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Dear Kiki: I had a steamy dream about a coworker, and now I can’t make eye contact


Questions about love and sex in the Iowa City-Cedar Rapids area can be submitted to dearkiki@littlevillagemag.com, or anonymously using this form. Questions may be edited for clarity and length, and may appear either in print or online.

Hi Kiki,

Well, there’s no easy way to say this, but I had a very steamy dream about a coworker the other day. We work in the same office and have a friendly relationship, and yes, I do think they’re kind of attractive. On the other hand, we’re both happily married and it’s not something I’d ever really go for in real life. It was very vivid and I can still remember images from it, so now I don’t know how I’ll face them when I’m in the office next. We’re friendly, but not the “Hey, I had a dream about making intimate, creative love to you” level of friendly, so I can’t just explain why I suddenly can’t make eye contact without sounding like a turbo-pervert. What do I do?

—What Dreams May Come?

Dear Dreams,

Sad to say, this is something you’re best off just keeping to yourself. I, for one, would love it if our society could be a place where these kinds of conversations could be off-hand, humorous, inoffensive and, most importantly, non-binding. But even the most casual workplace is not the context to indulge in that level of witty banter. No matter how close the two of you are, “sounding like a turbo-pervert” is the least of your worries. You could face workplace harassment charges or, if there’s a power differential, worse.

But, Dreams, there’s no reason at all to be embarrassed. Fantasies happen; they’re natural, normal and fun! I’m no dream analyst, but a (cough) quickie internet search confirms my instinct that dreaming about a friend likely reveals a desire to connect with them more deeply in a non-physical way. Has work been rough lately, making you feel glad of their support and eager for more? Did a recent conversation make you feel like “friendly office mates” could blossom into “true friendship”?

We’re all human beings here (last I checked). Connection with others like us isn’t just a desire, it’s a need. If we lack a network of companionship, it makes it harder for us to thrive in all areas of our lives. And the fact is that’s been tricky over the last couple of years, because of the pandemic. Work relationships are sometimes the only ones we’ve been able to maintain, because there’s no choice but to spend time together. So lean into that, Dreams. Don’t squander a chance at true intimacy (which, unlike sex, is rare).

However, I definitely don’t want to sleep (heh) on your revelation that these steamy, vivid, memorable sex scenes were, you said, “creative.” That’s something to explore in a different light. Are you craving some specific types of physical interaction that you’re not getting from your spouse? This could be an opportunity to request a bit of experimentation with the person you are comfortable having actual sex with. It could be that you’ve been wondering about expanding your repertoire for a while, but weren’t sure your spouse would accede to your wishes, so your mind cast someone else in the role. Don’t ignore that creativity; utilize it! Thank your subconscious for providing you a template for potential pleasure.

Ultimately, though, it’s up to you to continue treating your coworker like a human being. Your dreams are your business, not theirs. Make that eye contact. Shake off your embarrassment. Connect.

xoxo, Kiki

This article was originally published in Little Village’s April 2022 issue.


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