Dream Manipulation is an ability that both vampires and hybrids possess. Vampires can control dreams and the subconscious via their limited form of telepathy. A vampire's ability to produce and modify dreams, bestow nightmares or lucid dreaming is tied to whether their target's minds are weaker than theirs. Other effects of this ability is the distortion of reality and people being trapped in the dream.
- In Stay, Liz Forbes was on her deathbed in the hospital, dying from a Stage 4 cancer tumor in her brain. Her daughter, Caroline, wanted the spend with her mother her last moments, but couldn't due to the latter being unconscious. Stefan Salvatore, who had experience in the ability, taught her how to enter her mother's comatose mind by instructing her to clear her mind. With this ability, Caroline was able to bestow a memory that Caroline had of her mother when she was teaching her to ride a bike as a child in her final moments.
- Caroline would later use this ability again in I'm Thinking Of You All The While to say goodbye to Elena Gilbert, who was put into a magical coma by Kai Parker. By focusing on Elena's thoughts, she was able to bring Bonnie Bennett into Elena's mind as well, so the three of them could have one last memory together. Either Damon, Caroline or Stefan allowed Matt, Jeremy, Tyler and Alaric to enter Elena's mind.
- In Requiem for a Dream Caroline uses this ability on Bonnie to help her fight the desire to kill vampires now that she is a Supernatural Huntress by showing Bonnie that not all vampires are evil but fails after Bonnie marked her in the dream illusion.
- In The Night of the Comet, Vicki dreamt that she was lying in the Mystic Falls Hospital bed. She goes to the bathroom to wash her bite mark. In the mirror she sees Damon, she turns around, but nobody is there. She goes to Matt who is sitting on the chair next to the bed. She is about to wake him up, but instead she sees Damon's "vampire" face. When she finally wakes up for real, she sees that neither Matt nor Damon were actually there. This may have been Damon messing with her dreams.
- In Friday Night Bites, Damon, after the dinner at her house causes Elena to dream that she is making out with Stefan. He takes off her shirt and kisses her. Then when he takes off his shirt, he turns into Damon. Elena wakes up screaming. Damon's crow is seen standing in the window.
- In Family Ties, Damon causes Stefan to dream that he kills Elena. The dream starts with Elena waking up in her bed. Nobody is home, but she sees some shadows. The electricity doesn't work in the house, yet the TV was on. Logan Fell reports that local student, Elena Gilbert has been killed by an animal. Damon comes up from behind and tells her, that she's next. She starts to run, but he's everywhere. He bites her on the neck and Stefan woke up.
- In 162 Candles, Damon may have been using this ability on Lexi, due to the fact that she was having what looked like a very restless nap. Then when she woke up, Damon was staring at her and she groaned.
- In The Descent, Rose is with Damon in Damon's bed, she says goodbye to Elena and while in Damon's arms they share a dream created by Damon in which they are in her birth town playing in a field with horses. She tells Damon that she is no longer afraid and wishes to see her family and Trevor soon. Damon then drives a stake through her heart and ends her suffering even though he liked her.
- In I'm Thinking Of You All The While, he uses this ability on Elena to say goodbye and share one last dance until they are going to meet again in approximately 60 years when Bonnie dies. Either Damon, Caroline or Stefan allowed Matt, Jeremy, Tyler and Alaric to enter Elena's mind.
- In Requiem for a Dream, Damon uses this ability on Bonnie to wake her up by saying things to her that would make her furious enough to wake up. Bonnie ended this illusion by ripping his heart out of his chest.
- In Memory Lane, Katerina. controls Stefan's dream - He imagines Katerina and him dancing at the Founder's Ball, back in 1864, then he sees Damon and Elena together, but Elena in present day clothes. Then going out of the door at the Lockwood Mansion where the party was, following Damon and Elena, evolving into the present day where he watches Damon and Elena kiss at the Grill while playing a game of pool. Then Katerina shows up still in her dress from the party and says that now he knows how she feels. Stefan wakes up in panic, only to find out that Katherine is in bed with him, posing as Elena.
- In By the Light of the Moon, in the tomb, Katerina asks Stefan how long he’s been without blood and describes the effect it can have on the body. She undresses before him and says they could make the most of the time, now both of them are in there. They end up making out before he wakes up and tells her to stay out of his head.
- In Break On Through, Damon seduced Rebekah and slept with her to find out what she was up to. While dreaming, Sage figured out that Rebekah wants to find the new White Oak Tree.
- In The Murder of One, Rebekah used this ability to make Damon think Elena was rescuing him.
- In Red Door, Esther (possessing the witch Lenore) made Elijah dream that he was being rescued by Hayley.
- In This Woman's Work, Stefan uses this ability on Caroline while she was having a c-section to give birth to Alaric and Jo's twin daughters Josie and Lizzie Saltzman.
- In I'm Thinking Of You All The While, Stefan uses this ability on Elena to say goodbye until they are going to meet again. Either Damon, Caroline or Stefan allowed Matt, Jeremy, Tyler and Alaric to enter Elena's mind.
- In One Way or Another, Valerie uses this ability on Stefan while trying to put him back in his body.
- In No More Heartbreaks, Klaus uses this ability on Camille to give her a vision of their perfect day together before she dies in his arms.
- In Requiem for a Dream, Enzo uses this ability on Bonnie to help her fight the desire to kill vampires but fails after Bonnie marked him.
- All vampires have this ability but only 7 vampires and 2 hybrids have used it so far.
- Damon used this ability on Stefan, Elena, Rose, Vicki and Bonnie.
- Katherine used this ability on Stefan.
- Stefan used this ability on Caroline and Elena.
- Sage used this ability on Rebekah.
- Rebekah used this ability on Damon.
- Caroline used it on her mother, Elena and Bonnie.
- Valerie used it on Stefan.
- Niklaus used it on Camille.
- Lorenzo used it on Bonnie.
- It is an extension of their tactile Telepathy, allowing them to enter minds similar to their ability to project Illusions. However, this is done on a victim which is unconscious.
- Their ability to enters other mind is dependent on whether said mind is weaker or willing, older vampires use this skill more effectively, implying that mental strength too, like their physical strength and speed, also grows and evolves with age.
- In I'm Thinking Of You All The While, it is shown that vampires can share this ability with others as long as they are able to let them into their thoughts.
- It's an ability that most vampires need to learn from another vampire who has already mastered the skill.
- Caroline didn't even know that vampires have this ability until she learned how to use it - proving this is somewhat of an advanced ability that takes instruction and practice for young vampires to master.
- Silas' ability to cast hallucinations and illusions into the minds of his victims is an extremely advanced form of telepathy that is very similar to this ability in vampires.