if your bed partner is having a nightmare do you wake them?

United States
November 18, 2009 7:00am CST
if you share a bed (with whomever) and the person is prone to nightmares and freaks out and cries out while jerking around do you wake them? i know there was an old saying about sleepwalkers and not waking them but i think that was an old wives tale.. but something about being afraid that you would startle them but wouldnt you startle the person having a nightmare? is it that much different? could you really injure some one by waking them up from sleep walking or nightmares? i dont know about you but as far as nightmares go i dont want my bedmate to have them because he sounds so tortured and i worry about what ever horrors he is experiencing even if it is just a dream..
4 people like this
21 responses
@srganesh (6348)
• India
19 Nov 09
If you take your bed partner seriously into your life,what you have to do is to,take him/her to a good psychiatrist.Daily having nightmares,screaming at sleep are real mental problems and it should be treated quickly.Some suppressed feelings and emotions should have an outlet and a psychiatrist will help in this.Cheers!
• United States
23 Nov 09
he is seeing a shrink for his ptsd so i guess its just another part of the ptsd
@ahgong (10064)
• Singapore
19 Nov 09
Oh yes, I will try to coax them to wake up. Or at least calm them down. Usually once you intervene and calm them down, they will get out of whatever nightmarish situation they got themselves in in their dreams.
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah i figure its better then them scaring themselves awake
@lazeebee (5466)
• Malaysia
22 Nov 09
Hi Moonlit, I whack him - I really do. The first few times when he had a dream or nightmare, he kicked out and hit me. So I'm very careful - whenever I hear him mumbling or talking, I will whack him first!
2 people like this
• Philippines
19 Nov 09
Yes. There are times that I sleep later than my husband. I used to read books in bed until I feel sleepy. There were times that he seemed to be into some bad dreams. I very well observed it and I woke him up. I didn't want anything bad to happen if I allowed him to be continually in that situation.
@riyasam (16571)
• India
19 Nov 09
yup,i also wouldnt like to wake the person but like you said,i would like to see them in that state,so i would mutter reassurring words and would try to gently wake them up from their sleep.
2 people like this
@rg0205 (2638)
• Hong Kong
19 Nov 09
I would most definitely wake my partner up when hes having a nightmare or when he seems to be talking in his sleep. I've done it a few times. He's never really had any really bad nightmares or anything and he doesn't sleep walk either. He does the same for me. He wakes me up if I'm having nightmares.
2 people like this
@katisaurus (1038)
• Canada
19 Nov 09
I have night terrors sometime, My boyfriend ALWAYS wakes me up. And I appreciate it because he wakes me up before I have a chance to walk around and freak out or potentially hurt myself. I move around a lot in my sleep and I have a tendency to get really sweaty and shakey, and I flat our just seize up. It's a terrible experience when you're woken up and realize what it is you're doing. It's embarrassing for some people. Fortunately I only ever sleep in the same bed with one person and he's so used to it that it doesn't bother him anymore. It worries him when it gets really bad some nights, and it does.. Because there's been a few nights where I've tretzed out in my sleep and kind of freaked out.. One night I did it and he woke me up. I didn't move the rest of the night. I layed there in a hardcore dripping sweat. I slowly remembered parts of the dream. THOSE I won't share cause it was goofy and embarrassing. :P haha
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah well my hubby had one where a hankie was attacking him and going down his throat or something.. i was like your screaming over THAT?!?!
• United States
19 Nov 09
I am normally the one that has had the nightmares and my husband has always woke me up as long as he has been awaken by them at least. There has only been maybe twice that my husband has had a nightmare of sorts, I can't say that he was having a nightmare but when he seemed to be a bit jumpy or breathing heavier in bed I have woken him up out of his sleep just to be safe. He always gets these jumps as i call them to where right as he starts to fall asleep he jumps like he just got the poo scared out of him..he says he doesn't remember but is glad he wakes up from it.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
you mean like a jerking thing when he is falling asleep? my husband does that because he has that restless leg syndrome
• United States
24 Nov 09
I am not sure if it is so much of a leg thing it is almost like he is on the edge of the bed an slightly rolls and then realizes he is closer to the edge than he thought so he jumps but it isn't that because one he is sleeping and two he is no where near the edge. Half the time when he does it it is right when I am at that stage right before I fall asleep and it scares the life out of me LOL
• United States
19 Nov 09
I have also heard that it is very bad to wake a sleepwalker and I wouldn't. Imagine laying down to go to bed at night and then opening your eyes and being in the livingroom. Your initial reaction would be to freak out. So, someone could end up getting hurt. When it comes to nightmares, I would wake them up. It may just be me, but I have had instances where I am in a very weird stage of sleep. I will be having a nightmare and I will be trying to scream at my husband to help me. I just can't talk or move because I am still asleep. I know it is a dream, but I still can't get out of my sleep mode and wake up. Has this ever happend to anyone else? I guess the main reason I would wake the person up CAREFULLY (incase they are fist fighting in their nightmare, I don't want to take a punch) is because most of the time when you wake up from a nightmare....you can go back to sleep and not continue the dream and be rested in the morning.
1 person likes this
@xzvzion (134)
• Singapore
19 Nov 09
You should try to subdue them first. Then tie 'em up. Then put cold or warm water(cold water has a better waking capability, I guess) on that person. Skip step 2 if that he/she is strong. Just do step 3 quick!
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
i think my hubby would be pissed if i threw water on him lol
@oasis_9 (832)
• Philippines
19 Nov 09
I think you should wake them up! Not sure but I've heard that its more dangerous if you let them have there scary nightmares... Better to bring them back to reality.
1 person likes this
@xzvzion (134)
• Singapore
19 Nov 09
I think people would fall into some unwakable, deep sleep (comatose, maybe?). They might never wake up again. So yeah, I should wake them up!
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah i think some people with heart problems might be at risk for heart attacks etc if they get scared enough
• Canada
2 Dec 09
My husband usually wakes himself up from a nightmare, screaming like a maniac, with Viet Nam flashbacks. FORTUNATELY these have become few and far between, over the years I've known him. It also really really REEEEEALLY helps that we live down in the basement. He says this is "just like a bomb shelter."
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Dec 09
ugh i bet those nightmares are horrible
• United States
26 Nov 09
I woke my mom up once when she was having a nightmare and her fist flew up into my face. lol. I had a black eye and sore noose for a week.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Dec 09
ugh that sucks!
• Philippines
19 Nov 09
It's necessary for me to wake them because it can affect their mental health. Sounds like your bed partner is in freddy krueger's nightmare. Freaks out and cries? That's not normal.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah it does sound like the movie
• United States
19 Nov 09
I still suffer from night-terrors. Sad at the age of 18, but it's true. When I sleep in the same bed as my boyfriend, he doesn't wake me up. But he says he holds me close and whispers in my ear that it's just a bad dream, and to start dreaming something happy, that he's close. He says it usually calms me down.
• United States
23 Nov 09
thats sweet of him
• Malaysia
19 Nov 09
When we were young, my eldest sis was the one who usually have nightmares. She would always make some scary sounds when she was having some bad dreams. When we asked her about it, she said she was actually shouting for help and hoping my other sis would hear her to wake her up. That's why when she started to have nightmares, my older sis would not hesitate, but to jolt her. So, I think it's better to wake the person who's having nightmares. He/she might be struggling to wake up and need someone's help. Just my thoughts...
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
thats interesting that she was aware enough to know to yell for help in her dreams
@mylearn (37)
• China
19 Nov 09
for me, i'll wake up my bad partner, and let he away from the nightmare.After that, when he return to bed , maybe he will have a good dream, at least not nightmare again.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah usually its rare for some one to go back into the same dream
@xzvzion (134)
• Singapore
19 Nov 09
Nightmares are just dreams in your head. In your head. So that means you can control it, if you try to overcome it. But it will take time for some depending on their control of fear.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
its not me having them so unless he learns how to it doesnt solve anything
@smileonstar (4012)
• United States
19 Nov 09
hi, of course, I will wake him/her up... cuz if I dont wake he/she up then he/she will continue in their dream and it might scare them so bad. it is a good idea to distract what they are seeing now. and hope to help them release from those bad dream.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
yeah that is what i am hoping for.. that i will wake them up and then he wont continue the dream
• United States
19 Nov 09
Rather than waking them up by shaking them, I would gently place my arms around them, so that if they did wake up, they would have a pair of reassuring arms around them, and help them awaken with less fear and anxiety from a nightmare. It can be awful for both the one suffering the nightmare and the partner when something like this does happen. But when you have a good partner, its much easier to cope with. Happy myLotting
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
although if something is chasing them in the dream they may take me grabbing and holding them as the attacker grabbing them and then try to fight me off
@jillhill (37383)
• United States
18 Nov 09
My SIL is a sleepwalker.....my daughter doesn't wake him up...sometimes she doesn't even know he is gone...but a nightmare...if if were my grandbaby I would scoop her up in my arms and comfort her....if she woke up she would find herself safe....but I don't know if I would wake her.....
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Nov 09
guess sometimes it depends on the person and their personalities and size