We are invisible. We are suffering though we look well. People don’t understand that we are using more energy than they are because we are trying to cope and do life. It’s harder for us and I’m asking friends and family members of “DID-ers” to give us grace.
DID can get us in a jam with others. I’ve experienced more of this lately as I strive to understand just how DID has worked in my life. Let’s just take it one personality at a time, together.
Trying it Again
I know, I know, I should have been seeing a psychologist along with my psychiatrist long ago, but I’ve never had a good experience with one.
The last one I saw was about 8 years ago. In the very first session with her I mentioned that I have DID and she left the room, copied the DSM-VI page with the little part about DID, gave it to me, and she said, “This is what DID is.” I was like, “Yes, and?”
I also told her that one of my parts will convince her in a very short period of time that I’m fine and she will only want to see me once every few months. Guess what happened after our third session? Yep, I didn’t go back.
So, after being diagnosed with Psychogenic Non-Epileptic Seizures I figured I’d better see somebody—so I did.
The DID Secret
I hate that we have to “hide” DID. I mean, I get it, we get labeled crazy and so many doctors and therapists don’t even believe it’s real.
Here’s where I am with that: Whether it’s real or not, this is how my mind decided to process trauma. Perception is reality, even to us. So, if DID is how I have to get through the PTSD, Depression and Anxiety then that’s what I’ll do. Because I believe that with some deep inner healing, I’ll be cured.
I know, I know, some people say there’s no cure. But I have hope I can conquer this because I’ve overcome a lot in my life already.
So, Mr. Psychologist, Sir, here I come.
P.S: I hope this works. What is your experience with counselling?
People with DID are familiar with constant inner dialog. We have multiple parts or alters invested in everything we do, and the parts don’t always get along.
On top of the DID with PTSD, I was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), Psychogenic Non-Epileptic Seizures (PNES) and Fibromyalgia all over the past six years. So, I can no longer work or do much of anything else.
It’s a seriously stressful drag. To add fuel to the fire (CRPS joke), I find out tomorrow if I have Type 2 Diabetes, and a few days ago I found out I have Liver Disease and Stage 2 Kidney Disease.
Why bring this all up regarding DID?
Shaming and blaming.
People with DID are familiar with constant inner dialog. We have multiple parts or alters invested in everything we do, and the parts don’t always get along. Upon finding out about more diagnoses a few days ago, I had an anxiety attack that started arguments between some of my parts. They were conveniently blaming each other for not eating better, for taking all the medications for the other illnesses, for being born, etc. It got pretty bad and I ended-up in a deep depression. Then my parts were shaming and blaming each other for being depressed. I’ve been on a rotten merry-go-round for days.
So, I’m going to work this out here, in writing. As I do this, I will switch quickly through some of my parts who are representing all of us. I know this is going to happen because that’s how my DID works.
I don’t change voices, or make-up and clothing when I switch. I switch too quickly for all that. There are situations that my parts argue over what to wear and I can’t make a decision. But it’s rare. I don’t even know I switch the majority of the time but can look back and see where certain alters took control. The other way I become aware of switching is my internal dialogue. The only time I’m NOT engaged in conversations with multiple parts and switching is when I have effectively distracted myself.
I use distraction for pain management and have gotten very good at it—maybe too good.
Talking it Out
I am ready to step through the fear of being more ill and face reality. So, I will ask myself some “what if” questions and give “so what” answers.
What if I have Diabetes? I believe it’s reversible in many cases, so I do what I can to overcome it.
What if it’s really bad? We’d be in the hospital. It’s not going to be bad.
What if I have to take more medication? It may only be temporary. I trust our doctor.
What if the liver and kidneys get worse? The liver can recover to some extent. It depends on the current damage and we’re having another ultrasound soon. The liver and kidneys can be supported through diet and exercise. We’ve lived through worse. Right!? We always knew life would be shorter because of the other illnesses. We’ll make the most out of what we have.
It all sounds logical, but my heart hurts. That’s normal, you need to grieve, once again, the life you thought you’d have and accept the new one. Being ill is horrible. I agree.
So, what now? Place it in God’s hands. I can do that. I love you. Love you too. Can we all just do the same? Love each other and give it to God? Yep.
P.S.: Communication is key.
The following is an excerpt from a book I’m writing called, 21 Pieces.
It all started at this house-church meeting I’d been attending for a while when the facilitator handed me a book on Multiple Personalities. He wanted me to read it to see if I connected with what it said from a ministry opportunity perspective. We had been discussing the idea of fracturing of the human soul and spirit that Scripture mentions, and the possibility that these breaks need healing.
I couldn’t put the book down.
The book began with a warning: “If you suspect Satanic Ritual Abuse in your past do not read any further.” Intrigued and a bit frightened I prayed for protection before reading more. That wasn’t going to stop me.
I never thought about SRA being a cause for DID. I had suspected the trauma of sexual abuse as a factor and this book confirmed it. But SRA is a possibility for me. I had some strange dreams in the past that made me wonder if I had any SRA in my background. That and my Grandpa was a Freemason; Grandma was in the Order of the Eastern Stars. Rumors say that these groups have connections to Satanism though I don’t remember anything like that growing-up. My Grandparents were more like my Mom and Dad than anyone else in my family. I lived with them off-and-on all the way through high school. They’re both gone now, and I miss them dearly.
Regardless of what my Grandparents may or may not have done, it was obvious I had generational sin and curses to work through. I know that for sure because my Mother was a New Ager, which brings its own bag of lies into my life. When I turned 16 my Mother gave me a Bible and her set of old Tarot cards, which I was good at using. Talk about confusing. I worked through deliverance and prayer to get rid of those influences in my life already. I thought that was enough at the time, never realizing I had more work to do.
Images from my dreams swam through my mind’s eye. Dark hooded figures loomed over my crib at night. I can’t remember what they were saying. I got the impression they were planning my future. And the devil is always there, sometimes as a handsome, desirable man and other times a bloody beast with long horns and a sickening grin I can’t forget. These dreams have come and gone my entire life. The book was getting more real as I continued to read.
The writing style of the book was clinical but easy to follow. I read about the history of dissociation, alternative personality systems, and various therapeutic treatment options. I was stunned as I flipped through the pages learning theories about fracturing and reading case studies of DID patients. I couldn’t ebb the flow of tears warming my cheeks. I thought, “This is it. This is me.” Nothing could have shocked me more. This was me.
Firstly, DID is not an illness, it’s a disorder like Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Secondly, DID is an ingenious way the body and mind choose to cope in a traumatic situation. Finally, I will do my best to be transparent, honest, courageous, and loving in my posts.