Have you ever had a dream about your partner cheating? You’re not alone, not by a long shot. According to a new survey of 1,000 people from Amerisleep, one in four people have had dreams where they cheated or were cheated on by their significant other in the last year.
Understandably, these dreams can wreak havoc on relationships as they can be indicative–or the root cause–of reservations in their relationships. In fact, three in 10 people fear their dreams of dishonesty indicate that they have feelings for somebody else. But is it true?
Thankfully, the people over at INSIDER spoke with a number of experts to determine what these dreams truly mean, though one may not find any of what they said particularly helpful. The experts told the pub that it’s a complete “toss up” whether or not these dreams are a sign that you or your partner wants to stray. They then jump into some of the reasons these dreams occur, which is far more interesting. The most prevalent circumstances boil down to trust issues that you have and may or may not have anything to do with your partner. Experts agree these issues are more about the person having the dream than they are about the partner and their behavior.
Amerisleep’s research suggests dreams of infidelity may have nothing to do with the relationship at all. More than one-third of women surveyed said their dream was likely the result of a “difficult decision” they had to make in their personal lives. With that said, a dream is a dream. If you react to the dream with ill-will toward your partner, things can get rocky.
“Taking [a dream] as gospel truth and acting as if that’s so will most likely lead to real trouble in your relationship,” marriage expert and radio host Lesli Doares told INSIDER. “Blaming your partner for something you dreamed they did (as opposed to actually doing) is unfair on so many levels. Acting on your feelings as if the event really happened leaves your partner feeling attacked and with no way forward.”
What you need to do is–prepare yourself for some very familiar advice–communicate with your partner. Instead of getting all bent out of shape about it, talk to your partner about the dream you had and see how they react. Like the experts say, these dreams are more about you than it is about them. If there is no evidence to support the dream, then there’s nothing you can (or should) do about it. If there is evidence to support the dream, we’ve written about how to best catch a cheater, so check it out before you make any assumptions.