Dream 353: Working It Out
A young adult woman dreamed that she and some acquaintances spent the night in a house. Her work supervisor’s boss was with them. They climbed never-ending stairs that were scary and increasingly narrow.
They arrived in a dark attic. They were exhausted and piled into bed to sleep. She later woke up within the dream and it was light out.
She could now see clearly in the room and was horrified. The room was filthy because it was covered with dirt and dust. She saw a dead mouse on the floor.
She walked to a bathroom. She saw a baby carriage. An overwhelming smell of urine pervaded the atmosphere like what you might smell in a bad nursing home.
She then saw a very large rat sniffing around the baby carriage. She worried about the baby. She started choking because the dust was so thick in the air. The dream ended with her intensely blowing her nose to get rid of the dust buried in her lungs.
This is a classic type of dream. Each character represents a part of the dreamer’s mind at the first level of dream interpretation. Her supervisor’s boss was a part of her that’s in charge of her overall work life, career life, or financial life.
There are several things that Freud said that were uncanny. One of them was that when there are stairways , it usually involves sex because going upstairs is rhythmic activity that ends in a climax.
There are many signs that the dream involved being sexually mistreated in the past. Climbing the stairs was harrowing, confined, and she felt horrified at some point in the dream. Also dust is “old dirt” that implies that the body was violated, i.e., the Biblical injunction that “to dust though shall return.”
The mouse was dead which indicated how it may have affected her instincts back then, i.e. she probably felt small and lifeless.
The baby carriage implied reproduction (sex). Water is almost always emotion in dreams. Urine is water that we no longer need, i.e., negative emotion.
The nursing home implied that this happened a while ago. The supervisor’s boss being involved signaled that it either happened in a work area of her life or was affecting the work area of her life now. At the end of the dream, the dream became dramatic and indicated the dust or “old dirt” was taking the air out of her, i.e., that it was taking the joy out of some area in her life.
Another uncanny image Freud talked about appearing in dreams was a rat, which often involved sexual mistreatment because it is an image of what the perpetrator is. All in all, the dream was implying that there was some sexual mistreatment that occurred in the past that was taking some life or joy out of the work area of her life.
Reaction and Feedback from the Dreamer
“Whoa my mind is blown. I have to ponder over this one for a while…your summary at the end nails it but it’s in such a way I never would ever have thought of it like that! Possibly sex related mistreatment in the way past that has influenced me even now to be getting in the way of something I could do to better myself career wise but hesitate based on the impact and dependence the trauma caused in me.”