Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
How closely do the personalities of your love interests in your daydreams resemble your real life partners?
I was doing some self-reflection recently and began to analyze the men I have been intimately involved with in my daydreams. While going over their characteristics, I obviously noticed some similarities. Everyone has certain traits that they look for in a companion (real or imaginary), as well as some non-negotiables. That being said, regardless of the personality type or scenario, I found the men all shared at least a couple of attributes. In seeing these commonalities, I also noticed some others that really gave me pause. Let me explain...
I grew up with an alcoholic parent who died at age 53 due to the damages inflicted by their addiction. This life experience colored my feelings on drinking/drug use, and I myself have never engaged in either. If you like labels, I guess I fall into the category of "straight-edge". Through my education in psychology and work in the human services field, I acquired a deeper, more thorough understanding of addiction. However, this does not mean I'm not without my sensitivities. To this day, I remain especially uncomfortable around someone who is intoxicated, happy-drunk or otherwise. I have not and will not, under any circumstances, date a man who actively abuses substances. The end. Occasional light social drinking is the only thing I will tolerate, but honestly, I'd prefer abstinence. What I noticed about several of my daydreaming intimate partners was that at one point in their lives, they had battled addiction. One of the more recent men (whom I am profoundly attached to) I actually helped through alcohol withdrawal and into recovery. I have absolutely no intention of playing the part of a mother or a savior in my real-life personal relationships, so I can't help but wonder why I would do this type of thing in my daydreams. I encounter enough of that at work! I honestly and truthfully don't think it's about a desire to "save" someone, but perhaps it's more about seeing someone succeed in recovery?
Another discrepancy is personality type. I have slightly more footing on the liberal side of the tracks, and as someone in the helping profession, tend to be quite sensitive to the feelings of others. Numerous men I've dated are on a similar wave length. The men in my daydreams, on the other hand, are the exact opposite! Most are stereotypical alpha males: conservative, tough, large in stature, protective, a bit rigid, and most definitely not touchy-feely. Several of them are in a position of power, and a few have a criminal background. Assertive, but never abusive or controlling, I defer to them in certain situations. I don't have to take care of them, unlike some people in real-life, and this is very attractive to me.
Am I reading too much into this?
I'm sorry to hear about you loosing a parent to alcoholism.
I don't think that you are reading too much into this. I have never really analized any of my day dreams but now that you have said this I find that many of my chracters., are quite strong individuals. They don't take anything from anyone and they are very protective of those around them and quite caring. The exact opposite of the people I am surrounded by. Perhaps these are the people I desire meeting which is why they are freqently in my dreams. The only chracter who mirrors anything in my real life is the chracter I sometimes portray in some of daydreams but that is not really a general rule.
I don't think you are reading too much into it either. I think we could gain many insights into our own complicated needs & priorities by examining such things. Starting, just as you did, with looking at common denominators. For instance, many of my DD romantic interests have very similar traits and even repeat the same (or nearly so) dialogues with me. They would seem almost easily replaceable except that I get profoundly attached to each. On the other hand, it is interesting to compare my DD self to my actual self. How are we the same & different. I notice we are the same in values & some attributes - both good & bad - but very different in more superficial ones - mainly looks. Also I never age in my DD's past a certain age many years ago.