My wife and I have been dealing with nightmares for our whole time together (16 years, wow! and 9 years of marriage) but for most of that time, she was the one getting nightmares as she is a CSA survivor. I have gotten very good at calming her and bringing her back. She would occasionally wake up screaming, and i would sometimes wake up feeling her tossing and turn in her sleep, stuff like wetting the bed and crying in her sleep is not uncommon. From what I have read it is best not to wake someone in the middle of a nightmare and instead let them wake up on their own. Waking her up would sometimes make her afraid of me until she was fully awake.
Usually I would ask her if she wanted to talk about it. Sometimes she does, sometimes she doesn't. Sometimes I would snuggle with her until she felt safe enough to go to sleep, other times she would go sleep on the couch.
After I was raped almost 4 years ago, I also get nightmares and that really throws a wrench into the mix! at least once a night I usually jolt awake in bed sometimes screaming. I also will 'fight back' in my nightmares on top of my usual leg cramps and restless legs and now that I'm getting more muscle in my legs it's been causing bruises for her and waking her up. I have found that before bed I need some kind of muscle relaxer.
“If a man wishes to be sure of the road he treads on, he must close his eyes and walk in the dark.”
- Saint John of the Cross