The Dream: Part 1: I'm a child. I'm in a room with twin beds. My brother is meant to sleep in one; I'm meant to sleep in the other. I get into his bed with him. I think there's something wrong with my doing this, but it isn't clear to me what it is. I know I should cover up the action. Both pillows are on one bed; the other bed is pristine and clearly has not been slept in. Will Mother figure it out? I decide she'll only think I made my bed and my brother didn't.
Part 2: I'm an adult. I'm reading through an old diary that my daughter had left at the house, written on a stenographer's pad. In one part she describes an active and unembarrassed sex life. I'm very surprised that she had such a frank view of sex at such an early age. I feel uncomfortable about this on the one hand, but on the other hand I think that since all has turned out well, perhaps it's okay. In some parts of the diary I notice a different handwriting and wonder if it's that of one of her boyfriends. I feel a certain dread—but also an attraction—toward reading what he wrote.
Interpretation: These dreams further the sorting out of the “mother” theme. The child/mother relationship is central in both. In the first I'm the child; in the next I'm the mother. In both Mother judges my spontaneous relationship to life (sex) and pleasure, and in the dreams these feelings are symbolized by a socially inappropriate relationship. The fact that I am not sure what might be wrong with being in bed with my bother tells me that the dream is pointing to a very early feeling. The dream uncovers (covers play an important role here!) my earliest sexual feelings and the child's dawning awareness of parental disapproval regarding them. The dream tells me that this has colored my feelings about pleasure: some part of me believes it's something to be leery of.
In the second part my child has developed and explored her sexual feelings despite mother's queasiness on the topic. She keeps her diary in a stenographer's notebook, an interesting touch since stenographers write down what others tell them. What proportion of my view of life and sex was created by the society I live in? There is a role reversal in the dream sequence as I go from child to mother: I become the owner of my own attitudes and mores. A kind of freedom from the influence of the mother of my childhood occurs as the mother in the second part concludes that perhaps it's okay that her child has freely explored sex.