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#462228 - 03/08/14 02:22 PM Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams?
sadclown Offline


Registered: 02/27/14
Posts: 57
So, I stopped dreaming around age 13/14. It became really rare for me to have any kind of dream, or lingering feeling, and when I did they were just cryptic visuals/plot and neutral emotions- generally just a "wtf?" feeling. When they were bad, I had no visual or sensory data, just woke up feeling really revolted and lousy about myself, sometimes sweaty. The bad dreams have been presenting more over the past few months, but are still pretty rare. However, I've been having the SAME dream a few times, and I've never had a repeat of any dream until now. It's happened three times in the last two weeks: I am in some kind of institution, captive, and I'm completely paralyzed. Can't move, can't talk. I wake up friggin terrified and can't move for a few seconds and I start panicking. Why the heck is it and how does one make it stop?
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My Story

"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed"- Ernest Hemingway

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#462231 - 03/08/14 03:15 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
cant_remember Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 1039

Sadclown,

I've had these kinds of dreams. For me, they vary in terms of scene, but always the same in terms of effect. They all involve me being paralyzed by fear, whether by shark attack, bat attack, or UFO attack -- you get the idea.

Here's how I've come to understand them:

The fight-or-flight reflex we have as an instinctual response to trauma actually has a third component, fight-flight-or-freeze. Freezing during the abuse seems to be a common response, and it's essentially a biochemical process that shuts our bodies down.

Now, during REM sleep, it is natural for the body to produce chemicals that induce paralysis in order to keep us from acting out our dreams in real life.

However, with abuse survivors, maybe our brains interpret this natural influx of paralysis chemicals as a response to some sort of fear-induced trauma, and the brain therefore presents a dream to the mind that unifies the correlation between sleep paralysis and abuse.

Anyway, that's my working theory. I deal with it by smoking marijuana. One of the lesser-known effects of pot is that it reduces dream activity. If you are in a place where medical marijuana is legal for PTSD patients, then take advantage of that ASAP. If not, maybe do it anyway, if you don't have to deal with work-related drug screenings.

Cant
_________________________
Recovery is possible. Hang in there, brothers.

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#462232 - 03/08/14 03:48 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
Frustrated Offline


Registered: 10/28/13
Posts: 192
I have nightmares of sexual abuse a lot I have just learned to deal with them there doesn't seem to be a way to stop them. I have taken sleeping drugs to get beyond them but I am just stuck in them and not able to wake up. Nightmares are part of what I am I hope one day they will subside hopefully they will for you

James

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#462234 - 03/08/14 03:50 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
fff123 Offline


Registered: 03/05/14
Posts: 12
Loc: Karachi,Pakistan
Me also got nightmares mostly related to my rapes.Should i say whenever i get dream its always nightmare as i forget when last time i see some good relaxing dream

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#462237 - 03/08/14 04:27 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
sadclown Offline


Registered: 02/27/14
Posts: 57
That's not what I was hoping to hear frown

As for weed, that sounds like a capital idea and is one I have been entertaining. I don't know if I have PTSD; the army said I didn't, but these days they don't apply the designation unless they absolutely have to- its more expensive for them. And it was never something I thought worth pursuing...we'll see what a civilian clinician has to say about it. Sorry to hear about you guys having dreams of the abuse; the worst I get is seeing the rape happen in the first person when I close my eyes sometimes. But the dreams that leave my blankets on the ground and me trembling and drenched in sweat I never recall. I hope I never will, either.

Thanks for the insight, guys
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My Story

"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed"- Ernest Hemingway

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#462241 - 03/08/14 07:27 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
Tiger1982 Offline


Registered: 01/31/14
Posts: 26
Loc: Slovakia
Hello, friends...

I've had nightmares for a long time, since I couldn't remember the abuse I suffered, the nightmares were my only clue that something bad happened. The scenario in my nightmares was the same as some of you had mentioned, I'm paralyzed, can't move my legs, there is some beast, that wants to catch me and I can't run and escape from it... I used to wake up in terror and always instinctively escaped from my bed (it was the place my abuse took place) - so I think that some part of me was aware of the abuse. When I started to deal with the issues of abuse in real life and I became a survivor, my nightmares have ended. But on other side, my life has become literally a nightmare (because I started to deal with all the issues of CSA and supressed and dissociated emotions and memories). These days I feel fear, anxiety and terror almost every minute. But since I'm awake now, I'm not paralyzed and I'm more in control, so I'm not helpless as I was in my dreams.

As I read, some of you are having terrible nightmares, mine were only symbolic thanks God, but they were pretty scary nonetheless. I'm still afraid to go to bed in the evening, fearing the bad dreams would come back and I would wake up in terror with my heart pounding fast...

Enough of the bad stuff!
I wish you all pleasant dreams!

Andy
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Out of the dark, into the light.

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#462245 - 03/08/14 09:51 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3028
Loc: O Kanada
for decades, i had recurring full immersion 3d technicolor dreams.
there were some recurring themes.
some thrills and some screams.
sometimes, they were vivid enough, i was able to write them down.
other times, i'd wake up yelling, or paralyzed with fear, unable to move or breathe.
i am happy to say,
prayer chased them bad dreams away.
haven't had a problem with nightmares for a long time,
although i have restless sleep issues once in a while, and sparebooard shift work doesn't help.
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#462246 - 03/08/14 09:56 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1478
Loc: New England
Hey Sadclown,

Yeah, nightmares seem to be part of the deal for many of us. After the abuse I had recurring nightmares with the common theme being "somthing terrible was my fault". Those continued into adulthood, and have diminished with time and therapy.

The other recurring dreams that still plague me come only just as I am falling asleep. As I doze off I am suddenly transported into a horror movie where something/somebody, is about to get me. I jolt awake, screaming and swinging my fists and kicking. This will repeat 2-3 times before I am finally able to stay asleep. I go to bed 30+ minutes before my wife does so I don't hurt her.

Will it ever end? I don't know.

Jude
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#462247 - 03/08/14 09:57 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1478
Loc: New England

Jude


Edited by Jude (03/08/14 09:59 PM)
Edit Reason: Dunno why this posted twice
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#462248 - 03/08/14 11:58 PM Re: Anyone else have recurring nightmares/bad dreams? [Re: sadclown]
jas4159 Offline


Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 278
Wow that brought back some memories. I don't have the reaccuring dreams anymore but for many years i did. My terror dreams where like yours - caught in a place, powerless and all the rest. I love the part when you are trying to run and this invisible force paralizes your body. I had about four recuuring dreams that i had for years. But recovery has ended all that now and i enjoy dreaming. in fact i love it.

rich

justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com
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Thanks

rich

justanothersurvivror.wordpress.com

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