The completely obvious career transition from making teeth to interpreting dreams | KNKX

The completely obvious career transition from making teeth to interpreting dreams

Dec 28, 2019

This story originally aired on October 20, 2018.

This Danish tooth-maker became a dream therapist, at the urging of his Jewish Unitarian minister wife. As one does.

OK, better back up. For Flemming Behrend, his career as a dental technician was something that he loved. He hand-made artificial and prosthetic teeth, shaping porcelin and pigments into lifelike choppers. He appreciated the art of it, and the satisfaction that came from delighting his patients. 

He practiced in Germany, in Massachusetts, and Washington D.C. When his wife took a minister job in Utah, he moved his practice there. They eventually ended up in Olympia to be closer to their college-age kids.

But over the last ten or 15 years, the art of hand crafting and staining teeth has transitioned to computers and 3-D printers. Flemming began to feel disillusioned with the mechanized version of his industry.

So when Flemming was weighing his options and trying to figure out what he would do next, he made the most obvious and logical transition: Flemming moved from the tooth business, to the dream business. More specifically, he studied the theories of psychologist Carl Jung, and became what’s called an archetypal pattern analyst. Through that lens, he helps clients interpret their dreams.

He spoke with Sound Effect host Gabriel Spitzer in his Olympia office, and explained his long, strange trip.