Cheating (infidelity) - Dream meaning and symbolism
Main symbolic meaning
Dreams about cheating on someone or being cheated on by someone are often very simple, straightforward and "transparent" (without any complicated symbolic). You have to take into account that the true author of the dream is always you and no one else. Therefore the "dramatization" and the "plot" of the story must be attributed to you inner wishes and fears. When you dream of cheating, your shady thoughts got the space to manifest themselves without any "side effects" or causing any real harm. When you cheat on someone in our dream, you are pursued often by the feeling of guilt. But you will say: "I love my partner – why do I dream about cheating?" There are several possible interpretations.
I am jealous / he (she) is jealous
One from the typical situations inducing cheating dream is: "I am very jealous in my waking life. I was the mistress to my boyfriend for a while before he divorced and married me. Is the dream a sign that I should be more careful or that I should leave him? Or, does it mean that I am only excessively jealous?" or the description may be reversed to: "Not my, but my boyfriend is very jealous in the waking life, because I was his mistress before ... and now he does not trust me, that I will be faithful" – whether it is you or your boyfriend or girlfriend, who is cheating in your dream, it does change much on the fact, that jealousy is the noticeable characteristic closely accompanying and thus shaping your real life. You have to look for the meaning of the cheating dream in your conscience thoughts.
The dream usually has several possible meanings and you have to carefully decide what is the proper one for your current situation:
1) The mirror
The dream works as a mirror and gives you the honest picture of your deep fears and desires. You see your life as a movie in the cinema or, yet better, as a very impressive theatre play. In this case cheating in your dream may be symbolic for the genuine but suppressed fear (being cheated on) or the genuine desire (to cheat on somebody). The fear of being cheated on is often understandable, but why to have such strange desire? Simply, because you could have a good reason for the breakup – maybe you are not satisfied in your relationship and you are looking for the good reason to make the definitive end, but at the same time, you do not want to be the "bad" one and your dream about cheating leaves the burden to the other.
2) The magnifying glass
The dream can highlight or suppress some of your personality traits. If your rational and well behaved "self" dominates the life during the day, than in the night your deep instincts are willing to show what they are up to. Frankly, there is no better time to give a free hand to your instincts than in your dreams (even though it may be shocking). To see cheating in "live stream" while you are dreaming may be very reliving and pleasing for one side of your personality, but outrageous and unacceptable for the other. Therefore you wake up usually with mixed feelings. (To explain this more: people are full of contradictory wishes, for example to have new Ferrari but also to save money for your retirement at the same time. And similarly to have nice and stable relationship, but to make sex with whoever you consider as attractive at the same time).
3) Training ground and wish fulfilment
The dream gives you an ideal opportunity to try everything you want, of course, including cheating. Would you like to try drugs, rob a bank, be unfaithful or murder someone? It is no problem at all! Your cheating will not harm anyone accept maybe your ego after you wake up. You can see and try different scenarios: "how would it be, when ... I will cheat on my girlfriend / boyfriend ... or when ... my girlfriend / boyfriend will cheat on me?" It is not necessary to only think about cheating – now you can experience the feeling in your dream directly. (Please note, that dreams always seem to be absolutely real unless you wake up. Without the moment of awakening, they would remain real forever).
A typical dream: my boyfriend / husband cheated on me
Let's have a look on two dreams with the cheating subject.
A typical dream description: "I went to see my friend and she told me: I cannot see it anymore, your husband has an official mistress and everyone knows about it. You should do something! He invited her to a party. And he treated her as a real girlfriend. Everyone saw it. Your husband is cheating on you!"
Another typical dream: " My boyfriend comes home and there are several people in the car with him including a woman. He kisses her. When my boyfriend gets out of the car, she begins taking his clothes off and starts seducing him shamelessly. I gaze at them and after a while I shout: pack your stuff and get out!"
Interpreting the dream in the context of your waking life
The final decision, how to interpret you dream about cheating according to your current situation, is always up to you. Unfortunately, there is no magic way how to determine the proper reason for the infidelity in your dream. Let's summarize all the possible meanings:
- Prediction – the dream as a warning sign
Some signals, that are hardly noticeable during the day, may become very "loud" during the night, when you plunge into the complete silence. To dream of cheating on someone or being cheated on by someone means to have premonition of such future event. It is a visual fear of your own insecurity. Dreaming that your spouse is cheating on you can be interpreted as a kind of anxiety that you have about him or her, but also as a kind of worry about your own personal faith (am I morally strong enough?).
- Wish fulfilment – the dream as a place where you can enjoy even questionable wishes
To dream of cheating on someone or being cheated on by someone means to "open the floodgates" of your deep unconscious space. Your inner ambitions and suppressed fantasies may be freely determining what you are doing and experiencing during the dream.
- Searching for oneself – you have to experiment (a mental exercise) somewhere to see and test all the possible scenarios of the future
Dreams are the very suitable place to test yourself. Being confronted with different parts of your personality is never easy. Dreaming of cheating on someone or being cheated on by someone can be interpreted as the story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Both cannot be on the same place at the same time, because both are in fact one physical person that is just switching the characters. During the night it is very wise to give space to your personality traits, that are not desirable during the day.
To take a look on art can be very helpful for finding the inspiration when exploring and interpreting your dream. Discover different adulterous fantasies and infidelity punishments in art:
- Lucas Cranach the Elder: The mouth of truth, cca 1550
A woman accused of adultery was required to place her hand inside the mouth of the ancient mask in the presence of her husband and a judge.
- Tintoretto: Venus, Mars, and Vulcan, 1551
Venus was an unfaithful wife.
- Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Christ and the Woman Taken in Adultery, 1565
Jesus and the woman taken in adultery is a biblical episode from John 7:53-8:11 where Jesus encounters an adulterous woman brought before Pharisees and scribes.
- Alessandro Turchi: Christ and the Woman Taken in Adultery, cca 1600
- Rumi: A Shoemaker and the Unfaithful Wife of a Sufi Surprised by her Husband's Unexpected Return Home, 1663
- Pierre-Narcisse Guérin: Clytemnestra and the murder of Agamemnon, 1817
Agamemnon is murdered by his wife, Clytemnestra.
- Indian Unknown Artist: An Outraged Husband Murders His Unfaithful Wife and Her Lover, 1745
- Indian Unknown Artist: Sohni swims to meet her lover Mahinwal, Mewar
- Alexandre Charles Guillemot: Mars and Venus Surprised by Vulcan, 1827
This picture, which was accepted for the Salon of 1827, illustrates the story of Vulcan, Roman god of metalworking, snaring his adulterous wife with her lover, Mars.
- George Barbier: Choderlos The Dangerous Liaisons, 1782
- Norman Neasom: The Unfaithful Wife, 1952
- Gustave Clarence Rodolphe Boulanger: Rehearsal Of The Fluteplayer And The Diomedes Wife In The Atrium Of The Pompeian House Of Prince, 1861
Aegiale was married to Diomedes, who, on his return from Troy, found her living in adultery with Cometes.
- Top 10 Movie Cheaters and Adulterers
Temptation is the drug for cheaters and adulterers! See top characters that just could not resist a little loving on the side while their spouses may have been completely unaware of their dalliances.
- Top 10 Caught Cheating Scenes in Movies
See the guys and gals who have been caught red-handed in the bedroom. Characters must either be cheating, or be directly caught cheating, or at least admitting the act to his or her partner.