Looking your partner in the eye and professing love to them the morning after a night full of erotic dreams can be exhausting. For one, you may have to deal with that nagging voice in your mind that keeps reminding you of what your dreams the previous night were.
This may make you begin to question your loyalties because dreams about cheating are stressful on many levels.
Although it may be a bit difficult to accept, having dreams about cheating on your spouse doesn’t make you a bad person. You may be surprised to find out that it is pretty much common, as a study carried out in 2018 revealed that almost 60% of women had some sort of dream about cheating on their partners.
So, cheer up already. You aren’t alone in this.
However, here’s where it gets interesting.
Although dreams about cheating can cause you to begin questioning yourself or your partner, one practice that can help you is always looking at things from a holistic viewpoint. Yes, your subconscious may be trying to tell you something, but sometimes, you may just need to adopt a different approach.
Taking a few minutes to analyze these dreams of infidelity can reveal many things about your relationship to you and help put your mind at ease.
Do you have dreams of infidelity? This article will tell you what you should do with them.
What do dreams about cheating mean?
First off, dreams are a series of episodes that happen during sleep. Usually, they seem real at the time but are mostly forgotten a few minutes after you wake up. Dreams are those images, thoughts, or feelings you experience while you sleep.
Although there’s every tendency to chuck them off as unnecessary, your dreams could serve as a major pathway for your subconscious to communicate with your conscious mind.
Dreams about cheating have occurred when in a dream, a person has an affair with someone other than their partner. It could go both ways; the person either has a dream where they cheat on their partner or sees their partner cheating on them in a dream.
In any case, dreams about cheating can mean many things, and recurrently having these dreams calls for close attention from your end.
Although a lot of controversies surround the subject, having cheating dreams always leaves a question in your mind; the question of ‘why.’
Why do these dreams occur? Are there specific reasons you may be seeing either yourself or your partner cheating in the dream?
These questions can hound you for a long time, and if you do not find answers immediately, these dreams can plant a seed of doubt in your mind and may even cause your relationship a lot of damage.
Here are a few reasons why you may be having dreams about cheating.
1. It may be a reflection of your paranoia
Although the conversation is still mostly ongoing, psychologists, dream analysts, and other scientists postulate that dreams are autobiographical thoughts that are centered around your recent activities, conversations, or scenarios you have been in the past.
By implication, it is safe to say that your dreams can sometimes be a reflection of what is going on in your life and your mind. Going by this, your dreams about a cheating partner could be the result of your paranoia.
If you are in a relationship with a person who makes you doubt their intentions towards you, you may spend a reasonable amount of time worrying if they have sexual conquests outside the relationship. These thoughts can find their way into your dreams and begin to present pictures to you while you sleep.
This implies that although it is not always the case, your dreams about your spouse cheating could be a result of a personal challenge you may be dealing with.
It also means that not every cheating dream you have means that your partner’s doing a dirty deed behind your back.
2. You feel insecure about the relationship
This is a spin-off of the last point. If you’re in a relationship where you feel insecure; about what you mean to your partner, how committed they are to making the relationship work, and about any other thing, you may find yourself having dreams about cheating on your spouse.
In addition, the insecurity that comes with a low sense of self-esteem can also cause you to have dreams about cheating. When you see yourself or your partner cheating in a dream, one thing to do is to carefully self-evaluate and ensure that those dreams aren’t the result of low self-esteem.
3. You have past experiences of infidelity
If you have had past experiences of infidelity (maybe you cheated on a partner before or a partner did it to you), memories from the past may begin to manifest themselves as dreams, especially when a sense of paranoia or inadequacy begins to set in.
If you have had a partner who cheated on you in the past, an excellent way to ensure that the cycle doesn’t repeat itself is by being honest with your current partner. Converse with them and let them know what’s going on in your mind.
Bear in mind that you have a role to play if those fears would be forever obliterated from your mind.
Now that we have quickly examined what it means to ‘dream about cheating’ and looked at possible reasons for having these experiences let us quickly look at the implications of these dreams.
We would examine this from two perspectives; what dreams about cheating on your partner mean and what dreams about your partner cheating on you could mean.
What does it mean when you dream about your spouse cheating?
Having dreams of being cheated on by a spouse/partner could mean a lot of things. Some of these include:
1. A feeling of being cheated out of spending quality time with your partner
If you have ever seen your partner cheating with a stranger in the dream, it could be your mind’s way of telling you that you feel cheated in the relationship. Maybe, your partner is beginning to spend more time with other people than spending with you.
This could be time spent at work, with friends or family, or even online.
2. You feel inadequate because you believe your partner’s ex has something you don’t
If you have a dream where your partner cheats with their ex, it could be that deep down within, you feel inadequate due to the knowledge that their ex has something that you don’t.
Dreams about cheating with an ex could result from something as significant as the fact that the ex was your partner’s first love, or it could be their sense of style and mental drive.
What to do:
Taking out some time to have a heart-to-heart with your partner can strengthen your trust in them. Find creative ways to remind yourself of why your partner chose you and the things they love about you. If you’re not sure about these, please ask them.
Also, practicing self-love and the use of positive mantras can help you overcome these feelings of inadequacy.
3. You want your partner to get along with someone you know
This may be the case when you have a dream about your partner cheating with someone you know. This dream reveals that you want your partner to start getting along with that person somewhere deep down.
This is usually the case if the person in your dream is your loved one, a close friend, or a family member.
What to do:
Again, communication is vital. Talk to your partner and let them understand how important that person is to you.
4. Your imagination may just be running wild
Not all dreams about a cheating partner mean that your partner is doing something fishy behind your back. This is usually the case if the dream features your partner with a random person.
Also, past experiences of infidelity may contribute to this.
What to do:
When this is the case, consulting with a professional may be the right step to take. The professional would help you sort through your past experiences and find the needed support to move on.
5. You feel betrayed in other areas of your life
When a partner you truly love cheats on you, feelings of anger, betrayal, and distrust should arise. While this is what happens in real life, dreams about a cheating partner can elicit such feelings.
When these happen, it is essential to self-examine and determine if there’s an area of your life in which you feel betrayed or resentful. While these dreams may play out in strange ways, they may be suggestive of much bigger situations than just the dream you have had.
What to do:
Introspection sessions would play a major role in helping you pinpoint exactly what is going on in your mind and help you draft a strategy to overcome these challenges.
6. Your relationship needs some TLC
While it may be a bit difficult to accept this, dreams about a cheating spouse/partner could indicate that your relationship needs some work. It could mean that you’ve started drifting away from yourselves or that there’s just something that needs attending to.
What to do:
Communication would be the bridge between the old and the new as far as your relationship is concerned. Brainstorm with your partner and come up with new and exciting ways to spice up your relationship.
7. You’re battling with a sense of loss, or you feel that something is missing from your life
If you find your partner cheating in the dream, it could indicate that there’s something you believe to be missing in your life. This could be something you can quickly point out or something a bit more intangible.
A timeout with yourself would do you a ton of good. As you prepare for this, go with a journal and think critically about your past and present life. Is there something you would have loved to have (especially with your partner) that you don’t?
If yes, you may benefit from a heartfelt conversation with the partner.
8. Your sexual fantasies may be coming to play
If you have ever talked to your partner about trying out a sexual kink and they refused to go down that route with you, you may have a weird dream where they engage in that sexual fantasy with someone else.
What to do:
Trying to repress your sexual desires (especially if they do not hurt your partner) may be counterproductive. Hence, you may want to have the conversation once again and see how you can reach a compromise.
This is one of the major reasons why you may find yourself having these dreams when everything in your relationship is going smoothly.
When your partner is picture-perfect, attends to you the way you want, and even satisfies you emotionally and sexually, you may still have dreams of a cheating partner.
This is because you are created to love and hold on to whatever makes you happy. When this finally comes your way, the fear of losing it may cause images to begin to run wild in your mind (both conscious and unconscious mind).
What to do:
Reassure yourself of your position in the relationship.
Remind yourself frequently that your partner means a lot to you and that you mean a lot to them as well. As much as possible, try to spend quality time with your partner as well.
10. Your partner is cheating on you
As far as this convo goes, this is the hardest truth of them all. Dreaming of your partner cheating on you could be your subconscious mind’s way of telling you that something is wrong in the relationship; your partner is cheating.
While this may not always be the case, when you’ve had these dreams over time, and they’ve refused to go away, you may want to take a step back and ask yourself the hard question; “is my partner truly cheating on me?”
What to do:
When these dreams just wouldn’t go away, open up to your partner about them. If there’s truly nothing to fear, they won’t get defensive and should be able to help you allay your fears.
In addition, critically analyze the relationship and point out the triggers that could be causing suspicion in you.
Do you want to know more about what cheating dreams mean? Watch this video.
What does it mean when you cheat on your partner in a dream?
Dreams where you find yourself cheating on a partner, can be as uncomfortable as the dreams where you see a partner cheating on you (if not more uncomfortable).
This is because these dreams often leave the bulk of the responsibility on your shoulders, and you would have to address some underlying issues if your relationship would proceed unharmed.
Here’s what dreams about cheating on your partner could mean.
1. There’s something you’re ashamed of (and hiding from your partner) in real life
Most times, the messages in your dreams come as metaphors. This means that although it may not be wise to take these messages the way they come, completely disregarding them may not be a brilliant decision as well.
A dream where you’re cheating on a partner could mean that there’s something that you’re trying to keep away from them in real life.
What to do:
You may have to be completely honest with yourself. Is there something of importance in your past that you’re doing your best to conceal from your partner?
If yes, your subconscious may be trying to let you know that it is time to get it out in the open with your partner.
Similar to what is discussed in the first point, dreams, where you are the cheater, could suggest that there’s something that’s gone down in your life that you feel guilty about.
In all honesty, it doesn’t have to be about your romantic life or relationship; it could be about something completely unrelated.
What to do:
You would benefit greatly from introspection sessions.
When you have identified whatever you’re feeling guilty about, take the time to figure out your emotions and get rid of that guilt. If you think it’s necessary, please visit a professional (therapist) to help you.
3. You’re giving too much time and attention to something/someone else
If you find yourself cheating on your partner in the dream, it could suggest that there’s something out there that’s been taking a lot of your attention lately.
It could be your job, your family, or even the world online.
What to do:
Take a while to count the cost and decide exactly who is worth more to you. Your partner? If so, consciously begin to create time to be spent with them.
Block out time from your schedule, spend it with them, have fun, communicate, and do things that make you happy. This would also help to spice up the relationship.
4. Your partner feels insecure in the relationship
If you’ve cheated on your partner in a dream, it could mean that your partner feels inadequate or insecure in your relationship.
This could be as a result of perceived factors (stuff that’s all in their head) or because of things you’ve made them feel.
What to do:
Make it a point of duty to show your partner (both with your words and actions) how important they are to you. To effectively accomplish this, you need to know your partner’slove language and try your best to speak it.
5. A part of you is looking for some extra fun
If you’ve ever dreamed that your partner goes with you and some friends on a double date (and things spiral out of control from there), it could mean that deep down, you feel there is something that has messed up your relationship.
Furthermore, if you have ever dreamed of yourself in an orgy, it could be that your body seeks the thrill that comes from trying out something exciting.
What to do:
As difficult as this may seem, this isn’t the time to start feeling ashamed of yourself or trying to repress your feelings. If you have an active sexual life with your partner, you may want to broach the subject and let them know that you’re open to trying out new things.
Look out for ways you can reach a compromise so that your relationship doesn’t take a beating in the long run.
6. You want to get close to someone your partner is close to
Having a dream where you’re cheating on your partner with someone they’re close to could be an indication that deep down, you want to get close to someone who means a lot to them.
What to do:
Evaluate your partner’s relationship with this person and know if getting close to the person would make your partner happy or not. If the person is a close friend/relation of your partner’s, getting close to them may be a good idea.
7. You feel physically attracted to someone else
If you’ve had a dream where you’re cheating with someone you’re actually attracted to in real life, it may be a call from your subconscious for you to tread with caution.
What to do:
Honest conversations with yourself would help you navigate this slippery slope. Ask yourself some of the hard questions; what’s it about this person that’s attracting you to them?
Do they have something your partner doesn’t (a better paying job)? If yes, you may want to be honest about this with your partner.
Also, you may want to see a professional who can help you unpack your emotions and offer expert advice on how to make it through these times without making your relationship suffer.
8. There are some qualities you wish your partner had that they don’t
If the dream is about you cheating with someone who’s in a stable relationship and whom you aren’t physically attracted to, it could mean that there are qualities they have that you wish your partner had.
It could be their sense of style, fashion, or humor. It could also be their charisma or charm.
What to do:
Communicate with your partner and develop creative ways to help them become the person you want. Remember, however, that your partner wouldn’t become everything you want them to be.
Also, look at it from a broader perspective. Could it be that this couple has something you don’t have with your partner? Yes? That may be the answer you seek.
What to do:
Again, communicate with your partner.
If it feels like the spark in your relationship is dying, plan something fun and exciting with your partner – like a getaway or vacation at a lovely location. Spending quality time together can help you find that spark once again.
If you have a cheating dream when you’re at the brink of making a huge decision about your life with your partner (like getting married to them or moving across the country), you may want to focus more on the feelings you had in the dream.
Was it excitement, dread, or terror? It may be that your subconscious is trying to pass a symbolic message to you.
What to do:
Focus more on the emotions you felt in the dream. Journaling can help you sort through these emotions and figure out exactly what’s happening deep down.
If you felt dread or terror, you may want to place your feet on the brakes and carefully analyze that decision you’re about to take with your partner. Think about the long-term implications of that decision.
Do you think they would be pleasant?
Also, having a third opinion (from someone you trust and respect) can be a blessing because they can help you see things from an entirely new perspective.
Is it a great idea to talk to your partner about these dreams?
There isn’t a one-word answer to this. On some occasions, it would be great to tell them, and some other times, you may not want to tell them about it.
However, before you make the decision of whether to tell them or not, here are a few things you should consider.
Consider the message the dream is trying to pass across to you. We’ve analyzed about 20 different scenarios where you may have dreams of infidelity and what each of them means. Is the message in the dream meant for you (something you should work on)?
Yes? You may want to focus on sorting out your emotions first. If you must talk to your partner about it, you can consider leaving out the part where you tell them that you had a dream about cheating.
Has your partner done something to make you suspicious of them?
You may want to consider talking to them about their actions that make you wary while still leaving out the ‘dreams of infidelity’ part.
Consider talking to your partner about the dreams if they are recurrent and you believe your partner should know about them. Infidelity (whether real or perceived) is a sore subject, so you may want to think carefully about this before letting your partner in on these cheating dreams.
Having dreams of being cheated on can be a lot to wrap your head around. However, this article has revealed that it isn’t all about the dreams but the messages in those dreams. Pay closer attention to what your mind is trying to communicate to you than to the dreams you’ve had.
Remember, not all dreams of infidelity mean that you or your partner are bad people.
It could just be your mind trying to do a number on you.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.