This was my post for mental health week.
I think I’m late.
This post is directed to abuse survivors and their families, but don’t
let that stop you from reading it.
My therapist sent me a copy of 101+ Ways to See DID, by Kathy Brody, a specialist in treating Dissociative Identity Disorder.
These are a few of the symptoms described by Kathy Brody that I experience:
feeling completely blank
the sensation of not having a body
a sense of seeing through the eyes of other people
an inability to recognize myself
confusion about age
I have trouble
connecting to others
and physical intimacy
I have numerous perspectives and completely opposing interests.
For every yes, there is a no; for every trigger, a chorus of reactions.
A sense of being alien in a world that makes no sense is one of the most painful and pervasive of my symptoms.
Life with DID is exhausting.
When I tell people I have DID, I expect them to believe it, but most people don’t, and some of my friendships fail because of it.
Kathy Brody describes recognizing or refusing relationships as one of the symptoms of DID.
People take the sudden loss of connection personally, and I understand why.
I do have close friends in real life, people I’ve known for most of my life, and I have a partner who loves and accepts me; I am blessed.
The worst thing a friend can do to someone with DID is act in ways that make the symptoms worse.
I have a relative who knows the history of my abuse and used that knowledge to trigger me, when I realized it was intentional I cut that
person out of my life.
My rule for family members is if you say you love me but act in ways that make the illness worse; you really don’t love me and need to get out of my life.
It was a struggle to gain the insight to set limits because I was raised to believe that I was responsible for all of the bad things that happened to my Mother.
I was not allowed an opinion or a mind of my own.
DID is not invisible, not even online.
Bloggers can’t see my facial expressions and mannerisms, but my blog’s long time followers are familiar with my various writing styles and images.
My skills come and go, such as the ability to write or build computers or make images.
I have different vocabularies and reading interests, and some of me
doesn’t read at all.
The range and intensity of my emotional expression are more than most normal people can understand or tolerate; and I am frequently asked if I know how old I am.
The answer is no, and why does it matter?
What DID is:
DID is a childhood-onset disorder that begins as a result of extreme
DID is a symptom of a broader cluster of symptoms called Complex-Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder.
DID is a psychiatric disorder that only improves with psychoanalyses.
What DID is not:
DID is not multiple personality disorder.
DID is not a bid for attention.
DID is not something my therapist is imposing on me.
DID is not borderline personality disorder.
DID is not pathological narcissism.
DID is not hysteria, an excuse for bad behavior, or the result of negative thinking.
DID is not a choice.
DID is not ‘clinging to or refusing to let go’ of the past.
People and governments that sexually and emotionally abuse children are evil.
It is not the past I can’t release; it is the confrontation with evil.
Please vote wisely this year.
(c) Rob Goldstein 2020
I am not a doctor, my experience with DID may not be the same as yours. If you think you have Dissociative Identity Disorder please seek professional
If you or someone you love is feeling suicidal please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255