“I Dreamed About Being Pregnant—What Does It Mean?" A Jungian Therapist Explains

Spoiler: It doesn’t necessarily mean you want a bebé

dreams about being pregnantL Woman holding her belly
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Therapists and spiritual advisors agree—dreams are an invitation to do more investigation of our thoughts and feelings. Whether you’re dreaming of scary things (snakes and spiders are common) or people in your life (like an ex-boyfriend), a symbol, activity or emotional state experienced while you’re sleeping is a valuable clue to unexpressed impulses of your waking life. That’s why we were curious to investigate a common occurrence: A dream about being pregnant. Does it we want to have a baby? Is this a sign we already are pregnant, but may not know it yet? Should we be worried about anything abnormal happening during our dream about pregnancy, like giving birth to an animal (which is a common dream, btw)? We asked a psychotherapist and dream expert to illuminate possible meanings behind the most common pregnancy dream scenarios.

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Meet the Expert

Machiel Klerk is a licensed mental health therapist, speaker and international speaker. He’s author of Dream Guidance: Connecting to the Soul Through Dream Incubation. Klerk has been vocationally guided by his dreams, leading him to found the Jung Society of Utah and the online Jung Platform.

What Do Dreams About Being Pregnant Mean When You're Not Pregnant?

In general, dreams about pregnancy can be put into four categories, according to Klerk. “First, there’s a literal interpretation—a dream about being pregnant might mean you are pregnant, but don’t know it yet. Second, there’s the symbolic interpretation, as in the birth of something new," he says. "Example, first I am walking around and think I want to write a book, then at night I have a dream I have just conceived a child. Third, it could be a reflection of an anxiety or a desire concerning pregnancy or parenting. And finally, fourth, you could interpret a dream about being pregnant when you are not pregnant as being a combination of the above psychic expressions.”

Common Dreams About Being Pregnant

1.   Dreaming You’re Happily Pregnant

Klerk says that this may not mean you’re actually pregnant, or even want to be. He gives the example of a person who in their waking hours is working on a project they enjoy, and the book, screenplay or score is happily taking shape. At night, that person might dream they are having a successful pregnancy, which is a reflection of their process of satisfying creation.

dreams about being pregnant: tearful woman holding belly
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2.    Dreaming of Miscarrying

Using the example of writing a book, Klerk imagines what might occur if he were to become creatively blocked. “Five chapters in, I might dream of miscarriage and think oh, this might not go as planned, he says. “This would be an expression of it not going well.”

3. Dreaming You Just Conceived

An important element of dream interpretation is observing the state of your emotional reaction inside the dream, and to your perhaps hidden feelings in your waking life. “Dreams can be a reflection of a desire or an anxiety,” Klerk says. “So in one case, someone might dream of getting pregnant and feel the desire in the dream, or in another case, someone in an erotic encounter is super afraid the condom fell out and then they could have an anxiety they might be pregnant, and dream about that.”

4. Dreaming You’re Pregnant with an Animal

“If I have adream I gave birth to a cow or a dog, that’s a positive dream, because that’s the birth of an instinctual force in you,” Klerk says. “It’s an instinct ready to come into the world, maybe doglike (upbeat and loyal), or if it’s a wolf, then a different instinct.”

Klerk emphasizes how useful dreaming can be, with just a little analysis. “Dream work involves cues to further nurture qualities into your life,” he says. For example, the therapist suggests imaging in waking hours, the following: “Oh here is the dog I gave birth to, it brings you to a broader consciousness….like if you have the energy of the wolf you gave birth to, then you bring that hunting fierce wolf energy into your daily life.”

5. Dreaming You’re Pregnant with Twins

If this is an anxious dream, Klerk says it can signify your feelings of being overwhelmed.

dreams about being pregnant: woman counseling another woman
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6.   Dreaming About Being Pregnant and Losing Your Job

Klerk suggests traveling to a foreign country while pregnant is an expression of your fear and/or desire that a major change is coming in your life.

8. Dreaming You’re Pregnant and Swimming in the Ocean

Klerk says that he’d ask a client with this dream to describe the narrative of the dream. “We are water beings, in the belly of our mother and the mother herself is also carried by something larger than herself, the ocean. Is the dream about floating? Trusting Mother Nature to carry her? If she is floating, then that’s she’s on the right track, but if she is drowning then I’d help her shift her perspective somehow to a more positive viewpoint.

dreams about being pregnant: woman surrounded by medical tech

9.   Dreaming Your Baby Is Sick

“If a woman is pregnant, I would first have her check with her doctor” to check on the health of the fetus, Klerk says, or pediatrician if a woman has a child. Otherwise, Klerk says that dreaming about a sick child can be an expression of generalized anxiety, especially when in the dream, if the woman is highly agitated. “In general, it’s the same if you have a dream you need a test or school and can’t find classroom—that’s all an anxiety dream feeling.”

10. Dreaming Someone Else Is Pregnant

You may be picking up on a hidden message from the collective unconscious. “My sister dreamed a colleague was pregnant and the colleague said, ‘You’re right, it’s just so early I haven’t told anyone yet,’” says Klerk. So, tread carefully if you are thinking of mentioning your dream, unless you want a surprise answer.

Do Dreams About Being Pregnant Mean I Want to Get Pregnant?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no, according to Klerk. “In the dream, the feelings of desire you would know as desire,” he says. “If you’re not desirous of that outcome, it may be an expression of something else.”  He cites the example of a woman he knows, a busy project manager, who slept with a DJ at a party and then had a pregnancy dream. “She dreamed she was pregnant, but when she awoke, she decided she wasn’t enthusiastic about having a child, but was instead pregnant of the idea of DJing as a hobby,” he said. She learned the skill and now does it part-time, as a side hustle.

Are Your Dreams More Vivid When You're Pregnant?

“I have heard anecdotal reports some women’s dreams are more intense when their hormones change during pregnancy,” Klerk says. While some women also report being able to remember their dreams better at that time, some still claim they don’t dream or don’t remember them. “Our dream life peaks and flows” during our lives, Klerk says. “It’s like going on a journey.”

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Dana Dickey is a PureWow Senior Editor, and during more than a decade in digital media, she has scoped out and tested top products and services across the lifestyle space...