Relationship Partner with BPD (Straight and LGBT+) => Romantic Relationship | Detaching and Learning after a Failed Relationship => Topic started by: Skippy on July 12, 2006, 01:14:45 AM

Title: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 12, 2006, 01:14:45 AM
I don't think of her in the course of a day;

I am not wavering or thinking about contacting her or have images of a reunion;

I loved her with my all;

She humiliated my character;

It's over;

No hope burns on any day.

But... .

The dreams. Still get them. 

Maybe every 6 weeks or so.

In normal times I don't dream... if I do, its usually fuzzy.

But these are getting more and more life like, detailed, colorful, strange.

Had one recently where she did something mean and said she didn't care, calmly to my face - OK, I can see what that is all about.  But the detail was really high.

Last night was about her entry into my club, with another man (average guy)... .and none of the details remotely fit her or her history and she lives 50 miles away... .but the level of detail is incredible (but not probable).  I can describe the clothing, the wall color, etc.

OK, I can see what that is all about too.  That we are past the point of reconciliation... .permanence.

But why the vivid detail and why the dreams now?

They are not upsetting - but they a little unsettling.

Anyone ever experience anything like this?

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: bpdex100 on July 12, 2006, 04:38:55 AM
Had a similar thing, but apparently tis a good thing, it can mean that you are being released, that the final ties are being cut. Maybe you are looking into this a little too much? I still dream of exs before my BPD experience.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: bewildered2 on July 12, 2006, 05:20:46 AM
Skip- u can read thousands of books about the meaning of dreams if you want to.

The best explanation I heard was from the cleverest person I ever met, a very wise man from Ethiopia who happened to be a clinical psychologist. And he said that dreams are just a combination of thoughts you had during the day that were "unfinished". Maybe it is like your brain is defragmenting, putting everything in order while you are asleep so that you wake up fresh with a clear head the next day.

So all it really may mean is that she is still on your mind, and that you can envisage her with another guy perhaps, and that the thought isn't gonna kill you like it would have done perhaps a while ago. Unpleasant yes, but with some more time hopefully not unpleasant at all, but simply a relief.

I'm actually trying, and it is hard, to hope that my ex is fixed up with another guy soon so that she doesn't turn up on my doorstep (not likely) before I'm ready. Hopefully she will idealize him as she did me for at least a year before it goes wrong, and in that year I will be fully recovered and impervious to her "charms" (i.e. looks).     


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 12, 2006, 12:03:39 PM
Thanks BPDex and BW2.  It was an odd question to ask.  But in writing it and looking at your response I can see what is going on here - I don't think I really knew. 

My reality is that I'm not ready for this last door to close yet.  I fear it happening.

I guess  there is a huge divide between won't (go back) and can't.

I've been bracing every since NC for her to connect in a big way with someone - idealization - marriage - whatever.  The gods have been kind to me in that she hasn't.  That would have been really traumatic for me months ago. 

Instead, she seems to be desperately trying to find the right guy and its just has not jelled yet.  She is on every dating sight out there... .and it not too attractive.  But its a numbers game, so she will connect soon enough.

The gods were good to lead me to find them (the ads) - reading her "ads" on occasion has been hugely rehabilitating... .a chance to see the shallowness of it all, the misrepresentations and how she hunts.  I can't blame any of it on myself now, she is doing this on her own.   

There was truly nothing unique about our relationship - she says this stuff to everyone.

My reality is also that I'm still addicted.  Not to her, but my memory of November 2002 (just to pick a date).  No where no do they connect (her and the memory), so I feel safe... .but it does show the incredible power of the addiction.  No wonder I was kicking and screaming in NC.

I've entertained the thought of trying to go back on a few occasions.  This has helped me, too.  The flip slide of "sad it crashed", doesn't seem as bad when you say - "OK, tell me how you go back - what then?".  The first thought on this hypothesis is "how would I ever believe in her again - nothing she could say or do, even her best behavior for a year, 2 years, 4 years, couldn't relieve my concerns of what lurks below".

Not a totally clean bill of health for Skippy  ... .but at least I know my reality.  I'm still recovering.

OK, back in the saddle... .


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: aames on July 12, 2006, 12:18:08 PM
I still dream about  a man I left over 16 years ago.  He was the love of my life, and the person I was with the longest, as well the person by whom I was betrayed and hurt most deeply;  so  naturally he became the touchstone "dream character representative" for  much of my subsequent disappointment, hurt,  heartbreak and anger through the years.   

You're still relatively close to the time of break up -- it's going to take you a while to process all those leftovers and loose ends, emotionally speaking.

Dreaming is connected to both the logical and the emotional  processing centers -- it makes a lot of sense that you're still experiencing her in your dreams.


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: TonyC on July 12, 2006, 12:20:04 PM
i can relate skip, i miss her like well i will say as you know,

i look at my phone and say when will she call and tell me she got a new therapist , and she is spending every wakng moment to fix herself so we could be us again... .

and all the things she did were wrong to do to someone as devoted to the relationship as i was... .and she is ready to be real and we can go on... .a new begining

but i know the out come so i must wait till the memories slowly diminish... .

i have read , heard , studied ... .listened to you guys and the punishment you endure , yes i know there are good and great times, bbut as long as they exceed the bad times , its ok... for me anyway

i must move on , and leave her behind... .for my sanity and everyone else involved in my life

im just venting but i hope really hope she does what she needs to fixherself... .i cant do it for her... .


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 12, 2006, 04:00:18 PM
i have read , heard , studied ... .listened to you guys and the punishment you endure , yes i know there are good and great times, bbut as long as they exceed the bad times , its ok... for me anyway

You could count me in for good and bad times.  I would owe my family that and deliver with a smile.

The problem, as I read, is erosion.  Most (not all) of these relationship erode over time - the good/bad percentage shrinks.

Isn't a relationship that get better with time important?  Growth.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Mr Soul on July 12, 2006, 06:08:36 PM

But why the vivid detail and why the dreams now?

I googled "vivid dreaming" and discovered it is associated with REM sleep.  Sleep researchers found that when they wake up their subjects during REM sleep, the subjects report very vivid dreams as compared with when the subjects are woken up during nonREM.  If you were at all sleep deprived before, it's not unusual to experience higher levels of REM sleep as you return to a normal pattern of sleep.  So it would make sense that if your REM cycles are more frequent, the incidence of vivid dreaming would increase as well.

For what it's worth... .

Sleep tight and don't let the bed bugs bite.

Mr Soul

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Count_Zer0 on July 12, 2006, 06:14:32 PM
Uncanny Skip... .

I've had two dreams in the last couple of weeks in which my uBPDexgf made an appearance.  Both times it forced me to awaken. In a two and a half year relationship I never once had a dream that included her.  I rarely ever remember my dreams and when I do they rarely have to do with anyone or anything that I would say was the reality of my everyday life.  I have very odd dreams folks.  I'm going to hazard that this might just be some bit of my subconscious reacting to the separation and loss or maybe I just had a bad burrito. :)

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: garyw on July 12, 2006, 07:04:32 PM
I havent had a "Cathy" dream in about 6 months. But being that I have been over her for now going on 2 years... .thats pretty recent.

There is no question in my mind that I could not and do not want another relationship with "Unhealthy Cathy"

If Cathy became well... .which is such a long shot... .then maybe my mind would entertain it but on her looks alone at first because her disorder does not change her looks.  I like that look... .in her and others like her.

maybe our mind ,when it decides it needs a person to play out a role in a  dream to work on something (maybe not even relkated to whos in it) works like Google search.  Makes common sense that the most logged on subject and easily accesed person would be ... .who else

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: WhiteBuffalow on July 12, 2006, 10:08:58 PM

Dreams are a way our supconcious deals with things. This was a lady you loved very much and it's going to take time for your heart and spirit to deal with it. I'm not sure of all the details of what you lived with with her, but I got some pretty strong PTS which cause me the "dreams"  . .  you may have some subconcious stresses that are bringing her back into your sleep time and your insides are trying to figure it all out.

I do understand the "not ready for the last door to close. . " I think in relationships with fairly healthy people when they end, it's not a slam, it's a gentle close. With BPD, it has to slam so the door makes a huge noise. That's hard to take. At least in my opinion. If it's someone a lot of love was once shared with, why does it have to come down to this? These relationships don't seem to be able to end with civility, there has to be that SLAM. In more common relationships the door can close more gently and we all have time to deal with the emotions more naturally. With these folks, ending is very much like the whole relationships were . . extreeme.

I probably didn't say that well, but I hope you understand!

Be very gentle and loving with yourself! Allow yourself time to grow beyond this.

Take care!

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: bewildered2 on July 13, 2006, 10:47:40 AM
Hey Skip,

I went on a date with a new girl last night. Guess what, I had a dream too. About the new girl, not the horror that was the love of my life for the last few years. Its gotta be a good sign I think.

Unfortunately, she mentioned that she had been on anti-depressants for a year about ten years ago (in reality, not the dream). Should I run now?

Get out there and mix a little. I can't say I'm excited about doing it either, but if it helps to get me out of the emotional quagmire my ex left me in then I'll do it every night I can.

Don't let the crazy hang on.

All the best,



Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 13, 2006, 10:52:26 AM
My first advice to you is to not post your question in the following thread :evil:

       Do NONs create/enable BPs? [1950f3 replies to Jerryz

Anti-depressants 10 years ago is a single factoid and not at all darning in and of itself.  Of course, if she was taking the antidepressents in prison becuase she was down about being caught leaving her children at Wallmart so she could date her therapist... .


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: aames on July 13, 2006, 01:12:00 PM
Unfortunately, she mentioned that she had been on anti-depressants for a year about ten years ago (in reality, not the dream). Should I run now?

Jeez Bewildered  - I do hope you're being Snarkastic... .(Snarky + Sarcastic = Snarkastic) !

WORLD of difference between short-term depression  (even recurring)

and a personality disorder... .

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: macman on July 13, 2006, 04:19:49 PM
I get PTSD dreams.  I have dreams about her with another guy.  I think it comes back to some of my basic insecurities of not being good enough.  Even though nobody will ever be all that she wants, I feel that somebody out there might and it makes me very insecure.  My own little "issue" to deal with.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Karma Police on July 13, 2006, 07:29:24 PM
Yeah, I rarely have dreams, but during the first two weeks of his last (final in my book) silent treatment I started having them.

I get PTSD dreams.  I have dreams about her with another guy.  I think it comes back to some of my basic insecurities of not being good enough.  Even though nobody will ever be all that she wants, I feel that somebody out there might and it makes me very insecure.  My own little "issue" to deal with.

I dreamt that he started banging his ex-wife and this stupid betty that called him at 1AM when we were hanging out (RL) and stroked his ego telling him she wanted him to come over for a booty call (yes, this actually happened and I listened to it for an hour... .I later discovered that he kept her phone number in his cell--jackass).

It blows, for sure.  They went away (I think--I am ignoring them).  It helped me realize how tweaked I had become over him... .and how he had purposely planted seeds of doubt to keep me on my toes.  He would totally deny this, but then again, he pretty much denies having any problems whatsoever. 

You know, because it is normal to not have any friends, freak out when I mention a preference in the way my child is to be disciplined, and give silent treatments to me after he is the one that effed up.

Nope, no problem here.   :)   Glad he has his garden to keep him company.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: GlassTower on July 13, 2006, 09:09:31 PM
I also never dreamed about my BPxh when we were together.  Just today I had a dream that we were still married and living together.  Someone had threatened to kill me and I was leaving to hide somewhere.  BPxh seemed eager for me to leave.  I said I would be back in three days for supplies if nothing happened to me before then.  He said that everything there was his and I couldn't have any of it.  Even in my dream I was astonished at how he cared nothing at all about me being in danger but only cared about possessions.  I woke up then and was so glad that it was only a dream and we weren't still together.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 13, 2006, 10:19:31 PM
I just read this about the intesity of dreams... .

People often deal with traumatic events through dreams. Tufts University psychiatrist Ernest Hartmann, author of ":)reams and Nightmares," analyzed dreams from the same group of people before and after September 11 (none of them lived in New York).

He found that the later dreams were not necessarily more negative, but they were more intense. "The intensity is a measure of emotional arousal," he says. For people suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), dream content can be a marker of the level of distress, says psychiatrist Thomas Mellman of the Howard University School of Medicine, who studies PTSD.

Dreams that mimic the real-life trauma indicate that the patient may be "stuck" in the experience. He thinks one way to help people move past the memory is through an "injury rehearsal," where they imagine a more positive scenario.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 13, 2006, 10:44:48 PM
This would be it for me (read below)... .I feel the same internal pain after the dream that I felt during the relationship.  Precisely, albiet not as intense as it could be.

Trauma survivors commonly re-experience their traumas. This means that the survivor experiences again the same mental, emotional, and physical experiences that occurred during or just after the trauma. These include thinking about the trauma, seeing images of the event, feeling agitated, and having physical sensations like those that occurred during the trauma.

Thankfully this doesn't occur very often - but now that I think about it all - any serious level of "revisiting her in my mind" tends to bring on the same feeling i had in the bad times of the relationship. 

I have pretty much eliminated any of these thoughts or explorations when I am awake - but I can't control that sleep (well I guess I could take sleeping pills - but its to far apart for that).

There is some remnant of jagged hurt still floating in my soul.

I had a suspicion... .

Well I'll chalk it up to a tinge of PTSD and expect that it will go away as it does in most PTSD.

If they show up after the one year anniversary - I going to get a professional opinion.

It's strange.  I've come to fully forgive her. To fully accept that I am out of the childrens lives forever.  I can put myself in her mind function and see how she saw the world and why, in that world, she was acting "normally".  I see my failures.

I guess it just dies a really slow death or maybe I should say... .

I don't bounce back from these things like I should and I need to "get over it".


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: WhiteBuffalow on July 13, 2006, 11:26:32 PM

In my humble opinion . . PTS doesn't go away that easily . .  It lays dormant. I found out a year or so ago, that was part of my issues before my BPDSO, they cropped up with him, he saw some of it and was good about it until my fears had anything to do with him. It doesn't have to occur often, but if it does at all, and the pain is that intense, then yes we do have PTS and something only we can do something about.

With all your heart is going through, I do think it would be really good for you to be in (good) counceling to help you! I know it helps me.

I saw your post on smashing the box of her stuff you had. (I was in hiding then) That kind of "get the stuff out of you" is good.

Take care of you! Do things good for you!

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: macman on July 14, 2006, 08:48:30 AM
I have two weird PTSD sources, my marriage and college. I keep dreaming that I never finished college, that I had skipped so many classes that I couldn't remember my schedule, etc.  Pretty strange and I have to remind myself when I wake up that I graduated!  I never dream about Iraq though, so I guess I know what was more stressfull in my life!

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 14, 2006, 09:37:45 AM
I saw your post on smashing the box of her stuff you had. (I was in hiding then) That kind of "get the stuff out of you" is good.

Thanks Difficult:  I do think knowing what it is helps a lot.  You're point about therapy is reasonable - but I struggle with the thought of going... . 

1) I honestly feel I (we) tend to look for too many "reasons"... .at some point (after the crisis) it's just simply us, a failed relationship, it hurts, and we need to tuff up and get on with life. Bottom line, I picked this girl and no matter how good the show was, I didn't get it.  And yet, I can see a magic act and never believe its true.  I'm not undercalling the initial trauma of a BP relationship - but as time goes on... . 

Clearly there is some PTS going on, whatever PTS really is (it's catchment has grown from war, to physical trauma, to now mental trauma).  My undersatnding is that PTS is not uncommon to any trauma and most of it resolves without threatment. 

Reading and having someone like  you "confirming" what is going on is a great deal of help.  I guess this is just part of it.

2) I'm not a fan of on-going T.  When you are in emotional distress I think it helps... .but when things calm down, there seems to be a lot of chat about very little... .what happened this week, how do you feel, our time is up.  When I turn the tables and say after 15 minutes, "talk to me", the Ts get a little uncomfortable.  When you do finally get them to talk (and they will) a little goes a long way.  They tell you something you don't see and then you go off and ponder it and you eventually see it.  I'm probbaly not the best patient - or just "impatient".

All this said - it this keeps up - I go in for a session or two and see if I can get a direction.

Macman  .   That says something, now   :-\  I'm glad you don't have battle induced PTSD - I understand it is awful.  Glad your back, safe too.


Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: WhiteBuffalow on July 15, 2006, 10:08:42 PM
Skip, we all have different ways to help us deal with and get through things.

I think if we are in constant therapy for years, we maybe aren't "getting" something we should or maybe use it for a mask . . . I've been in an out because I seem to get myself into stupid situations. I've been very fortunate to have had some very good therapists that have helped me see things more clearly. This last bout of bad choices with my BPD has shown me I really have some things to learn  . . . I honestly thought I'd figured a lot out and was strong enough to keep myself out of abusive situations. I'd spent alot of years trying to learn how to be healthier and recognise healthier. Self growth stuff. . . Spiritual . . . And I've come a very long way!

Personally I don't ever want to find myself in this kind of situation again, and I need to find out what gets me there. I'm also realizing that my own PTS is not going to go away without help, I keep making choices that reinflict. Perhaps the one situation, I get past, but something gets getting me into these. (long story)

If you really do want to go to therapy, find someone that works for you. There are different types. Some do me absolutly no good at all, waste of time. Others have helped me emensly in an ongoing way. My current one does her share of talking and pointing things out to me. She gives me suggestions to move forward. And actually my accupunctuist who is working on my cronic pain is very helpful with insiteful life growth things. She's also worked a little on my emotional stuff as the whole body works together.

Take care! I hope you travel through this phase of your life quickly and find more peace!

Bless you!

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: meredith on July 17, 2006, 12:18:42 AM
:) clearly van morrison did:

i dreamed you paid your dues in canada

and left me to come through

i headed out there right away

i knew just exactly what to do

i dreamed you played cards in the dark

and you lost, and you lied

wasn't very hard to do, but it hurt me

deep down inside

these dreams of you

so real, and so true

these dreams of you

so real and so true . . .

i wouldn't consider dreams alone a matter for therapy, unless they're affecting your ability to function otherwise - you can't sleep because you're scared to get one, or you can't shake them once you're awake, for instance.  other than that, they're just movies that play out in your mind; you don't have to engage with them.

and i stick with this:  i never once dreamed about my mother all the time she was ill and dying.  never for a good couple of years afterwards while i was actively dealing with the aftermath.  she only started to show up now and then when i had done all that real-time dealing and she'd attained a different kind of 'settled' or 'historical' stature in my mind.  then my subconscious let her come out of the closet for me.  it seems to me like dreams mark occasions like that by providing this kind of thing.  in general, i find my dream patterns are usually linked to one of two status points:

a) it comes through a dream because i haven't consciously clued up to it yet, or b) it comes through a dream because i don't need to spend any more conscious bandwidth on it.

either way, i find i think of them mostly as indications of a change in mental status - nothing more than that.  i find them kind of neat that way, because they provide me with road-markers i wouldn't track otherwise.

Title: Re: >>> BAD DREAMS <<<
Post by: Skippy on July 17, 2006, 06:25:38 PM

Your points are all well taken Meredith... .it could be just an emotional transition... part often healing process.

Talking it out here, helped... if its PSD (and I'm stuck) or just another emotional transition, I at least have some basis to evaluate it.  I didn't engage the last dreams as you suggest... .other than the "why now" question.

This relationship failure hit me like a ton of bricks.  Learning it was BP was a relief in the very beginning, but a became a bigger concern as I dug deeper... .how did I miss it (I can partially understand), why did I put up with the non-sense when it got bad (I deserve what I got here for not ending it), but most freightening - she could have destroyed me much much more than she did.

This last thought might be the what is coming out of the dreams... the passing of this fear of the other shoe droppinng.