The meaning of being attacked in a dream
To dream of attacking or being attacked often relates to issues of control in your life, and your own vulnerability. Even if you feel you are in complete control of your life, you may still have an attacking dream, because deep down, you could be waging a war to stay in control, and fear what would happen if you lost control. Being attacked in a dream is not usually about wanting to hurt yourself or others, but can be about your own unresolved internal conflict. They can disturb with their violence, but attacking dreams often show a way to peaceful resolution.
Being attacked in a dream (or attacking another) can feel challenging to address because these dreams are often asking questions such as:
– Where am I being defensive in my life?
– Where may I be hurting myself or someone else in real life?
– What old patterns of behaviour do I need to break?
Consider if there something in your life you need to get rid of, perhaps a behaviour or belief that you have outgrown. You may be attacking your own fears and doubts, so to “eliminate” them is a good thing. Remember, you are likely not dreaming of real people, but what those people represent to you. If you dream of being attacked by Bob your neighbour, who you see as highly critical, maybe you feel your own critical nature is preventing you from achieving your goals – the voice of self doubt. But attack dreams can give insight into your relationships. If you’re vulnerable, or emotionally “under attack” in some area of your life, this may manifest in your dreams, often with other aspects that can help you deal with this particular problem.
If you're vulnerable, or emotionally "under attack" in some area of your life, this may manifest in your dreams, often with other aspects that can help you deal with this particular problem.
Also look at the weapons of attack. Think what these symbolise to you. Describe it as you would to a child. For example, a sword might be described as sharp, precise, a bit old fashioned, used in children’s fairy-tales. How does this relate to your own feelings and behaviour? It might be the critical voice in your head, with sharp words, judging you in an old fashioned manner for behaviour that you learnt as a child was bad. Whereas a tank is inpenetrable, fires from a distance, is large and strong. This may remind you of a distant father or boss, who didn’t support you but would criticise you and not realise they hurt you. You might still carry this pain with you, and every time you get hurt, you react to the person as if they were your father, boss, head master, or whatever.
To help move on, try writing a letter to your attacker, telling them what you feel, why you need to move on from them. Forgive them and release them – tell them you have no need for their outdated behaviour. You can then burn, bury, or flush this letter down the toilet – symbolising releasing that old pain from your life. It can also be helpful to write one from the attackers point of view – this can give you insight especially if you are attacking your “internal critic.” It may be quite a good thing to silence that voice!
On another note, attacking dreams can signify a possible health problem. An attacking dream can symbolise your immune system, your body fighting some kind of infection. Consider reviewing your eating/exercising/sleeping/substance using behaviours. “Listen to the whispers before they become shouts.” Your subconscious knows what’s going on with your body, often before your conscious mind does, especially in a world where we are all so busy and stressed. If you do have any concerns, seek medical advice.
Being attacked in a dream, or attacking another, invites you to stop, reflect, and see what needs changing. These dreams offer a chance to feel confident, safe and empowered – but only if you listen to, and act upon, the messages they provide.
For more information about attacking dreams, visit The Dream Well.
Seeking wellness? Visit our Wellbeing Directory
Like what you read?
Sign up for a weekly dose of wellness
Why we have recurring bad dreams?
People who are frustrated because their basic psychological needs are not met are likely to have recurring bad dreams.
How to control your dreams
New research shows that three specific techniques can help us achieve lucid dreams and be in control of the experience.
What it means to dream about a mother
Dreamt of a mother lately? It may be time to consider the sacred role of female creativity and nourishment, and...
How keeping a dream journal may help answer life's questions
We look at how journaling about your dreams can help you to interpret their meaning and understand how they relate...