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Dream 01_199610

Dream of the Month (October 1996)

  1. Title: Murderer

  2. Date of the Dream: (09/20/96) (received Saturday, 28Sep1996)

  3. Dream: I was in a mental institution under psychiatric review for the eight murders that I had recently committed. I felt no remorse for the murders and in fact, could not actually remember them, although I knew that I had committed them. I felt alarm at having to live the rest of my life branded as a murderer. I knew that I wasn't in control when those acts had been committed and felt trapped by circumstance and by the enclosing institution.

    At that point the dream shifted to a washroom where I was attempting to defecate into a bathtub of water. I teetered on the edge of the tub and was afraid of falling back into the mess I had created.

  4. Significant life event:

  5. Personal concerns/issues: Failed past relationships still causing pain.

  6. Associations: That evening I had the realization that as we grow older, there are more and more things which we live to regret. I feared a time when these regrets would become overwhelming.

  7. Category: anomalous

  8. Pen Name: Morticia

Dr. Holloway's Comments:

Some of our most valuable dreams appear rather distressing at first. Serial and multiple murders in dreams often deal with repeating patterns of ending things abruptly, or "killing off" opportunities. It is typical in dreams to feel no regret over murders committed, (since they are symbolic) but to dread the consequences that result. It seems important here to analyze the past from a psychological perspective, but not to condemn and judge yourself. (Notice the condemnation is actually worse than the crimes.)

The bathtub scene suggests a desire for normal elimination, "letting go" of what is no longer needed, contrasted with fear of "falling back" into old patterns. Be leery of a tendency to dwell on past mistakes and condemn yourself. That may feel like justice, but it works to perpetuate the pattern. Sometimes too great an emphasis on expressing fully about the past can actually "contaminate" present opportunities for a fresh start.

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