My Girlfriend of 3 years had told me of her dreams. She wants me to help her solve the issues of her nightmares. She dreams of a dark figured man sexually abusing her in sadistic manor. And over the years, it has turned her into a masochist. She has had these dreams since she was 8 or younger I believe. She also mentioned that she has memorized the positions from 1 – 13, and that saying position ____ would trigger her memory. I read somewhere that it could be a radical level of hormones, or something strange like that. What do you think of it to be?

A: First of all I am glad that you have the kind of relationship with your girlfriend that has enough trust at the foundation to allow her to talk to you about something so difficult. Your job in this process is to realize you may be activating reactions in her that you were not aware of.

But so far as helping her — this is an issue that should be managed by a professional, particularly a professional with experience in trauma. You can check the find help tab at the top of the page to find someone in your country who is qualified. Beyond that I would recommend you help your girlfriend talk to a therapist trained in EMDR, a type of therapy that deals with traumatic reactions.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral