The Gossiping Dream

Image by Gerhard from Pixabay

I had a very strange dream this morning right before waking up and running to the bathroom. Actually it was so strange that one hour after that, I was still thinking of it while drinking soy milk for breakfast.

I dreamed that I was with two friends and we were gossiping about somebody, who sneaked right behind me without my knowledge. When I realized that she was standing right behind me, it was too late. She had already heard what we were talking about–something unflattering about her. Our gossiping group broke up and I felt such a pang of guilt that I woke up. It’s very strange that I couldn’t remember the exact words we were talking about even if the dream was still fresh in my mind. However what we were saying was definitely something negative.

“I really should not gossip like that.” I thought of it while chewing on a piece of toast, but on the other hand, probably other people are saying something about me behind my back too. If that is the case, which I am sure it is, what can they talk about? I was thinking the list can be very long since my faults and imperfections are endless.

One of my faults that came up on top of everything else was that I made mistakes in my writing and in the files I prepared. I could have minimized such mistakes if I read the documents for two or three or four times afterwards, but you know how it is–sometimes one just doesn’t want to reread something that’s not really interesting or exciting. I can imagine people gather and stare at my file and say, “Two mistakes here. How careless she is. Or probably it’s not even carelessness. She’s just stupid and unqualified.”

Well, I guess it is fair that if I gossip about others, I have to accept the fact that other people gossip about me in return. And what they say about me is really true that I cannot refute. I should take a little time to reread those files. It is not too much to read and I have an average reading speed–probably I have a less than average reading speed but I don’t want to admit it. Whatever speed I have, average or less than average, I should make a rule that I will read and reread what I write before finalizing it. I really should make a rule like that, but I haven’t.

Now licking my wounded pride, I have to admit I can be a little obtuse and slow when it comes to accepting other people’s criticisms. The above problem has been brought to me on several occasions by different people, but I have never taken it seriously, or seriously enough to force myself to reread my files, several times if necessary, before sending them out.

My slowness in picking up hints and suggestions can be attributed to my narcissistic upbringing. My parents were perpetually negative and they criticized just about everybody and everything. As a result, I developed a habit of never listening to them. And this tendency of “not listening” has been with me ever since. During my interaction with other people in later life, I have not been exercising good listening skills, which has contributed to my unintended obtuseness.

“Hi, what are you talking about? You are trying to blame me for all your mistakes in life, aren’t you? A good child would bring her mother the comfort, the pride, the love, the support, the obedience, but you brought me nothing. Absolutely nothing.” I can imagine my next dream tomorrow morning, in which my mother yells at me from the “Heaven Of Narcissists” that she has been living in ever since that fatal traffic accident long ago.

17 thoughts on “The Gossiping Dream

        1. Me too. Actually I recently realized that I have triggers, which will often send me into an unreasonable dread. It is probably due to my childhood of living under two narcissists. People growing up like that can often be triggered by some small things that are very insignificant in other people’s eyes.

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  1. Being able to see, not only our real faults but also our strengths, rather than only negative self-criticism is a good start toward change. Change comes slowly. Work on one little item at a time.

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  2. We all have gossiped in some form or at some level. I think as long as it doesn’t become the center of one’s day, it’s okay to get away with it. After all, we all need to get out our strongest feelings and thoughts. I would call that ‘healthy gossip’. And it’s also okay to make mistakes. We all do. Learning from them is important. Tuning down the inner chaos often helps us actually listen to others. Criticism is tough to take but always look for a hidden treasure in it, and then steal it. Haha! Take care, Haoyan. 🙂

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  3. I have the most vivid dreams. Most I forget as soon as I wake up. However, the other night I had a dream where my wife played the theme from the “Rockford Files.” I’m not sure why, either. I will keep thinking about it ☺️

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  4. Well – I must admit that I don’t react well to criticism. Internally I mean – not externally. Externally I would probably grin and bear it. It always amazes me how many people and businesses invite feedback these days. I couldn’t bear to do that. It’s like I don’t want to know. I always give them 10 out of 10 regardless!

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    1. I have always wondered how we handle the inevitable interaction and conflict with others. For example, Amazon sends me email to ask me for opinion after every purchase. Probably sometimes giving a hint is better, or probably wrapping a criticism in praise if one can manage to do it. It is an art I am still trying to learn…

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