I used to have this dream almost every week where I would walk out of my bedroom. As I walked past the bathroom, the door would open and this monster would come out and chase after me. The dream would end as I jumped down the stairs.
This dream went on and on until one night, instead of running, I stopped and said hello to this monster. He said “hi” back to me. That is how the dream ended and I never had any of those dreams again.
–jason, age 14, male, single, NY
Welcome to “Conquering Your Fears: 101.” Judging by your dream report, you graduated from this class with flying colors!
Your dream is an excellent illustration of how people can learn to conquer their nightmares — by facing up to the fears they always represent.
In younger people’s dreams, monsters tend to be symbols for a wide variety of fears. As kids in a “big person’s” world, monsters often represent adults we know (or have seen) who frighten us. Adults, like monsters, are bigger and stronger than we are; and sometimes they can act mean, get angry, or yell at us — for no apparent reason.
Based on your dream, we don’t know what in particular you used to be afraid of. It may have been fears we all face growing up: doubts about our abilities, being nervous in social situations (like at school or with friends), or problems with your parents or family.