fighting back

Hi Tracy -

Without knowing the specifics of your personal background - and what stresses you may be enduring or putting up with - I would suggest that your dream sounds familiar in two senses. The first is that it is a chase dream, and the person pursuing you (in the dream that recurs the most) is male. Women tend to dream of being chased and of having to elude attack more than men. I believe this is a reflection of the fact that women, being the fair sex, really do have to worry more about attack than men do. We don’t read many reports of women attacking men, do we?

The second element that is significant in your dream is that - by your own account - you always defend yourself with a knife - a long one - about the size of a letter opener. The fact that this symbol “always” recurs in your dreams is significant. Dreams - recurring dreams especially - are not casual with “details.” Without being overly Freudian, I would suggest that the knife strongly implies a sexual aspect to the fear of attack. And again, this makes your dream report sound very familiar. I think your dream is reflecting a fairly simple - and unfortunately well-founded - fear of sexual predation.

Your dream is unusual, however, in two regards. The first is that you are holding the knife in the dream, rather than your attacker. The second is that - again by your own account - you are the one who stands up for your group of friends and actually does the work of defending them - and yourself - from this attacker. Both aspects, I believe, are strong indicators of your personality. You may have experienced an actual act of violence in your past - in which case your dreams may be reflecting your lingering memory of this event - or you may just be aware of the need for regular vigilance in your daily life against the threats of attack that, indeed, still lurk in our world. In either case though, your dreams indicate that you do not perceive yourself as a “victim” in your life, but rather are confident and resourceful in your ability to protect yourself - and take care of your friends. Keep up the good work!

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