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dealing with bad dreams

(15 Posts)
bizzi Thu 16-Dec-04 20:15:03

I posted on 'sleep' but thought I'd try here too...please!
dd2 was sexually assaulted in August 2003, days before her 3rd birthday, by an 8 year old boy.
She is still suffering nightmares where, she says, the boy asks her to lick his willy.
How can I help her move on? She doesn't want to talk to anyone else "who could help get rid of the bad dreams"
A counsellor from the NSPCC were very helpful (for me) at the time, but I know she was leaving at the end of the summer and I don't want to go through everything with someone new. I don't know what else to do. My heart broke 16mths ago, what can I do to help her? She sleeps on our floor now - not ideal but her needs come 1st... only I don't think this is good for her in the long run.
please help.

OLittleYurtofBethlehem Thu 16-Dec-04 20:42:32

Bizzi How awful i really dont know what to say
Ds aged 3 has nightmares about walruses!!! not the same i know but he regularly wakes up screaming hysterically genuinely petrified of them. I dont know how i would cope with what you are experiencing - hopefully somebody else will soon..............

dolally Thu 16-Dec-04 21:21:55

don't really know how to help bizzi, but I'm sure someone will. So sorry to hear what happened, I just don't know what you say to a 3 year old. When mine have bad dreams it has often worked for me to tell them to turn their pillow over (the cool side makes the dream go away)but I don't for a moment think this would help your poor little dd... so sad for you.

bizzi Fri 17-Dec-04 07:26:11

Thanks for your comments.
She's 4 now the incident occured 16 months ago when she was 2.

Kittypickle Fri 17-Dec-04 08:36:21

Bizzi, I do feel for you, this must be very difficult. I don't know if it will help at all but my DD had some bad nightmares and her Nursery teacher suggested I got a dreamcatcher. We got one from Hobbycraft and made it. She wanted to know how it worked so I told her all the dreams get caught in the web, the good ones go down the ribbons so she can dream them, the bad ones get destroyed by the moon and stars. To my amazement as I was very sceptical about it all, it did work. She stopped having nightmares for ages, although it has stopped working now but her dreams aren't as vivid. She was 4 when I got it.

bizzi Fri 17-Dec-04 12:09:53

thanks kp, I've also tried this with the older two, but not dd2. Sometimes I can't see wood for the trees!
I have one that I'll wrap up for her to make it a 'special' gift.
Any other suggestions gratefully recieved...

OLittleYurtofBethlehem Fri 17-Dec-04 19:44:32

Hi Bizzi - I have been thinking about this all day!!!!!!! We have given ds a cuddly walrus to squeeze away the scaredy walruses - seems to be working - though he was very worried about pandas this afternoon..........

Obviously not in the same league as your problem though - have to confess to having trawled the archives and reading the full story about your kids and several other terrible stories of abuse

I think the dream catcher idea is marvellous - what about worry dolls from Guatemala - not sure where to get them but the idea is that you tell the little dolls your worries then put them under your pillow - in the morning all your worries will have gone away - Its a nice idea even if unlikely - My ds would believe in it!!!!!!!!!!!

OLittleYurtofBethlehem Fri 17-Dec-04 19:45:45

Just read my post and it sounds flippant - it wasnt meant too - sorry! Reading the stories of abuse actually made me feel sick and tearful..........

bizzi Sun 19-Dec-04 09:45:18

I have some worry dolls too! I used to use them when I was young - more like 14 than 4 though they're also a good idea. Although I'm a bit concerned that talking about the nightmares or any worries she may have just before going to sleep might exacerbate the problem and cause a nightmare...
Whatever, anything's worth a try. We shall have a go at hanging the dream catcher, talking to the dolls at bedtime and turning the pillow over if all else fails!
If these don't work does anyone know of a miracle cure.. herbal medicine or something else safe yet effective?

OLittleYurtofBethlehem Sun 19-Dec-04 13:16:07

I thought that too Bizzi - talking about bad things just before going to sleep isnt so great for a 4year old is it - maybe she could tell her worries to them in the morning!!!!

Maybe some more therapy of some kind would help
[sympathy]

bizzi Sun 19-Dec-04 13:54:40

Olittleyurtofbethlehem thankyou for your support, yes it was a horrendous time, I thought my children couldn't be more protected, ds (9) still doesn't go out on his own, yet dd2 (2 at the time) is repeatedly sexually assaulted, by a friend of ds's, in her own home while I'm in a neighbouring room.
I've just had a look back and can only see that I added something to pacifics thread, can't believe I didn't lean on this site a little more at the time, maybe I was past leaning, I'd probably have collapsed in a puddle if I'd tried to unravel my thoughts at the time!
Thanks again.

bizzi Tue 21-Dec-04 08:30:13

2 nights with the dream catcher and worry dolls (on our floor) and she says the bad dreams have gone, she thinks she's ready to move back to her room.
We'll be away over Christmas and she'll be on our floor for that period (no room at the Inn). Do I wait till after Christmas before moving her back into her own room?

Kittypickle Tue 21-Dec-04 08:44:40

Bizzi, that's brilliant I was going to say wait until after Christmas, but as it's her who's wanting to go back to her room, then maybe it is the right time to do it. I read what you posted on Pacific's thread yesterday and I am so sorry what you and your family have been through. I wish you all the best for 2005 and hope it's a much better year for you all.

OLittleYurtofBethlehem Tue 21-Dec-04 20:07:42

thats wonderful news Bizzi - Perhaps you could have a decorating session in her bedroom to celebrate! If it were me i would take the lead from her as to when to switch rooms - really fantastic news hope the bad dreams continue to stay away [hope emotion]

bizzi Sat 01-Jan-05 09:55:00

I just wanted to say that dd2 is now in her own room and sleeping through. She has a dream catcher, her worry dolls, 2 of which she's 'made friends' with and a couple of crystals, purple quartz? Not sure of their names, one's to give her nice dreams and the other I rub each night as I say goodnight to her and remind her that a little piece of me will be keeping her safe through the crystal. Hmm, sounds like baloney to me too but it works .
Wish us well for the luck to continue!

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