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Posts Tagged ‘not sure if I have DID’

This blog entry completes a series of three on the topic of my experience of becoming aware that I had dissociative identity disorder (DID). You can read the other blog entries here and here.

One issue I wrestled with in the early years of healing from child abuse was how I could have had DID for my entire life without having any symptoms or signs. Once I took a retrospective view of my life, the DID was the missing link to many questions I had always had about my life.

I had the symptom of people knowing me who I did not know. I apparently bonded with a high school sophomore while I was a junior at band camp. I have no memory (other than what I recovered through flashbacks ) of attending band camp at all, although I was always aware that I had attended band camp. I have always remembered this sophomore going out of her way to say hello to me by name and being baffled by who this person was and why she thought she knew me when I did not know her.

I had the symptom of people having strong feelings toward me with no explanation as to why. In my freshman year of college, one student in my dorm HATED me and would harass me by leaving ugly messages on my door. My friends asked me repeatedly why this young woman hated me because – believe me – she was NOT subtle about her intense dislike for me. I had absolutely no idea why she disliked me so badly. I even asked her one time and tried apologizing for however I had offended her, and she was not receptive in the least. She said I knew darn well why she hated me – I truly did not.

In my sophomore year of college, my ex-boyfriend spread rumors that I was pregnant with his baby. Since we had never had intercourse (I believed I was a virgin), I was baffled as to why he would say such a thing and assumed he was just trying to ruin my reputation.

I would visit with my mother and have no recollection of what we had talked about immediately afterward. I would try to remember the annoying things she said to tell my husband, but I simply could not remember. I also thought I had blood sugar issues because I would feel very lightheaded whenever I was around my mother.

My husband would tell me about conversations – sometimes long conversations – that we had that I did not remember. I believed I was talking in my sleep, but he said I seemed awake during these conversations. I had no recollection of those conversations even after his prompting.

Yes, the signs were all there – I just wasn’t ready to deal with them. I was so determined to believe that I was a “normal” person who had not been abused that I found a way to lie to myself and hide an awareness of having DID.

Photo credit: Hekatekris

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A reader wants to know what my experience was in consciously recognizing that I had dissociative identity disorder (DID). For me, recognizing that I had alter parts was a gradual process. Looking back, the signs were there all along, but I truly had no idea about having DID or a child abuse history.

I always knew that I was fundamentally f@$%ed in the head because I struggled with so many seemingly unrelated issues – eating disorder, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), suicidal urges, etc. I didn’t know this was a profile. I just thought I was “crazy.”

A couple of years before I recognized the DID, I started to notice a feeling of someone “stepping into my face” when I was lying down in my bed at night. I had read enough books and watched enough movies about DID to recognize that this could be an alter part. I would run to the mirror to see if my face looked different, but I never could tell. I once even asked myself if I had been abused and, if so, by whom. (I knew about a link between alter parts and child abuse). I recovered a body memory of my mother abusing me. I wasn’t ready to deal with it and woke up the next morning with that experience dissociated away.

In 2003, when my son was two, my mother had surgery. My son and I stayed with her for a few days. I was very triggered (but didn’t know what that “floaty feeling” was). My mother sent me out to run an errand in the middle of the night and went into my son’s room while I was out. When I returned and found this out, an alter part took over. I stayed co-conscious as someone else was in the driver’s seat apologizing to my son for leaving him alone with “that crazy woman” and asking him over and over if he was OK. My mind and body was flooded with intense fear that my mother had sexually abused my son, and I was viewing all of this from a corner of my head, absolutely perplexed.

After that experience, an alter part named Irate came out repeatedly while I stayed co-conscious, and we had multiple “dialogues” in my head. I did not “hear voices.” Instead, it was like I would experience thoughts that did not originate from me, and I would “think” responses back. I recognized that Irate was an alter part, which began my journey toward questioning why I had one.

More tomorrow…

Photo credit: Hekatekris

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