Visitation Dreams, Part I: Messages that Can Change Your Life

Has someone you loved visited you during dream time? Did they show up to reassure you or give you a message? Or perhaps they gave you a message to share with someone in your life?

Visitation dreams are not uncommon but they do not happen frequently. They are meaningful encounters that often contain invaluable messages or loving comfort. In Part One of “Visitation” dreams, we are delving into the unforgettable realm of “Message” dreams and how they have the power to change your life.   

Now, quite often dreams of people giving you a message involve something called “Dream Telepathy.” We have the ability to communicate telepathically with one another while asleep and dreaming. This phenomenon is much more common than we think and surpasses the boundary of coincidence. The first person to use the phrase ‘dream telepathy’ was Sigmund Freud in his book “Uncanny” published in 1919.  

I have had numerous clients share dreams where a deceased loved one has appeared to give them a message either for them, or for someone else in the dreamer’s life. The latter tends to happen because the dreamer receiving the message may be an avid dreamer with good recall, or because he or she is more receptive to receiving the visitor and his or her message. Sometimes the messages being given are incredibly positive and sometimes they entail more serious issues like illness and even death.

For example, several years ago, while teaching a dream workshop, a woman shared how she was visited by a deceased relative and was told that her brother was going to die in a car accident in the near future. Telepathically, the relative communicated exactly how the accident was going to occur including the location and time of day. My student believed the message she was being given but was so distraught, she didn’t know what to do with the information. She didn’t want to scare her brother, but she knew she needed to convey the message. So, within two days of receiving the message she told her brother about the dream and cautioned him not to drive this certain route for a while. He listened but didn’t take the dream seriously. Five days later he died while driving his car in the exact place the dream message predicted.  

My student carried great guilt about this and we worked together to help her process her grief. She eventually came to terms with the fact that because we have free will, she couldn’t stop what was happening, she could only convey the message.  

This was a traumatic message dream, and in most cases, the message being conveyed is helpful and uplifting to the dreamer or the person it is meant for. It usually provides insight or wisdom that the dreamer is unaware of. In fact, I had such a dream like this a couple weeks ago:

I am having a telepathic conversation with author and world-renowned intuitive, Sonia Choquette. She has 40 years of experience as a spiritual teacher and written 27 books. In my dream she is acknowledging that I am having difficulty defining what this next chapter of my looks like. I’m closely listening to her as she instructs me, telepathically: “look for the CLUES in your life.” As she communicates this an antique-colored map that resembles an old-fashioned treasure map appears and I see that it contains the path I have been walking this lifetime. As I look more closely, I see that certain life experiences are highlighted. I realize these are the “clues” she is referring to.   

Upon waking, I begin using “Dream Inquiry,” a process I created to understand dreams more deeply. Inquiry with this dream entailed asking myself about the highlighted life experiences on the “map” appearing in my dream:

What nourishes my soul?  

What brings my soul to life?  

What energizes my core, gives me strength, lifts me up and inspires me/

What calls my attention and what brings out the best in me?

How do I best express my soul’s desire?  

And what does my soul need right now to feel most alive?

These are probes I have asked throughout my life but not in a very long time. This dream was a powerful reminder that to gain clarity about this chapter of my life, I need to mindfully answer the above questions because they are the “clues” Sonia encouraged me to look for. This dream is significant and one worth working with and paying attention to!

In Part Two of “Visitation” dreams we are going to look at “Reassurance” dreams which occur when a loved one appears during times of change, loss, or letting go.  


Laura Grace, PhD



I think very few of those who have lost their beloved have failed to receive some sign or message from them in dreams, and often it is of deep biding and consolation. – William Dean Howells

     Night-time dreams have been a significant part of my life since I was a small child. As I write this, I’m in the fourth week of teaching a dream course with a passionate group of dreamers. Each week, I find great joy in hearing their dreams as we delve together into a powerful and healing process called “Dream Tending.” In this unique manner of tending to dream, a healing we call “medicine” reveals itself through the dream.

Earlier this morning, I had such a dream. My father, who passed away ten years ago, appeared in what is called a reassurance dream. This is one of the four different kinds of healing dreams that can occur with the deceased: the message dream, the visitation dream, the reassurance dream and the trauma dream. My father, sensing I could use some comfort right now, came during dream time so he could give me a big hug. I was so happy to see him. He gently reminded me that he couldn’t stay long, but that he was there for me. He recognized that it has been particularly painful with a family member who is struggling with some mental and emotional disorders and that I was not alone. I awoke feeling comforted, reassured and strengthened by his presence.

Dreams like this one are immensely healing. They have the power to make sorrow less painful, to repair and restore harmony and to bring a sense of wholeness into our lives. Further, visitations such as the one I experienced are quite common. Sometimes they occur when we are grieving the loss of a loved one and the loved one appears to reassure us that they are okay. Other times, we may be seeking some guidance about an issue and the deceased delivers an important message.

If you have ever been visited by a loved one who is now deceased, remember that it is a powerful gift. There is always something of value that you can be gained from the dream. Here are some tips on how you can heal, grow and evolve from such dreams:

1. Write the dream down. Notice the landscape. (Landscapes are frequently overlooked.) Are you indoors? Outdoors? Daytime? Nighttime? What do you see, smell, hear or touch?

2. Share your dream with someone you trust. By sharing the dream, you will re-experience the positive qualities that you felt during the dream. I am very blessed to have a life partner that I can share my dreams with every morning. As we walk our dog, we tell each other any dreams–even “snippets”–that we remember from the night before.  By sharing my dream with a loved one, I have been able to retain the feeling of comfort and will recall the feeling whenever I need it in the future.

3. Select a tangible dream image that stands out in the dream. Make this image visible in your daily life. You will feel the positive effect of the dream as you keep the image nearby. For example, one dreamer I worked with remembered an orange scarf that her deceased mother wore during a visitation dream. The dreamer went and bought an orange scarf and kept it nearby. It became her “touchstone” and empowered her whenever she was in doubt or felt anxiety in her waking life.

Our psyche never stops dreaming. We are all dream keepers, whether we focus on night-time dreams or day dreams. May your dreams remain alive and gently awaken you as you record them, share them and let them reveal the gifts they hold for you.