When I broke up with my partner of several years, I started to have dreams about him. He would turn up in the most unusual places, doing the most mundane things, but he wouldn't stop appearing. I thought after I started dating again that it would stop, but it lasted for months. It was SO frustrating, but now that I'm finally free from those dreams I can look back and realize why it was happening.
The thing is, after spending years together, it was the most mundane things that I missed. Things like going grocery shopping, chatting while we unloaded the dishwasher, or even those quiet mornings when we just sat drinking coffee were the things I still felt myself thinking about. While the relationship didn't work out, there was a bit of me that still missed him. But as it turns out, there are many reasons why you can dream about your ex, and not all of them are that simple.
1. You've lost who you are
Seeing your ex in your dream may be representing the fact that you are unhappy with how you have changed. You are actually seeing yourself in them, and the dream version of them is actually you. You changed while you were in the relationship, so now your trying to break it off with that part of your personality.
Focus inward and try to regain that independence. Remember who you are, and what makes you happy outside of a relationship to free yourself from these constant dreams.
2. You're still hung up on them
Whether or not you were the one to end the relationship, you are still harboring deep feelings for them that you just can't let go of. You shared a deep connection with them, but now that it's over you should take a good look at what about the relationship you actually are missing to see how you can move forward.
Even if it is aspects of their personality you miss, you can potentially find them in yourself or in a future partner when you're ready to move on.
3. You need closure
Maybe the relationship ended suddenly with you even expecting it, maybe you thought you were through with them but you still have these moments of longing, or maybe it's as simple as you just didn't get to say goodbye. Closure is important, but not everyone feels the same way so sometimes you need to grant yourself closure without forcing your ex to go through it too.
4. You're feeling anxious in a new relationship
It's hard to start a new relationship, especially when you start comparing it to your last one. When your previous relationship went on for a long time, you may find yourself expecting everything to be as simple as it was before. But this is a new person and they may be frustrating you because they don't know all the things you like or what your routine is, but you need to give it time to settle in.
You can't compare relationships, even though it's hard not to, because it's not fair to the new person or to yourself. You're going to end up putting a stop to any relationship if you constantly compare and contrast to your ex.
5. You're afraid of being hurt again
If your relationship ended badly, it's hard not to take that pain forward with you. When you go through a bad breakup it's going to stay with you for a long time. As much as we wish we could all just hit the reset button and start fresh with someone new, those hangups are going to follow us forever and ever.
The best thing you can do is try to make conscious decisions in your relationship not to follow the same paths. Take a little bit of control in your choices and try not to just sink back into your usual pattern.
6. You are trying to forgive them
If you are having issues getting closure, your subconscious may try to forgive them so you can finally get some peace. It's not easy to forgive the people who hurt you, but there comes a point when your anger is only hurting yourself.
Try to take some time in your days to let go of their transgressions and move on with your life. It might just free up your dream time for something a lot more fun.
7. You miss them, or at least parts of the relationship
As I said before, for me, it was that I missed the little things we did together. Sometimes you just have to accept that those are no longer a possibility and find new things that you enjoy. I had to think about why I missed those moments, and once I did that I was able to accept and move on from them.
No matter what the reason is, don't worry. It's completely normal to dream about an ex, even if none of these reasons seem like they are true for you. Sometimes your brain is just dumping random information on you while you sleep, sometimes you saw something that reminded you of them but you didn't even register it, and sometimes your brain is just playing some tricks on you.