Animal Symbols | Dream Symbols

Cockroach Dream Meaning

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Cockroaches in a dream can seem nasty or even downright terrifying at first. While there’s not really anything to like dreaming about cockroaches, their presence in your dream can help you understand what it means and help you make positive changes in your life.

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Meaning of Cockroaches in Dreams

What does it mean to dream about cockroaches? These insects are quite common in many parts of the world, especially in cities and places with warm climates. While we typically don’t like cockroaches even in real life, the dream meaning of cockroaches can be quite interesting!

The first thing to think about of course are the characteristics of the roaches of themselves. 

Cockroaches are some of the most difficult insects to get rid of. They are very difficult to kill and they tend to take over very quickly if they are not properly exterminated.

This characteristic can be viewed as a positive or negative trait, so let’s take a look at the common themes we might see when we experience them in our dreams. 

Cleansing & Purification

Many times we associate these insects with dirty apartments covered in filth in crowded cities. They especially love areas that have food or dirty dishes.

While these dirty homes are not the only place they like to live, cockroaches have become a universal symbol for cleansing and purification. If you see one in a dream, it is very possible they appear in the dream to remind you to practice self care and to maintain a clean and sanitary environment. 

Many times what needs cleaned is not something in our daily lives in the physical realm, but instead our own attitudes and feelings. If you frequently have negative thoughts or a bad attitude towards a situation in your life, it could be time to cleanse and purify these feelings so they are more positive.

Another possibility is that you are surrounding yourself with toxic people. This could be negative people you work with, such as a boss or office partner, or it could even be needy family members who use you and constantly drain you from your own energy and joy.

 If this theme seems to resonate with you, it can be helpful to do some journaling about things that make you feel upset or angry in your daily life. Many times learning positive ways to deal with these situations and deal with the emotions involved can make a big difference in your life.

Perseverance: Be Persistent, Don’t Give Up! 


Saying perseverance and persistency 10 times fast might be a tongue twister, but these two words perfectly describe the symbolism of a cockroach. These insects have survived for possibly millions of years, and they still persist on causing all sorts of problems for others in the world. 

To persevere means to never give up, no matter how difficult the situation may be. To persist means to keep trying over and over again, even when you are overwhelmed and feel like giving up.

When dreaming about cockroaches, we can see this message appear in a number of different ways. Perhaps no matter what you try to do in the dream to get rid of cockroaches they still continue to take over.

This can be a sign that there is something in your daily life that requires much effort, or it can mean that you are motivated to continue moving towards a goal even if it seems very difficult to achieve the desired outcome.

Think about what is currently happening in your life. Are you in a situation that requires a lot of effort? Are you feeling like it’s a hopeless situation? Do you feel like giving up? This dream could be a sign that it’s time to explore whether you should keep trying to simply surrender and move on.

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Cockroaches are a very fascinating species, once we get over the creepy crawly aspect of course! Studies have shown that the female roach can reproduce with no dependence or need of a male. This is a very powerful symbol if you are recently overcoming a break-up or a long-term relationship has come to an end. 

While none of us can go completely through life all on our own, the cockroach can appear as a symbol to remind you that you are independent and able to survive and even thrive without needing someone else. 

If you notice many baby cockroaches in a dream, it can be a symbol that it’s time to begin a new life and to take advantage of the new circumstances to fully develop your own self and abilities.

Disgust and Concern

Cockroaches certainly can cause many people to feel disgusted and repulsion. They may also appear in our dreams as a symbol for concerns about safety and security. Homes which are infested with roaches generally are not safe to live in, especially because they are likely there after being attracted to nasty situations. 

Feelings of disgust and repulsion are normal in our regular everyday lives. Maybe there is a person you see everyday at work that keeps trying to ask you to go on a date but you feel nauseated just by the thought of spending more than 5 minutes with them.

You might have feelings of disgust towards a certain situation or event that is happening. For example, if you had a dream about some sort of political injustice, you might dream about a cockroach because it is equally as revolting as the injustices happening in the world. 

Ask yourself, what in my current life causes me to feel put off or revolted? What causes me a sense of uneasiness and worry?

Common Cockroach Dream Examples

Now that we’ve gone over the different themes we see with cockroaches, let’s look at a few specific situations you might encounter in your dream and what it means.

If you dream you are killing cockroaches, it means that you are confronting the things that are bothering you in life. You are ready to make changes. If you are able to squash the bugs successfully, it means you will be able to overcome any challenges on your path.

If you dream you can’t kill cockroaches, it means that you have to persevere to get what you want. It’s not going to be easy to succeed, but you will be resilient and a stronger person for the struggles you are going through.

To dream of being surrounded by cockroaches means you are feeling overwhelmed and disgusted by a situation in your life. This could be your career or even your relationships.

To dream of eating cockroaches means that you are feeling regret about something you did or said. You might be facing the consequences of your actions.

To see a cockroach in water means that you aren’t facing your emotions. You may be avoiding the truth in how you really feel about something.

Cockroaches on your clothing means that you are feeling “bugged out” by something. There is something that just doesn’t feel right in your waking life. This is a dream telling you to look carefully at a situation and proceed with caution.

Other Dream Symbols to Consider

If you have a dream about a cockroach, you may want to consider these other related dream symbols and what they mean:

Did you have a dream about a cockroach? Share your experiences in the comments section below!

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  1. I had a dream I was carrying an empty suitcase and when I opened it there were many roaches scurrying inside it. I didn’t try to kill them, but strangely enough zipped it back up and kept going. I wasn’t scared or creeped out. I was calm.

  2. I dreamt of showing my toddler how things were “ok” because in the two jars on the table had honey with a honey comb and a large cockroach was inside happily eating. It was a gray rainy day and we were sitting at a place where the windows were open and you can see outside to other people sitting at tables even amongst the overcast and drizzle. Not sure what it meant. But this is the first time I ever dreamt of roach. I don’t understand though why I had one in each jar of honey and was examining it and was happy to see how well it was eating and creating honey? (or so it seemed. Very weird dream to say the least.) Thoughts???

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