The dream as coping mechanism continues to persist; patient experiences this dream as if it were an alternate "real-life" existence. This week, he discussed his reluctance to attend a memorial for his son at the crisis center where he used to volunteer. This refusal to be in the presence of the group who has accepted the reality of his son's death smacks of self-protection. Though patient claims to be acting out of concern for his wife, "protecting" her, he is instead safeguarding the dream that his son is alive.
In a separate session, patient discussed the discovery that a man he once arrested was not guilty of the crime for which he was sentenced to prison. Clearly, on a subconscious level, he always suspected this man's innocence. Stronger evidence - this man's appeal happened at the same time of son's death - thus causing him to create the dream in which he had to prove his innocence, else relive the death of his son. This dream forced him to do the right thing, a kind of reckoning for his subconscious.