Don't Take A Gamble With Gambling Online

Don't Take A Gamble With Gambling Online

Here's advice on staying out of trouble online

Gamcare has seen an explosion in women gamblers over the last couple years. With online gambling literally at your fingertips it's easy to get sucked in. Feeling a bit bored at lunchtime? A little excitement in the form of online action is the click of a mouse away. Fed up after a long day at work, or juggling both work and childcare? You can gamble at your home computer or set your laptop buzzing with some bingo. No problem!

Online gambling can be fun and a diversion from daily life in moderation. But you need to be aware you don't get sucked into problem gambling. Some key things to consider about your personality might help keep gambling under control. Consider the following questions:

Do you get bored easily? Yes  No

Do you like taking risks? Yes   No

Are your moods quite changeable? Yes         No

Do you get your feelings hurt easily? Yes      No

Do you hide your feelings? Yes           No

Do you find it hard to control habits like smoking? Yes         No

Have you ever worried about your behaviour around certain things like drinking? Yes      No

Are you secretive about how often you gamble online? Yes No

Would you describe yourself as very stressed? Yes   No

Being honest, do you not look after yourself very well? Yes No

Yes answers can mean you're susceptible to gambling-type issues. That's because typically gamblers show destructive behavior patterns like not looking after themselves, having unhealthy habits and being secretive. They also experience negative emotions like feeling under stress, believing they have to hide their feelings, being susceptible to moodiness, and feeling bored easily.

If these questions ring a bell with you and you're either gambling regularly online, or tempted to, then take these nine necessary steps as preventive measures:

Identify your pattern: When do you go online to gamble? Is it always at the same time of day or evening? Perhaps it varies depending on your obligations that day. Identify your pattern of online gambling even if it turns out you don't have a set pattern. Arm yourself with whatever knowledge you can.

Recognise your weaknesses: Within that pattern can you recognise that feeling weak, vulnerable, or stressed out, drives you to gamble online? It's important to highlight your weak points when you're most likely to want the "lift" that gambling gives you. Then you can act on those rather than "burying" the things that worry you or causes stress.

Develop your strengths: Think through when things go right for you. You might have strong points, say, like dealing well with the demands of your boss. How can you apply those to areas where you feel weak and vulnerable? Get creative and apply the things you do that work well on, say, the partner you find hard to handle. The more you develop your strengths the less likely you’ll succumb to a desire to gamble.

Stop keeping secrets: If you've been secretive about how much you're going online it's time for some honesty. Gamblers keep their problem behaviour from the people they care about most. They don't want to upset their partner or their families and they becomesecretive. Always remember your loved ones want to know if you're struggling. They can help you resist going online and in making good choices like getting rid of your PC.

Learn to burn stress: If feeling stressed drives you to look for some light relief (believe me gambling isn’t light relief if you're getting in trouble with it!) It's far better to look for constructive ways to burn stress. Take up some exercise that you’ll enjoy and stick to as it can be a brilliant stress burner. Make it a regular date in your diary.

Face your challenges: As you begin to recognise your weaknesses and develop your strengths stop running from challenges. When faced with, say, a deadline you fear you won't meet don’t turn to online gambling as a distraction. Instead face challenges head on. This can develop your self-esteem in leaps and bounds - critical for fighting a compulsion to gamble.

Enjoy some "safe" risk: There's nothing wrong with having a risk-taking nature if you channel it into "safe" risk. I speak from first-hand experience! There are many ways you can challenge yourself that won't damage you but will vent that desire for action. Try an action sport like wall-climbing, white water rafting, or abseiling. Take up a hobby like public speaking or amateur dramatics. These will set your adrenaline buzzing.

Get off the rollercoaster: It's crucial to steady your mood swings that might veer from "excitable" when you're online, to completely depressed a few hours later. These keep you hooked in this cycle of seeking a "lift" online. Practice daily relaxation and calming meditation. Yoga is also excellent for calming your emotions.

Handover financial responsibility: If you've got in trouble financially hand over your finances to your partner or trusted family member. Do so until you've regained strength to fight your gambling compulsion.

Ring the Gamcare helpline for confidential advice - 0845-6000-133

Published in The Express Newspaper

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In Depth Feature About Your Child's Dreams & Nightmares

In Your Child's Dreams

Here I highlight the significance of your children's dream life

I clearly recall the moment I realised how important my children's dreams were in understanding their emotional and developmental state. It was one ordinary morning over a bowl of cereal when my son was four that he exclaimed, "Mum, I had the most exciting dream last night about a friendly dinosaur!" I asked him to describe his dream, admittedly paying only casual attention with the busy day ahead at the forefront of my mind.

My son described riding across an open plain on the back of a baby diplodocus. There was such exuberance in his tone and detail in his description that I was caught up in the excitement and touched by the expression on his little face. I'd recently done some dream interpretation seminars, albeit aimed at adults’ dreams, but until that moment I hadn't really thought about the potential significance of my children's dreams. It dawned on me that merely flicking through a dinosaur book from the library had touched my son’s inner creativity, sparking his dream. This was powerful stuff knowing that his young mind had absorbed these images and played with them yielding such a sense of adventure.

"Why don't we go to the Natural History Museum on Saturday?" I suggested picking up on his enthusiasm. That idea thrilled him and he couldn't wait to see the “friendly” dinosaurs as well as some scary ones. After that morning, his dreams of adventures and exploration fuelled many outings, drawings and projects. And it was the same when my daughter was old enough to recount her dreams - they stimulated all sorts of dressing-up costumes, artwork, and little plays where she roped-in friends to play various roles.

As time went on and I went through a difficult divorce from their father I became sensitive to any nightmarish images in their dreams. There were times when such images said more about how they felt than what they actually said during the day. These raised my awareness to being particularly responsive to their emotional needs.

This is a key point that I'd like to share with other parents: your children's dreams speak volumes about their inner life, not only about happy and confident feelings. Their dreamscapes, as I call them, abound with information about how they feel in the face of challenges, say, at school and with their peers, as well as anxieties they might harbour over events in the family and other issues. And of course as adults our dreams are bursting with symbolism. What's fascinating is that often the meaning of the symbol in an adult dream will have a similar meaning in a child's dream. Some of the examples of common symbols in children's dreams (see box) are common to adult dreams too.

In fact I believe your child's dreamscapes are so rich that I recommend listening to, and talking about, their dreams and nightmares as a creative parenting technique: a technique that provides you with unique and varied information about your child’s innermost th bursting oughts and feelings.

As with the adult mind, this is because when your child dreams the limbic system - the primitive brain system involved in our most powerful emotions - goes into overdrive. It throws up all sorts of images and feelings that have meaning, deeply-rooted in their psyche. Exploring your child's dreamscapes reveal some of the things percolating deep in their mind that they may not even be aware of. Because very often a child absorbs things occurring around them, processes them at this unconscious level, only for them to be revealed in dream images. It’s helpful to think of their sleeping mind as actually "awake" but at another level - that of the unconscious that’s all too willing to reveal things that in waking life your child may keep to themselves.

A perfect example can be found in Mark's nightmare. Mark was eight when he had a terrifying nightmare of being on a ship that resembled his home that felt "wrong". Waves started to envelop the ship and him. Every time he moved the waves came closer to completely swamping him. He felt helpless in the face that these waves despite the ship looking like his home. Mark had woken up and gone into his parents room for comfort.

A little probing found that his parents argued frequently and believed that he wasn't old enough to understand these rows or be affected by them. However these did overwhelm Mark and the enveloping waves were a dream symbol of how “enveloped” Mark felt about life at home right now. This came as a revelation to Mark's parents who acted to reassure him and made sure their discord was resolved.

Not only can you learn much about their emotional state, but your child's dreams and nightmares often tie-in with their developmental stage and how they’re coping with demands at school. Take Izzy, 10, who had a nightmare about her science teacher. In brief, she found herself in the science classroom without her school jumper and blazer. Suddenly the science teacher yelled at her to, "Come here!" He demanded to know where her school uniform was but she had no idea what to tell him. He chastised her repeatedly in front of the class, as all the class stared, and no one attempted to stop him.

When over breakfast Izzy mentioned her horrible nightmare, her mother naturally started questioning her about it. She knew Izzy always went to school with her uniform and wondered what was really at the bottom of this. She then discovered the science teacher had sometimes embarrassed and undermined Izzy in class by singling her out when she didn’t fully understand something. Her mother had been surprised by Izzy’s declining science grades that year. Now she had an explanation and could address this appropriately with Izzy. She also planned a meeting with the science teacher to point out how Izzy felt undermined in class.

Of course it's not always possible to understand the symbolism in your child's dreams. And certainly dream symbolism at times can be absurd, having been strung together by a child's sleeping mind from unrelated incidents. In such cases the symbols don't have any real meaning. However what’s crucial to realise as a parent is that the simple act of paying that special bit of attention to what your child says about their dreams, is enormously beneficial to your relationship.

Your child feels that you're interested in something generated from within them. Rather than feeling you're only interested when they bring home something from school that’s been marked, or they achieve a certain level in music or some other skill. Such external things that show progress, skill-development and achievement are important but shouldn't repeatedly take precedence over your child and their inner emotional life. Their dreams give you the chance to connect with them in a way that's rare and special, strengthening your parent-child bond.

Analysing Your Child's Dreams

Your child's dreamscapes can be very complicated. Because of this individual images within their dreams can serve as a great starting point for understanding their meaning. I fully explain my system of interpretation techniques in my book and how it's important to bear in mind that your child’s unique dream may be influenced by a specific context. Therefore the following common symbols are only a loose guide to go by.

Common Symbols in Positive Dreams –

Here are six of the most common symbols signifying positive feelings. Not only do such dream images give your child a sense of happiness but they can also indicate general levels of confidence and well-being. Exploring them can give you insight into what your child is feeling good about as well as being a springboard for creative play.

* Flying or having other extraordinary powers - images around these themes symbolise your child’s going through a positive period of personal/emotional growth.

* Discovering something like a buried treasure, special implement, or exotic item - dream symbols like these show that your child’s just learned something new that they’re pleased about like a skill or are enjoying investigating/doing something new in waking life.

* Talking animals or family pets that act like companions - dreams that contain such symbols demonstrate that your child feels very attached to and gets comfort from a pet. Or if it's not a pet but still a happy experience with, e.g., a talking animal, it symbolises a positive connection to nature.

* Scaling a mountain or a big wall with a positive and happy feeling - your child’s excelling at something, perhaps at school, symbolised by these dream images. They’re rising to the challenge symbolising growing confidence.

* Confidently doing something in front of a classroom or peer group - dream images where your child sings, speaks, or shows something to their class or peer group, accompanied by happy feelings, shows a very positive adjustment to that group.

* Meeting their favourite sports or pop star - dream images where they get to meet someone famous that they admire symbolises true wish fulfilment. Wish fulfilment is a very straightforward emotional state where something they’d love to have happen occurs in their dream.

Common Symbols in Nightmares -

Here are six of the most common symbols signifying unhappy or anxious feelings. Gentle probing of such images will give you important details like whether your child freezes in the face of these threatening images, runs from them, or face them down. These in turn indicate how overwhelmed your child feels, or how prepared they feel to face things that worry them. Always use worrying dream symbolism or nightmarish images, that your child reports, as one piece in the puzzle of trying to work out what may be troubling them. It can be starting point for open-ended questions around the subject matter of the symbols.

* Wild animals on the loose - lions, tigers, wolves, etc., that roam around unfettered usually signify a specific anxiety provoking situation. It may be the fear of a teacher or a bully and this fear takes on the form of a wild animal.

* Monsters, ghosts and ghouls - unlike nightmares of wild animals symbolising specific worries, images of monsters and ghosts tend to symbolise generalised anxieties. Generalised anxieties can take the form shyness, timidity, and clinginess. And like these nightmare images are hard for a child to describe.

* Raging fire or volcano - these symbolise an explosive sense of fear and often represent a new and frightening situation a child’s been put into.

* Being taunted by other children - such images can symbolise actual bullying that your child’s experiencing or a sense that somehow they don't fit in.

* Falling off a high wall, from a building or a cliff - these images can symbolise a sense that your child feels unsupported at home over something they feel anxious about.

* Getting lost in a jungle, wilderness, or other unknown territory - when a child has a nightmare containing such an unknown image it often symbolises the sense that they’re completely lost with a situation. Often such nightmare images aren't as frightening as the above but are still unpleasant, often relating to things like skill-development and academic achievement.

Check out my two dream books in the book section

 Published in The Times


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Your Sexy Dreams Have Secret Meanings!

Your Sexy Dreams Might Have Some Secret Meanings!

With my "Dream Doctor" hat on I reveal what your red-hot sex dreams really mean

See my book Sex Dreams and Symbols - Understanding Your Subconscious Desires -

Ever wondered where a sexy dream of yours came from? You wake up thinking, "Wow, that was hot - but, crikey, what on earth did it mean?" It might be you dreamt of having passionate sex with a woman when you're not lesbian or didn't think you were bi-curious. Or you dreamt of sleeping with someone at work that you've never, ever fancied - in fact quite the opposite - finding them really unattractive.

There’s usually a hidden symbol or symbols in such dreams that your subconscious mind wants you to take note of. But sometimes your sexy dreams make complete sense because you’re dreaming of the boyfriend you love, or your favourite soap or pop star that you find completely fanciable.

Why Do You Dream?

Just as good quality sleep helps you recharge yourself physically, your dreams recharge you emotionally. That's because during the dream stage of sleep - called REM stage sleep for rapid eye movement - the limbic system of your brain goes into free fall. The limbic system is responsible for our most powerful emotions and it literally has a clean-out during our dreaming.

Sometimes it throws up dreams that make complete sense. At other times it throws up dream images that are both surprising and even shocking - like having sex with the boss who has just told you off that day. This is because your mind wants to slowly unveil and unwrap the things you feel and think. It offers-up these images that make you question your dreams. That means you start a bit of self analysis which can be a very good thing.

How Can You Begin to Interpret Your Dreams?

Think carefully about your dream images and they can make sense. To help you decipher your dreams I've formulated the Dream (D.R.E.A.M.) Key technique:

D is for detail: think about which detail stood out most in your dream? Let's say there were snake- like things writhing all around you. They made you feel sexy. In a dream like this, such detail can represent you longing for sex. The writhing snake-like things represent your inner desires to have a man in your life.

R is for recognition: is there anything recognisable in your dream? Think through the dream images and whether your dream was set somewhere recognisable or featured someone you knew. The more recognisable features there are in your dream, the more it's based in reality. The less recognisable, the more your sleeping mind is trying to slowly reveal a message to you. And so it uses ‘veiled’ or unrecognisable symbolism to break a message slowly and subtly to you.

E is for emotion: think back to how you felt when you woke up and what was the most powerful emotion in your dream? Did you feel sexual excitement, anxiety, fulfilment, etc.? That’s important as a guide to what your mind is trying to tell you. Let's say you're having sex in the dream, and you feel very anxious during the sex, that means your subconscious mind’s trying to tell you that you need to face any inhibitions you might have.

A is for action/inaction: recall whether you're the one leading the action in your dream or if you're a passive observer - maybe watching someone else have sex. If you're an active participant in what's happening, it reveals that you want to assert yourself or recognise something about yourself - like recognising that you'd quite like to experiment more in bed. If you're passively watching other people do sexual things it symbolises that you're probably lacking sexual confidence or feel you on the "outside" in a sexual relationship.

M is for meaning: finally if you think carefully about your dream can you guess the meaning? Since our dreams are there to help us understand more about our deeper emotions sometimes examining them reveals their meaning to our lives. So relax, think back to your dream, and be open-minded about what the symbolism from your sleeping mind was trying to tell you.

Three Of the Most Common Sex Dreams and What They Really Mean:

1/ Having Hot Ex-Sex: it can be a big worry when you dream of having hot sex with your Ex-Partner. Especially if you're with someone new it can cause anxiety. I can reassure you that dreaming of sex with your Ex is a really common sex dream.

A Typical Dream Scenario: You dream that you're having passionate sex with your Ex - usually in the same way - doing the same things -you would’ve done when together as if nothing has changed. If you're in a new relationship your new partner, or someone else, might walk in on you two in bed.

The Hidden Meaning: Trust me, such dreams don't necessarily mean you actually want sex with your Ex. These dream symbols usually mean you longing for something that you feel comfortable with and that's familiar to you. It might be that you feel a bit insecure in your new relationship so your sleeping mind takes you back to a time when you were comfortable.

If your new partner, or someone else, discovers you having sex with your Ex is usually a sign from your subconscious mind signalling that you need to sort out how you feel in your new relationship. And that you probably have some mixed feelings about it.

Dreams of sex with your Ex spell danger if you keep dreaming about them. Recurring dreams about them symbolises that you're not over your Ex or that sex with your new partner isn’t as good as with your Ex.

2/Having Sex With Someone of the Same Sex When You're Not Gay: dreaming that you're having sizzling sex with someone of your sex doesn't necessarily mean you're bi-curious. You might think it's extremely bizarre but believe me it’s common. Men in particular get anxious when they’ve dreamt about having sex with another man as they think it reflects on their sexuality - but this usually isn't the case.

A Typical Dream Scenario: Very often this type of sex dream occurs somewhere you don't recognise - they're usually not set in your own bedroom or home. You're also likely to dream that you're the passive participant and it's the other person that is in charge of the sex.

The Hidden Meaning: Such sex dreams are more about emotional and intimate curiosity, generally, then a desire to try gay sex. It's one way for your subconscious mind to allow you ‘let go’ and do something that's new. That's the reason why the setting is somewhere unknown as your sleeping mind’s hinting that you need to experiment more - get out and do something different! Often the hidden meaning is about being less inhibited in the bedroom.

But, again, if this is a recurrent dream theme then it's very likely deep-down you’re bi-curious and you’d like to experiment with someone of the same sex.

3/ Sex With a Boss/Colleague That You Don't Like/Fancy: having a sexy dream like this can completely mystify you. You wonder why you'd dream about having raunchy sex with a boss or someone else you don’t like?

A Typical Dream Scenario: You probably find yourself in this person's office or in your office having sex. Often it's likely and activesex and you end up on the desk, on the floor, or basically all over the place.

The Hidden Meaning: When you dream of sex with someone you don't like it's usually your subconscious mind telling you that you need to take control of the situation. These dreams are more about a ‘power struggle' and less likely to be about actual sex. In your dream life your sleeping mind gives you that control by having passionate sex with the person but crucially in the way you want it.

But if you're not enjoying the sex with this person it's a big symbol that you really don't know how to handle things with them - whoever they are in your life.

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Understanding Children's Dreams And Nightmares

Understand Your Child's Dreams And Nightmares - And Understand Them

Try my creative parenting technique

When my children were young I discovered a unique way to find out more about their emotional well-being was to ask them over breakfast about their dreams. I was astonished to find that even at ages four or five they could recall vivid images from their dreams - and from nightmares.

The dreaming mind

When asleep, the brain’s limbic system goes into overdrive. It’s responsible for processing powerful emotions and it releases these into our dreamscapes as I call them. You might wake from a dream or nightmare startled by the "story" it told you; so too do children.

This is a rich and untapped source of emotional information for you. Because when your child’s asleep the usual daytime restrictions don't apply to their dreams.  When awake they might feel restricted about mentioning something like wanting to see their father if you’re separated, or even feel nervous mentioning they were bullied at school the day before. But their dream life’s another story! It chatters beyond their control.

It's wonderful to know you can "listen" to this by asking your children what they've dreamt of. Also I've developed this into a creative parenting tool as it allows you as a parent to focus on something that comes from within them. This is important because we parents often only focus on our child's achievements at school or whether they've passed, say, their swimming or music test.

The power of a child's nightmare -

Take Ben’s mother, Sarah,  who was worried over nightmares he'd had. Ben, nine, hadn't said much to her about his feelings over his parents’ divorce. It was acrimonious and although Sarah tried to keep the worst of the tensions from Ben she knew deep down he was absorbing some of the ill feeling. Still, when she asked him how he was feeling he’d say he was okay.

But his nightmares spoke volumes of his real feelings. He rushed into her bedroom on different nights scared to his wits about the volcano that was erupting in his dream. Sarah was astounded to hear that when he repeatedly cried for help in his nightmare neither of his parents came to him.

It soon became apparent to Sarah that the volcano in his nightmares represented the volcanic emotions around him. The fact that his pleas for help were ignored symbolised that inside he felt ignored. Sarah discussed this with Ben's father and they both resolved to handle their difficulties in a more positive way. They also became more attentive to Ben rather than taking him at his word that he was okay.

The creativity in a child's dreams -

It's not just your child's nightmares that can inform you of their emotional state but you can also use your child's dreams as a springboard for improving your communication, strengthening your relationship and as the basis for creative projects. Get involved when your child describes a lively dreamscape. Ask if they want to put some of the wonderful images into a painting or some other fun project.

I'll never forget my daughter at age six having happy dreams of a fairy that she named Sally. We then decided to make her a fairy dressing-up costume out of bits-and-bobs from the sewing basket. She had loads of fun making little plays come alive with Sally the fairy as the main character.

Key dream symbols of emotional well-being

You'll find many symbols of your child's well-being in their dreams. A few common ones include taking leaping bounds up something like a mountainside, having a wonderful skill that seems magical, or learning a new task (young children often dream of tying their shoes when they’ve mastered this). Also soaring in the sky but not accompanied by a feeling of anxiety. If that dream image is accompanied by anxiety it may mean your child feels on their own with some sort of issue.

Key dream symbols of anxieties –

Unfortunately your child may experience a number of terrifying images. The most common ones are shapeless monsters that chase them or lurk in their nightmare, signalling a general anxiety. This might be a non-specific school anxiety or worry about home. Other common ones include falling from something more like a building or cliff signaling an anxiety over a meeting some sort of challenge - perhaps a school exam. And being picked on by others or being embarrassed in a school scenario may symbolise being bullied or isolated at school.

Discussing your child's dreams -

Three top tips are: 1. Definitely keep conversations about your child's dreams relaxed, even if they're describing a terrifying nightmare. If you get anxious it'll make them feel even worse. 2. Ask them if there's anything they recognise in their dream to give you a clue about whether it symbolises something to do with home, friends, school, etc. 3. See if they can describe the overwhelming emotion of the dream - did they feel happy, frightened, excited, or a bit anxious, etc., when they woke.

Some dreams are a jumble of images without particular meaning. If you can't work out any meaning in their dream or nightmare simply take the opportunity to chat about something that came straight from their heart.

Published in The Express Newspaper


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Dream theme: Lesbian lust

Name: Jan S.


Dream: I'd gone into my local coffee shop and everything was as normal. I asked for my favourite cappuccino and stood at the counter while it was being made. I surveyed the restaurant and brilliant sunshine seemed to be breaking through the windows. A woman on her own caught my eye. I didn't pay for my cappuccino and it was very frothy. I went and sat right next to the woman even though the restaurant was empty and as I sipped it the froth spilled over my lips. The staff seemed to melt away so we were truly on our own. She smiled and looked at my cappuccino which was going out of control - it was frothing everywhere. Suddenly she leaned over and literally started licking my cheeks, my lips, my neck - to get all the froth off. Before I knew it we were touching and caressing each other. It felt fantastic. I've never had a lesbian encounter what could this mean?

Background: Jan is a 37 you will divorce who works as a hospital technician.

Practical interpretation: Jan was surprised but not upset by her dream. Although she never had a lesbian find she had often wondered about it and fantasised during sex with man about women. "the brilliant sunshine breaking through" symbolised her up a wakening to these feelings at a new level. "the frothing cappuccino" quite literally symbolised her sexual desires were bubbling up inside her. "the staff melting away" symbolised the fact she still kept these feelings very secret and didn't wish to  acknowledge them publicly. "the woman licking her face, lips, etc." was a veiled symbol of her desire for the woman to actually lick her genitals. The dream was quite freeing for Jan and she decided she might check out some bi-sexual or lesbian events.



Dream theme: animal symbolism


Name: Leslie P.


Dream: I found myself in some riding stables and didn't really know what to do. I got a little panicked wondering was I supposed to groom the horses, or feed them, or even ride them? Just then Jack walked into the stables. He immediately sensed my panic. He said, "don't worry, the horses are here for your pleasure." He helped me mount a big stallion and walked me around the yard. As we walked my clitoris was being stimulated by the saddle and I started to say things like, "this feels so good, don't let this stop." At the same time I felt completely embarrassed that I was saying sexual things around him. Jack didn't seem to notice but I didn't want to dismount and simply  continued walking the around in circles as I pleasured myself.

Background: Leslie is a 25 year-old student teacher who has never been particularly interested in riding horses. Recently she been very attracted to a fellow teacher, who is married, which she felt quite guilty about. She's been avoiding Jack since this dream.

Practical interpretation: the horse in Leslie's dream it is a symbol for what she really wants to do with the Jack. Her sub conscious pre-tax term by a putting her in this scenario where she's not quite sure what she's supposed to do. Jack then it enters and tells her it's fine to be pleasured by the horse. This symbolises what she'd really like him to do in real life, take charge and lead her into a sexual experience. Telling him how good it feels and going round and round on the horse is actually a symbol of her wanting him to caress her, and make love to her, over and over again. Getting her feelings for a Jack out into the open made her feel she could now a knowledge them and take control of them. Talking about the dream gave her back the power to feel she could stop avoiding him and act naturally again. Sometimes we take the power out of our unacceptable desires by talking through them and meeting them head on.



Dream theme: weather-related symbolism


Name: Cindy B.


Dream: it was time to leave the office and so I packed everything away into my briefcase. Everything seemed to take a long time. I lined up all my paperwork, pens and other items of stationery perfectly inside the case. I then became aware of the time and thought I really must leave as I’ll be the last one out. I felt really fed up and didn't want the responsibility of locking up the whole office building. Even though in real life this would never be my job as we have a 24 hour security service. As I got out the building I noticed the weather changing. There had been a few raindrops which then turned into a large storm. The wind was whipping my hair, my face and lips and dragging my clothes off of me. I heard the roar of thunder and felt quite frightened yet at the same time finding myself naked in a violent rainstorm, I felt quite excited. When I woke up I felt sexually aroused which seemed really weird after such a dream.

Background: Cindy is a 29 year-old accountant who it times feels frustrated by her work. She doesn't like the fact that it's seen as a straight-laced profession. She worries about the way people, particularly man, see her. She has had problems keeping a long-term relationship as she gets quite competitive over issues like pay packages and has chosen men were quite a week and had her. Some men have found her hard to handle.

Practical interpretation: this dream contains important symbols for Cindy that she needs to lighten up in her relationships with men. "feeling in charge of the building and having to pack everything away perfectly" symbolises how hard she feels she must try in her career. These symbols are accompanied by negative feelings. "the rain becoming violent and whipping her hair" symbolises the sense of trauma and power it would take to start getting her interested in a man. He need to be quite sexually powerful. "the storm leaving her naked" accompanied by a sexual arousal is a symbol that she does want to feel that some other powerful force will take her and arouse her. Cindy agreed she needed to line up about her work and look for stronger men than she had in the past.

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