Tuesday, February 03, 2009

To Sleep, Perchance To Dream...


Patients frequently tell me their dreams. Part of the royal road to the unconscious, Freud tells us. I'm never quite sure what to do with them. I listen, I comment on how the dream contents relate to the events in the patient's life-- a phenomena known as Day Residue. Simply said, I don't know that much about how dreams are helpful, or why they've come to be.

That said, ClinkShrink had an interesting dream last night, one that she shared with me. She says I can blog about it, so why not?

Clink is climbing a mountain with my dog, Max. Max gets cold. He's shivering, in fact. Concerned, Clink checks Max in to a resort hotel where they offer to give him (my dog!) sherry twice a day. The dream, I'm told, was vivid and in color.

So what does this mean, doctor? I asked Clink if she'd watch Max overnight while I'm away at a party. I will be staying in a hotel, though not a resort. I won't be drinking sherry, at least I don't think so, as I've never before been inspired to drink sherry. There may be some in the cabinet, Clink, but it's cooking sherry, please don't give it to Max and I can't imagine it's much fun to drink. Why is Max cold? He has never complained about the temperature, ever. He does like to eat meat and he likes Mighty Dog, but really, Max is a mutt, and sherry seems way too sophisticated for the pooch. He's never been to a resort. Has ClinkShrink? And Clink does climb mountains these days and Max would probably be happy to go along. He's quite athletic, but he might get freaked by the steep edges. He's not much for vacuum cleaners.

And what did you dream last night?

Italic

15 comments:

Still Dreaming said...

I actually had a totally weird dream today. I work nights, so it was during the day, but it was incredibly weird. I wrote about it here ( http://awake-anddreaming.blogspot.com/2009/02/crazy-dream.html ) so I fill the comments with it, but it was NUTS!

I know for me, I always have the weirdest dreams after I've hit the snooze button. I fall into a different sleep state which seems to be especially conducive to dreaming. Sometimes I can figure them out, but sometimes I totally can't.

drytears said...

This wasn't last night it was a few nights ago but it was pretty weird...

In my dream I was living in my high school (I'm in college now). The fire alarms went off and I lead the group of people outside, as we got outside the fire truck was there and some guys jumped out of the fire truck and they all had guns and yelled at us to lay on the ground with our faces down and then proceded to take and valuables/money that we had on us. It was terrifying!

I woke up shortly after the dream and was very freaked out... I'm a RA in a res hall... a res hall that's old and the fire alarms will randomnly go off plus they are very easy to set off. I just crossed my fingers that the fire alarms wouldn't go off that night because I really don't think I would have been able to leave the building!

mindful said...

I was prescribed Seroquel off-label as a hypnotic which I took for about three months. While on Seroquel, I had the most extraordinary vivid dreams. It was like dreaming in rich, sharp high definition technicolour. The feelings and memories from the dreams would spill over into the next day. Since coming off the Seroquel, the colour is duller and the dreams are less vivid. Go figure.

JJ said...

I dreamt last night that my husband was mad at me for buying peanutbutter crackers, and I insisted they were really bacon sandwich crackers. Usually I have dreams about a sport I used to be really involved in a decade ago, which often involves (in my dream) my dead father. I would love to know what these dreams meant and why some recur!!!!

Roy said...

Clink's dream interpretation: While Dinah is jetting around, drinking highballs at 4, living it up, Max and Clink are stuggling against the elements in Baltimore in January. (Yes, I know what the reality was, but still...)

Battle Weary said...

You really don't want to know what I dreamt last night! For a very, very long time I did not ever remember my dreams...I would really love to return to that!

Anonymous said...

A few months ago, I had the strangest dream about my shrink. I was walking to when she comes from behind (my office is only few blocks from hers) and she starts walking with me down the street. She is super bubbly & perky (not at all her usual demeanor!!!) and she is talking a million miles a minute about how she likes to walk on this side of the street because the overpass keeps it warm. I look up and there is this weird space-age looking overpass a hundred or so feet up (there is no overpass there in real life). When we get to corner, instead of crossing the street to go to her office, she goes down into the subway and then comes out the other side and starts waiving frantically at me, yelling, “Bye-bye!! I’ll see you later!” I just stood there thinking that was really bizarre. Then all of a sudden I’m in beauty parlor trying talk Debra Messing into highlighting my hair for less than what price she quoted me. I don’t usually remember my dreams but this one stuck with me. Very strange!!!

Doug Bremner said...

Ha ha ha! Good one, ShrinkRappers!

Your fellow shrink here is reading a book called 'Decoding Your Dreams' by Robert Langs MD. I read Dr. Langs as a psychiatry resident long ago and thought he was crazy cuz he said that the beginning time and ending time of the therapy session, or 'frame', was pretty much everything. I thought he was nuts but since then my experiences (which I won't go into here) have shown to me that he was pretty much right. I read the 'Interpretation of Dreams' by Sigmund Freud when I was in medical school and tried to analyze my own dreams then without success. I would wake up and write them down and then free associate. Anyhoo one of the things I learned from reading the 'Decoding' book is that if you write them down they become sterile fixed objects and no longer contribute to an interpretation of the unconscious mind. They also said that telling it to someone other than your therapist does the same thing but WHO you tell your dream to is psychologically significant. Letting your mind wander related to elements of the dream is most informative as I have learned in my own life. As Dr. Langs said the life lived without the interpreted dream is most un interesting. So I admonish you to not discount the power of dreams, ShrinkRappers!

Doug Bremner said...

btw dreams are related to the residue of an event that occurred the day before that triggered something mentally that is too emotionally charged to be brought to the conscious mind. Ultimately only the individual can interpret their own dreams. But they need some cheerleading! And the Shrinkrappers don't do dreams? I hope they aren't the product of a 'biological psychiatry' training! If so, I apologize!

Anonymous said...

What the heck is biological psychiatry? Please don't tell me that shrinks are no longer learning the fine art of listening/discerning, etc?? 25 years ago, before there were good drugs, a shrink saved my bacon through old fashioned talk therapy. I'd hate to see psychiatry become purely med management. Or is it too late already?

Anonymous said...

this is all very weird

The Dotterel said...

You mean this is reality?

nardilfan said...

I don't dream any more. I have to say, it's a vast improvement on the situation as it was before!

free dream interpretation said...

Some people say they don't dream... but they do dream... they just don't remember their dreams. Dreaming is a necessary function for the mind.

Try this exercise if you are looking for an answer.. speak to your dreaming self or Dream Guide before retiring at night and ask for a specific dream for a specific problem you are encountering. Ask for a dream that will give you a solution to your problem.. one that is simple and easy to understand.. Repeat it over and over like a lullaby as you drift off to sleep. Keep a dream journal and pen by your bed. When you awaken, write everything down that you remember of this dream.. people, details, colours, faces, feelings. Write all this down without analysing.. be descriptive instead. Then set it aside. A few days later, read what you have written without judgment and you will find that you have a solution there to your problem. Viola! Simple isn't it?

Dream interpretation said...

Recurring dreams about planes crashing and nuclear holocaust. I try not to think about it too much!