100 Best Nightmare Quotes To Drive Bad Dreams Away

Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Dec 12, 2023 By Rajnandini Roychoudhury
Originally Published on Mar 23, 2021
Edited by Isobel Murphy
Young girl sleeping over clouds
Age: 0-99
Read time: 12.4 Min

A bad dream that triggers an unpleasant emotional response from the brain is called a nightmare.

Such dreams often contain disturbing situations that incite fear, confusion, and anxiety in the individual. The effects of a nightmare can remain even once you are awake, causing sleeplessness and stress.

Nightmares can be scary, so let's learn more about them with this list of nightmare quotes. For more related quotes take a look at these bedtime quotes and sweet dreams quotes too.

Dreams And Nightmare Quotes

Let's start off with these quotes about nightmares and dreams.

1. “The thing about nightmares was that you couldn't prepare for them. They sneaked up on you when you were most vulnerable.”

― Sylvia Day.

2. “How many of our daydreams would darken into nightmares if there seemed any danger of their coming true!”

― Logan Pearsall Smith.

3. “They're just nightmares, and they end eventually. The terrible dreams are the good dreams.”

— Neil Gaiman.

4. “Of all the things you choose in life, you don't get to choose what your nightmares are. You don't pick them, they pick you.”

―  John Irving.

5. “Nightmares are not dreams. A good dream does not leave the dreamer in darkness, confusion and terror. Start having dreams, not nightmares!”

―  Michael Bassey Johnson.

6. “Where hopes are unrealistic, fears often become exaggerated; where dreams alone are blueprints, nightmares result.”

― Anthony Daniels.

7. “They've promised that dreams can come true - but forgot to mention that nightmares are dreams, too.”

―  Oscar Wilde.

8. “Realized dreams often turn into nightmares.”

―  Lera Auerbach.

9. “Caught in the crossfire of a silent scream, where one man's nightmare is another man's dream.”

―  Bryan Adams, 'Heat Of The Night'.

10. “Nightmare and dream both are not real, but I do always love my nightmare; because it offers me gratitude.”

―  M.F. Moonzajer.

11. “An optimist expects his dreams to come true; a pessimist expects his nightmares to.”

―  Dr. Laurence J. Peter.

12. “Chase your dreams and your nightmares will grow tired of chasing you.”

―  Matshona Dhliwayo.

13. “Like nightmares, dreams were insidious things, and didn't like being locked away.”

— Laini Taylor.

14. “It’s like some of us are chasing after our nightmares the way other people chase dreams.”

— Taylor Jenkins Reid.

15. “There is some consolation in the fact that, even though your dreams don't come true, neither do your nightmares.”

―  Richard Armour.

16. “I see the dream and I see the nightmare, and I believe you can't have the dream without the nightmare.”

— Tori Amos.

17. “Innocence eroded into nightmare.

All because of very bad touch.

Love, corrupted.”

— Ellen Hopkins.

18. “When you know about something it stops being a nightmare. When you know how to fight something, it stops being so threatening.”

— Andrzej Sapkowski, 'The Witcher - Blood Of Elves'.

19. “The dream didn’t leave, people just don’t know a nightmare when they are right in the middle of one.”

— Marlon James, ‘A Brief History Of Seven Killings’.

20. “The tradition of all dead generations weighs like a nightmare on the brains of the living.”

— Karl Marx.

21. “Show me debauched nightmares or sunniest daydreams.

Come not as you are but as you wish to be seen.”

— Erin A. Craig, ‘House Of Salt And Sorrows’.

22. “Memories always kill nightmares.”

— Beth Revis.

The Best Nightmare Quotes

Waking up from a nightmare can be as scary as it gets! Here are some of the best quotes about nightmares.

23. “Give them pleasure - the same pleasure they have when they wake up from a nightmare.”

―  Alfred Hitchcock.

24. “This net has a wooden frame bearing many feathers and a hole at its very heart — it was the sacred dreamcatcher.”

Philip Nicklin.

25. “I turned my nightmares into fireflies and caught them in a jar.”

— Laini Taylor.

26. “I miss him. I still see him in my dreams. They are nightmares mostly, but nightmares tinged with love.”

— Yann Martel, ‘Life Of Pi’.

27. “Pay attention to other people's nightmares because they might be contagious.”

―  George Packer.

28. “I have had dreams and I have had nightmares, but I have conquered my nightmares because of my dreams.”

―  Jonas Salk.

29. “You have to know who you are, if you don't you have nightmares.”

―  Stephen Rea.

30. “The responsibility to nightmare is to wake up.”

―  Michael S. Harper.

31. “Nightmares end. That's how you know they're nightmares.”

— Kami Garcia, ‘Beautiful Redemption’.

32. “Outlaws, like poets, rearrange the nightmare.”

— Tom Robbins, ‘Still Life With Woodpecker’.

33. “How do you tell a dream from a nightmare? If it involves a book burning , it's probably a nightmare.”

— Rick Riordan.

34. “I found him between a reality and a nightmare.”

— Shannon A. Thompson, ‘Take Me Tomorrow’.

35. “Nothing chased nightmares away faster than the rustle of printed paper.”

— Cornelia Funke.

Your Worst Nightmare Quotes

These nightmare quotes and sayings express the emotions you feel when your worst nightmare becomes reality.

36. “The worst nightmare is to have no dreams.”

— Thomas Amo.

37. “My best dreams and worst nightmares have the same people in them.”

―  Philippos Syrigos.

38. “Worst nightmares can also appear with your eyes open.”

―  Florence Welch.

39. “The worst nightmare would be not to achieve what I know I'm capable of.”

―  Romain Grosjean.

40. “I have very vivid dreams and nightmares, and my biggest fear is of some kind of dystopian future where we're advanced in every way except in our humanity.”

―  Bryce Dallas Howard.

41. “My nightmare of nightmares is being overdressed for a casual event - I've done it! You have to have a real sense of what you want to communicate.”

―  Nina Garcia.

42. “What's a joy to the one is a nightmare to the other.”

―  Bertolt Brecht.

43. “Seeing the enemy as human. A general's ultimate nightmare.”

— Sabaa Tahir, ‘An Ember in the Ashes’.

Bad Nightmare Quotes

Cute little baby with toys sleeping on bed at home

Here are some of the best quotes about bad nightmares and when your nightmare returns.

44. “Put the nightmare together. If you do not wake up screaming, you have not put it together well.”

―  R. A. Lafferty.

45. “The greater your dreams, the more terrible your nightmares.”

―  Edward Abbey.

46. “Just because you have a nightmare doesn't mean you stop dreaming.”

―  Jill Scott.

47. “I still get nightmares. In fact, I get them so often I should be used to them by now. I'm not. No one ever really gets used to nightmares.”

— Mark Z. Danielewski, ‘House Of Leaves’.

48. “You ever been trapped in a world where you're everyone's worst nightmare?”

―  Chuck Palahniuk.

Bad Dream Quotes

Have you ever woke up and wished you had a way to make a bad nightmare go away? Quotes like these will certainly help you learn more about handling them!

49. “I want to keep my dreams, even bad ones, because without them, I might have nothing all night long.”

― Joseph Heller.

50. “Do you want me to sing to you? I'll sing all night if it will keep the bad dreams away.”

― Stephenie Meyer.

51. “It's been like a bad dream I never woke from.”

― Alex Chilton.

52. “In sleep things are simpler. No regret over the past. No worry for the future. Only the present. And as bad as a dream gets, at least you get to sleep through it.”

— Jonathan Goldstein.

53. “There are bad dreams for those who sleep unwisely.”

―  Bram Stoker.

54. “It's weird when you wake up from a bad dream and everything is still bad.”

―  Todd Strasser.

55. “Bad dreams are ghosts of our fears and worries, haunting us while we sleep.”

―  Maria V. Snyder.

56. “Everybody underestimated the universality of the concept of a nightmare or a bad dream.”

―  Robert Englund.

Scary Nightmare Quotes

These scary and creepy nightmare quotes are a complete delight to read!

57. “But dreams have ways of turning into nightmares.”

— Erin Morgenstern, ‘The Night Circus’.

58. “One need not be a chamber to be haunted. One need not be a house. The brain has corridors surpassing material place.”

― Emily Dickinson.

59. “Monsters are real, ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.”

― Stephen King, ‘The Shining’.

60. “There are horrors beyond life’s edge that we do not suspect, and once in a while man’s evil prying calls them just within our range.”

― H.P. Lovecraft.

61. “We ask only to be reassured about the noises in the cellar and the window that should not have been open.”

― T.S. Eliot.

62. “Who's to say that dreams and nightmares aren't as real as the here and now?”

― John Lennon.

63. “Everything I was afraid of when I was growing up, I've become. I've taken on my nightmares, like the devil and the end of the world, and I've become those things.”

―  Marilyn Manson.

64. “I am surrounded by some sort of wretched specters, not by people. They torment me as can torment only senseless visions, bad dreams, dregs of delirium, the drivel of nightmares and everything that passes down here for real life.”

―  Vladimir Nabokov.

65. “Hell is empty and all the devils are here.”

―  William Shakespeare, ‘The Tempest’.

Living Nightmare Quotes

An unpleasant life can feel like you're in a living nightmare. Here are some of the best quotes that express the feeling of a living nightmare. Many of these quotes describe how you feel when your worst nightmare becomes reality.

66. “Strange, I thought, how you can be living your dreams and your nightmares at the very same time.”

― Ransom Riggs, ‘Hollow City’.

67. “I don't know if I'm dreaming when I sleep or sleeping while I'm awake, but I have reoccurring dreams my mind cannot take.”

― Stanley Victor Paskavich.

68. “I'm interested in the dream and subconscious mind, the peculiar dream-like quality of our lives, sometimes nightmare quality of our lives.”

― Anthony Hopkins.

69. “I was having a much better time asleep. And that's really sad. It was almost like a reverse nightmare, like when you wake up from a nightmare you're so relieved. I woke up into a nightmare.”

― Ned Vizzini, ‘It's Kind Of A Funny Story’.

70. “Childhood should be carefree, playing in the sun; not living a nightmare in the darkness of the soul.”

— Dave Pelzer.

71. “I drag myself out of nightmares each morning and find there's no relief in waking.”

― Suzanne Collins.

72. “In life your dreams may not come true, but sooner or later one of your nightmares will.”

―  Richard Jeni.

73. “It's hard to wake from a nightmare when the nightmare is real.”

― Kristin Cashore.

"My Life Is A Nightmare" Quotes

These great quotes truly embody the meaning of life being a nightmare!

74. “Life is a nightmare that prevents one from sleeping.”

— Oscar Wilde.

75. “Welcome to the worst nightmare of all, reality!”

— Clive Barker, 'Hellraiser: Hellseeker'.

76. “I am not afraid of nightmares, because mine came true and I lived through them.”

— Victoria Schwab.

77. “My professional dreams were coming true while I was living a personal nightmare.”

— Dane Cook.

78. “I can't tell whether I am living in a dream or a nightmare.”

— Bertrand Russell.

Conquering Nightmares Quotes

Conquering your nightmare can be a tough thing to do. Here are some great quotes about conquering nightmares to help you out!

79. “... As we emerged from the nightmare and began to search for meaning.”

―  Elie Wiesel.

80. “It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice.”

― Joseph Conrad.

81. “I don't paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.”

― Frida Kahlo.

82. “Most of my nightmares that jolt me awake either involve the cosmos or something completely out of human control...”

― Lorene Scafaria.

83. “Our memories have voices, too. Often sad ones that clamor like raised arms in the dark.”

— Stephen King.

84. “The world was a terrible place, cruel, pitiless, dark as a bad dream. Not a good place to live. Only in books could you find pity, comfort, happiness - and love.”

― Cornelia Funke.

85. “To wake up from our own bad dreams and realize that really lovely things are happening all the time.”

― Shauna Niequist.

Fear Quotes

Here are some quotes about fear induced by nightmares that might leave you with a chill!

86. “There are many who don't wish to sleep for fear of nightmares. Sadly, there are many who don't wish to wake for the same fear.”

―  Richelle E. Goodrich.

87. “Nightmares are seldom a foreshadowing of real events, but always a showing of real fears.”

―  Criss Jami.

88. “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”

― Marianne Williamson.

89. “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me.”

― Frank Herbert, ‘Dune’.

90. “Fear doesn't shut you down; it wakes you up.”

― Veronica Roth, ‘Divergent’.

Funny Nightmare Quotes

These "laughing at my nightmare" quotes will surely make you chuckle!

91. “Old age is when you are not bothered with bad dreams, but with bad reality.”

― Faina Ranevskaya.

92. “I told my therapist I was having nightmares about nuclear explosions. He said don't worry it's not the end of the world.”

―  Jay London.

93. “I have nightmares that I'm going to wake up, and everyone's driving a Prius and living in a condo, and we're all getting health insurance.”

―  Kid Rock.

94. “I never really got nightmares from movies. In fact, I recall my father saying when I was three years old that I would be scared, but I never was.”

―  Tim Burton.

95. “It's not clear whether the brain actually is designed to have nightmares or whether this is actually the process going awry.”

― Matthew Walker.

96. “Have you ever noticed there is never any third act to a nightmare? They bring you to a climax of terror and then leave you there.”

― Max Beerbohm.

97. “A dream is just a nightmare with lipstick.”

— Toni Morrison.

98. “She can be a nightmare, but this still feels better than any dream.”

— Penelope Douglas, ‘Punk 57’.

99. “She looked like a head-on collision between a fashion plate and a nightmare.”

— L.M. Montgomery.

100. “Unfortunately, a superabundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares.”

— Peter Ustinov.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for nightmare quotes, then why not take a look at these night quotes or night sky quotes too?

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Written by Rajnandini Roychoudhury

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

Rajnandini Roychoudhury picture

Rajnandini RoychoudhuryBachelor of Arts specializing in English, Master of Arts specializing in English

With a Master of Arts in English, Rajnandini has pursued her passion for the arts and has become an experienced content writer. She has worked with companies such as Writer's Zone and has had her writing skills recognized by publications such as The Telegraph. Rajnandini is also trilingual and enjoys various hobbies such as music, movies, travel, philanthropy, writing her blog, and reading classic British literature. 

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