Ex’s play an enormous part in many people’s dreams. The reason is that dreams about ex’s are very tricky for several reasons. To start with most people are often totally unaware of the experience they take in and how it interacts with them when we love or interact with someone. In other words because we memorise the feelings and responses we felt; and because we learn through our experiences, we are changed by them. The memories and the learning are part of you and is symbolised in dreams as a person or event. You have taken in millions of bit of memory, lessons learnt, life experiences, along with all the feelings or problems met by loving and living with someone and they are what makes you the person you are. Your dreams tend to put all that in the image of the past person when you are dealing with the influences left in you from the relationship.

Example: The details behind this were that I recognise that my telling my partner frequently that I don’t need her, that I am independent, that I don’t really want to live with her, was the way of hitting at her to test her response. I realise that I am so frightened that the person I love will betray me or leave me, that in a way I challenge them to leave me to see if it is going to happen. Of course this can actually cause the breakup to happen. I know this is a classic pattern in relationships but that doesn’t mean to say I am free of it.

A very beautiful and deep dream (Love was written in blood) can be seen at least in two ways. The usual one is to see it as about a physical partner that is there for you to find. Another more likely view is to see it as the you that you lost without warning – the being that will make you whole and let you know what real love is. But love is learnt and becomes habits at the early experiences – as a baby – of being loved, abandoned, left of abused. All those are very real ways leading you to painful emotions in the present relationship.

Traditions from the past and our own dreams if explored, show that we inhabit a body which is polarised as one expression of gender – male or female. But the ‘we’ that experiences life in a body is a whole being, female and male. Being in a body leads us to long for wholeness which we feel we do not have, and so long for a partner of the opposite sex to feel whole. But of course it is only an illusion of wholeness and has to be sought again and again by having sex. But that is natures or the instinctive way to procreation. See Archetype of the Animus and Archetype of the Anima

This search for wholeness in many cases. Sets up a bloody conflict between the sense of being in a body and the longing for the real love of wholeness. Look around you at the bloody mess that comes for such deep longing for a partner –  amount of ex’s you see, even in those who have ‘everything’.

One of the great and often self-defeating identifications is that with our body. If we accept that dreams portray in images our conception of self, then dreams suggest that our identity largely depends upon having a body, its gender, health, quality, skin colour, the social position we are born into, and our relationship with others. In fact, we know that if a person loses their legs, becomes paralysed, loses childbearing ability, becomes blind or is made redundant, they face an identity crisis. Yet despite all of that they still exist as a person, and if we realise that early we can avoid all the pain and distress caused by a complete identification with our body and our ex’s.

Even an absent parent is a huge figure in our inner life. In dreams we meet them again and again in ex’s, in lovers lost or in the figure of parents. For we are not dreaming about them but the memories, hurts, lessons and experiences stored within us. Everyone we have known are in fact figures of our inner world. To become whole, to love ourselves we must meet, acknowledge and integrate the people we carry within us.

Example: I am not pregnant, but dreamt I was at my ex’s place, with whom I spent a night together 3 months ago (1.5 yrs after our breakup), and he’s cold/avoiding me ever since (claiming he’s seeing someone). In the dream, I was not pregnant with him, and was convinced I was about to deliver around that day.

Example:  It started from a month ago, things started to change. Not so bad, but it’s just only the dream that he has been having lately. He has been having the same dream this past a month! He talks in his sleep. He says his EX’s name over and over again, and then some words too. I love him to death, and he loves me too! I have no other problem with him. Ohh well, few months ago, we had few, but we got through it.

Sometimes we get stuck, unable to move on, because of pains linked with the Ex. Here is a way a man found to freedom.

Example: Then I slowly became aware of a deeper sense of the discomfort. It was a feeling of being stuck in one place and not being able to move. It wasn’t anything to do with moving physically but was as an awareness. It felt awful and I tried to move but couldn’t. The only way of describing it was as if we are all made out of the same stuff – as an example concrete – and as such we filled all space. So, the little space I filled could not move because all around was filled by others. I felt really stuck and wondered what I could do, but there seemed no way out of it. Yet I could not believe this was really how things were.

But that led me to think about my cousin Sid again, and his situation of being constantly linked with his mother, a relationship he never escaped from. Then I realised that I was also linked with Ros, and in feeling that I realised that I could move in at least two positions – me and Ros – because of the loving connection I felt.

Then came a flood of realisation, every person I had loved was another position I could be in; and then I knew all the animals I had loved and even people I had a casual relationship with. But there was even more because in dreams and sessions I had become or encountered amazing things, people, creatures, the Star Beings and others. I knew then that I was FREE to go anywhere and be almost anything.”

See Secrets of Power Dreaming

Copyright © 1999-2010 Tony Crisp | All rights reserved