Dreams are unconsciously intended to help people master psychological difficulties. Sometimes they offer warnings, other times encouragement. One can not only learn about oneself from analyzing one’s dreams, but dreams can help steer us toward greater health and safety.
Masculinity is founded on the renunciation of femininity. Boys have to emphasize their difference from their female mothers as they simultaneously attempt to separate from them. Thus, masculinity is based on negating femininity which makes it inherently brittle and unstable. Boys further learn to devalue femininity in order to reinforce their sense of separateness and difference. Normal love and intimacy threatens these defenses. Boys, and later men, use objectification and emotional withdrawal in their attempts to feel safe.
The production of pornography clearly hurts and degrades women performers. To deny that is to put lipstick on a pig. On the other hand, the “plots” or scenarios depicted in porn do not necessarily reflect what male viewers want to do with real women in real life. They function as sexual fantasies, complicated productions intended to arouse the viewer by counteracting his inhibitions. Most porn, for example, features women who are or who become sexually excited, something that a real woman might well never feel. But this arousal functions to reassure male viewers that the women aren’t hurt, which counteracts the man’s unconscious guilt about hurting women. Fantasies have a different logic than real relationships.
Trump’s psychology reveals certain universal psychological dynamics in great relief, highlighting conflicts that all of us have. All of us, all the time, seek to minimize, avoid, or otherwise get rid of unpleasant, painful, or threatening feelings. Often, the defenses we use to do so are what cause problems for us and for others. So, Trump’s grandiosity appears to be a defense against feelings of inferiority, helplessness, and shame. He fears exposure for being small, for being a loser, and so acts in paranoid and boastful ways. He also wards off shame by belittling others. Understanding this about Trump, it makes sense that he should be, of all things, fearful of any insinuation that Russia helped him win in 2016. All of us exhibit some version of these defenses, even if we don’t, of course, have the power of the Presidency behind us.