Whether you love or hate the eight-legged creatures, dreams about spiders can leave you waking up with goosebumps. Spiders don’t exactly seem like the most likely dream characters but the spider represents a lot according to some dream interpretations. “Spiders are one of the most debated symbols in dream interpretation because there are many different cultural contexts,” says UK-based therapist and dream interpreter Delphi Ellis. “For example in some traditions, spiders are seen as a powerful symbol of creativity, luck or even strong feminine power, where in others they can represent danger, caution or a warning not to make the same mistake.”
So what does the spider represent in your dreams? As with all dream symbolism, there’s room for personal interpretation. For example, maybe spiders remind you of a friend or loved one you haven’t seen in awhile—a spider showing up in your dream could be a subconscious signal that you miss them. But generally speaking, dreams about spiders do have some common interpretations.
You’re feeling anxious about the pandemic
“It’s important to remember that the global pandemic has affected our dream recall, with some saying they are having more vivid, sometimes disturbing dreams,” says Ellis. “Sometimes people see spiders as ‘bugs,’ which could be a metaphor for the virus. In other words, the presence of a spider for some people in a dream may be a fear of contracting COVID-19, or spreading it.”
Try to think about when you had your last dream involving a spider—did you find yourself being particularly consumed about news on the vaccines earlier that day? Dreams are a way for our minds to reflect on the world around us, and while the symbol is often not literal, it can be very enlightening.
You’re feeling trapped
Another reason for those spider dreams, especially those involving a web, could be that you’re feeling like your sense of freedom is being slowly taken away. “Seeing a spider web in a dream connects to feeling that you feel stuck in a situation,” writes spiritual medium Aunty Flo. “As a spider’s web is thirty times thinner than hair, it can often represent the fact that you cannot actually see the situation in front of you.”
Ellis says that being caught in a web could symbolize a person feeling trapped in their job. To get to the bottom of why you’re feeling a loss of control, describe the web, paying attention to what it felt like to be caught in one and how that compares to your current situation in waking life.
Your fears may feel unavoidable
Few things are worse than being confronted with a fear without time to properly prepare, and that’s exactly what dreaming about spiders can feel life if you truly can’t bare the sight of them.
Sometimes, spiders can symbolize a fear that seems unavoidable in your waking life. Is there a person in your life that you find yourself wanting to get away from ASAP when in their presence or that you even feel unsafe around? “To be bitten by a spider in a dream indicates you are feeling threatened by someone in waking life,” writes Flo. If you can’t shake the feeling of needing to stay on guard around them, it’s worth figuring out how to create an environment where you have a healthy amount of distance.
However, depending on whether the spider was poisonous or not, the person who is on the prowl might just be you. Flo continues, “if the spider was venomous in the dream then this can indicate you are hungry to prove yourself in life.” Are you finding yourself steadily looking for new opportunities to showcase your talent? Your dream might be reflecting your ambitions.
Can spiders be a good sign?
Spiders can be a positive sigh. “The second interpretation is feeling that you are stepping away from a situation that has been difficult in the past and that you have the power and force in order to mold your behavior towards others,” Writes Flo. In other words, feeling trapped doesn’t have the be the last takeaway from your spider dream—the greater lesson may be recognizing what has led you to feel that way and realizing that you ultimately have the power to break away.