DID & Me: The Delusion – A Logical View

This is a logical viewpoint of “DID” through the lens of professionals and most laymen.  The views presented here do not necessarily reflect the views of the entire system, ‘my’ system, or the medical community.  In order to be fair and logical, I must present them.

First, DID is not well understood, occurs more frequently in women than men, and is more prevalent in developed countries, indicating it may be more of a cultural affection than a psychological affliction.  Some professionals consider DID a delusion created by a solitary mind in an effort to distant one’s self or one’s ego from events in the past.  Negative vents may be assigned to a certain “person” or “alter” within that person’s mind; positive or neutral events to another.

The person may also begin to build personalities based upon cultural circumstances; e.g. a persona for their parents, a persona for school, one for their peers and/or friends, another for someone or something else.  Over time these ‘personalities’ may evolve and become endowed with traits which are not shared by other personas in the patient.  This can be caused by the repeated reinforcement or belief that another ‘person’ exists in their head and by a consistent and uniform assignment of specific types of events and/or emotional states to “that person”.  Like a path, the more it gets used the more apparent and ‘real’ it becomes to the patient.

Each “person” in a DID system is different; and serve purposes related to the survival (mental or physical) of the whole.  How the mechanism of psychotic amnesia works is not well understood, however, it is assumed that the person, after ‘switching’ to an alternate personality, stores events which occur after the switch in a part of their mind which they then unconsciously or consciously ‘shut off’ or refuse to acknowledge when they ‘switch’ back.  MRI studies show that there may be different parts of the mind active during ‘switching’, which indicates various (and different) areas of the mind may be ‘mapped’ during each personality change.  This would also explain the requirement by some DID sufferers to “awaken” a part of themselves in order to access the memories of the activities performed by that ‘self’ of which they may not be aware.

The fact that most DID patients are able to function in an overall coherent fashion indicates there must always be some cross-communication between various ‘personalities’, which indicates the function may be more psychological than physiological, though the DID patient may not be aware of it and may even go so far as denying such a connection exists.   The fact is such a connection must exist in order for the patient to perform a continuous task while or during ‘switching’ (e.g. driving or watching a movie).  This underlying communication between the ‘alters’ or ‘system’ indicates there is one mind at work; therefore, all the others are fictitious fabrications which the original mind (or core) is aware of, since it created them to hold certain memory sets, emotions, behavior patterns, and/or contexts.

An example of such cross-communication can easily be seen when a DID person “finds” purchases made by an ‘alter’ in their own home – proof the “other alter” knows where home is, can find their way there, and know where such purchases go (e.g. clothes in the closet); or by an “alter” knowing which is “theirs” despite never purchasing said item.

The mechanism for developing DID appears to be imaginative and often appears in abuse victims who, finding the abuse “too much to bear” created a persona to ‘hold’ said memories so that they, the original person or core would not be affected by them.  Thus many DID patients may have trouble accessing memories of abuse or certain regions of their past.

That DID is a fictional ailment cannot be discounted; however, the fact that the patient believes in the fiction makes it real – to them.  Many professionals and laymen do not and can not conceive of or understand that for these patients, there are different “people” in their head.

Treatment options are many, but success rates are low.  In the past therapists made an attempt to integrate the multiple personas into “one person” by making the client understand that all these “people” were just themself.  In more recent times therapists have learned that when a DID patient comes to them they are best ‘playing along’ with the patient’s delusion in order to get them to accept the different facets of their own self instead of rejecting and compartmentalizing them as ‘persons’.

In most cases the patient will have assigned “blame” for certain life events and/or decisions on a certain ‘alter’ as a way of distancing themselves from their own actions and/or events.  It is easier for them to believe “someone else did it” than for them to believe they did it themselves.  This assignment of blame often results in a person harming themselves in order to punish the “one who is bad” or brought the perceived ‘shame’ on the whole being.

There is no one cure or treatment option for DID patients.  The prognosis for integration in DID patients with a long history of symptoms is low.  Early detection and treatment is recommended in order to avoid those neural pathways regarding the delusion of “many selves” from becoming too firmly entrenched and/or established within the patient’s mind.  A patient needs to be told that it is “all you” no matter what, and administered drugs to stabilize them if needed, or until such symptoms disappear.

In most ‘cured’ DID patients it has been noted that they are emotionally flat or shallow and not given to wide ranges or depth of emotion, rendering them stable.

This is called “cured”.


*Note: There is much more to this disease than noted here; however, most people are unable to read articles over a thousand or so words, so I kept it short.  If you have any questions, there is plenty of information on the internet.  There is no “one-liner” explanations nor cures.  Sorry about that, you ADD/ADHD crowd.  You gotta read more – if you wanna know – and since you can’t – you’re screwed.  Plus: I am not a professional so I don’t care.  I just know what I know about this; “us”, et all.
A few Sources:
http://www.medicinenet.com/dissociative_identity_disorder/article.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dissociative_identity_disorder
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About jeffssong

JW is an adult childhood abuse survivor with DID*. He grew up in a violent family devoid of love and affection. He is a military brat and veteran. He no longer struggles with that past. In 1976 JW began writing "The Boy". It took 34 years to complete. It is currently on Kindle (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004T3IVKK ), or if you prefer hard copy, on Amazon ( http://www.amazon.com/Boy-J-W/dp/1461022681). JW resides somewhere in the deep South. He is disabled and living with family. Note: Please feel free to take what you need; all is free to all. With that in mind, keep it that way to others. Thank you. We have 3 Blogs - One for our younger days, 0-10 (The Little Shop of Horrors); one for our Teen Alter and his 'friends' (also alters) with a lot of poetry; and finally "my" own, the Song of Life (current events and things)
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11 Responses to DID & Me: The Delusion – A Logical View

  1. Sam Ruck says:

    “Cured” is the proper way to put it. I want more than that for my girls and for me as their husband. I know you want more than that, too, Jeff, and all.

    Sam

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    • jeffssong says:

      For me – and us – there is only one cure we can see, and that’s to be – ‘me’, whatever that is, and whatever it may be.

      How will we know when we’ve gotten there?
      Everyone will be happy. ALL the time.
      Might be insane . . . but oh well (laugh & shrug).
      It’s better than the way we used to be!

      “If sanity means giving happiness up – then I chose to be insane.” <- some silly ol' part of 'philosophical me', LOL'ing!

      Have fun Sam & all; Karen, too. And the 'kids' of course. 😀
      Ya'll have fun. And take care.
      Jeff, et all & "some", LOL!

      Like

  2. Michael says:

    MRI studies show that there may be different parts of the mind active during ‘switching’, which indicates various (and different) areas of the mind may be ‘mapped’ during each personality change.

    This study was done by showing people that had the DX of DID horrid photos. Not real science as far as I am concerned. It was done by Dr Chu who is the one who in 3/4 of an hour understood the guy that pretended to be a Rockefeller. Not credible in my view. He did get paid well with the grant to do the study. That is fact.

    “In most ‘cured’ DID patients it has been noted that they are emotionally flat or shallow and not given to wide ranges or depth of emotion, rendering them stable.”

    I think you are mistaken. Even if you are not I am not going that route.

    The you are one person is not the standard of treatment for those how deal with extreme trauma.

    One issue with the treatment of trauma is those that do know how to be an asset and not a detriment are not well accepted in the field. They are not the ones getting the grants or speaking at the conventions.

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    • jeffssong says:

      It’s funny: they’ve progressed with MRI science to the point of being able to pick low-res primitive images from a person’s brain. They were shown videos, put in the machine, and asked to visualize the videos. Coarse images roughly corresponding to what they had seen were obtained. Popular Science mag, about a year ago. Won’t be long and “they” will be able to ‘see’ what you ‘see’ in your mind – about 15-20 years, I reckon. Should be interesting.

      MRI has revealed physical differences between DID & non-DID persons in terms of brain structure. The one I found most interesting was that in DID patients there is more ‘separation of the septum’ of the brain. Talk about your left-right handed brainedness! (if that’s even a word, LOL!)

      The study showing the ‘flat people’ results was just one of several I read. I found it bitterly humorous that they considered these ‘patients who were cured’ (integrated into a single ‘person’) actually “cured” – and even they were admitting the result was less than perfect, but apparently preferable (to them) than a person with multiple personalities. I would not consider that ‘cured’. It sounded more like a state of permanent dissociation (the real meaning of the word: emotional deadness) than anything I would want to be. Not acceptable by me – just these psychologist’s words. They might consider that a cure. “I” don’t.

      I agree that there seems to be a division within the mental health community on how they should ‘treat’ a DID patient. There is ‘stablization’ of course in the case of a suicidal individual(s) – but then where to go? Do you give them drugs to “drown the voices out” – deaden them? Try to find a ‘core personality’ and restore IT to some function? Or treat ‘it’ (the person) as a family and try to get them to get along while offering ‘therapy sessions’ to those in the system who are in need of some outside help and/or realizations?

      And then there are the patients. Who chooses integration over ‘family’; or the idea of making one host ‘stronger’ than all the others so that host can ‘subdue’ the alters and control them – smothering them if necessary?

      I think part of the problem is ‘they’ (people & society) want “us” (people with people within) to be “more like them” because it disturbs them that we are different. And I know we both agree: finding a good therapist is hard to impossible sometimes – unless you are willing to move on a guess and a bet (which I am not). Been there done that and as my wife says: I do much better on my own. Though to be honest sometimes I wish I had one sometimes – just not a lot anymore. They rarely do any good.

      Like

      • Michael says:

        “The one I found most interesting was that in DID patients there is more ‘separation of the septum’ of the brain.”

        There may be a new study., That was known by dissecting brains long ago and is now measured by sonograms. The science is parts of the brain are more dense. You may read smaller or underdeveloped. I go with just right for dealing with danger. Until proven otherwise.

        What would be cool is measurement over time by those that are trying to heal.

        Reality is 80% of mental health professionals do not believe in DID at all and many of those that do think it is rare.

        Here is the thing you were in a hospital and they had no clue. Same thing happens with me. Lots of DID people there.

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      • jeffssong says:

        I think a lot of DID people are out there who don’t KNOW they have DID. Or perhaps they never gave a ‘name’ to a part or personality. I dunno. It just they are doing co-conscious switching and not realizing it. Maybe.

        They’re doing some really cool science with mapping neural pathways as well as structure/density – down to individual neurons. Some really cool ‘maps’ out there – really beautiful stuff. But like the early digital age – low resolution. They can ‘see’ the pathways and active regions.

        There is some new research using light diodes and/or genetically altered chemical phosphorescence which, when the ‘light’ is turned on, alters behaviors – permanently in some cases. Currently being done with rats: teach them a fear/avoidance – and then using the light remove that fear/avoidance. Damn near ‘brain control’ IMO – but just experimental – AND is being talked about for use in DID patients. Some interesting stuff going on out there in the fields. (wry smile) It’s that compulsive ‘learning stuff’. Drives me (and my wife) crazy some times, LOLing! Always gotta wanna know ‘more’ about some stuff . . .

        Like

  3. Ann says:

    I’m sorry Jeff about your BIL. Suicides are always tragedies. It’s like life unfulfilled because the person committing the act can’t reconcile or feel able to change his circumstances to those which are tolerable. No scientific study here. We’re free-flowing ideas.

    It seems that you have been introspective of late, but harboring on the negative side … are there things that you’ve let go or taken away as goals/ideals? Is your life still progressing as you wish?

    I agree that multiplicity is not well understood, and that sometimes we try to encapsulate our thought concepts to reach some kind of “logic” in it to calm the parts of our minds that are so distracted with all the uneven edges. It is a frustrating suit to wear if not modeled as a straight jacket at times when energy and enthusiasm is down.

    We don’t use our words the same as you sometime … like we think of dissociation more as a defense than a delusion. Delusion seems to portray intended malware. I will go enthusiastically with you that with severe abuse, usually sexual that our brains suffered trauma. I think most time I hear the concept of trauma – it is the “person” who is traumatized, and although I hadn’t thought of it before, I think you are more accurate in saying the brain was what was traumatized. I don’t understand everything like hippocampus, amygdala, serotonin, nortripteline, or dopamine (not betting on any spelling here), but these all seem to be processes of the brain affected by early traumatic force.

    One day I will figure through the studies the biology … just know now when these words are said our ears tingle. Hmm, someone is ON TO SOMETHING THERE! I think synapses are exploding and doing the building and rebuilding of mental systems or pathways. And, as multiples through some brain logic give names and voices to these separate areas of explosiveness within the brain products and patterns. Well, unfortunately we’ve only achieved our medical knowledge through the collection and submission of bubble gum wrappers, but there are some shreds of truth here – thinking your two steps ahead of us.

    I don’t think there’s any purpose in minimizing or glamorizing the trauma. I think multiples have gone through something significant and it takes sometimes a lifetime to “reassemble” toward where it used to be, or at least where we’d like to be – usually using outsider role models other than family … and the booby prize is that we sometimes gain insights that others don’t get especially in new-found trust, truth, cooperation and communication, etc. General, if you want to call the process healing – AND there is a Jedi reward – I’m willing to go with that! Bottom line love and respect DOES go a long way. 🙂 You right on the mark!

    Always our best,
    Anns (missed you while we were gone)

    http://annsmultipleworldofpersonality.blogspot.com
    http://newsdidmpd.blogspot.com

    Like

    • jeffssong says:

      Part of the problem we’ve been having lately is the grownup alter ‘getting in the way’ and keep us down. But he’s recognizing that and starting to give way again. A learning process for each and every ‘one’, LOL’ing.

      I presented this particular ‘article’ just because it seems ‘fair’ – and while part of me buys into it (that “it” – the multiple selves – are a delusion of sorts) – we’d rather think that it is real. There’s something reassuring, comforting about the knowledge and/or concept that we are multiple souls living in one person – or perhaps is it that one soul can create others?? God only knows, LOLing!

      I wish we would write some more and we are beginning to push for that, starting with our book (part 2 of “The Boy”). Also 2 other novels cooking on the back burner. Problem is we only exceed about 3500 words a day on this computer, and then we get tired – so blogging? or writing on this book of ours. 🙂

      This suicide was not the worst. I will not tell you about the worst right now. It was my son in law. Quite a mess there. Big time horror story for sure.

      Is life progressing as we wish? . . . naw, not really. Haven’t been busy on everything we like to – or need to. Again, part of it is this computer. We also have a 1 acre yard, 5 ponds, a creek and gardens to attend to, and a 3500 sq.ft. shop that needs working on. Didn’t work this summer – too hot! – so now :/ – LOL, busy. So that explains why M3 (adult alter) has taken over so much of the time: trying to get things done. Winter (when it’s too cold) we oughta be writing more. Some here as well.

      There’s also the issue of covering old news – what we’ve written before regarding DID. We rarely rehash old stuff. But we should – for the benefit of the DID community. After all, who reads people’s old blog entries? I know I do – some of the time. But mostly people want new news. LOL.

      When we regard DID – we regard in in so many ways. As individuals, as a crowd; as broken parts of a personality ‘reassembled’ in many forms; as persons, souls, hearts – and a delusion. Which one is ‘good’? I suppose it’s the one you’re happiest with most – except when it comes to some personalities which aren’t real happy with it but are learning (somewhat) to accept (again the M3 thing again, LOL’ing).

      You girls have fun, take care, and as always you are right on the money there: love & respect go a long way towards handling internal issues sometimes! Forgiveness works well, too, LOLing!

      Until later
      Jeff & crew, et all

      Like

  4. Kat & Crew says:

    i was thinking in something, but it ran away lol. one of me agrees that ‘its’ all ‘delusional’ – i find that funny as i’m sat here listening to her thinking i’m a delusion lol – methinks she’s not aware i’m here and she’s back there – i dont think she’s seen the screen she’s behind.
    Much Gentle Love and Respect, Kat the delusion.. xx

    Like

    • jeffssong says:

      Who is the dream and who is the reality? Inquiring minds want to know . . .

      “tis all a dream, all a dream, until the day I die (and wake up somewhere)” <- Shakespeare?

      A Childhood Favorite: "Row, row, row your boat, life is but . . . dream."

      Dreamtime Aboriginal Themes.

      🙂

      We are but a little fish dreaming in the depths of a dark and endless sea. (<- mine).

      and who IS the man behind the curtain? (Wizard of OZ, and source of several of my 'theme' songs, LOL.)

      "To sleep, perhaps to dream; to dream, perhaps to scream . . ." (from one of 'my' poems) . . .

      All in fun of course 🙂
      Jeff, et all.

      Like

  5. ~L says:

    Love your closing statements!!! Thanks for the info!

    Like

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