Bad Dreams - Nightmares - Sleepwalking - Bedwetting
These are common childhood afflictions which are often caused by mis-perceptions or misunderstanding or exposure to material which defeats a child’s capacity to manage or understand. Often this results from the casual intimidations and provocations or bullying that children can perpetrate on each other
Whether adult or child, bad dreams or just strange ones ( and waking daydreams ) often contain highly disguised information about conflicted or unresolved issues the unconscious mind is processing. Examining these in relation to a person’s background - often with hypnotic exploration - can reveal useful insights into what holds us in a problematic place and gives powerful clues and approaches to settle the underlying issues.
With adults concerned about recurrent dreams. techniques to achieve ‘conscious’ re-enactment of the dream can often recall elements which were significant at the time but which have faded from memory.
Persistent bad dreams, nightmares, night terrors, and daytime flashbacks are quite often characteristic of post traumatic stress disorder ( PTSD ). This may relate to early life experience or to more recent accident, assault or other abnormally severe stress. Threatening relationships or other physically or psychologically damaging environments - including discrimination, bullying or victimisation at school or work may all cumulate to produce these symptoms.
Otherwise such patterns are strongly associated with deeply disturbing issues from the past - prominent amongst which are witnessing sudden and unexpected or peristent violence - patterns of parental severity and parental violence, severely dangerous or life-threatening childhood environment or similar severely disorientating chaos - or childhood sexual abuse.
These severe patterns need a concentrated approach demanding psychotherapeutic skill in depth.
There is a tendency amongst insufficiently trained or inexperienced practitioners to mislead a client into misinterpreting such symptoms before there is sufficient evidence to justify such a conjecture. This can give rise to ‘false memory syndrome’ where the client is induced to seek confirmation of abuse, supported by a therapist who has become over-involved emotionally or who is driven by other inappropriate motives or ideologies - rather than maintaining an objective stance and arriving at properly founded conclusions.
The arising confusion and upset can cause serious disruptions to an individual’s stability, to their relationships and those of a far wider circle of friends and acquaintances.
Contact Keith Bibby Copyright Keith Bibby © December 2009