What Dreams About Your Ex Mean

dreams about your ex

Dreams about your ex decoded

Have you been having dreams about your ex? Does this person visit you at night while sleeping? Do you wake up scratching your head, wondering WTF?

If the answer is yes, you wouldn’t be alone. One of the most common types of dreams are those involving ex-partners.

Not long ago, I wrote about what it means to dream about your crush. Given interest in the topic, I felt inspired to pen this piece.

Let’s face it – dreams about exes can be unsettling. This is particularly true if the relationship ended badly. Should your dream include romantic imagery, such as intimate touching and kissing, it can make the experience really confusing.

So, what are these dreams all about? Why are you having them? Moreover, what do they really mean?

Now before we get too far in, I need to say dreams are a subjective in nature and unique to each dreamer.

Therefore, when reading the material below, it is best to view your dream through the lens of symbolism.

I’ll walk you through five common dream types involving former girlfriends and boyfriends.

My promise is to share information that is free of psycho-babble so that you can arrive at a place of greater understanding.

Let’s jump right in!

1. Seeing your ex in a dream

This is the most common type of experience. Here, you simply see an image of the person – such as their face or body. They may or may not use verbal communication.

Some people report that even without words, there is a deep knowing that transcends time and space. Much depends upon the previously shared connection.

At any rate, their presence in your dream is usually linked to a trait they possess that you need in your life right now.


  • Strength
  • Compassion
  • Understanding
  • Wisdom
  • Sexual energy

2. Kissing your ex in a dream

Another common (and confusing) experience for some is dreaming about kissing an ex. Almost always, the kiss is passionate and sensual.

They can also be reoccurring in nature.

But remember, it’s important to look at your dream symbolically and not literally. In the case of kissing, this usually represents some form of communication.

Are you missing passion in your life right now? If so, did your ex provide this to you in the past? If the answer is yes, this could be your mind’s way of communicating a current need.

Deep below the conscious level, there may be a part of your psyche that yearns for an emotional connection with another. This point is particularly true if you are in a relationship with someone (currently) who isn’t giving you what you need.

Because the human mind connects to what is familiar, ex’s can pop up subconsciously as a kind of emotional messenger. In truth, they are relaying material that you need in the here and now.

3. Dreams about hooking up with your ex

When you dream of hooking up with your ex, pay attention. That’s because your mind may be trying to communicate carnal needs that aren’t being met.

By carnal, I mean sexual. Yep, we’re talking good old-fashioned time between the sheets.

Typically, hookup dreams about ex’s speak to an unmet aspect of your life. Here are some questions:

Are you with someone now who is physically unsatisfying? On the flipside, are you single right now but not sexually active?

While there’s no way to be sure, intimacy based dreams involving an ex-mate may suggest a need for sexy time in your life.

4. Dreams about your ex sleeping with someone

Have you been dreaming about your ex sleeping with someone new? Upon reflection, does the imagery make you feel happy for them or jealous?

Think about this for a moment before reading. The answer to that question is important.

In my experience, the imagery is symbolic of letting go and moving on. In other words, that you are dreaming about an ex having sexy-time with a new mate means you have healed from the breakup.

More: What dreams about death and dying mean

The only exception to this is if you felt jealous, either during the dream or upon waking up.

Should this be the case, there’s a good chance your mind has produced the material as a sign of unfinished business.

So how do you know the difference?

If you weren’t upset after having the dream, it’s probably a sign of healing. If you were angry or envious, it likely means you still have unresolved feelings that need to be processed.

5. Dreams about ex years later

Out of all the thematic type dreams listed above, this scenario by far is the most confusing.

If you broke up with your ex five, ten or twenty years ago and they are just now popping into your head, you know exactly what I mean.

Why on earth are they showing up?

Folks, you will read explanations elsewhere but here’s my take. Most of the time, the ex you are dreaming about from yesteryear is appearing because you miss some aspect of them.

Was your ex nurturing? Did this person understand you in ways that your current mate does not? Is there an element of their personality that you need in your life right now?

The human brain has a way of producing what it needs, even if it’s just imagery.

If your ex from many years ago is appearing now, it’s time to do some journaling. Grab a piece of paper and a pen and compile a brief list of your ex’s attributes.

When you are done, reflect on what you have written and let the person’s key traits resonate – deep inside.

Once accomplished, you’ll be in a better position to understand why they are visiting you while sleeping.

Wrap Up

Well, there you have it. Dreams about ex’s broken down into common themes. Your experience may not exactly fit what’s been described above and that’s OK.

What’s important is that you are exploring with self-insight. And that’s a good thing.

If you want to know more about the symbolic meaning of dreams, I encourage you to pick up a copy of The Complete Dictionary of Dreams by Lennox (See Amazon).

It’s a great resource for anyone trying to understand the mind’s subconscious projector.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by!

About John D. Moore 391 Articles
Dr. John Moore is a licensed counselor and Editor-in-Chief of Guy Counseling. A journalist and blogger, he writes about a variety of topics related to wellness. His interests include technology, outdoor activities, science, and men's health. Check out his show --> The Men's Self Help Podcast