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Ask anyone who has been a victim of theft and they will undoubtedly tell you how horribly violated they felt by the experience. In early childhood, we learn that to take a toy from another is taboo. Likewise, having a toy taken away hurts our feelings. However, sneakiness and acts of theft are common dream images. Whether you are the thief or the victim, there are several interpretations to explore.

As a thief, you could be feeling a lack of resources or an unfairness about the distribution of resources. For example, if you dream of stealing essentials -- bread, food, items needed to survive the dream environment -- you may see yourself as a pauper. In waking, this may play out as behavior that isolates you or leaves you feeling as though you have no choices.

However, dreaming of stealing from people you know may reflect a perception that you feel their lives are better than yours, even though you do not perceive them as better people.

As the victim, fear of loss seems to be a possible theme. The suspect list in the dream will help refine this further. If you are the victimized and the stolen items are central, then material loss is creating anxiety. However, if the lost items are of secondary importance to the suspect, you may feel as though someone you know is violating or taking advantage of you. Still, it is important to consider the objects taken and their significance to you. What the objects symbolize for you may indicate the area or life where your boundaries are being violated and help find solutions to reestablish yourself.

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