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Because of the water, drowning depicts fear of being overwhelmed by difficult emotions or anxieties. But this might apply not to dangerous emotions or urges, but to natural urges such as eating, loving or sex, that some people have enormous conflicts about. Drowning in a dream is also about struggling to survive as a person, so it applies to your identity as it is dealing with relationship with other people, but also with your own internal world of instincts, body activities and needs.

This is about being or feeling overwhelmed by something. One can ‘drown’ in sorrow for instance. So you need to look at your waking life to see what you are feeling threatened or burdened by and see if there are ways you can deal with it. If someone actually drowns in the dream it may mean some of your feelings, your creativity and responsiveness are no longer ‘alive’. But they can be brought back to life if you care for that side of yourself. Sometimes it is simply anxiety we drown in, and much of anxiety is about situations we imagine. Separating what is imagined from what is real can help this.

If you feel you are struggling to you ‘keep your head above water’, do not give in for it is only emotions you re facing, not reality.

Water and drowning often indicates you are facing the unknown changes and so are afraid. But in dreams we can never die or even be hurt, for we wale without real hurt except for our feelings.

Dreamt about someone else: May occasionally show Your apprehension about their health or well being, having the suggestion of death or breakdown.

Example: ‘I fell into a pond. My brother was frightened to be by himself so he jumped in. We were both drowning in the water and we shouted out for Mum. My brother drowned.’ Poppy S.

Poppy dreamt this while feeling insecure and anxious due to her father being seriously ill.

Example: I had been dreaming about sitting on a sofa with my friends – well watching horror movies, when suddenly everything comes to live. I was afraid of the ghost that had been drowning with her husband in the movie comes to haunt me. I asked the ghost sister to help and she passes me a necklace with can protect me. And suddenly the ghost appears and told my friend she was pretty. What does this means?

It means that you need to understand how your mind works. It means that you have nothing to fear about ghosts. As the ghost that appeared showed you, there was no harm in it. Dream images are like images on cinema screens – harmless unless you are haunted by your own fears. But the dream also shows you that whatever you believe in becomes a fact. I mean that the necklace gave you confidence, and in fact the necklace is only a crutch for your confidence. But we need such things until we can deal with our own emotions. See Facing Fear

Idioms: drown your sorrow; if you’re born to hang, you won’t drown.

Useful questions:

What powerful emotions or changes am I dealing with?

Am I feeling overwhelmed by something?

Can I define the strengths and ways I use to deal with threatening feelings?

Do I feel as if I am ‘drowning’ in a situation or relationship?

What is it I am feeling overwhelmed by recently?

Is this someone else drowning – if so what facet of me do they represent?

What resource or person could help me survive in this situation?

Another person or animal drowning still suggests it is an aspect of your own personality you need to care for.

Whoever or whatever it is, imagine yourself back in the dream and save them. If necessary imagine rescue services coming to your aid. In doing this you are using imagery to shift your feelings and anxieties.

All water in some way signifies your own inner world of feelings, but the sea often suggests meeting urges and wisdom lying beyond the boundary of your conscious mind. What is it you feel in the sea or river? Try putting it into words.

See Associations Working With; Techniques for Exploring your Dreams; Avoid Being Victims; Secrets of Power Dreaming



-Shyanne 2014-08-05 23:55:28

I dreamt that when I jumped in to the lake I was going deeper and deeper into the water I couldn’t kick or move. When I couldn’t hold my breath any longer I gasped for air and I could only breath with that one intake of oxygen. Then I woke up when everything went black & I had no air in my lungs. I don’t understand it.


-Kyra 2014-09-07 20:54:54

I keep having dreams where I am not me, but someone completely made up and my significant other, who is also a completely made-up character, ends up drowning and I don’t find out until they are already dead.

What does this mean?
The only things that’s been stressing me out is that I’m struggling to get a job, and that seems like it wouldn’t really be related..


    -Tony Crisp 2014-09-11 9:16:41

    Kyra – Life and death in dreams have very different meanings than what we feel about them in waking life. See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/questions-2/#Summing

    However your dream is very interesting because in the view of dreams it is so true. I will try to explain. The person you call Kyra is a tiny thing and is part of something so huge and amazing that most people are scared of meeting it. Most people suffer enormous amnesia. For example you grew from a seed in your mother’s womb, and as it did so took you through the whole process of evolution, through the vegetative phase as cell division, then into the reptilian phase and up to the mammalian. Then you entered the time when you learned the amazing computer like program called language, up until then you were a little animal and you were living in the ‘unconscious’.

    Of course you feel it is not possible to remember such things but it is. We shut it out because we only use words and our conscious mind in remembering things. But our consciousness is the tiny part of us. It is our unconscious which is enormous and is the force of life that grew you, keeps your heart beating, and remembers every moment of your existence. Also seeds do not appear from nowhere, they have a massive history back to the beginning of life on earth. Please read http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/brain-levels-and-dreams/ and http://dreamhawk.com/interesting-people/animal-children/#Program

    Reading those alone you must realise that most of who and what you are is made up out of language you learnt, the culture and beliefs it teaches, and parental influences. Perhaps also read http://dreamhawk.com/dream-dictionary/what-we-need-to-remember-about-us-3/#DualBeing

    That you are already dead and also what you say, “The only things that’s been stressing me out is that I’m struggling to get a job, and that seems like it wouldn’t really be related”, suggest to me that your dream self, your core self, is attempting to wake you up so you can access your massive potential. Also your core is always trying to grow you into the unique person you are. See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/genius-2/ and http://dreamhawk.com/approaches-to-being/martial-art-of-the-mind/

    I feel your dream is pushing you to become more than you have been. Also I am not saying this to sell you a course, but because I too was in a hole and climbed out of it.



-Janet 2014-09-08 10:32:37

My dream wasn’t necessarily me drowning. It happened at a board walk per say, where my little sister slipped and fell into the ocean, I jumped to save her. The thing is that I can’t even swim which is horrible but the anxiety made me want to save her. I’m not what that meant, but it scared me a lot. Please help!


-Kay 2014-09-15 2:26:31

My husband has dreamt twice that while we were crossing a bridge near our home we witness a car drive of the bridge and he jumps in and saves a woman and small child. What does that mean? And what’s the chances of having the same dream twice?


-Kay 2014-09-15 2:29:24

My husband has dreamt twice that while we were crossing a bridge near our home we witness a car drive of the bridge and he into jumps into the water and saves a woman and small child from drowning. What does that mean? And what’s the chances of having the same dream twice?


-Mimi Burgos 2014-09-15 21:08:31

I had a dream last night of going on a honeymoon with my husband to the beach and we took our son who is a year and a half. We went to a tropical destination. My husband was taking care of our son while I had some time to myself. After a while I joined them on the beach and saw my son playing in the ocean by himself as my husband watched him. A big wave was coming his way and I screamed for help and no one could hear me. My husband held me from getting my son and said he was going to be okay. The wave came and washed my son away. I ran to find him, crying and screaming and still, no one heard me nor helped me. My husband didn’t seem to care about what was happening. He simply stood at the beach just watching me go crazy and his son disappearing. My husband would give his life for our son so why wouldn’t he in my dream?


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