Weird Dreams During Pregnancy: What They Mean

Judy Dutton | Sep 3, 2014 Pregnancy

One of the funny side effects of pregnancy are strange dreams -- as in, bizarro "I've gotta call my husband/girlfriend/therapist and tell her this one pronto" dreams. Experts chalk this up to hormones, as well as your self-conscious mind acclimating to impending motherhood. Whatever you call them, they're bound to leave you scratching your head and wondering what they're about.

All will be illuminated in the slideshow below on moms' common pregnancy dreams with explanations of what they mean from Lauri Loewenberg, Dr. Oz's resident dream expert and author of Dream On It, Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life.

More from The Stir: 5 of My Most Embarrassing Pregnancy Sex Dreams

Did you have any strange dreams during pregnancy?

Images © Ariel Skelley/Corbis; ©      

  • Dreams About Your Mother


    Image © H. ARMSTRONG ROBERTS/Corbis

    "We'll often have dreams of our own mother before we even realize we are pregnant," says Loewenberg. "She is usually 
a helpful character in these dreams because she represents the fact that we are becoming a mother ourselves." Or if you're trying to get pregnant and are having difficulty, "you will find that your mother is an angry 
character in your dream because this reflects your own anger with achieving motherhood.


  • Dreams About Fish, Tadpoles & Other Water Creatures


    Image © Eiko Jones/Corbis

    These dreams are common in the first trimester because, well, a tadpole or fish just about sums up what your little nugget looks like right about now, swimming around in your amiotic fluid. "This awareness of the state of your baby is what causes these dreams," says Loewenberg.


  • Dreams of Having a Litter


    Image © Michael Busselle/CORBIS

    This is particularly common with first-time pregnancies. "The litter represents the multiple concerns we have
 with pregnancy: It's overwhelming with so many unknowns," says Loewenberg. "In addition, the first birth many of us 
have ever witnessed was our own cat or dog giving birth ... to a litter!


  • Dreams of Giving Birth to a Puppy (Bear Cub, Etc.)


    Image © Michael Kloth/Corbis

    By this point in your pregnancy, your baby no longer looks like a tadpole, so those water creature dreams may dissipate. But what takes their place are dreams reflecting your baby's current appearance. "
It has a big round head and a cute little pudgy body, not unlike a cute baby animal," says Loewenberg. "These dreams 
reflect the awareness of the state of the fetus, in addition to the protective maternal instincts starting 
to kick in, which are typically triggered by round heads and big eyes, a phenomenon known as pedomorphism.


  • Dreams of a See-Through Belly


    Image © 2/Aping Vision / STS/Ocean/Corbis

    By your second trimester, you're DYING to see that baby in your belly. So that's what your dreams serve up. "That really cool dream where you can actually see the baby inside your belly, and you go around showing 
it off to others? That dream is caused by impatience to actually see the baby," says Loewenberg.

  • Sex Dreams


    Image © Hans Neleman/Corbis

    "These become pretty persistent in the second trimester due to hormones, and due to the fact that we aren't yet encumbered by the giant third trimester belly, so we still feel
 sexy," says Loewenberg. "There is also the fear that soon we will lose our girly curves so subconsciously we want to take advantage
 of our capable body ... aaaaaand giant breasts!"

  • Dreams About Forgetting About or Losing the Baby Somewhere


    Image © Corbis

    "This dream is due to the reality settling in that, holy shiz, I have to be totally responsible 
for an entire other human being soon!" says Loewenberg. "And with that come all sorts of waking life fears that continue to play out 
in our dreams: What if I go to the grocery store and forget to put the baby in the car with me? We're so used to
 only being accountable for ourselves up until this point, this is a natural and common fear." There is also the underlying fear of losing the baby to miscarriage,
 and pregnant brain is also
 at play here: If you forget who you were just talking to or your own address, who's to say you won't forget your baby too?

  • Dreams About Fights & Anger


    Image © Turba/Corbis

    Your back aches, your feet hurt, your hormones are out of whack, we get it! You're cranky and have a short fuse. "Dreams where we fight let us blow off steam and safely express our anger in our heads at night," Loewenberg explains.

  • Dreams About Death


    Image © Russell Underwood/CORBIS

    "These dreams are so frightening and also prevalent in the last trimester because we are facing
 a lot of changes as we get closer to motherhood," says Loewenberg. "Dreaming of our own death is the way our subconscious 
mind helps us to let go of our old self so we can more readily embrace our new life as mom."

    Dreaming of others'
 deaths is also symbolic of the changes in relationships you may face as a new mom (like, will you ever see your child-free friends again?). "But no matter when in your life you have a death
 dream, it simply means change," says Loewenberg. "Letting go of the past so that you can embrace what is to come."

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