Itís a common occurrence. We dream of a loved oneís death, and wake up weeping, with a wet pillow. Weíre thrown into profound sadness. We make a point of calling the person in the dream as soon as we can. Or we find them in the house and check on them, hug them. Hearing their voice is reassuring. We may not want to disclose details of the dream, so as not to scare them. We may give in to the temptation to tell them to be careful. We sound irrational and mysterious.
Hopefully, we tell them we love them.
Aside from the sadness, these dreams can also frighten us terribly. Was it a premonition? How can I keep them safe?
The cause of these dreams is anxiety. They reveal the deep love we have for these people, and our desire to do all we can for them. Chances are the dream followed some mishap or illness. We may be missing this person, regretting being far away. For parents, itís a subconscious realization that the kids have to grow up, and thatís not always easy, or painless. If we had a difficult childhood, or trauma in our own lives, we have anxiety over similar experiences by our loved ones. We want better for them.
These dreams affect us so deeply, we remember them for a while. Itís a good idea to tell someone about the dream. This usually puts things in perspective. It may also reveal the irrationality of it. While dreaming that your grandmother was killed by a giant watermelon was traumatic at the time, talking Ė even laughing Ė about it later takes some of the anxiety away.
A note here about violence in dreams. A very, very small percentage of our huge population dies violently. Yet violent dreams are quite common. Again, it is the deep-seated anxiety coming to the fore to be dealt with. Avoid video games and television if you are prone to such dreams. You may also consider not eating spicy foods too late in the afternoon.
One young mother was overheard as saying, ďI know nothing will ever happen to my kids. The Bible says God wonít give us anything we canít handle, and God knows I just couldnít handle anything happening to my children.Ē
This line of thinking is so dangerous. This poor woman is probably plagued with nightmares. She is so far from reality. When she does finally experience the maturing process herself, itís going to be hard on her. She may have grown up in an overprotective environment, or in a bad one. She probably never dealt with the latter, if that was the case. Sheís bound for a rude awakening. Hopefully, she has a large, loving support group to aid her journey.
And itís never a good idea to presume we know the mind of God.
Talk, talk, talk. If you are a regular reader of the Bereavement page, youíve read this a lot. But talking things out really is the first step to healing. There are ways to relieve your anxieties. Naming them is the first step. Reality check is the second. Ignoring anxiety leads to physical disorders. So if you have nightmares often, seek out a professional counselor. In the extreme scenario, you could develop such a fear of losing people that you stop developing close relationships. Thatís not a good thing.
Talk to your medical provider. Be mindful, however, that medicine will only affect the symptoms of anxiety. They have to be brought into the light of day to be conquered.
Another consideration of death dreams is to think about what the person in the dream represents. Your subconscious may be trying to kill off something you donít like about yourself. Bring it out, and deal with it.
If you are dying in the dream, think of what problems have you so overwhelmed. Talk, talk, talk!
These dreams are not what you may initially think. But by no means are they to be taken lightly. A good nightís sleep is essential to your physical and mental health, and is part of