What does it mean when you dream about someone you hardly know?

The meaning of dreams about random people is one of the most common questions people ask when looking to interpret their dreams. 

After all, dreams are a universal language we can take advantage of when trying to look into our problems, both present and future. 

Keep reading this article to find out more about the symbolism that this kind of dream can bring to your day-to-day life. 

But, first…

Why do we dream?

We can analyze dreams through many different lenses. We can use psychology, philosophy, and even religion. 

This is why interpreting dreams is such deeply personal work. Not everyone has the same experiences or feelings; what we dream of is comprised of our most intensely private, subconscious thoughts. . We have no control over them.  

Why and what you dream can be influenced by:

  • Your diet — Heavy foods like pasta, stew, or even cheese can give you nightmares as a result of your stomach digesting dinner.  
  • Anxiety — Adrenaline levels rise when you experience anxiety or panic attacks. This kind of mental illness can lower the quality of your sleep, causing nightmares or other sleeping disorders like insomnia.  
  • Depression — Mental illness can impact your health and your sleeping patterns deeply. Low periods and all their consequences are no joke, and professional help is essential to manage these symptoms. 
  • Illness — If you’ve gone through illness and you’re recovering from it, your body can alter its sleeping patterns and cause insomnia or even hypersomnia. When you’re getting over a fever, your dreams might be weird or creepy.  
  • Medication — Some medicines can cause vivid or scary dreams. Read the leaflet carefully so you aren’t surprised by the side effects.  

Dreaming about someone you don’t know

Dreams about random people can be confusing or even surprising. 

Here are the 4 main reasons you might be dreaming of someone you don’t know…

4 reasons why you might be dreaming of people you don’t know 

Dreams with people we’ve never met might be a replacement for people we don’t want to see. 

They can also represent aspects of ourselves that we haven’t explored yet or that we refuse to accept. 

1) It’s time for a new experience in your life

When you see an unknown person in your dream, it might be warning you of a new experience, whether negative or positive. 

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Maybe you’ll start a new relationship, or maybe something else will happen that you don’t expect. 

Yet, if you dream that you are in love with someone you’ve never met, it may mean that you’re about to meet a new romantic partner. 

If this person you don’t know is your lover, it might be your subconscious mind sending you a message through this image. 

Even though this exact person might not even exist, there is a chance that there’s someone else who’ll become an important person in your life.

2) You want to fill a void 

Perhaps your mind is trying to fill in some subconscious need, fear, or even something you desire.

Your dreams have a subconscious meaning of some sort.  

For example:

  • If the person in your dream behaves in a positive way, you might need someone of the same nature in your life. 
  • When someone is chasing you, you might be afraid someone is working against you. 
  • If they are your lover, maybe what you want is a new relationship, love, or passion. 

Although it’s easy to believe the person in your dreams is real — maybe they are— this likely happens because you’ve randomly seen them at some point. 

Even so, it doesn’t mean they will play an important role in your life. 

If you fall in love with someone you’ve never met in your dreams, it’s not likely you’ll meet them in real life. They are a representation of a feeling, a desire, or even a situation. 

3) You want to develop new qualities

Dreams about strangers are a representation of your inner world. 

In some other situations, dreams can represent qualities you lack and you’d like to have or develop in your own life. 

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Maybe your life is super stable, meaning: 

  • You have a 9-to-5 office job. 
  • You are a responsible person. 
  • You take care of your family.
  • You keep on top of chores and things to do.

On the other hand, the person in your dreams is fun and playful. 

The reason you might be dreaming of them is because you wish for a more daring life. 

You want those qualities; you wish to go on adventures, be spontaneous, and have fun experiences. Your subconscious processes your desires and builds your dreams according to them. 

Sometimes a stranger comes into your dreams and makes you question decisions or situations in real life.

This person can act as a mirror, making you analyze your thoughts and habits. They might help you gain perspective on these issues, waking you up to the changes you need to make in your life. 

4) You feel may feel vulnerable and lack support

Sometimes, the people who show up in your dream can represent your vulnerability and remind you of the much-needed support and protection you lack. 

For example:

  • You may feel like the entire world is out to get you. 
  • Nothing is going right. 
  • You’ve been betrayed by your family or your friends, people you used to trust. 
  • Your work is constantly being criticized.

With such negative situations, maybe you dream of a stranger helping and protecting you. Unfortunately, it doesn’t mean this person will appear in real life. 

It’s more likely a sign that you need protection and help, and in your dreams, this appears as a person you don’t know because there isn’t anyone who fulfills that role in your real life. 

In this case, you may want to reach out to your family and friends and ask them for support. They may not even know that you’re having a hard time. 

Telling them about your hardships may be liberating and helpful for you.

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Situations in dreams with people you don’t know

Here are some of the most common situations you may see in your dreams and what they mean.

Dreaming about someone criticizing you

If there are many different versions of you in your dreams, it may mean that you have to develop different critical-thinking skills. 

Here’s what we mean…

David Bedrick, a counselor trained in Jungian psychology, explains this concept through the words of the poet Antonio Machado in an article he wrote for “Psychology Today.”  “I am not I,” he wrote. “I am this one walking beside me whom I do not see.”

The expert wrote, “…Let’s say ‘I’ am being criticized by someone in a dream; I am not only the one criticized or hurt, but also the one who is being critical.” This may call for some changes in your real life. 

“Maybe I need to be less judgmental of others or myself,” Bedrick mused, “or perhaps the dream is advising me to be more consciously critical of ideas and people I accept.”

Dreaming about someone chasing you

There are a lot of who have anxiety about dreams where we’re being chased. 

Michael R. Olsen is a dream expert and a student of the subconscious mind. 

He says that, no matter how scary these dreams are, they’re not always bad: “If another person, more people, or even animals are chasing you, these can all be illustrations of sides or elements of yourself, something you either will not acknowledge or simply [haven’t] yet realized you contain,” he explained.

As an example, Olsen related that a woman might dream of being followed by another woman, but, when turning around, she sees an unassuming street musician.  “She might be a symbol of a more loose or free, potentially creative/musical side of you, which you currently are hiding in waking life,” he wrote. 

Indeed, you might have a hidden version of yourself that you need to run toward, instead of away from. 

But of course, this isn’t always the case. 

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If you are being chased by a predatory or dominant person, Olsen says, perhaps you have this trait in your personality and are struggling to accept it. 

This can be due to embarrassment or shame, which causes you to run away from it. 

Try to accept all sides of your personality and it’ll make your life much easier.

Dreaming about a guy you’ve never met

Two of the most obvious reasons Mr. Right is a stranger in your dreams are because he either doesn’t actually exist, or because you just haven’t met him yet. 

Of course, maybe you want to have a new romantic partner or sexual fling. If you have been dating your current partner for a long time, your subconscious may be telling you to spice things up.If you do not have someone to fulfill that role in your waking life, your subconscious has to make someone up. This person could have all the ultimate “wish list” combination of traits you desire.

On the other hand, some women may dream about a mysterious stranger when they are in a relationship. 

This does not necessarily mean that you want to be with someone else. It’s more likely the stranger represents something you lack in your current relationship. 

Another reason why you might see a strange man in your dreams is because you’re upset or disappointed with your current partner. Your subconscious may be trying to reveal a quality or something you are missing in your everyday life: 

  • Perhaps you feel like your significant other never pays attention to you, while your dream guy or girl gives you the attention you need. 
  • In other cases, you may be angry that your significant other never helps out at home. In your dream, you suddenly have a partner who supports you and helps around the house.

Your subconscious is basically looking for someone new, who is less stressful for you. In fact, your sleeping mind may be ready to acknowledge what you are not prepared to accept yet – the relationship could be at its end.

Lastly, a dream about a stranger could just be your mind trying to give you a free, romantic vacation while you sleep.

Dreaming about a stranger dying

This kind of dream or nightmare can represent the end of something, a deep change:

  • Moving abroad
  • Switching careers
  • Starting a new relationship 

A dream where someone else dies can reflect our desires. 

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Not as in, “I want this person dead,” of course, but perhaps if the relationship has been strained for a while, you may want major change. The dream may signal that you want to move forward. 

When we look at the “death” card on the tarot deck, it brings the message of deep change, a discovery of new aspects of your personality. 

When a death feels real in a dream, it can mean you’re trying to acknowledge whatever’s dying in the relationship. 

We all know we’re going to die, along with the people around us. When we dream of dying, we can learn lessons from the dream or nightmare. We can learn how we’re feeling about society, rules, relationships, and even ourselves. 

Here’s what you can do if you see someone you know dying in your dream:

  • Rethink the relationship with this person.
  • Review what situations you’ve been in together and how they’ve impacted your relationship.
  • Think of any unresolved issues you might have with this person.
  • Consider getting in touch with them to find out how they’re doing and if they need any help.

Dreams mean different things to different people groups. Western cultures associate dreams of death with happiness. 

Ancient Egyptians interpreted dreams of someone else’s death as material progress. 

Some people even believe that, if you dream of someone dying, you’re prolonging their life. 

Dreaming about having sex with a stranger

Many people wonder what it means when you dream about having sex with someone you’ve never met.

In the freedom of our dreams, sex is often about feeling connected to someone and the intimacy that brings, rather than a physical desire for sex itself. For this reason, it’s not unusual to dream about having sex with someone with a stranger when you are feeling lonely  or are in the process of starting over in a new life circumstance or entering a new relationship. 

“For example, it is very common to have sexual dreams when you are moving to a new place, entering a new job, or feeling distant from those you love,” Bowman explains

“Physical contact is actually a metaphor for the spiritual and emotional connection we desire. It is a sign to open up, try new things, and let the good stuff in.”

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At a very basic level, your body may be experiencing hormonal changes, which is why you’re having sex-related dreams. 

“Depending on where a woman is in her cycle, hormones can affect our thinking, so why not our dreams?” poses Jeffrey. “It could also mean you’re really attracted to someone, and your mind is playing with the idea. So, the dream means what you think it means.”

Dreaming about someone being pregnant

Thankfully, dreaming about someone dying doesn’t mean the person will actually pass away. It can symbolize the end of something – a work relationship or a period of your life. 

The same thing happens when you dream about pregnancy. 

It can represent the start of something new. More women dream of pregnancy than men, but both sexes can have this kind of dream. 

“At its core, this dream is about creativity,” Ally Mead, a dream analyst, told HuffPost. Still, there is a difference between having a dream about being pregnant yourself versus someone else.

“If you dream of being pregnant, you are likely craving time to be creative, or ‘dreaming up’ a new and exciting creative project that will come into existence down the line,” Mead explained. 

“This could be as small as a home-based renovation project or a large-scale artistic work.” If you dream about someone else being pregnant, however, it’s probably not steeped in personal growth. Rather, the expert said it’s a sign that “something has been left inside, unexpressed or undone.”

Dreaming about someone famous

Dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg explained, while interviewing with Reader’s Digest, why you might have dreams of meeting famous people. 

She stated, “The message that celebrity brings to you can be found in the title of the song or maybe the lyrics or the character you know them from. There’s something your subconscious identifies from it that applies to you and your life right now.” 

If your dream goes from innocent meet and greet to full-on making out with an A-list celebrity, the meaning doesn’t change that much. 

You might like this celebrity, which is a good reason why you might be dreaming of getting it on with them, or, according to Loewenberg in an interview with Prevention, “Celebrities in our dreams often represent some part of ourselves we want recognition and applause for.”

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Dreaming about a stranger

Dreams often help you process information or circumstances that are difficult to handle in your waking moments. While not necessarily premonitions, they can also be a sign of things to come. Here are a few reasons you may be dreaming of an unknown person. 

To play out scenarios

We might be dreaming of different possibilities for decisions we will have to make, which means the stranger may represent unknown circumstances.

Another reason a stranger appears in your dream may be your desire for new experiences with people you haven’t met yet. A new person in your dreams could also be a combination of different traits about many people you like or admire, all rolled into one. 

To deal with trauma

Dreams can help you process or understand a difficult situation you’ve been through. It gives your mind time to accept and acknowledge circumstances from your past that your alert mind is not ready to face.

A strange person appearing in your dreams during this time could be nature’s way of sending someone to help you through this emotional season. 

What to do next?

Now that you have a better understanding of why you dream, you can appreciate their role in helping you through each phase of your life. They are a time of rest, rejuvenation, preparation, and reflection. 

Consider your recent lifestyle changes

We most often dream when we are in REM sleep, which is the deep-sleep stage when our brain is supposed to be the least active.

If you have been able to recall your dreams easily, it might be a sign that you are not getting into the deep sleep you need to feel restored. This could be due to not getting enough rest, being anxious, stressed, or not exercising. .

Consider what has happened in your life recently

Keep in mind any unusual things you have experienced in your life recently, since your dreams can a response to things that have happened to you. For example, if you moved to a new town, it might be your brain’s way of helping you feel a sense of community until you have a chance to meet new people.

Pay attention to what your dreams are trying to tell you.  Taken as a whole with what is occurring in your life, your dreams may be sending you a message.

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To sum up

Your dreams are like embroidery work, threaded with the fabric of our emotions, needs, experiences, and memories. Discovering the meaning of your dreams isn’t always easy, but if you take time for it, it can be significant.

A key for dream interpretation is to realize how subjective dreams are. You must analyze them according to your feelings and the situations they relate to. 

Only with that knowledge in mind will you be able to understand their significance. 

Dreams can bring solutions to problems you’re currently facing and don’t know how to solve because they symbolize events in your waking life. To better understand the meaning of our dreams, we can get clues from the context and relate them to what’s happening in our lives. 

We hope our guide has helped you understand your dreams better!

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