Monday, 13 April 2015

Sex & Lucid Dreams

I have previously written articles on the topic of sex and lucid dreaming, but I thought that due to the popularity of the subject-matter I would address it again, and share some personal insights.

I am quite a sexually confident person, so I do not have an issue with discussing issues of a sexual nature. I do not necessarily discuss my sexual relationships with my partners (largely out of respect for them), but in terms of my own sexual identity, I am quite able to engage in a dialogue about open up about how sex and sexuality influences my dreams. That said, I do not necessarily experience a particularly frequent number of sexual dreams and certainly not as many sexual dreams as some of my readers/viewers confess to me.

This post will not 'name and shame' specific people who have written to me abut sex in their dreams, because that would be unfair and disrespectful. However, I will point out that many of the instances that I am sharing in this article (using a cloak of anonymity to protect those persons to whom I refer) were posted publicly on my social media platforms and so completely accessible to anyone who visits my Youtube profile, for example. I should also point out that not all the dreams I will be citing in this post were lucid dreams either. 

If you want an overview on the subject of Lucid Dream sex, I recommend you read my earlier article, which can be accessed by clicking here.

Indeed, the largest number of requests I have for dream interpretations involve the key themes of sex and violence. These themes were thought to be the most common forms of subconscious expression by Freud, who postulated his Wish Fulfilment Theory of dreaming within his broader psychoanalytical theory of dream interpretation. 

Sex is the second main motivation for beginner lucid dreamers, after 'flying dreams' according to research. However, sex is a common non-lucid dream theme which can be perceived as both satisfying, thrilling and arousing, or alternatively, the source for anxiety and distress, depending on the context.

Sex dreams - typically non-lucid, normal dreams - tend to relate to the merging of contrasting aspects of the dreamer's self or the need to incorporate certain qualities into themselves. Sex dreams may also explicitly relate to a need for physical connection of some kind.

When analysing/interpreting the meaning of a sex dream, always begin by asking yourself the following questions:

  1. If you know your dream sex partner - what kind of real-life relationship do you have with that person?
  2. What characteristics/traits/qualities do you associate with the person with whom you engaged in dream sex?
  3. What are your thoughts/feelings in relation to the sexual act which took place?
  4. Was the experience pleasurable or not?

I will address some of the common sex dream issues:

Sex with Someone who Repulses/Disgusts You
This is an incredibly common theme - more so than sex dreams which involve a desirable or fantasy figure. The important thing to remember is that sex dreams are rarely about the actual act of sex itself. Dream very rarely have a superficial, simple meaning, but are multi-layered, condensed and symbolised in many different ways which need to be unlocked and decoded before their true (potential) meaning can be deciphered. 

Some dream analysts suggest that sex dreams are the union of two conflicting aspects of your own psyche. Dream characters are typically assumed to be subconscious projections of parts of your own identity or ego. I do agree to some extent with this notion, but I also think that sometimes a dream character who is based on someone you know in real-life, is just that - a representation of that person, or at least your subconscious perception or attitude towards them. This does not suggest that a sex dream involving someone you actually know in real-life means that you want to have sex with them. The sexual act may represent something completely different - a union, or a power-struggle or a assimilation of characteristics associated with that dream character, for example. There is no one definite interpretation, just a range of possibilities.

In lucid dreams is it very common for a dreamer to approach a desirable dream character only for them to transform into a hideous, repellent being. I interpret this to be a sign that what you are faced with on the surface (beauty. desirability) may actually be very different to the realisation of what is hidden beneath, once the layers are stripped away. Often we have a very different perception of a person who we admire from a distance from what we actually 'see' when we become intimate with that person. In lucid dreaming, experiences are streamlined, condensed and distilled into a more symbolic narrative - so subconscious awareness that a person may appear superficially 'perfect' only to be revealed as flawed or 'ugly on the inside' is projected onto the lucid dream sex act. 

Sex with a Stranger
Jungian dream analysts believe that each individual has an animus (or 'anima') which embodies the energies associated with their alternative gender (so masculinity for a woman; femininity for a man). Sex with a stranger of the opposite gender is therefore thought to relate to the state of the dreamer's animus/anima; balance; and the merging of the male/female aspects of the self.

Research has shown that male dreamers are more likely to engage in lucid dream or normal dream sex with a stranger than women, who tend to have more dreams (lucid/non-lucid dreams) of sex with celebrities and fantasy figures.

I have been asked by a particular dreamer if an unknown woman with whom he had sexual relations in a dream was me. This was based on me sharing several physical characteristics with his dream person. My answer was that the female dream character might have been me if he perceived it to be me, because of course, the dream is just a projection of his subconscious. However, the dreamer seemed to be asking if the female dream character was actually me, which would suggest he was indicating we may have experienced dream telepathy (shared dreaming). In this case, then the female dream character was most certainly not me, because firstly, I do not believe in shared dreaming; and secondly, even if  I did, I had not experienced sexual activity with any male at that time, and especially not the middle-aged American man who wrote to me. Many of my male readers/viewers express a desire to meet me in their dreams (with the implication that there are sexual intentions) or ask me to 'appear' or 'visit' them in their dreams, to either assist them in becoming lucid or just for some kind of interaction. I never refuse, because if they choose to believe I could appear as a dream character, then this may enable them to incubate an intended dream, which is out of my control and not my business (I would never try and control what someone dreams about, even if a dream version of myself is involved). 

Sex with an Ex
This is not necessarily a sign that you want to rekindle a former relationship. It may be that you are re-living previous physical sensations (the familiar sensations of sexual activity) and have projected a recognisable character with whom you have shared these - a re-enactment of a past experience/memory. It may also be that you have unresolved feelings about your ex-partner; doubts, fear and anxiety about a new relationship; or a resurgence of feelings you felt with your ex-partner. The best advice is to analyse your thoughts and emotions - how you felt during the dream sex with your ex - to determine what this type of sex dream actually means. 

Unwanted Sex Acts/Fetishes/Taboos
Sometimes we dream about certain sex acts which we do not enjoy or would not consent to in real-life. For example, I have dreamed about group sex/threesomes, which is not an activity I actually want to participate in or fantasize about. Dreaming about a certain sex act does not mean you subconsciously want to engage in real-life. Instead, consider what that sexual act might represent on a more symbolic or metaphorical level. For example, anything to do with the mouth (so, oral sex) might refer to expression, or a desire to give pleasure and please. Anal sex often relates to notions of submission, which may be either pleasurable or traumatic, depending on the subjective perception of the dreamer and the specific context in which it occurs within the dream. 

Dreaming about fetishes are even more subjective and difficult to decipher - they need to be analysed in a personal, individualised way rather than adopting one generalised meaning. Consider what values or qualities you associate with the activities/objects/persons who appear in your dream; whether the dream felt positive or negative and how it relates to what is happening in your real-life. It is highly unlikely that a surprise fetish dream which occurs out-of-the-blue is communicating a desire to start indulging in a new fetish - the dream is probably less about 'sex' and suggestive of a more complex set of associations and emotions.

As with anything which offends your waking morality and ethics, I would advise you refrain from lucid dream sex acts which are likely to cause you psychological distress or affect your conscience. While lucid dreams are a safe place to escape into a fantasy world, remember that they are often so vivid and realistic (and engage our conscious mind) that they transition more readily into our waking life than normal non-lucid dreams (which are often less vivid and more easily forgotten). When we do something intentionally and purposefully our conscience is activated and we can feel deep guilt at where we allow our minds to wander. This is especially true when we create a dream scene in which we actually sense and feel these mental projections in a three-dimension, multi-faceted environment. 

If you experience guilt or shame because of entertaining ideas of a certain taboo or unacceptable thoughts, then imagine how you will feel if you indulge them in a lucid dream? Try and use your morality and ethics as a template for what is acceptable for you in a lucid dream and remember that these memories and experiences will stick with you in your waking life.

Homosexual/Bisexual Sex Acts/Orgies
This is a common sexual dream theme which I have been asked to interpret, analyse and explain to my readers. One male asked me about a dream in which he could not talk because his mouth was filled to capacity with a huge, disembodied, erect penis, which caused him waking anxiety. After unpicking his thoughts and feelings about this dream, it was immediately clear that this was not a latent homosexual fantasy, but rather an expression of his own sexual identity which was being stifled and choked through a lack of opportunity to meet, date and engage in sexual activities with women he desired. 

Often, same-sex sex dreams can relate to self-esteem - the same-sex partner is a projection of a fragment of your own psyche and your relationship to those parts of yourself. If you dream of a same-sex activity with a person you know in real-life, this might be an expression of your subconscious (or even conscious) feelings towards that person's character, traits or qualities and a desire to incorporate elements of their personality/identity into your own life. It may also be a reflection of your subconscious thoughts/feelings about your friendship/relationship.

I often have bisexual or homosexual dreams, but they do not phase me in any way. I analysed whether these dreams might be a subconscious fantasy to have sexual contact with a woman, but I was able to rule this out: although I am an active LGBT+ supporter/advocate, very confident and open about sex, and have previously engaged in some casual sexual acts with other females, there is no doubt that I am of a heterosexual orientation - as confirmed by the fact that I was not aroused in any way by my same-sex experimentation and have never felt attracted to women. So, for me, knowing that I am certain of my real-life sexual orientation and am not confused or curious, means I can enjoy same-sex sex dreams for what they are: situations which are unlikely to occur in my real-life and are more enjoyable in my dreams than actual experiences. 

However, when I have dreamed of same-sex sex within the context of a three-way/threesome or orgy, I have not enjoyed the experience and have wished the other woman/women would leave me and the male(s) alone. I interpret my same-sex dreams as being the union/conflict (depending on the context) of different fragments of my psyche, so I am possibly rejecting aspects of my self, rather than the notion of bisexuality, which in itself does not hold negative connotations. A  orgy may represent the multitudinous and varied facets and fragments of the self being brought together in union - or may reveal conflict - depending on the dreamer's perception of the sexual act and their relationship to their sexual partners in the dream. Interestingly, male lucid dreamers are more likely to engage in lucid dream orgies than women.

Some dreams about homosexual sex may be the result of subconscious desires or fantasies - but it will be down to the dreamer to decide if this applies to them and their sexual orientation. Dreams can present safe, secret playgrounds for us to subconsciously express ourselves in ways we may not be able to do in real-life, and so should never be seen as dangerous or shameful. 

Incestuous Sex
Incestuous sex dreams are typically - and understandably - the most disturbing and most likely to affect your waking thoughts and emotions. I have experienced incestuous sex dreams, in which my dream ego was of a different person (Beyonce), which seems to have been a censoring of distressing content i.e. because I was 'Beyonce' in my dream, although I experienced the incestuous situation from the first-person perspective, it wasn't really incestuous because I was not 'me' and therefore not in a familial relationship with my sexual partner. 

I have also experienced incestuous dreams in which my family member (late grandfather) appeared to be different to how he was in real-life, which suggests another censoring safety mechanism within the dream. In one of my dreams where I was sexually assaulted by a 'grandfather' character I was able to subsequently interpret the dream in the following way: in my real-life at this time I had been subjected to various forms of online harassment by males, who objectified and 'oppressed' me with unwanted sexual attention. In the dream I was looking at a huge screen showing Facebook - the means by which the real-life harassment had taken place. The grandfather in the dream represented patriarchal oppression - my real-life grandfather was an oppressive character (not sexually, of course) and represented my childhood memories of a patriarchal figure (and the main male relative in my life, as I did not have an active relationship with my father). The sexual acts in the dream symbolised my perceptions and subconscious feelings about how my grandfather treated my female relatives and I projected this idea of male dominance into a sexual context in a dream at a point in my life where I was questioning male responses to my femininity.

Of course, some people may have been subjected to an incestuous act in real-life, which surfaces in their dreams. In these situations, it is highly advisable that you should seek professional help. 

It has been known for people to experience 'False Memory Syndrome' as a result of strong, vivid, but objectively-inaccurate beliefs that a traumatic event - such as familiar sexual abuse - may have happened in the past (usually early childhood). It is possible that a dream can create a strong sense of real-life memories resurfacing from the subconscious, and in the case of incest dreams, this would be very unsettling for the dreamer, but not necessarily a reflection of actual events or truthful recollection. 

When I experience incest dreams, I (i.e. my 'dream ego') tend to be my adult self, so it is easy to disassociate what I experience in the dream from my own personal recollections and real-life events. If there is any doubt as to whether a dream experience is a re-living of a real-life experience, the dreamer should seek medical assistance or therapy to help them deal with these issues in a safe environment. 

There are various possible interpretations for sex involving a parent or family member - it may be 'conflict' with certain ideals or characteristics associated with the parental/familiar figure; a sign that acceptance or forgiveness is required; or symbolic of the transition to adulthood or the dreamer becoming a parent themselves. 

Sex with a Celebrity/Fantasy Figure
Sex with a celebrity of fantasy figure can be incredibly enjoyable - and perhaps a desireable and quested for experience. However, there may be other alternative and more complex interpretations than simply the act of having sex - it may be that the dreamer wants greater fortune, wealth, fame, status or success; or hopes to incorporate some of the characteristics/traits associated with the celebrity/fantasy figure. 

Bestiality/Sex with an Animal
This is highly unlikely to be a sign that the dreamer has subconscious bestiality/zoophilia fetishes - it is more likely to relate to a desire to incorporate some of the traits stereotypically relating to that animal - such as the 'pride' of a lion, the 'wisdom' of an owl or the 'beauty' of a butterfly. In some instances, the dream may be a reflection of the animalistic, wild and untamed nature of sex and sexuality. Consider also the phallic symbolism of the animal in question - sexual dreams involving snakes are very common universally. I was once contacted by a male dreamer who asked for an analysis of a dream in which a female friend showed him 'her pussy' meaning her pet cat - I interpreted this to be a dream verbal pun, given that 'pussy' is a slang-term for a woman's vagina and the dreamer had indicated he had an unrequited sexual interest in his friend. 

I have had dreams in which I have been raped and they are often very traumatic. Indeed, when these dreams are not traumatic, the distress I feel usually comes from my unusual reaction to what should be a horrifying violation. 

If you have been victim of rape or sexual assault, rape dreams will have a different importance and meaning than for persons who have not experienced this in their real-lives, and so my best advice is to seek professional help to deal with these issues.

Rape dreams are often about power struggles, violation, oppression, undermining and threat to self-esteem and autonomy - clearly some of these issues also relate to the actual experience of rape, but in a dream it is usually more symbolic and metaphorical. 

I have experienced lucid (and non-lucid) dreams in which I have felt violated and 'raped' despite there being no actual penetration or sexual touching of my genital areas. In one lucid false awakening (Dream 341), I 'awoke' in my bedroom to find a giant alien being, which inserted it's hand into my mouth and my hand into it's mouth. Although this wasn't 'rape' per se, in the dream, the feelings I had were analogous - my bodily autonomy and consent were removed and I felt degraded and disgusted. I also see the insertion of bodily parts (hands) into orifices (the mouth) as metaphorical for sexual penetration. False awakenings (and sleep paralysis experiences) often involve demonic or monstrous entities (sexually) assaulting or violating the dreamer in some way. It is possible for the dream ego to stand up to the threat posed by a menacing force, but when confronted with the dual challenges of lingering sleep paralysis and fear, it can be difficult to either change the dream narrative into something more pleasant; fight the enemy; or wake up and leave the dream. This is something you can work on with lucid dream control, but sometimes we have to accept that we may experience something distasteful or terrifying over which we have no choice. This is one of the reasons I try and keep my lucid dreaming light-hearted and positive and keep themes of violence or taboo activities to a minimum.

Sometimes, lucid dreamers who try to have sex with a dream character are rejected. This often comes as a surprise, since obviously dream characters are a projection of the dreamer's self, so why would their subconscious 'reject' the sexually act when the dreamer consciously wants and intends for this? Sexual rejection in a lucid dream may be an indication that the subconscious desires something more intimate - a more deep form of connection - than the physical act of intercourse. The dreamer may have assumed that they simply wanted sex with a certain person, but their subconscious is trying to communicate that empty, meaningless sex will not actually fulfil or satisfy them and they may have been mistaken about what they really wanted. 

I have been asked whether raping a dream character in a lucid dream is wrong. I would say 'no' because dream characters are a projection of aspects of our subconscious self, but add the important caveat that actually it is wrong to try and justify, glamorise or normalise the act of rape, particularly if you are the rapist in your dream. Dreams are different from waking fantasies, but I still believe they have the power to shape our understanding, perceptions, identity and relationship to others. If you start to consciously use 'rape' as an enjoyable form of dream escapism and entertainment, you may be de-stigmatising the event in your own mind and this can cause you to feel guilt afterwards. Of course, dreaming is a safe way to break taboos and engage in illegal or unacceptable behaviour and I am in no position to judge how any lucid dreamer decides to use their dream space to experiment, but when confronted with confessions by other lucid dreamers who glorify the fact they have raped dream characters and speak of such actions with pride, I do feel sickened - because they seem to assume that rape in a dream is not a sensitive topic and this presumes that other people will accept and ignore the implications that this individual has taken pleasure in the violent sexual oppression of a vulnerable person.

Turning the issue on its head and looking at female (or male) lucid dreamers who suggest they want to play out a 'rape fantasy' in their lucid dreams, I would suggest that this is a complete fallacy. Just like women (or men) who claim that they like to indulge in real-life rape fantasies, I would suggest that the fabricated nature experience prevents it from ever being a realistic simulation of what it is like to be raped. In a rape fantasy - and in this contest, a lucid dream rape fantasy - there is an implied consent which can never be overlooked. Thus, there is no 'rape' just violent or brutal sex which has been pre-negotiated before the event, even if subconsciously in the dreamer's own mind. In this respect, consent, choice and autonomy are very much present, making the act the very opposite of a rape. The feelings of shame, humiliation, degradation, oppression, lack of autonomy and violation are never inflicted; the 'raped' dreamer is very much in control of the experience and actively participating/complicit in it; and further, actively enjoy the experience. I therefore think it is illogical and wrong to label these types of lucid dream fantasies as 'rape'  as it undermines the concept and victims of the real-life experience. If this is your lucid dream fantasy, it might be better to think of it as 'aggressive primal sex'.

I do not wish to shame anyone for their lucid dream activities, but remember that lucid dreaming is often used as a therapeutic tool in overcoming post-traumatic stress disorder and nightmares/phobias generally. This is because conscious dreaming and decision-making/control in lucid dreams has the same potential to create new neural pathways in the brain (and modes of thought/responses to stimuli) as cognitive behavioural therapy. If you intentionally indulge in behaviours which provide you with new conscious (and vivid) experiences, to an extent, you are forming neural responses to new sensory stimuli and the illusions within the dream can feel very real.  Lucid dreamers often refer to their 'dream ego' as being a secondary 'them' which feels as much part of their identity as their real-life self. If you consciously and purposefully engage in behaviour which feels real and is valued as a 'real' experience, albeit a mental one - why would you not act in a way consistent with your waking morality and ethics, given that lucid dreams create strong, lasting memories and emotions ('dream residue')? 

I have also been asked by readers/viewers whether I 'consent' to having sex with them in a dream. I have responded (in as neutral and non-committal terms as possible) that I have no control over what any dreamer chooses to dream about and if their intended dreams involve me, then there is nothing I can do about it. I certainly do not communicate 'consent' because really, there is no actual interaction or contact between the 'real' me and the dreamer, but I understand that they mean symbolic consent - because they want to dream freely. One dreamer told me that the fact I said I would not try and stop him having 'dream sex' with 'me' in his dream made him feel better about trying to cause that to happen in a lucid dream, because he 'knew' it would not be 'rape'. As dreams are subconscious projections, he was suggesting that knowing I would not resist him in the dream meant I would be sexually available and willing as a dream character. Although I do not necessarily welcome this type of request from a reader/viewer, it was comforting to know that he did not want to 'rape' me in a dream and saw the obtaining of prior consent as important. 

Deformed Genitalia
Deformed or weird genitalia/sex organs may be symbolic of the dreamer's creativity, productivity, personality or sexual identity. The dreamer may be questioning aspects of their sexuality or sexual identity, depending on the dream narrative and its subjective elements. The dream may relate to the animus/anima - and the incorporating and balance of the masculine/feminine aspects of self. It may also be an indication that the dreamer needs to get in touch with their masculinity/femininity. 

Castration or the removal of other genitalia/sexual body parts may reflect subconscious fears in a loss of creativity or productivity; a loss of sexual expression or virility; or powerlessness. These are incredibly common dream themes and often relate to how the dreamer perceives their sexual identity.

Infidelity & Cheating
Infidelity and cheating is usually symbolic of anxieties about your real-life relationships. If the dreamer is the person cheating, it may relate to subconscious feelings of betrayal or guilt in another area of their waking life. 

If the dreamer is getting cheated on, then the dream may be symbolic of latent insecurities or self-doubt. The dreamer may fear abandonment or betrayal in a real-life situation which isn't actually sexual in nature.

Dreaming that you are having sex with a friend's partner is not necessarily an indication that you harbour secret desires for this person, but rather that you admire or wish for aspects of their relationship (i.e. loyalty, compatibility, security etc) in your own life - or characteristics/traits/values associated with your friend or their partner. 

Does dream sex feel like actual sex?
In my personal experience - no. Dream sex feels much more like the arousal and pleasure you feel from masturbation. Whenever sex happens in one of my dreams, I feel a stimulation of my clitoris, but not necessarily the sensation of penetration or the pressure of another person's body on top of, or in close proximity, to my own. I dream that I am having sex with another person, but aside from 'knowing' this, there is usually little indication of another person's involvement in the act. This is coupled with the fact that in my dreams sex tends to happen from behind ('doggy-style') so I cannot actually see the person I am having sex with. 

The genitalia becomes engorged with blood - causing feelings of sexual arousal - and this triggers the sexual content of the dream. But sometimes the dream fails to recreate the sensation of penetration or intimate contact with another person, which may explain why dream sex feels closer to masturbation. This would be especially true for virgins who do not have the physical experiences/memories from their real-lives to draw upon and recreate in the dream.

How can you encourage sex dreams?
One way of encouraging sex in a dream (if you cannot lucid dream or successfully control your lucid dreams) is to incubate a dream. You can learn some basic dream incubation techniques by clicking here and here. You could also try to stimulate yourself sexually before sleep, but refrain from climaxing to encourage you to seek satisfaction and 'release' in your subsequent dreams. This is a method which is used in SILD - Sexually Induced Lucid Dreams, which are a form of DILD - Dream Initiated/Induced Lucid Dreaming which combine the MILD Technique (Mnemonic/Memory Induced Lucid Dreams) with a specific lucid dream trigger (in this case, sex). Another common method for encouraging sex dreams is to sleep on your front. This is also supposed to encourage flying dreams, since the position is akin to that you would likely adopt if you were able to fly. With regard to sex dreams, laying on your front means that the blood rushes to the genital area and may result in genital engorgement, which then leads to more chance of sexual arousal.

Do you really orgasm from dream sex?
The answer is - it depends. Night-time emission (wet dreams, ejaculation during sleep) happen to dreamers of both genders, but is more common in males. Studies into physical responses during sex dreams has revealed that dreamers experience increase heart rates, muscular reactions and changed in vascular tissue - which contribute to the life-like sensations of dream sex.  It has been found that during dream sex, female dreamers often perform pelvic thrusting. 

Neuroscience has shown that we often dream of sex and violence (therefore, giving support to Freud's theories of dreaming) because the prefrontal cortex which inhibits and regulates aggressive and libidinal urges is deactivated during REM (dream) sleep. Libinal desires cannot be fulfilled during sleep, so instead our dreams create hallucinatory experiences in which to act out these urges

However, just because you orgasm in a dream does not necessarily mean that you ejaculate or climax in real-life, although this does not mean the experience is any less pleasurable. I have orgasmed many times in my dreams, but when I awaken there is no sign that I actually climaxed in real-life (i.e. no vaginal wetness), but the dream climax certainly felt very powerful and realistic. 

Can you become addicted to lucid dream sex?
My answer is, I don't know. I think it is possible. I think it is also possible to become addicted to: (a) lucid dreaming generally; and (b) sex in real-life. This is because anything which offers us pleasure, fulfilment, gratification, power and escapism can be addictive. Many lucid dreamers tell me that once they immerse themselves in lucid dreaming they don't enjoy their normal non-lucid dreams as much and they can sometimes find normal life dull and unsatisfying compared to the fantastical lives they lead in their lucid dreams. This worries me and is one reason I do not try and induce lucid dreams as regularly as some people. I place a large amount of emphasis on my normal non-lucid dreams and enjoy/engage with them as much as possible, seeing lucid dreaming as an opportunity to indulge in a more intense 'treat' every now and again. With sex, if your actual real-life sex life is fulfilling or boring, of course regular fantasy sex in a lucid dream may seem more appealing and exciting. You need to achieve a realistic balance and learn to value the your waking experiences rather than seeking to replace or enhance them constantly in the dream world. 

Likewise, if you have lucid dream sex with people you know in your real-life (but with whom you are not involved in a sexual relationship), then don't be surprised if you find you develop more intense feelings for them in your waking life. This may include seeing them in a more sexual way, becoming obsessed with the illusionary fantasy version of them you have created in your lucid dreams, or even craving actual sexual interaction with them, which may not be healthy or productive for your real-life relationship with them - or your partner, if you have one. It is also possible to form a guilt complex about the things you do in your lucid dream life, so while I do not wish to place a dampener on your lucid dreaming experiences, think carefully about what you allow your lucid dream self to do and how it may affect your waking reality and conscience. 

What are the challenges of lucid dream sex?
Just like any lucid dream themes, there are a number of challenges implicit in lucid dream sex. The first one is finding a dream character with whom to have lucid dream sex - especially given that we often experience rejection when we approach a dream character with such intentions of becoming intimate. One solution would be dream incubation (see above), but this is more of a non-lucid dream technique. Instead, if you are an experienced lucid dreamer, you might try dream visualisation (click on the link for an introductory tutorial guide). 

Dream visualisation can help you project your ideal sexual partner into a dream scenario, without having to 'find' and 'meet' them in the dream. However, you then need to be able to control your dream, which can be incredibly difficult even for experienced lucid dreamers. I will be providing a separate tutorial on this aspect of lucid dreaming in the near-future, but my first piece of advice would be to first learn how to stabilise your lucid dream so that you can prolong your time in the dream state. Lucid dream stabilisation is vital, because when lucidity it triggered (particularly in DILDs), the sensation and realisation can be so overwhelming that we are woken up prematurely. This is especially true in lucid sex dreams, because by nature, they are highly-charged and exciting. Often, when we really want something, it seems all the more out of reach, which can be frustrating. 

Once you have learned to stabilise your lucid dream, if your lucid dream characters seems unobtainable or aloof, you may need to make some kind of intimate connection with them, in lieu of exercising superior dream control (or 'mind control' of your lucid dream characters, which is possible for experienced lucid dreamers). This goes back to the point I was making about subconscious desires and wishes. Of course, dreams are an expression of primal urges (sex and violence; wish-fulfilment etc), but in lucid dreams, we have access not only to our subconscious, but also our waking consciousness, thoughts, feelings and emotions. While we may think we want sexual gratification, it might be the case that we actually yearn for a more intimate connection or relationship with another person (or dream character) which goes beyond the physical act of sex. You could try to communicate with the dream character before approaching them for sex. Make conversation and eye contact and show them affection and respect - because these might be the very things you are subconsciously craving yourself. Your dream characters - lucid or otherwise - are projections of fragments of yourself, You may not want to be objectified, oppressed, violated, used etc, so treat your lucid dream characters as you wish to be treated and you may have more of a chance of achieving the sexual union you are seeking.

If you have any specific questions about sex and dreaming which are not covered in this article, please do not hesitate to contact me. You can leave a comment in the Comments Section below, tweet me @TallulahLaGhash, Facebook me by clicking  here; or email me at

Links to other articles you may enjoy (click on the title):