Listen to your heart--through the revealing power of dreams.
Classic symbols of love and sex
Revealing relationship analysis
Plus celebrity love dreams
Whether we're in the throes of first passion or the depths of a bitter breakup, feelings of desire, anger, guilt, and longing are played out in our dreams. Now expert psychoanalyst Lauren Lawrence shows you how to interpret your dreams to understand better your relationships, avoid making the same mistakes again and again, even how to prevent heartbreak before it happens. Find out about:
Incompatibility dreams...how they help you view someone you're "crazy about" without the rose-colored glasses!
What it means when you keep climbing stairs in your dreams
The "ex-files"...divorce dreams of being rescued, dreams of being someone else, survival dreams, revenge dreams
Warning dreams...in which someone you love alerts you to hidden danger
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Lauren Lawrence is a psychoanalyst with a specialty in dream analysis. Her column on celebrity dreams formerly appeared in the New York Daily News and her column on the dreams of famous political figures now appears in George.
Lauren Lawrence is also the author of Dream Keys, the first book in the Dream Keys series. Her third book in the series, Dream Keys to the Future, will be published in spring 2000 by Dell. She lives in New York.
Women Nest and Men Hunt: Separate but Not Equal
Jerry Seinfeld once noted a profound behavioral sex difference between men and women in regard to their usage of the remote control for the television set-whereas women are content to stay tuned to what they are watching, men vigorously shift from channel to channel. Seinfeld ended his comedic monologue with the words "women nest and men hunt." No truer words were said particularly in regard to the psychological effects on the psyche of the divorcing couple as manifested in the unconscious world of dreams.
Upon reexamining the ending of Annie Hall wherein Woody Allen's character, the emotionally distressed Alvy, sits firmly entrenched in his car in the face of great odds, reaffirming the symptom of separation anxiety by seemingly not wanting to leave the security of the parking lot. It is time to focus on Alvy's strangely neurotic behavior. Importantly, it should be noted that Alvy's reluctance to leave his convertible should not in any way be confused with nesting. In that the car is a symbol of power and freedom, Alvy is simply recharging his male ego batteries. His sense of male desirability and dominance has just received the equivalent of getting an atomic wedgie, yet with his underwear and pride literally over the top his "boys" are out there, baby, and part of him is loving it.
A car, as an engine that heats up, is a symbolic representation of the male genitalia; in a symbiotic way the car inflates his momentarily deflated body part. Soon, we know that Alvy will be able to play the field again (even this cliché is male biased, for how many women do we know who play baseball?). The pain Alvy feels from being rejected by the woman he loves will be supplanted by his new freedom and the joy of purchasing powerful male toys that feed the ego-toys purchased with male money. The more money, the faster the car and the faster the weakened male imago revs up. The focus is on expensive cars, cigars, speedboats, the purchasing of large homes, stocks, and so forth-on investments in things external to the physical body. For buying is linked with ownership, and for the most part men view divorce as a loss of ownership rather than a destructive interactional situation that will disrupt their nonsubordinate role in society or minimalize their degree of self-worth and aggressive goal-oriented nature.
So, when men dream they dream big. They dream that they are buying when they are ready to sell! They chalk up their loss as one among many gains that will predictably occur during their lifetime-while all the while anticipating and believing in their future gain. Their physical persona is not minimalized or degraded for long.
Remote control in hand, they are on to a new channel. They set their sights to score anew-for men are hunters at heart. The male heart is a hunter with its finger on the trigger and the female is the target that keeps getting bigger.
While going through his divorce, Anthony Quinn dreamt of buying the right house (see "Buying and Selling / Property Loss and Gain / The Male Imago"). He had to choose between the one and the other, for by gaining one he would lose the other. Anthony's ownership dream will be analyzed farther along in the text.
Women on the other hand, nest-their house is who they are. In that women often feel synonymous with the home and hearth, the divorced female spouse frequently experiences environmental upheaval, particularly when the husband is perceived as being the source of all nurturing and protective ministrations. But whereas this environmental junta of sorts should be situationally attributed, women tend to internalize the situation and make personal attribution. In other words, they own it. It is their fault.
Because women are physically symbolized by the home (after centuries of being regarded as nothing more than the homemaker) and as the divorce represents the breakup or destruction of that home which the women have internalized, dreams of falling apart follow closely upon the retreating heels of divorce.
In this transitional period in their lives, it is quite common for divorced or divorcing women to dream of their homes in disrepair, falling apart. Unconsciously the woman and not the home is falling apart. There is the need to redecorate, which symbolically refers to changes and alterations in physical appearance and reinforces a women's sense of undesirability. A new physical presence is sought.
Going through a nasty divorce the socialite Mai Hallingby (see "Dreams of Redecorating and Refurbishing the Home: The Female Imago") has had many recurrent dreams of homes that need significant work, dreams that reinforce how the sense of physical decline is intrinsically related to the emotional upheaval caused by the divorce. Windows are either broken or needed to take a long look out from. Radiators are poignantly missing as they symbolize the lack of emotional coziness, and dearth of human warmth from the loss of spousal love. The house needs repainting, a thicker skin is needed, and there is much to be covered over or whitewashed. The roof is falling in. There is no protection from the elements. Dissolution is everywhere with chaos the new tenant instead of order. Furniture needs to be purchased (dreaming of buying new chairs is the wish for stability and structure) as there is much empty space from the spousal void that needs to be filled.
On a more constructive note, dreaming of needing more space may also suggest that freedom and a newfound sense of being and identity are sought after-style is no longer cramped. The dream may fill the home with a party atmosphere wherein strange new men may appear wandering through the house, for a substitute partner must be found. The house needs maintenance of the spousal socioeconomic protective kind. The nest must be filled!
SEPARATE BUT NOT EQUAL
In conclusion, as we have seen, a parting of the ways separates the conjugal couple from shared ground but does not leave them on equal ground emotionally. Similarly, we have noted that the historical (one is tempted to use the word hysterical in its psychological usage) view of divorce is more than ample reason to ripple shock waves on the Richter scale of the unconscious. Whereas there is trauma for both sexes, the male gender-biased society has ensured that women, due to their historically subservient position, suffer more emotional upheaval during and after divorce, which results in dreams of a heartier, more energized form of anxiety.
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Book Description Dell, 1999. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0440234786