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ISSTD statement on movie "Glass"

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http://www.isst-d.org/downloads/EmergencyComm/ISSTD Statement on Glass.pdf  

Washington, DC (January 18, 2019) Christine Forner, President of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, is releasing the following statement regarding the M. Night Shyamalan movie Glass. 

“In his new movie Glass, M. Night Shyamalan persists with his grossly inaccurate and offensive stereotypes of people living with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). In this most recent movie, Shyamalan has exploited the stigma and misunderstanding surrounding DID to portray people living with DID as subhuman and dangerous.

In fact, DID is a relatively common mental illness effecting approximately 1% of the population; equivalent to the rates of schizophrenia. Yet there are far less adequate treatment options, especially compared to other mental disorders. DID is characterised by two or more identity states (‘personalities/alters’) with amnesia (or strong neurobiological barriers) for life events that is too significant to be explained by ordinary forgetting. 

DID develops in response to profound early childhood trauma. The constant fear and lack of care that these kids experience prevent the development of a unified sense of self. These infants and children never get the chance to develop as safe children do. It is a rational response that results from horribly, unfathomable dangerous circumstances. As survivors of abuse, it is common for people with to evince a heightened empathy and concern for others. 

Individuals with DID are often the children of psychopaths, but they are not psychopaths. Most individuals with DID hurt themselves, not others. Television shows and movies are saturated by erroneous portrayals of persons with DID as perverse or dangerous. Resulting in not only having to be harmed personally but globally as well.

These stereotypes are extremely unfortunate, misleading and harmful to individuals who have to live with this painful and often debilitating condition. These portrayals of people with DID are also likely, in part, responsible for the lack of satisfactory psychotherapeutic treatment or they receive harmful treatment. 

They are not getting the help they need, so instead of being able to heal, their torturous childhoods often never end. M. Night Shyamalan’s irrational and grossly inaccurate depiction of DID targets the most abused people in our society. We have, in the past, sent out our concerns to M. Night Shyamalan and these concerns were left unanswered. The lack of care and accountability is rather reprehensible. It is our intention to clearly warn viewers that this movie pivots on harmful misrepresentations of the dissociative disorders. People with DID have survived extreme violence and characterising them as the perpetrators of that violence is amoral and irresponsible. “




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Oh no...this movie is projected to be a huge blockbuster hit also. Just great, all we need is more reinforced negative stereotypes that people with mental illness are dangerous threats ?

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