they wanted to go somewhere else instead of that bowling alley. So I asked if I could bring Bianca, izayah & laylah & they said OK. So we went to the parking lot & piled into the 2 mini vans but bianca went into a different van then her kids so I went to go get izayah & laylah out of the other van so they could be with bianca. I grabbed them and started walking to the other van except I got lost all of a sudden I couldnt see the van & the area I was in just changed completely. So I started walking around the bulding with izayah & laylah to see if I can spot the van I was supposed to go to. I couldn’t find it & the area was getting less urban. The area consisted of big factories, parking lots, and long roads. Plus it was all snowy so I was getting frustrated. Izayah & laylah were very fidgety so it was hard to make a phone call to bianca when one was always running off doing something. Then all of a sudden the izayah fell into a very deep pile of snow. I was holding laylah in my arms so I reached to get izayah and he got out. I see 2 people close by the incident and I screamed out for their help. They came to my rescue & grabbed izayah and told me to get in their car. I got in with the kids & their was already a 11month old baby in the car as well. Their was a man and a woman and they were very nice talking about how pregnancy is a wonderful thing and they just had a new baby. I told them where I was supposed to be so they said they would take me their. Except the drive was longer then the time I was walking. We even got pulled over by the cops & the cops said a smart remark to the man driving and he drove off! Then I started to panick saying If they could just take me home. I seen my house from a distance and we were going toward that direction but he passed it and thats when I knew something was wrong. I instantly knew he was kidnappings us because he wasn’t responding to any of my questions.. I asked “where are u taking me? Can u just take me home please?” No reply. So I took out my cell phone put my location ON & called 911. Only I didn’t speak to the operator I just continued talking to the man so they could hear his voice. Then we came to a stop. I was so scared of my life especially the children’s lives that I had in my hands. The woman came out opened my door then went around the other side to get izayah.. I already had laylah in my arms. I begged for them to let me go I screamed for help. Some neighbors even opened their door & didn’t seem to have a care in the world of what was going on. I walked up the stairs of the home. It was an apartment and the person on the main floor even opened the door in frustration. I told him to call the cops please no reply. I proceeded to walk upstairs, the woman took izayah to a different room & me & laylah followed the man. Each rooms door was wide open. I didn’t see anybody in them. But In different rooms i seen chains, handcuffs, feices on the floor and I seen a trumpet dangling from a wall. I grabbed it quick & just started hitting the man with it as hard as I could he fell on the floor bleeding I kicked him in the face & nuts. He was unconscious, I think. So I ran to the front door escaping. I ran 2 or 3 blocks when I seen a fire truck parked but it was running. I went to the window asking for help the fireman said to get in. I told him to please help and he already knew who the man was that I was referring to that kidnapped me. So he simply got out the truck & headed to his house. I locked all the doors and windows got on my phone & called 911 again. Explaining the situation. I didn’t know the streets but my location was on so they tracked my phone down. Only, this is when I woke up.. I woke up in cold sweat. I never had a dream like this before. I’m 5 months pregnant & I have a really close relationship with my boyfriends sister and kids. So I Dont know exactly what these means & I tried looking it up but I feel I didn’t get the right answer. Please if u could read my dream & let me know what’s going on in my mind I’d appreciate it .. Im scared to go back asleep again. This dream was horrible ..


Bruce January 6, 2015 at 8:28 pm

Hi Danielle,

I’m afraid you might have been in such a rush to share your dream that you forgot to read the post above, where it says:

[Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So, please take some time to actually read some of the other dreams and also the comments. If you do that you should be able to make some guesses about your own dream. If after you really do all that, you still have a question that you simply cannot figure out on your own, write back and I will do my best to address it.

I will start you off with a hint, as I imagine my response will frustrate you (at least at first). You have a strong wish for rescue (think about the firetruck in the dream) and consciously you are over-identified with being a victim, helpless, a “damsel in distress.” This is a failed strategy for feeling empowered, confident and happy, as well as truly connected with others rather than dependent on them. If you roll up your sleeves, slow down, read your own dream again but thinking, “what could these symbols mean?” Cops (authority figures) Bad Guys (the Shadow part of your psyche), etc, and how is this “play” written by your own private mind, trying to show YOU something you are missing. No one else can truly tell you what your mind is saying to you. You need love, just like we all do. Just as you might feel overwhelmed by your own dream (your own mind, your own feelings), I feel a bit overwhelmed by working all day, parenting and then sitting down to a long long dream from someone who is obviously rattled and suffering, but who didn’t take the time to really try and figure it out. So, work with me here, as I want you to feel better, but I don’t want to do your work for you. Hope you can feel my encouragement, and my respect for your own process and not like I’m just being too lazy to bother to help you.

Good luck with your own self-education, I certainly wish you Sweet Dreams ahead


Danielle Rae January 7, 2015 at 6:44 am

Hi my names Danielle. And I really need your help. The least you could do, is just try to take a guess as what my dream might mean..please. At first, I had a dream that my friends and I were in my room playing hide and seek. I’m 18, so i don’t know why er were playing hide and seek. But, one by one, my friends disappeared. I looked everywhere. And then, I realized my baby girl was gone.. In a panic, I ran outside to look for her…nothing. I couldn’t find her. Son I went back inside and cried and cried.. I go back outside, and I see her bouncer outside.. I keep staring at it, and finally she appears. I grab her, and I go inside. I realize she had writing on the bottom of her foot. It had her birth date, name, and where she was born, and said Florida for some reason.. We don’t live there. And so I walk outside with her..and everyone in my neighborhood is standing outside wearing black capes and black hats.. Like witches almost. And they were praising me for finding my daughter. Because when I found my daughter, their kids somehow appeared too.. I don’t know how to explain this. Just please help me.


Bruce January 8, 2015 at 2:06 pm

Hi Danielle,

As noted above: [Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

So… since it’s the least I could do, and you’re only 18, I’ll start you off with a couple of hints (and then you need to read the other dreams and comments for more insights).

Your “friends disappearing” could symbolize that your friends aren’t there for you. Playing hide and seek, a children’s game, hints at how you are both a mother and in some ways still a child, maybe overwhelmed by the responsibility of parenting.

“Your baby girl was gone” could symbolize that your own childhood has evaporated now that you’re a mom, and so your unconscious might be trying to find your own self, your own child innocence, in the midst of parenting, which is a blessing but also a bit of a nightmare because it’s so hard, even if you’re more mature and at 18 hardly anyone is particularly grown-up.

“Writing on the bottom of her foot” might symbolize a message that was hidden (stepped on) and Florida could connect to your ancestors (if any had lived there in the past) or maybe to whatever Florida symbolizes for you (vacation, sun, etc.—and maybe your wish to be born into that feeling symbolized by a place).

Black caps and hats mighty symbolize your own “Shadow” feelings, as it is generally forbidden to feel negative feelings toward our babies, so the unconscious expresses them as “other people” in our dreams.

Hope this helps. If your mom is around and nice ask her to help you with the parenting as it’s a big job and everyone needs a lot of help with it.

Sweet Dreams


Kadisha February 15, 2016 at 3:34 am

I had a dream that my 3year old was abducted. I was hysterically crying for what seemed like days. But the person who set it up to be done was a old friend from school, and he had set it up as a payment as he owed some people money. As i was searching for answers i ended up at her nursery where her coat was still hanging up on her peg and everyone was normal except for one teacher who i questioned and she was very helpful and pointed out to men iv never seen before who was new working in the nursery as cleaners it all got very out of hand quickly and i was very aggressive and started fighting these two men in that time i had a few older member of my family backing me. I jumped out of my sleep and was very shaken. As i drifted back to sleep i dreamt i was chasing a black van who had abducted my daughter and the police was chasing us also, as i was on their tail they let my daughter go by throwing her out of the van on the motoway where i nearly ran her over but managed to stop in time. When i got out the car she was unconcious but breathing very weak i drop straight to the hospital and was screaming ‘someone help me’ kicking the door for the children A’n’E when i got in they took her and told me she was given some sort of poison moments after they told me they was unable to save her…she had died….i then jumped out of my sleep again in a sweat. As i closed my eyes again i saw the same thing but instead of being thrown out of the van being poisoned she was thrown out of the van with her neck sliced open. I then got out of bed and felt very uneasy.


Bruce February 25, 2016 at 1:29 pm

Hi Kadisha,

[Please note that I cannot continue to interpret individual dreams at this time, however if you read through these dreams you will very likely find insights into your own dream—and you will discover that you are not alone in having such nightmares.]

but perhaps if you do read through the other dreams and comments you will figure out how to make some sense of your own dream.

another thread that might apply:

Certainly wishing you well asleep and awake :)


Leanne March 4, 2016 at 5:32 pm

Hi Bruce I know you cannot interpret individual dreams and there’s alot to read through here so any helpful comments or hints you have will be very much appreciated.

Alot of people have dream about their child being kidnapped. This is similar to me but but mine is different slightly. I dream of my two year old daughter being kidnapped by someone who breaks in to my home. I dream she is terrified and screaming and it happens so fast and this person takes her. I wake up feeling cold a shivery it’s so real I rush out of bed to check my daughter and feel like someone maybe in my house and she is fast asleep.

Maybe it’s because beforehand I lived in a secure flat where people had to buzz to get in. I love my home but I feel out of control here. Also the thought of anything happening to my little girl is beyond imagination I always panic about something terrible happening and me not being there to help her.

It’s really bothering me as this dream is becoming regular and makes me feel sick to my stomach. Please any insight you may have would really help I’m really panicking it could be a premonition of some sort it’s scaring me.

Leanne, Nottingham, UK


Bruce March 9, 2016 at 9:03 pm

Hi Leanne,

Firstly, from a rational standpoint if you feel there is anything you need to/can do to be sure your child is safe I would imagine you already do those things. The idea that it could be a premonition is not something I would interpret, as that would be suggesting you know the future and that would be up to you to decide—and that would mean trusting your instincts about keeping your kid safe, but the way anxiety works is that if we avoid our fears they get stronger.

Therefore perhaps you could imagine being in the dream, but realizing you are dreaming. Then you could confront the kidnapper, even if it is just in waking “fantasy” as we think about it here at this blog. You might say to the kidnapper, “So you are the part of me (all the dream being symbolic parts of me anyway) who loves/wants my child so much they will stop at nothing to have her. Meanwhile my child is the frightened part of me who feels unprotected. Obviously this is not about the future but the past, and you, the kidnapper, are my Shadow side, powerful, bold and rule-breaking. Meanwhile I’m stuck playing the helpless mother who cannot protect her child self from her angry and misunderstood self. What if you tell me what you want. Ransom? Me to do a better job understanding my own fear? So if I realize that I’m the kidnapper, and the kidnapped, I can melt the two parts into one conscious mind and wake up, safe and understood.”

Who knows if this could help, but I’m certainly wishing you, and all parents and children, the safety and sense of community we all deserve and all want somewhere in our hearts, or at least so I hope.

Sweet dreams and waking life too :)


Anabel March 25, 2016 at 4:26 am

I’ve had a lot of bad dreams with my oldest child she is 5 soon to be 6 and I’m pregnant with my 3 baby and I’ve been having constin bad dreams only with my oldest the first one was a few weeks ago we were at the park and a huge dragon tried to take my daughter away from me the dragon took her by the leg and tried flying off with her but I lundge and grab ahold tightly of my daughter and pulled her out of the dragon mouth and I was holding her super tight in my arms and my youngest daughtvtoo and fighting off the dragon the second dream I just had now and I woke up crying it we were at some school fair and I could hear my daughter screaming and I seen her threw above a curtain laying down on the pointy part of the fence some girl older then she was bullying her and grab her by the back of my daughter neck and legs and slammed her on the pointy part of the fence and I can gear the screams n crying of my daughter so clearly in the dream and in real life and I went to rescue her and caught and faught the girl that hurt my daughter and my daughter told me she tried telling me she was getting bullyed but me and the others(I Dnt know who are the others..) Were to drunk to listen.. Please help I’m having constin bad dream with my baby (my oldest) I don’t even want her to go to school because she has to leave my side and I feel they would not take care of my daughter the way I would n keep her safe


Bruce April 14, 2016 at 6:28 am

Given that I can’t really keep up with the demand for dream interpretation that I have been receiving and that I don’t have time to organize the material into a proper guidebook to nightmares about our children I have elected to take an interim step: to offer nine blog posts dealing with the most common categories of nightmare with some insights about overall themes and a quick guide to get a reader moving toward nightmares that might most closely resemble their own.

My hope is that if you find the best general category, and then go to that list of dreams which have been organized in terms of the age of the child in the dream, you may find some insights that you can then use to think about your own particular dream (and hopefully feel less afraid and more conscious about what is being stirred up for you and about how you personally discover is best to take care of your own self and your child).

Note that the threads are long and you must be patient in scrolling down through dreams until you find some that match the age or situation of your own dream.

While I realize it is still cumbersome to scroll down through multiple dreams until you reach one matching your child or your theme, my hope is that it will be somewhat easier than the random thread of comments at the original post.

So… If your dream involves water or drowning click here:

If your nightmare involves falling or flying try here:

If the core dread is kids running away or being hurt from neglect click here:

If kidnappers or scary animals, bad guys or monsters are the subject go here:

If the child actually does die in the dream click here:

If the dream involves overt abuse or graphic trauma read from here:

If the dream involves poison try here:

If there is a family feud or families fighting see these:

And finally, if the dream doesn’t quite fit any of the above categories but you suspect that it is teaching you something consider these dreams:

And… Sweet Dreams


Kellylynn April 7, 2016 at 9:04 pm

I read through all the threads so as not to waste your time, however none of the dreams were like mine at all.
In my dream i apparently discovered my roomate was a psychopath that had kidnapped a child of about 3-5 yrs old. I stole her from him carrying her on my hip i fled the house. She was wearing a long silky burgundy nightgown, had tan skin brown eyes and long brown hair( opposite of any child of mine or that im raising). She wasnt crying or upset at all she just held on to me very calmly. In my dream i just knew he was going to kill her so i was terrified for her , i went from car to car, house to house screaming for help .Although he was not running behind me i just knew he was calmly in persuit. No one would help me AT ALL. I saw what i knew was the police in a normal car, i quickly realized they were helping him. Then i ran into a public bathroom and MY 18 yr old son and his wife ( both soldiers living 2000 miles away on post for 8 months now) were there and laughed it off. I sat on the toilet and tucked her on the floor behind my legs when i heard the so called cop coming i acted like ididnt have her but when he came ini reached for her and only her clothes were there and i just knew the psycho had her. Some one held me while the cop in a regular suit lifted my shirt and used his sharp fingernail to slice my tummy open and left me bleeding i thought i cant stay with him anymore. Then i was on the toilet in a kitchen peeing all over and when i stood upi had feces on my leg from the last person to use it, it fell off in achunk and my daughter in law said ive got it ma and swept it up with a broom and i woke up so rattled that i wrote the dream down.
Now, two nights later i dreamed that i sat watching a clown waiting in a bush off of a sidewalk i knew he was waiting to kidnap a child and i once again was helpless. I never dream like this..


Bruce April 8, 2016 at 6:42 am

Hi Kelly Lynn,

I’m glad you at least tried and read the other dreams. Yours is different in a way because it’s really more about your own pain than that of a child in danger… yet all our dreams are ultimately the same: they are all born of our own unconscious, and thus always ultimately about ourselves. Perhaps the deep yearning to wake up to love is the very essence of the lonely and frightened nightmare.

So… easier to interpret than to heal, but: The baby represents the part of you that is “wanted” (in contrast to how you feel unwanted and “abandoned” by your son and daughter-in-law). Your secret self-esteem is so hurt that you can only imagine your secret baby self being “wanted” by the psycho. This is why all the other dreams about kidnappers, which are about feeling unwanted, are actually like your own dream.

The belly cut might symbolize a sort of C-section, and the wish to be born into a better consciousness (and the burgundy nightgown of the child could symbolize a baby who is bloody, there are deep archetypal links here to the “bloody Mary” and horror hinges on splitting good and bad and projecting bad and trying to flee from it. I can’t emphasize enough how abandonment is worse than attack, and thus the person who is raised without a father is attracted to the man who will leave, and then ends up hurt or victimized by others who themselves secretly feel unworthy and unloved. Then the girl needs a man to abuse her and the man needs a victim to protect, until she has a real need, and then she is a “psycho.”

The capper, and this is sad but so much more common than you might think, is to end up feeling like we are not even a real baby but just dropped out of the other orifice. The feces in the dream become a symbol of your “shit baby” (now the 3-5 year old is gone and you are looking at a most unformed and primitive symbol of Self).

Ironically, this actually spells good news:

Certainly wishing you Well, dreaming and in waking life :)


jam April 19, 2016 at 8:54 am

I just wanted to share my dream with you And Hopefully Get some understanding as to why I dream like this. Although this isn’t the first time I’ve dreamt about a situation like this, its disturbing.
I just woke up about 15 minutes ago (so its fresh) & thought i would Google about dreams. I have read most but skimmed down a lot of the dreams on this website. But I really wanted to write to you instead.
So here we go.
My dream started when I went into this really large mall. I guess you could say it was somewhat fancy Mall. I didn’t realize that I had my daughter with me at the time But apparently I ran into this Singer named Nicki Minaj. I was surprised that she wanted my company As there were so many fans trying to get at her and take pictures with her. But I went along with it and It was surprisingly fun.
There came a time when There was this man who was really upset in my dream And wanted Me to spank him as hard as I could with the paddle. I turned around and Nicki Minaj was gone but she gave me a whole bunch of Balloons. I then Left that room to look for her and I realized that my daughter Gone. I started searching around the mall I must have circled it At least five times. There was this daycare In the mall that look after children.
Now my child is 8 years old So sometimes I would let her wander off on her own And she would always return. I don’t do this in real life but for some reason in my dream I do. I ran into this woman who was something like a mall Security. She was trying to help me find her too.
Finally I came to this Door and had children in there and a man had been playing with them. It looks somewhat like a dungeon really dark oak cherry wood With leather and stuff. I remember asking him where my daughter was Because I remember getting a call From some man saying that he had my daughter. At the end of the conversation he said He was looking for another woman And not me. That made me very suspicious and sent me off.I felt like they were trying to buy time. I heard them discussing Numbers. There were other children there probably 2 or 3 of them. And the guy was putting his hand On their head saying 2 And another child I’m saying 5 head I assumed they were talking about As to how much somebody would pay for them. That got me more agitated and I began asking more My daughter was.
Within a few minutes later my daughter came walking around the corner With her head down. When we got home I asked her what happened And she said that She got touched in her private spot. I started crying and asked her what else happened while I was running her a bath. She told me that they were making her get naked and touching her a lot. I was so Disturbed I woke up. I hate this dream, but it’s not the first time I’ve dreamt like this. Although I have 3 other children besides the one I dream about. I never dream about something bad happening to them.
Thank you for taking the time to read and Possibly analyze this dream for me.


Bruce April 24, 2016 at 1:17 pm

Dear Jam,

Thank you for at least trying to read the other dreams. I could well be wrong but my interpretation is that you have an “inner celebrity” (symbolized by a famous singer, also suggesting the feminine aspect that you would like to express, but are inhibited from doing) and you have an “inner Cop/Authority/Punisher” who would “spank” you, implying you are “bad or naughty” (in your own subconscious mind).

Parenting is wonderful, but it is also difficult and kids are all into themselves (naturally, because they are too young to understand that we all have needs/feelings/fears etc).

In the dream you “hang out” with your famous Self, but then you end up neglecting your child (and here we have the symbolic representation of your own “inner child”—and thus you carry a wounded sense of Self).

When the “celebrity leaves” you are left with “balloons” (symbol of childhood, birthdays, but also inflation or rising higher than the earth, reality, responsibility; think about Curious George).

So… your nightmares is a representation of your own dilemma, wanting to have fun and feeling tortured inside for the moment the parent self is having fun, the kid gets abused). Perhaps this tells us that the wound you carry is neglect, and thus the dark fantasy of being hurt is really, weirdly, preferable to being ignored.

Hopefully this will give you some peace, or at least a roadmap toward deeper knowing. To be present to your child, in an authentic way, is also to be present to yourself and your own experience. In this way parenting can heal you from your core wound.

Feel free to read my book if you want some guidance on how to do that day by day:

Either way, wishing you all best, awake and asleep.


rosario April 29, 2016 at 8:38 am

hi, my dream was about various forces tried to steal my 4 year old child way from me. I was being chased by a giant in the woods. me and my child got tired of running and stop to nap, I remember hugging her tight in case somthing truest to take her while we were sleeping. then I heard the giant again and we satred running again but this time I held her in my arm so we could go faster. we came to an old abandon garden full of huge water fountains. we stop so I could catch my breath and alligators popped up from the murky fountain water. There were so many of them they surrounded us. slowly they walked towards us, they were trying to get my daughter so I sat her on a tree Lim nearby so they couldn’t get to her. by that time the alligators were at my feet and puwing at the tree I looked up at my daughter one more time and that’s when I woke up


Bruce May 2, 2016 at 2:21 pm

Hi Rosario, Please read the above post or any of the recent comments to understand why I cannot interpret this dream for you. Nevertheless wishing you well and sweet dreams :)


Elizabeth May 15, 2016 at 7:43 pm

I had a horrible dream that left me bothered for days afterward.

I dreamed that my mother and I were doing dishes with my 5 month old daughter sitting in her highchair. A man strolled casually into our house and took my daughter from the highchair and ran out the door with her. My husband took off after him to get the baby back and I called the police. A little while later, an elderly woman in fine clothes, chauffeured in a fancy black car comes to my house and says she has my baby. Elated, I rush to the car window to get my daughter, only to be given a different baby. I told the old woman that this wasn’t my baby, but she insisted that it was my baby. When I told her again that it wasn’t my daughter, she went on to explain that the baby she gave me was her granddaughter, but she didn’t want her, she wanted MY baby and decided to swap them out. Enraged, I demanded that she tell me where my daughter was but when she refused, I climbed into the backseat where she was sitting and climbed onto her chest and pinned her down with my hands around her throat. I demanded again that she tell me where my daughter was or I would kill her. After she refused again, I bore all my weight on her throat and killed her almost instantly.

I’m not sure what to make of this dream, but it scared me almost to death. I haven’t wanted to let my baby out of my sight since. I’m actually scared to go to work tomorrow.

Thank you so much!


Bruce May 15, 2016 at 11:43 pm

Hi Elizabeth,

If you read the actual post above or any recent comments/dreams you will understand why I cannot interpret your dream at this time.

If you do read other dreams you will quickly learn what yours might mean to you. Hint: all the figures could symbolize parts of you (perhaps you want to be rich and free of responsibility; but the part of you who doesn’t want to parent is forbidden; you think you are supposed to 100% love parenting at every moment, and that’s not how it really goes in waking life; you hate the part of you that would think or feel this for a second so you “kill her,” but you’re still afraid, because it is a part of you. Maybe you need a little girlfriend time and a nap :)

Hope this helps. Sweet Dreams and waking life too


Cavel June 6, 2016 at 6:34 pm

Hi there, I had an awful dream last night that woke me up screaming, crying, and kicking, grabbing my husband. After realizing everything was okay I fell back asleep. In my dream all i remember was I was with my dad in a car, and looking for my 5 month old son. I had called the cops already, I don’t know how he went missing, but he was gone. I got a phone call from the cops and I was in the town i grew up in and met the cops in front of a bank because they said they found my son. I got out and looked down and there my son was in a fetal position, but he was frozen. The cop said he might live after he thaws out, i started to cry and the cop took my sons teeth and gums out of his mouth(even though he doesn’t have teeth yet) and said ill call you. I got back in my car and started telling my dad that i dont know how i am supposed to tell my husband what happened. I put the teeth in the car door, and cried. I felt something touch my stomach and looked back and there was a 13 or so year old girl staring at me with a small gun on my stomach. she said something horrible to me like “you deserve this” and as she went to pull the trigger i shut my eyes and clenched my body to get ready to be shot. I then woke up freaking out.


Bruce June 7, 2016 at 11:03 pm

Hi Cavel, If you read the post above and recent comments you will understand why I cannot interpret your dream at this time. Still, if you read other comments you will see similar themes and get understanding of your own dreams and feelings. Hint: being a parent is very hard and you may unconsciously wish for a break from your child, which is a forbidden thought which gets pushed into the unconscious and returns as a nightmare: the very thing you wish not to think is what you end up thinking/”seeing” in your dream.

You are feeling alone (“frozen”) and guilty about cruel things you say (teeth, biting words, taking them out and in the car door… do you yell in your car at other drivers?) and then you think you should be punished (girl with the gun, a girl just on the cusp of sexuality, and thus of becoming potentially pregnant), thus the bullet to the stomach is like a sort of psychological abortion… of your own self.

Maybe you had a hard time of it as a kid, and so being a parent puts you back in the “fetal position” (meaning you think about being a little child again, and get in touch with the pain of that time.

Hope this helps. Sweet Dreams in any event :)


Evey July 5, 2016 at 11:37 pm


Last night I had a dream that I was at a fast food place getting food with a friend and my daughter, there was a guy panhandling & I went inside and when I came back out the guy was in the car, wouldn’t get out so I took my daughter out & walked back inside there was an off duty officer there I told him but tried not to make it obvious few minutes later a cop came the guy ran out the car before the cop can get him, the cop asked who called & I walked out with my daughter as she walking to the car he grabs her so I yell for help & the cop comes running out (I dnt remember much) he let her go she ran to me & I woke up sweating looking for my daughter asking my husband where was she (I had to check on her)


Bruce July 6, 2016 at 10:06 pm

Hi Evey, If you read the original post and/or recent comments you will understand why I cannot interpret individual dreams at this time. Still, other dreams and comments might give you tools for interpreting your own dream. Certainly the dream is filled with images of non-safety that seem to represent our culture these days (wealth inequality; conflicts with police; “fast food” and fast everything/junk culture, all of which is not good for our kids but we don’t know as individuals how to make things safe, how to stop the madness. I think we all love our kids and the vast majority of us (although quiet and not in charge) yearn for a safer, fairer world. When injustice and violence show up in our dreams perhaps we are encouraged to turn inward, to understand our “inner panhandler” who is hungry and poor; our inner cop who in this case helps save the child, and our inner child who is “kidnapped” as a symbol of wantedness, when sometimes as parents we secretly need a little break from all the responsibility of parenting. They say it takes a village, but our village has become a sad and sketchy strip mall…

Here’s hoping for Sweet Dreams for you and your family, and sunnier times ahead in waking life too :)


Em July 12, 2016 at 1:59 am


This morning I had a dream about a mother and child that I know nothing about. The mother was abducted and put into the boot of a car and the little boy was put under the front wheel of the car and the car drove over the child.

Can someone tell me what this means


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:42 pm
jhoanna July 14, 2016 at 8:09 am

I have had 2 horrible dreams night after night. They involve my 3 year old daughter.
The first night tuesday i was traveling and at the end of my travel i stopped at a well known aunts house.
I was welcomed in with open arms (at that point i didnt have a daughter but the little girls face was just like my daughters) After being there for a bit, i decided it was time to go. My aunt refused to let me go and was screaming “get her get her” and that is when i got pulled through a window dragged through the driveway but was in reach of scissors somehow. i reached over and stabbed my aunt and the little girl who looked just like my daughter until i was free.

the 2nd dream was just last night.
I was in a house mixed with friends, family, and co workers.
All i fully remember was screaming at the top of my lung “you raped her” as i found my 3 year old in a shower crying.
i was directing it to my coworker.
and all he kept saying was she let me. and i woke up.

Lately i have been loosing my patience with her really fast? What is causing these dreams


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:42 pm
E.C. July 17, 2016 at 1:33 pm

I’m 19 years old. I am not pregnant at the time of writing this (That i know of).
I had a dream that I had just given birth and was released from the hospital. I went home and everyone was so happy to see me. However, There was this woman there that i didn’t recognize though she seemed familiar. I sat down and started to breast feed my child. That lady who i couldn’t recall knowing, suddenly takes my child away from me acting as if i’m not fit to be a mother. She tells me that my little boy is hers now. I try to fight and get him back for a while. Eventually I succeed. And I feel filled with joy to have my little boy back in my arms.

I have no idea what all of this means. It worries me.


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:41 pm
Jenah July 21, 2016 at 5:48 am

Struggling with this one. I dreamt I had a last minute makeup client and she lived on a run down estate, in an area I wasn’t familiar with. My 13 year old daughter came with me and we got out of the taxi at the house we thought it was. It wasn’t the house and that number was actually missing, so we separated to locate the ladies house. I noticed my daughter was no where to be seen, and I felt a strong connection that she had been taken into a house on the left. I actually envisioned her, through my minds eye, walking through the door way. When I looked over, there was a very ‘chavvy’ dirty looking young guy sat outside. I kept having bad thoughts that she was going to be assaulted or even worse. All of a sudden, hills appeared and police were involved. We knew she was in there but the guy was passing the children off in his house as his own. The girls (including my daughter) eventually got out. To end the dream, I was having a conversation with a police officer with red hair, who asked me on a date. The strange thing was, the whole station had the ability to vogue (change) into an animal when protecting civilians.
Hope you can help!


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:41 pm
Lisa August 8, 2016 at 1:32 am

I was woken up from a dream that I found my 5 year old daughter playing with kids that were abducted also in a fence and I seen her she looked at me and I walked in the fence right in front of the guard I guess you would call him as he was about to say playtime was over I picked her up and started running with her then I put her down so she could run and the guy radioed that the child was taken their was a girl in my dream that had been helping an she took me to an old Spanish lady house and we hid my daughter under a sink in the dream the girl said they were coming .. I remember being scared they would find her but I abruptly woke up unable to finish the dream. Mind u I don’t have my children , they live with my great aunt…


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:38 pm
Cara September 10, 2016 at 4:06 am

Hi there, Im a bit disturbed by the dream I saw today. I came across this website in hopes of finding an answer. I saw that I was holding a big knife and was cutting my 4 year old son with it, like actually slicing him. I felt like such a horrible mother when I woke up. I could never ever do that to my son. I love him dearly! Whatever made me had a dream like that is what worries me. I also saw my husband’s brother in a slaughter house. His skin wasnt there, just like the animals in the meat factory but he seemed happy and kept asking me something I couldnt exactly remember.
This was so horrible! I was scared when I woke up. Its seemed like a nightmare from some hollywood movie. Please tell me what this crazy dream could possibly mean?!


Bruce September 23, 2016 at 10:27 pm
Harshita rai October 17, 2016 at 6:47 am

I had a dream in which while I was crossing the road on my way back home someone tried kidnapping me. I held me tight and then did some sort of physical torture. I somehow managed to reach by home and cried for help. On a short while I was saved by that guy. What does this mean?


Bruce October 17, 2016 at 12:51 pm
Martin October 22, 2016 at 6:12 am

Hello, everyone!
I was windering if someone could shed a little light on a dream my mother had this night, she woke up really frightened by it. Unfortunately I can’t give much details and context because all she remembers are little details, specifically:
She dreamt my sister (who is now an adult, 34 years old) was being kidnapped, however, she just dreamt it as if my sister was being kidnapped as a child, not in her ‘actual adult form’.
Is this enough to shed some idea of why she might have dreamt this? Any help would be appreciated, since me and her are very worried about my sister now, who lives abroad and we don’t see/talk to each other everyday!


Bruce October 24, 2016 at 9:47 pm
guadalupe October 22, 2016 at 6:29 am

since i was a teen i’ve had this reoccurring dream about myself being in danger of a robbery or kid napping or just being in some sort of trouble and i’ll have my phone trying over and over again to dial 911 but for some reason i could never be able to dial the correct numbers. i never figured out what that meant. recently i had the same dream but now involved my daughter being the who needed help. we were getting ready for our day, my day at work and her day at school as we were brushing our teeth she tripped backwards into the tub and hit her head and started seizing i held her and tried to dial 911 but again i wasn’t able to get the numbers right. it is so strange to me that a reoccurring dream since i was a teen of being in that kind of situation is now coming back up but now involving my daughter. i have to figure out what this means.


Bruce October 24, 2016 at 9:48 pm
Sam November 5, 2016 at 4:22 am

Hi maybe some can help me figure this out.
I have had this dream since a was young . I’m
26 now so about 8 at least once a week.
It’s starts with me in a room looking at a little girl crying I can’t see her face don’t know who she is then a tall man in black who has no face he is trying to get the little girl I start chasing him but I never can catch him when some one try to wake me up cause they say I’m crying I wake up swinging my fist at who ever is in front of me when i clam down they say I was crying I say it was not me it’s the little girl . I looked everywhere to try and figure this out


Bruce November 7, 2016 at 9:09 pm

Please see:

(note, however, that if you read a number of responses to other dreams you will get some tools to understand your own. I’m sorry this has haunted you so long. One take on it is your “Shadow” or critical authority voice perpetually shames your child/feminine aspect, illustrating a conflict between being a bully or a victim; a waking solution would be to think about how you might work to integrate your positive “masculine” aspect (reason, although try to move beyond stereotypical gender association with the “masculine”) and your feminine (emotion, including compassion and tears, although again you might try to move beyond gender). Sweet Dreams


Bruce November 7, 2016 at 9:10 pm
Toni November 12, 2016 at 2:50 pm

My 3 day old baby was sleeping next to me in my bed and in my dream he was next to me, just like in real life, and in my dream I woke up to see him floating in the air next to me. In my dream I could tell that it was an evil spirit trying to take my baby from me. I reached out and grabbed my baby in a cradling position and pulled him back down next to me and then the evil presence was gone. In my dream everything was exactly like it was in real life. It seemed so real.


Bruce November 15, 2016 at 7:26 pm
Kate November 24, 2016 at 5:48 am

Ok, this was really weird. I dreamed that I was a guy (I think because the dream focuses more on a fatherly role in the child’s relationship), and that I had a 3 year old son (I don’t actually have any kids in real life). I clearly remember stating that he was 3. He was kidnapped by political rivals and taken to this island by then, and he wasn’t hurt but just kept there, away from me. I never saw him again, but I went to the island and in fatherly rage, I guess, eliminated the other 6 people there, the kidnappers, but it was years later and my son was already gone (not as in dead, but he had just left, and we were never reunited). I went back to the town and I adopted this other little girl, who was just another girl in the dream but she’s my 8 year old sister in real life. Then, when she was 3 she was like “you’re not going to let that happen to ME are you?” And I was like, “It wasn’t my choice the first time.” And I started like just thinking about how she was the same age as my son was when I last saw him, and I started crying about how much I missed my son, and that’s when I woke up.


Bruce November 27, 2016 at 11:01 pm
justina hernandez November 27, 2016 at 4:45 am

Can someone help.i dreamed that I was trying to find my husband n telling him we have to hurry home and I took my eye off my 7month old son for a sec I glanced towards him n I looked again only finding he’s gone n his car seat was bloody I looked everywhere for him but I couldn’t find him I’m terrified to sleep n I don’t want to leave my son with a babysitter I’m so freaked out right now I’m almost woke up having a panic attack


Bruce November 27, 2016 at 11:01 pm
bart December 5, 2016 at 2:50 am

just had a nightmare it was at night I was lying in bed with my kid(not sure if it was a boy or a girl) but then I get shot and I hear voices(do not hear what they are talking about) then they start going through my room and I hear fighting they kidnapped my kid I could feel the shots and hurting and I hear one of them say “no wedding ring must of been a one night stand or something” then I die and wake up. I don’t have a kid and don’t have a girlfriend and never had sex before


Bruce December 6, 2016 at 10:03 pm
Mia December 12, 2016 at 4:36 am

Can someone perhaps give me some clarity. I have had the worst nightmare. I’m in a small crowded area frightened, this area is me and my 6 month son smushed in between broken wooden stairs. As I’m trying to escape my son gets stuck, two smaller kids past me in this crowded area, I am finally able to get myself out but when I go to reach for my son he’s gone. Missing. These kids then go into an apartment where I immediately follow thinking they took my son. I hear my baby crying and literally choke the mother of the children telling her to tell me where he is. Then I wake up. The whole feeling was so scary and I felt as though they may be molesting or torchering my son. These kids in the dream looked like they had not bathed and very skinny, hungry, and also scared.

What can this mean.. HELP


Bruce December 12, 2016 at 9:21 pm
Tara January 20, 2017 at 6:37 am

Hi, I was wondering if you could interpret these two dreams for me. I had them one night after the other.

The first night I dreamt I was with people I don’t know who they were but in the dream I knew them. Someone had bumped me and all the fillings in my teeth fell out and into my hands. Now my teeth didn’t actually fall out it was just the fillings and I was feeling around my mouth with my tongue for the rest of the dream making sure I still had all my teeth. And then one of the people I “knew” was very rich and took me to the dentist to get my teeth fixed and was paying for it all. As I was in the chair though, fillings still in hand, that’s when I woke up….

The next night I had a dream about me as a little girl about 3yrs old getting kidnapped because my dad made a deal with a gangster. I wasn’t taken away roughly or anything like that it was more like a trade off and I was young so I didn’t know what was really happening. However the twist was that I wasn’t viewing this happening from the little girls point of view who I knew was me I was viewing it from my fathers point of view and was feeling his grief, fright and guilt as it all happened. And he tried to find me over the years but I am not sure if he ended up finding me because that’s when I woke up.

If you could please tell me what you think these dreams mean that would be wonderful!

Thank you!!


Bruce January 20, 2017 at 5:06 pm
Kaysee February 22, 2017 at 11:03 pm

I keep having a reoccurring dream that someone is trying to get in my house and kidnap my 3 and 1 year olds. It’s usually just one guy and he is either outside my house, in my bathroom or my closet. Sometimes I actually get out of bed to check if my kiddos are still in their beds. I have never spoken to him, but the fear is real I. My mind that my husband has to wake me up because I am sleep walking to to the window to see if he is outside. Could you please help explain this dream and how I can get rid of it! Thank you


Bruce February 23, 2017 at 6:52 am
Woodaa April 9, 2017 at 3:10 am

Hey so I keep haven these dreams every other night I’m getting kidnap and they all ways try to kill me but I get away they catch my sisster or my mother but it’s like when I get away I’m not really away I’m only a block up never not that far and only 1 time someone help me and let me in there car the dream I had today I ain’t want the killer to kill the person I was with so o just let him leave and I was helpless all over again .


Bruce April 9, 2017 at 10:02 am
Martha April 15, 2017 at 4:25 pm

Hey, i had a dream about my one month old son . We were in a house in the middle of nowhere , and a black trucked appeared while we were in the living room watching tv . He was in a car seat and ended up in the truck and three horrible deformed men were trying to take him when me and other 5 women fought and killed those 3 men. I regained my son back!!! Then i dreamt i was drowing my own son wearing the exact same close he was wearing when i put him to sleep and i was laughing in my dream . As if drowning him brought joy??? Can someone explain this horrid dreamm??


Bruce April 15, 2017 at 9:48 pm
Twyla Marie May 16, 2017 at 4:20 am

I dream I had a baby and in the dream I felt like my ex took the baby and hurt it but he just kept lying and saying he didn’t know. I knew he was lying.a week passed for some reason before I was gonna finally gonna report then I woke up


Bruce May 16, 2017 at 5:43 pm
Kashiri Peters June 11, 2017 at 11:21 am

I had a dream, more like a nightmare actually….my daughter is 2 years old and she lives in Jamaica with my mom.. I love in the states…..i worry I’m a worrier…..however this particular dream had me nearly screaming out in my sleep.

In the dream I have a daughter, she is probably 3 years older than my actual daughter and she doesn’t look anything like me. In the dream I’m competley disturbed by this fact because I have an actual daughter. But the weird part is…..i can’t seem to find her most times and I keep on saying to her to never be out of my sight. A man I knew in Jamaica was there who kept on saying she’ll be ok and I don’t have to “rough her up” . He laughed, we all laughed and it was all good. Suddenly the mood shifted in the dream and a breaking news came on the tv, Reports of some missing children….i looked around and she was not there. I started panicking and then ran outside where this lady ran up with a child who was abducted and said we had to see this. Mind you the structure of the house was a board house. And then suddenly I’m standing infront of my uncle’s bar that’s right infront of my house in Jamaica where i don’t love anymore but my actual child resides there….i starting screaming out as I saw a vehicle being opened with body bags being deposited I never saw the child in the dream in any of the bags but i couldn’t stop crying….deep heartwrenching cries, that tore at my very soul. I woke up tears running down my cheeks.


Bruce June 16, 2017 at 9:55 pm
Dorothy Scott August 7, 2017 at 5:04 am

me and my boyfriend in big space ship, im pregnant, for 2nd time the 1st time after 1st was given away after a early c section.
a disaster happens everyone is going to die unless i sacrifice new my unborn baby and most likely myself,
want me to go into a big pod to be experimented on, also a loud walling noise is going on all the time,
luckily there is a pink/red alien who is willing to be sacrificed instead, so he goes in pod to have tests done.
the alien dies after having tests done, [in background there is a small boy messing around in a room with brown slime wich is deadly]


Bruce August 14, 2017 at 10:30 pm
Parul September 16, 2017 at 8:55 am

I had a dream that someone tried killing my daughter what can this probably mean?


Bruce September 16, 2017 at 10:37 pm
faith mibenge September 18, 2017 at 11:36 pm

I need your help I had a dream where my sister was kidnapped and as I was trying to find and rescue her, I discover that I was holding a baby who was in handcuff and it happened so that, the baby belonged to my sister who in real life is finding it hard to have a child, coz after conceiving she ends up having miscarriages. the only way i was suppose to free the child is to look for this kidnapper becoz he was the one with the keys to free the child.


Bruce September 20, 2017 at 9:59 pm
Heather Allen September 27, 2017 at 7:53 am

i need your help understanding why my daughter keeps having the same bad dream.
She 8 years old and about every 2 weeks she has a dream that she has been kidnapped!
She comes in my room crying and can not shake the feeling from the dream, and she can’t get the dream out of her head. Weare both losing sleep over it. I don’t know how to help her. She has had the dream 4 times now. Last night being the most recent. What does it mean? How can I help her?


Bruce September 27, 2017 at 7:08 pm

Hi Heather,

Although I am no longer interpreting individual dreams, the following link might be somewhat helpful:

This thread is really about parents having nightmares about their children, however, and with regard to your child’s nightmare/fear of being kidnapped (which is not terribly uncommon) I would consider my larger and more comprehensive book about parenting, particularly Chapter 6: Calm Ideas for Anxious Children where I specifically discuss the fear of kidnapping and what it might mean

all best wishes for you and your daughter in any event :)


cheyrl October 31, 2017 at 4:43 am

I close my eyes first thing i see is my children getting run ova i wasnt safe when i was child do u no wot it means


Bruce November 1, 2017 at 7:58 pm

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