Karen answers Erin

Comment by Erin on January 13, 2009 3:20 am

Hi Karen,

I read on another site that usually a highly suggestible person goes to a therapist and, following some therapy suggestions, is unconsciously persuaded of idea that they have multiple personalities. What do you think of the statement? I read Switching Time and believed the illness to exist. Great attempt on your doctor in trying to prove it. Is it possible for you to write something that changes the minds of idiots?

Erin

Dear Erin,

Sadly, there are many people, including some therapists, who choose to make comments about multiple personality not founded on facts.  It may be true that there are some patients so suggestible, and some therapists so eager to see multiple personality, that together they manufacture it.  I’ve read about some cases of MPD and I’ve wondered if they really had it.

For me, I developed multiplicity from repeated sexual, physical, and emotional abuse that started before age three and lasted through adolescence. My abuse was persistent, horrific, and my abusers were relentless. I was abused at least twice a week, sometimes more.  I believe my mind created alternate personalities to protect me from that immediate trauma and to compartmentalize the pain.  By ‘switching’ I was able to then appear like everyone else, but losing time and keeping such secrets as a child caused many consequences that ultimately caused devastation for me as an adult.  I believe switching into other selves was a God sent coping mechanism. If it weren’t for my alters’ help, I wouldn’t be alive today.

I can’t get angry with people who disbelieve out of ignorance.  Multiplicity is an illness created as a coping mechanism to protect the mind from the horror that comes from being abused as a child.  Multiple Personality Disorder is a real illness, and though incomprehensible for most people, it devastates those who truly suffer. That is why it’s so important to bring awareness of this illness. 

Karen

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