There’s a stranger in the house and that person is me. Or her. Or both.
Sometimes it’s rather confusing.
You’d think after 23 (no, it’s been 27) years of living with her, I’d know who this person is. I’ve lived with her, made love to her – even married her, apparently.
But there’s this stranger in the house and it’s me. Or her.
You see, this is one of the things about being DID. Sometimes you don’t know yourself, sometimes you don’t know about the people around you.
“Who is she?” I find myself wondering. And wonder who is wondering as I feel this sense of alienness – of a stranger – in ‘my’ house.
Or is it hers?
I faintly remember someone else buying it (the house, that is) – standing in the front yard looking things over . . . a dim view of picking up some sand in the road, looking around, saying “yes, this here.”.
But sometimes when she comes to me (us?) at night I find myself wondering:
Who is this stranger who is coming to bed with me? Is it all right? Should I (we?!) be doing this? Is this ‘her’ – the ‘wife’? – some other component must’ve married her! – after all, she’s here! . . . cooking dinner, going about her life, and ‘I’ feel like a ghost to her . . . or more accurately, her to me.
Who is this woman I see?
I have to remind ‘myself’:
“This is my WIFE. This is the woman I married. Or some of ‘us’.”
Over and over again.
It’s a strange feeling to see someone in your house – someone you have lived with for long decades (or short ones; it depends on ‘our’ perspective here) – years, as a matter of fact . . .
and “I” don’t know her. Some of my alters know her. Some of them collectively call her ‘mom’. She is not my mom. My mom lives somewhere elsewhere. She no longer lives with me – or ‘I’ with her, though for some of my alters those remembrances are just a nook in the corner, a flash of a yesterday away . . .
This is one of the things about being an ‘alter’ (I am “21”, you see – an ‘alter’ of ‘mine’ or the entire system; a semi-host for awhile) – you don’t always recognize what is around you, even if ‘you’ (or some of your alters) own it.
In a very real sense we ALL own everything – the house, the yard, the broken down lawn mower. In a sense we “all” married her – the husband, the wife, the children – are all part of ‘me’ . . .
But sometimes when I’m not ‘right in the head’ (meaning the adult alters have gone away) I’m left with defusing a situation I hadn’t created and one that I didn’t agree to, and one I have no clue about running about. (a jokes in there; two meanings, two words).
And this is something spouses of DID patients (patience?) should apply: the knowledge that the person they married might not be that person all the time.
I might not be the only stranger in this house; I might be her stranger as well.
We tend to hide it, this problem; accessing information ‘inside’, allowing ourselves to observe and say: “Yes, it is my ‘wife’, the one ‘we’ all married. Get used to it. It’s there for life (is it?)”. We try to treat her gently as as the good host (adult alter) would. We ‘love’ her even if we’re not feeling love at the time. (Note to selves: this is especially an issue with ’21’ as we’ve found out here – some confusion on these issues.)
But it’s weird, and a weird weird feeling (adult alter M3 surfacing here) because not all my alters see this woman as the same.
But it’s also very weird to have lived with someone for 27 years, look at them, and wonder how they came to BE here; what are they DOING here, and what is her NAME?
And why did we MARRY her, and who is responsible for that decision?
Should we love her some more, or just give into this intuition?
She’s a stranger in our lives, but a good thing. We need stability in our life, and this is it. Remarkable how this woman we don’t know helps us; albeit with a little help from our friends, the adult alter & Jeff – and a few more.
And I can easily see how relationships can be sabotaged by this fact, this not knowing the score, this ‘distance’ in a relationship that is not there, for the fact of things is that ‘my’ wife and I are rather close – while not quite being ‘soul-mates’, we got together, don’t argue and fight, do things as couples do . . .
but oddly (sometimes) I feel like she’s a stranger in my house (but if so, then, why are all her possessions here?) . . .
or (more than likely)
the stranger is in me.