Archive for April 9th, 2008

Winding plant (c) Lynda BernhardtAfter I integrated from dissociative identity disorder (DID), I had to learn how to handle ambivalent feelings. Ambivalence was never an issue for me before integration. If I had conflicting feelings, then one part would hold one view and another alter would hold the opposing view. When I was in high school, I actually signed both a “pro-abortion” and an “anti-abortion” petition, and I had no internal conflict about this at all.

After integration, I could no longer compartmentalize my conflicting feelings. I had to face that I could both love my husband and be extremely angry with him at the same time. I could feel both sadness over my son starting school and glee over having some time to myself. At first, I did not know what to do with the ambivalence because I had never experienced it before. I talked to a close friend who knows my whole history and asked her to explain how she handled ambivalence.

While ambivalence used to be scary, I now recognize it as an important part of life. We make the best decisions when we can see all sides of an issue. Before integration, I was not capable to doing so. When I took a Myers-Briggs personality test before integration, I scored very high in being detail-oriented and very low in having a global view. Since integration, my global view ability has skyrocketed. I am still good with the details but not to the detriment of being able to see the bigger picture.

Having conflicting feelings is a normal part of life. I only got to experience this normal part of life after integration.

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt

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