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Hi. I'm new here. And I'm new to Dissociative ID Disorder. I'm the significant other of a newly diagnosed DID. I need to unburden myself a little... but mostly, I'd be very interested to hear from multiples or significant others of multiples. Advice, comments, opinions... all would be *very* appreciated.

It's my 23-year-old girlfriend, "L," with DID. She was diagnosed only a week or so ago.

Actually, I was a step or two ahead of the pdoc in this. The doctors had been thinking it was frontal lobe epilepsy (complex partial seizures). And then a few weeks ago the pdoc added bi-polar, and possible borderline personality.

But then she had a a harrowing two-day "seizure." She freaked out with anxiety on the way to work, and never made to the office. She wouldn't tell anyone where she was. But she would occasionally answer my calls to her cell phone-- though she wouldn't take calls from her family. And at one point she was apparently at an internet cafe and she had an instant messaging conversation with me.

That was when one of her alters identified herself to me by name, and made it clear she was an alter who had pushed L out of the way. And a day later a second alter revealed herself.

It was very creepy, but in a way a relief because her "epilepsy" wasn't like any of the things I had been reading about complex partial seizures.

I think I'm the first person any of her alters has revealed themselves to. Is this significant?

L lives in an extended family household, and I don't think anyone has ever suspected anything other than just that she's moody and kind of weird sometimes... oh, and she occasionally disappears for a few days-- which I think they impatiently interpret as *just* an attempt to get attention.

I've met some other alters who don't seem to know they are alters, or who L is, or know who I am.

Anyway... I haven't been able to talk to L's therapist yet, and I'm not quite sure what I'm doing when it comes to interacting with the alters.

I'm getting an idea of some of the things that might be triggering her. And when I do find myself talking to an alter I'm learning not to ask too many questions. I try to speak matter-of-factly and calmly and respectfully, and with good humor if that's appropriate-- even when once I was getting called bad names.

I think maybe I've asked the alters too many questions and annoyed them... but I'm so curious. And I want to understand who's in there.

On the other hand, I think I've had alters-- even ones who claim not to know they're alters-- kind of drop really big hints about who they are, or about their worldview. It was sort of like I wasn't catching on fast enough... the alter had to drop a hint.

Anyway... I'm kind of scared. But only a little. And I'm brave-- mental health issues generally don't freak me out.

But, see, I want to marry her. I love her. Deeply. I just want to make sure I'm ready for what might be ahead-- in her healing, in our relationship, etc. And I want to make sure I'm not indulging in some sort of hero complex-- like I'm her savior, or that I might find myself in love with a disorder, and not the person. Does that make sense?

I could go on and on about this. But I'll stop here. Thanks for reading this. Seriously. Thanks.

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hi and welcome ;)

I am deeply touched by your post, by your wanting to understand L more deeply.

I don't have any advice, having never been in a similar situation. But, I do have a dissociative disorder and understand some of what you and her must be feeling.....the fear and the bravery combined....as you discover parts of yourself that have been hidden....

People with DD can be very protective of their alters, especially if there has been severe trauma that brought them into being.

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Unfortunately, L and I are having a long distance relationship. That means for now at least we mostly can only interact over the phone.

I first posted here yesterday because I had just ended a long phone call with her, except that halfway through the call I discovered I had all along been talking to an alter. It's odd to say it was a "good" conversation... but I guess I did learn a tiny bit more about who's inside L.

But I miss L. It was our daily call at our usual time... and I didn't get to talk to L. It hurt. The day wasn't complete for me.

It would be OK if L were, say, on a trip or attending an event, or something like that, and couldn't talk. But instead, it's like she just randomly disappeared, and left a stranger in her place.

It's the next day now, and I just tried calling L again, not at our usual time. She (an alter, actually) picked up, but hung up when she heard my voice. I know L wouldn't do that.

Now, I'm getting angry at whatever alter is in charge right now... I'm mad that the alter has taken my girlfriend away. I know that's irrational, though.

And I'm scared. I don't know where L is or what she's doing. I fear she's heading off on another extended dissociation. She's apparently done this many times in her life, and has so far always survived. But I'm scared.

I've had well-meaning friends kindly tell me that I should think twice about having a long distance relationship.

If they only knew.

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An alter is still her....just the parts of her that you know and love and have built up a relationship with, are temporarily in hiding...

Maybe when the time is right you could ask her about the alter that was present, and why she feels it was there at that time, maybe she was anxious about something...something like that...

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~nestling~, thank you for your response.

You say I could ask her about the alter present. But at the moment at least, I seem to know more about her alters than she does. She has complete amnesia when she dissociates.

L is always curious about what she said and did when she dissociates, and asks me to recount what I know.

But this latest alter... somehow I get a feeling that the alter shares some memory with L. But I'm not sure.

Does any of this sound plausible? Will her awareness of her alters come with therapy? Is she perhaps at least somewhat aware of the alters, but maybe afraid to tell me about them?

And suddenly, I'm questioning if I even know the core L at all. I mean, sure I do... but this is all very confusing.

And, yes, I know the alter is part of L, and I've said as much to all the alters I've spoken with.

And when I say I'm angry at the alter tor taking L's place... I'm not ANGRY. I know it's not something intentional or meant to hurt me. I'm just frustrated. And, well, I'm not used to this alter stuff. I have to find a way to ignore the usual social conventions-- normally if my lover hung up on me, I'd be hurt. But in this case, it wasn't my lover... well, it *was* her, but only part of her.

I'm finding that being in love with a multiple is like being in a house of mirrors.

I must maintain my sense of humor.

Thanks for reading. And if you have any comments or suggestions... I'd love to hear them.

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I hear you. Yes, it makes sense.

Maybe both you and she can learn together?

I presume you are both in therapy? Do you ever talk about what happens in therapy with L?

Apologies if I'm not quite getting things ... because I'm co-conscious (and not full DID)and so used to being so, I'm having to remember that not everyone is co-conscious.

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L is in therapy, but only just started a few weeks ago. After three apparently very "good" sessions, the therapist left town for a vacation or conference or some such. Therapist hasn't returned yet... and last the therapist heard, L was diagnosed as epilepsy with bi-polar and possible borderline personalty.

Since then, the alters started coming out, and L's history of missing time, and odd items appearing in her purse, and unremebered interactions all started to fall into place. During a meds follow-up appointment with pdoc, she added all these previously unreported events, and pdoc promptly added probable DID to her diagnosis.

Though pdoc still isn't quite ready to pronounce her definitely DID... I'm certain he will. EVERYTHING I read about DID applies to L to the letter.

L's next therapy session is next week, and it should be *very interesting* considering the new developments.

And L has shared much about her previous sessions, and I expect she will want to share more. I ask questions, and I listen with interest to whatever she wants to offer me. But I'm careful not to demand information.

I, however, am not presently in therapy. But I'm now seriously considering it. I reckon it would be a good thing at least to examine my motives and true feelings about being in love with L. I've always been interested in mental health issues (I've struggled with depression most of my adult life). I suppose I always was attracted to L to some extent because I sensed her vulnerability... and now that it looks like we're dealing with something rather intense, I'm not scared off.

But, I need to make sure I'm not attracted to her BECAUSE she has a disorder. I don't *think* that's the case... but I can see how that's something I should consider, and possibly take steps to head off that kind of thinking.

~nestle~, you say you're "co-conscious". I'm not sure what that means. Would you mind explaining? And, again, thanks for your responses. Just knowing someone is reading my post is reassuring. And your comments are helpful.

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I admire the sensitive and thoughtful way you are exploring and reflecting on your relationship with L.

Co-conscious means that I dissociate, but am aware of the different parts/selves and what they are doing, thinking, feeling, etc. I am conscious of what is happening when I dissociate. There is a part of me observing. Not that that necessarily means I can intervene in and stop the dissociation, - because the dissociated/split off part is by its very nature hard to reach - but, it does mean that there is lots of internal communication going on and that I don't lose time, if ever only for a few seconds or so.

I expect that as L proceeds in her therapy she will start to become more conscious of her alters and why they developed and what their function is. Three weeks isn't very long at all. As I'm sure you know. Therapy for dissociative disorders is usually pretty long term. Also, from what I've read, and my own experience, more often than not one or more of the alters is Borderline.

Its great that L has a pdoc who recognises and is sensitive to DID. Not all are. That's a real plus.

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i'm pretty floored by this conversation (in a good way, don't worry), and i wanted to pop in before leaving for a few days.

agree with ~nestling~, absolutely dust -- you are exploring this with great sensitivity. Therapy would be a good idea, because some of these things you probably really want to contain, like your concerns about wanting to be with her because she has a disorder. i think you sense that these concerns aren't necessarily real and that sharing them with L would not be helpful. Therapy is a good place to explore that. It's great that you aren't shying away from her, but it's vital that you have your own support system.

Despite the pain and difficulty she has been experiencing, she seems really really lucky to have you on her side.

ok. gotta go.

pj

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hi dust,

first of all, kudos for not running away screaming heh ;)

seriously - most of us don't get the kind, considerate response (to discovering your friend/partner is multiple) that you display here. very cool.

i mostly don't get involved in dissociaton discussions, because we've got an alternative way of viewing our "condition" than mainstream medical folks do. we don't believe we are parts, alters, facets, functions, or pieces of some mysterious "host" or "original person". we believe we're all people, all sharing one body and one life. it's a difficult life that requires much compromise and communication, but it's also a rewarding life that can take one in unanticipated directions (believe it or not, that can be a good thing!).

however, i can't let this go without telling you how L's "alters" might be thinking/feeling about you (and your mileage may vary - every multiple system is different, even though their therapist will probably try to turn them into a cookie-cutter version of Sybil).

imagine for a minute that you were in a coma for a few weeks/months. when you wake up from that coma, you go home and discover that you no longer have your job, and you don't know why. there are five new outfits in your closet that you can not imagine being caught dead in. your partner won't answer your calls, and there are intimate messages on your answering machine from someone you've never met. not only that, nobody seems to think you were in a coma - they're all acting like you've been at home this whole time. and who paid the bills while you were away, anyway?

so what do you do? you pick up the pieces of your life - get a new job (somebody's gotta pay the bills!), mourn your relationship (your partner still refuses to speak with you, so it must be over), and try not to look terrified when someone talks about what "you" did last week (when you KNOW you were in a coma and couldn't have done that - but nobody listens when you say so).

what do you NOT do? you definitely don't talk to that stranger on the answering machine, even though s/he won't stop calling - it could be a stalker! wait, that voice seems familiar for a second - you think maybe you remember this person being in your home, drinking tea - no wait that can't be real, you've been in a coma, right? yeah, just don't answer the phone. you also don't wear those ridiculous outfits (you might even throw them away). and you don't argue when someone talks about things you don't remember - people might think you're losing it! you also don't argue with your landlord about the rent already being paid (who would?).

now imagine that there are several people living exactly like that, picking up the pieces again and again, starting over again and again. and they're all sharing one body called "L". and every person thinks they are the ONLY "L", just like you do. the more times each "L" wakes up and gets to live life, the more attached to that life they become and will try to recreate it at every opportunity (wouldn't you, if your life was yanked away and replaced with something you hated?). you come to think of yourself as strong and independent, since you are able to pull this off without anyone thinking you are crazy (because sometimes you wonder - you hear voices talking in your head, but you never tell anybody about that).

then, all of a sudden someone is telling you that you aren't real. you are a figment of the REAL "L'''s imagination. "L" made you up because she couldn't handle life - but she doesn't need you anymore so you should just go away. they're telling you that you have to stop hanging up on people you don't know, and act like you know them, because you aren't really you - you are really "L" and you need to stop denying that. you're told you are hurting other people just by not being this other "L" person that everyone keeps talking about. you're told that what you want doesn't matter, because it's not really your life or your body (though you've been living in it for decades!). and if you go to therapy long enough, you'll be told that you must stop existing or "L" will always be "sick".

if you, dust, were in that situation, what would you do? how would you want people to talk to you? with respect for your dignity, or like you were some alien that didn't really belong? would you want to be told that people prefer the company of the other "L"? would you want other people to encourage you to be like the other "L", or would you want people to respect you for who you are?

that's exactly how L's people want to be talked to :)

there's no mystery, no secret language, no special way any of us need to be treated except as the human beings we are. some of us might be younger, and we'll act our age - treat us like you would treat anyone else that age. some of us might be angry and confrontational - treat us like anyone else who tells you to 'fuck off" (get mad! we shouldn't be allowed to be assholes any more than "normal" people). some of us might be traumatized or afraid - treat us like any friend who has been through a terrible tragedy. we aren't done any favours by being treated differently or more gingerly than the general population (it might reinforce the "helplessness" that leads to uncontrolled switching). but we are done a world of good when our reality is recognized and respected by outside people.

that's not to say you can't make any demands or have any expectations. when you have a date with "your L", you should be able to expect she'll be there. eventually (after much fighting *ahem* negotiation), her system can be selves-aware enough to respect each other's commitments. but that isn't going to happen until people in her system are aware of each other and can communicate (that's where therapy is useful). until that time, i guess you'll have to be patient and deal with whoever shows up (or hangs up, as the case may be).

i hope this book i just wrote is helpful, heh. our coming out experience was awful in this regard, and i want to save L and her people (and you) as much angst as possible. i wish someone had told our partner these things in the beginning. it would have saved many fights from happening! fwiw, we made it through that awful part (nine years now), so it IS possible for one person to have a relationship with a multi-user body :cussing:

best of luck to you all.

-lysergia

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~nestling~, presentjoy, lysergic, DrummingCuresAll... thank you all for your comments. I've read and reread them all several times... and will again. You give me comfort and offer important viewpoints to help me understand what's going on with my girlfriend L.

~nestling~, another question about your co-conscious dissociation... Is the co-conscious nature of it a result of therapy (formal or informal)? Or a willful development on your part? Or is that just how your dissociation has always manifested?

lysergic, your comments are very interesting and very helpful... and I am especially pleased to see someone say that a relationship wih a multiple is possible.

In my early research on DID, I've noted the debate over how to define success in treatment-- put simply, is it complete integration? or just some sort of stable equilibrium with alters working in cooperation?

I think I could settle for a relationship with a small crowd. Right now, my big concern is her safety.

She scared the crap out of me a couple of weeks ago when she went on the two-day dissociative bender I mentioned above. It wasn't clear where she was-- and at least one of the alters, a very spacey "little" perhaps, didn't know where she was.

[edited following paragraph to remove a couple of very scarey details]

On the second night, when talking to her on her cell phone, I literally thought she was in a very, very grave situation. I was speaking to her on her cell phone, when she suddenly "woke up" from the dissociation. She found herself in this seemingly grave situation ... this freaked her out (and me when she described where she was), and she promptly dissociated away again to the spaced out child.

That was just hours after I had first clued in that she was DID. And I was literally afraid something horrible was about to happen to her... and my only consolation was that, assuming she lived through it, she'd at least not remember it.

Christ. I don't know how many episodes like that I can handle.

So, someone please tell me that, with loving support and adequate therapy, we can at least minimize that sort of situation.

I might not like it if she occasionally disappeared for a couple of days, but I think I could deal with it as long as I were confident she weren't endangering herself or others, or, say, draining the bank account.

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hi again dust.

hm...my co-conscious dissociation....that's a big question. as far as I know that's the way its always been. not sure why. but then, I wasn't conscious I dissociated until starting therapy....(just over 4 years ago...) I mean, I did it before. had to. I first split and dissociated as a newborn. (theories differ on this, but for me it is true) then my life after just added on top. I have always been very withdrawn, so that kind of masked anything. *everything else* was locked away safely in the back of my mind so that I could survive at school, at home, and in the wrong career choice I initially made (primary school teacher).

as my external environment started getting safer (I stopped teaching at last, and got a job in a library, and I moved out of the East End, and to flatshare and not be on my own...and got plenty of support through therapy, GP, medication, etc..) the split off parts started to show themselves, increasingly as I learned to trust my therapist more and more deeply...(I see her three times a week, have done for the past few years) all the frozen off feelings.....came alive....

of course I was always pretty self-destructive, with chronically low self esteem, but all my self destruction was carefully hidden until then.

I've always reflected a lot, and been interested in reading about dreams, the psyche, therapy etc, and have studied therapy a bit, and done lots of self/spiritual development through yoga .... so I guess that helps.

sorry that's not a very clear answer. it all feels terribly chaotic.

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hi Dust. i'm not DID but a couple of my best friends on the board are so i have a slight feel for your situation. here's how i see DID: the people inside all have jobs to do. they came into being during the life of a very young child who was in a critically threatening situation that she couldn't handle, but the child had a marvelously creative brain that gave birth to more people who COULD handle things. so the different alters (people) all have different talents and jobs and triggers. some can be really limited, like an alter who only does housecleaning. some are broad and 'just like regular people' (except they share a body with other people). some alters have jobs like handling scary situations or dealing with anger or someone who looks like an abuser. when that particular situation comes up, out comes the alter who has the job of dealing with it.

which is my way of saying that there is a very good chance that there is an alter who may be able to handle the grave situations. i;ve read the controversy of intregation vs equilibrium and i think it should be up to the DID person what they choose.

she is on the very beginning of a journey that is very new to her; it is good that you are willing to walk alongside her path (you can't share it but you can make a path by hers).

i'm gonna see if i can google up the site that is for SO of DIDs. it's hosted by a guy with a DID wife, so it may be very helpful to you.

oh, and Drumming? i know a couple of partnered alters here on the site. there's no reason why your DID automatically excludes you from a relationship. it's gonna make it harder, but then, the DID will make everything harder. note i say harder not impossible.

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Coming in late, so I'll start with "What they said!" Especially Lysergia - I think you'd go bonlers having to second-guess

all the time whether or which alters are really persons or not. You might suggest that some of the alters who want to be

treated as their own person make it clearer to you who you are talking to when there's a switch.

As far as the "goal" of therapy - what counts as "success" - I suppose some therapists would like to see a completely

integrated "self". What *I* would call "success" is the person(s) involved having a decent home and a decent means

of support and being reasonably happy as happenstance and fortune allow - the same as everybody else. I don't think

that requires integration, really, just that the constellation of selves mostly work together.

There will always be difficult times, but that's true no matter who you are with.

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reddog and nullotrooper, thank you so much for chiming in. All responses have been very helpful and comforting.

I think I have started to come to terms with speaking with alters, and learning what I can from them. And I accept intellectually that they are parts of L, whom I love, and therefore I love them, too. And I do.

But I'm still sad when L slips away and an alter comes out. I know she's part of L, but still it's not L, and I want her back. And I have to go into "alter mode." I feel like I have to keep my wits about me. I'm not sure why exactly, though. But somehow when an alter comes out, it's like I'm being tested. Some of the alters I've met are pretty simple-- one dimensional (two dimensional? help! I need a metaphor!), and these tend only to be out for a short time. But whenever I talk to an alter, I miss L. And I suppose it just reminds me of L's deep troubles.

But this weekend, I met a very complex alter who is in most ways is very close to being L. Though she didn't know who L was, she certainly knew me, and we'd obviously interacted several times before I knew about L's DID.

This alter was aware of some bad (but maybe not horrendous) things that had happened to L, mostly in her past love relationships (though, as I said, the alter didn't know who L was). But as we talked, alter mentioned that she was having dream-like recollections of one of L's Big Issues-- experiences that the alter seemed not to have direct knowlege of.

It just so happened that this Big Issue had a new, very unfortunate development the day before. L was in a bad way over it. So, I suppose that's why the alter was "dreaming" about it. The alter began asking me pointed questions about her "dream."

I'm not a therapist.

But I suddenly found myself with a tiger by the tail. I didn't want to lie, and say I had no idea what she was talking about. But I didn't want to launch into something painful. So, I tried very gently to satisfy the alter's curiosity without opening a wound. But, of course, before long the wound was open, and apparently the alter starting to remember L's bad experience. And it became searingly emotional for her.

All I could do at that point was remind her over and over and over that it wasn't her fault, that she had been powerless in the situation, that she had done all she could have to avoid the situation... and that the recent development wasn't her fault, and that (truely) the recent development is going to be alright ultimately.

Finally, I guess it was more than the alter could take, and she disappeared, and a several seconds later L returned.

L had no memory of what had just transpired. She was exhausted, but generally fine.

I was a wreck.

OK, folks, if you've read this far, thank you. Tell me, was I playing with fire? I mean, I don't want to just blithely head off into dangerous territory without at least getting a little training. But I don't want just to avoid talking when one of the more complex alters shows up.

Every day's an adventure.

Thanks for letting me unburden myself.

L's therapist still doesn't know about the DID. Therapist is back in town now, and there's an appointment this week. Maybe I should just not answer L's phone calls until then. (Joking!)

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Hi, I'm Raven. Like Reddog I have good friends here who are DID.

Let me say that you handled to above situation just right.

As for if you should stay in the relationship, I can't answer. You have to know it's going to be a bumpy ride. If you're up to it you can be a source of love and stability to L.

You are a good man.

raven

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Hi, raven.

Thanks for your comment.

I'm not really asking if I *should* be in a relationship with L. I mean, yes, I do ask myself that... in terms of whether I can be good for L, and if I can handle the rough ride ahead. These are important questions that need some thought.

My problem right now, though, is that I'm still in the early stages of learning about DID. I'm struggling with how to interact with alters. And how to keep my own head on straight in the midst of it.

And I want to know what L needs-- without me constantly pestering her about that. I need to know how to balance concern for her DIDness without losing sight of all the other, wonderful, aspects of her and our relationship. I must not let the DID smother us as a couple, or turn her into a sick object.

(Sorry, I'm just thinking out loud now.)

I've been doing lots of reading, and I've got a big order of books from Amazon on the way. But I'm not finding all that much advice or support for significant others.

And I think I've already spilled too much to my family and a couple of close friends. They are very sympathetic and supportive and non-judgemental... but I must not betray L's trust. I've told her who've I've talked to, and she says that's fine... but something in her voice tells me she wishes I'd shut up.

But despite my concerns, I'm already A LOT more comfortable with the whole situation than I was just a couple of weeks ago.

I just need someone to talk to-- which I am finding on this forum, and for which I'm grateful.

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i'm not a pro,but i think you did right. there are other people in there & they deserve respect & care. if you were the alter that just showed up, you wouldn't want ot be lied to & you would be able to tell if something funny was up.

i don't really think there is any way of not telling the truth....they know something is wrong. now, you may want to experiment with versions of 'i'm not a therapist, i'm not comfortable with giving you details, i want you to bring this up with your therapist.' i don't know if this will satisfy that particular alter though.

i've found it helpful to remind my DID friends that they are like everyone else in a lot ways by saying 'it's normal to be upset about 'x' or 'that would be frightening/horrible/whatever for anyone'. validating their emotions & experiences works very well. after all, part of what caused the DID was not being validates, as well as being severely traumatized.

i myself have had ptsd, so i treat my DID friends the way i'd treat a fellow ptsd survivor: show sympathy, understanding, validation, remind them that they are strong to survive, they are good people and keep making it clear that the abuser is the bad one, not them.

check out the ptsd forum as well. there's a lot of crossover. some docs feel DID from trauma is really part of the ptsd spectrum. i do believe that a multiple who was abused will also have ptsd no matter what. some alters will be more ptsd than others, but the system as a whole showes signs of ptsd (post traumatic stress disorder). after all, they are survivors of horrible abuse (usually....there seems to be a few anecdotal accounts of people who are 'naturally' DID w/o trauma, but that is controversial & doesn't apply here since you know L was abused).

best of luck to you & L. from my heart, i will tell you i cherish my DID friends here. they are very special people. i think of them as flowers that have grown in a manure pile. they've somehow found a way to not only survive soul-crushing situations, but somehow have become lovely wonderful people as well. a flower on a shit pile. the shit's not their fault, but becoming a flower is all their own doing. i wish i could make them all believe that.

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Damn Red,

That was an awesome anaolgy.

" I'm not finding all that much advice or support for significant others. "

Yeah Dust,

I understand that. I am a non-MI person married to a man with bipolar disorder and my youngest son is autistic. All I ever found for "help" was this touchy-feely blow-sunshine-up-your-ass crap that didn't do any of us any good. Then I found CrazyBoards.

There is nothing like actual information from real people with real experiences.

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  • 3 weeks later...

My problem right now, though, is that I'm still in the early stages of learning about DID. I'm struggling with how to interact with alters. And how to keep my own head on straight in the midst of it.

dust,

i wonder if then, what you are asking for is for people with alters to share maybe what they would wish for people to do when interacting with them.

one thing possibly is not always looking for switches, or also maybe not asking all the time, 'who am i speaking with?'

and then specifically dealing with the trigger topics that alters protect other alters from in the first place. what about others with DID? any opinions? ways of coping? does integrating MEAN that everyone knows? should that only be done in the presence of a therapist?

everyone is different (in what they might feel they need), but how do you keep your head on straight when (and this is a more general question i think, not a specific DID question) when things seem almost perpetually in crisis?

dealing with a constant crisis can be really unhealthy, just from a stress point of view and eventually can cause physical problems or just make oneself really hypervigilant too. how to address that? (most of all, i would think, is take care of self).

and i feel the need to sigh and apologize for how some people seem to insert inappropriate or simply irrelevant material into vitally important discussions.

i hope your silence here was more about sensing from L that she didn't want you to talk about it with others, so you were backing off a little, for her.

hope you're well

pj

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