Everybody who has ever drowned, knows how unpleasant and scary feeling it is. No wonder that also dreaming about drowning is nearly traumatic.
Usually, in a typical dream about drowning, we suddenly realize that we have been trapped under the water, and, for some reason, are unable to surface and catch a deep breath. We are holding our breath, although we know that we are running out of oxygen. Sometimes, we are trying to swim to the shore, but rough waves are hitting us, the frighten arouses, and we know that the end is near, although we do not want to accept it.
In the other version of this dream, we accept the fact that probably we will not be able to catch some air and survive, we open the mouth and…surprisingly, we discover that we can breath easily, just like on land. The nightmare ends up positively.
How to interpret a dream about drowning?
Dreams about drowning usually appear for the first time at puberty, when we are struggling with hormonal imbalance and various problems; from time to time, they may return in later life. They have a negative overtone, and make us wake up scared, but also happy, that the events we saw were just a bad dream.
Water usually symbolizes everything which is unknown – dreaming about drowning may symbolize our struggling with everyday problems, huge emotions in perceiving the reality, or the problems which seem to be unsolvable. It is worth taking a deep breath and distancing from the surrounding events – we will not regret it. We should also think how to take the initiative in creating our future, let’s avoid passivity which can bring us to ruin.
In a dream, in which we realize that we are able to breath easily under the water, we may find a positive metaphor for the latent abilities inside us, which we are unaware of, and which would be useful in everyday life. We should analyze ourselves to find them and to think how to use them creatively.
How would Freud interpret a dream about drowning?
The visions of water in dreams were for Freud a proof of the return to the period of fetal life and the birth, as well as to the early childhood. They could also, if the water was dangerous, indicate the anxiety about sexual contacts – and he would interpret a dream about drowning in such a context as well.
How would Jung interpret a dream about drowning?
Jung believed water to be the feminine symbol, and the symbol of the collective unconsciousness. He would interpret drowning as the fear of discovering the mysteries of the psyche, while breathing under the water as the chance to succeed in exploring our own personality, which could bring amazing effects.