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Sybil - the movie


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Sybil is a movie based on true events, a deeply moving account of a young woman whose childhood of abuse drives her to create multiple personalities to survive.

Has anyone seen this movie? The latest is a remake of the original 1977 movie, done in 2007. It is also a book.

Over here it's on tv tonight, gonna watch it, even though it finishes real late.

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I saw the 1977 original for the first time last winter. Interesting and moving. I wanted to know more about since both the real Sybil and her Psychiatrist died within a few months. What I found was that much of what is represented as fact is not true, based on statements made by both Sybil and her pdoc. These include statements by Sybil, and her secondary psychiatrist that she in fact did NOT have multiple personalities, and that her first pdoc suggested the idea and gave them names while having Sybil under hypnosis. Her pdoc worked up a book deal and when the secondary pdoc refused to endorse the multiple personality dx, the publisher stated the book wouldn't work without it. He and the pdoc then cut him out of the book and published anyway.

The orginial pdoc is regarded as being quite sloppy. She did not keep regular session notes. She did not keep a complete case file on Sybil. Other than the secondary pdoc, no other pdoc or psychologist ever examined Sybil. No peer presentations were ever made of her case, and no papers were ever published on her case. Also, the pdoc had only a few demonstrations of hypnosis and never took a formal course on its use for treatment. So the only support for the extraordinary claims are the book.

Also contrary to the impression of the movie, Sybil was not some basket case crazy shut it. She was a graduate student at a major university in NYC who was supporting herself and completed a PhD and went on to become an art professor at a Univ. in Kentucky.

I had discusssed with others here on the board whether I should post a thread, but decided at the time not to.

I'm off to class this morning but will post some links for those interested tonight.

cheers, a.m.

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i haven't seen the film or read the book, but can only comment that this, as with a lot of other portrayals/representations of .. well anything, can lead to people having quite a narrow view. not wrong, or bad, just incomplete. about a lot of things. i'm not feeling so articulate about this right now, but yeah. the stuff you found about this case is quite interesting, AM. also wondering what AJ thought about the film. --pj

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a drama is quite right. i have no idea if Shirley Mason was multiple or not, but i do know there are many many valid criticisms about Flora Schreiber's therapeutic techniques, and i can see completely where people get the idea that the therapist creates personalities from reading this book (or watching the movie).

wanna provide critical links but brain fried sorry.

good topic.

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  • 1 month later...

How did you guys get to see the 2007 remake of Sybil? On the Internet Movie Database (IMDB.com), it lists it as still being in production. I'd be very interested to see the new version, althoSally Field did an excellent job in the original.

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