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This area is reserved for the tidbits I know hope will be of interest to my readers. Check back often for regular updates. 

 

Check out this article about the Fifty Shades of Grey phenomena, including a list of organizations which strongly oppose this sick trend, and have implemented various means of helping women who have been sexually victimized.

 

Were you raised by a narcissist? Chances are you were if you suffered any form of childhood abuse. The Little Red Survivor website is filled with excellent articles examining the many faces of narcissism.

 

It's been a long time coming---7 years to be exact---but finally email notifications for new BD posts is available. Sign up today and never again miss another post. You know you want to!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Kate Is Rising has an excellent Survivors Resources page which directs you to numerous websites dealing with issues of abuse, healing and recovery. Please bear in mind that the information on these pages may be triggering.

 

 

There's lots of good stuff at the Dissociation Blog Showcase, including a list of 180 blogs dealing with some aspect of this disorder. 

 

 

On the Overcoming Sexual Abuse site there's an article entitled, "It's Not About You Mom" which I could have written myself. I bet many of my readers could say the same!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Entries in alters (9)

Friday
Jan242014

Heading Towards Hope

I'm suffering from watching my son struggle with addiction and the myriad of ways in which it's eroded his life. What I want to say is, I'm so sorry I wasn't a better mother. The truth is that I was the only person consistently by his side throughout his entire life. The truth is that he experienced a much healthier level of mothering than I ever did. And another truth is that his addiction isn't my fault, or his. It just is.

Strange, this trying to deal with his ongoing issues compassionately, and with wisdom and strength, when I am constructed of so many. Just who is guiding him when he hits another bump in the road? I wonder who it is that is on the verge of crying, with tears in her eyes, and then they disappear as quickly as they appeared. She is probably one of my youngsters who can't stand to see another in pain, but who was not ever allowed to learn how to cry.

Who attempts to humor him out of his addiction or, rather, not the addiction itself but the depression it causes? Does she really think humor will do the trick? Funnygal, no doubt, a big-hearted alter with good itentions but terrible timing.

It doesn't help to wonder if I'd be any better at this if I were a singleton. Something tells me that witnessing a loved one's self-destruction is hard on anyone, whatever their mental and emotional makeup. Why then do I compare my responses with what I imagine would be the responses of a "normal" parent?

I'm still under the weather, not the best of times for such serious contemplations. I'd do better to go back to Frasier reruns and sunflower seeds, but my heart is not in comedy or, for once, snacking. My heart at the moment is fearful and sickened, and oh so weary.

This is not the only son who has such struggles.

I'm not the only mother who mourns what drug addiction has done to a beloved child. No matter how old he may be, still a beloved child.

Doubtless the sun will rise tomorrow and I'll face another day, screw on a face of courage and tell myself to just get through the weekly routine of another Saturday with my brain injured son over for the day and night. Another day of worrying about the other one, of chastising myself for doing so, and then rebuking myself for chastising myself. Or someone rebuking someone inside of my head.

When I myself am poised on the brink of not being able to go on, of not being able to stand one more day of troubles and struggles, something shifts slightly. Maybe this time I don't want that shift to happen; maybe this is the time I'd rather just take the plunge and free fall into nothingness. But it doesn't happen. It hasn't yet, and it probably never will. My system and I seem to have too much control to allow such a plunge.

I'm in the plodding mode and have been for most of my life. Slow and steady wins the race, which is good. I couldn't go faster if my life depended on it. Plodding, I despair of ever really reaching a destination, but in my heart I know that my efforts must eventually add up to something, to some good. For me, for my sons.

It's not such a bad thing, I think, to have so much inward control. Where it gets dicey is when I think I can control my sons' struggles, choices . . . and addictions. I can't of course. And so I plod, uphill most of the way, taking my little pleasures and comforts where I find them. And when I can't enjoy them when they do come my way, well that's ok too. It's ok if I'm not always ok. Sometimes I won't be; sometimes it would be most odd if I wasn't full of sorrow.

My alters, I hope, will come to learn not to use shame as a means of helping keep the entire system in line. We all need to work together for the greater good of our whole, and I have hope we can achieve this--or when I don't have hope, I'm at least heading in its direction.

 

 

 

 

Monday
Oct212013

Lighting Candles

(Note: the following post was written in 2006, not long after discovering my many selves. I came upon it this morning at my old Beautiful Dreamer site, while searching for something else. I'd forgotten the DID issues my friend and I discussed back then. Not surprising! Anything of a DID nature has a tendency to dissipate from my consciousness rather quickly. I decided to repost this for my own reference, and also on the off chance that someone reading it may benefit from my friend's suggestions.)

 

This evening I spoke with my friend Susan regarding my missing parts. Her ex-husband has DID so she’s a fount of information and good ideas. We did a bit of brainstorming, and I explained that I don’t have very good communication with my parts. She suggested I come up with some kind of message center where any of my parts may go when they need to communicate something with me, or one another. She added that it could be set up so that the messages are in some kind of code which only the one writing them and the one they’re intended for can read them. Another suggestion was that when my parts enter this area they can be invisible, that way they can slip in and out without being seen, thus ensuring their privacy.

I never know what she’s going to pull out of her hat. The truth is, I don’t question her much about DID. I figure after about 10 years of dealing with her hubby’s disorder, she must be sick to death of the whole subject. When she phoned tonight our conversation gravitated to my missing parts and, without warning, I was sharing with her the sorrows and woundings I believe drove them into hiding. (By the way, she encouraged me repeatedly to turn to her with any DID related questions/struggles I may have in the future. Oh boy, she may wish she never opened that can of worms!) Well, I wasn’t too keen on the idea of a message area—-sounded too professional or something. A little later she mentioned it could be something different, like a tree for instance. She said this with a laugh, but it got me to thinking, or a backyard fort!

I like this image a lot. Anything which reminds me of that old sanctuary of my childhood has my approval, for it was there hidden in the womb of my fort where so many pleasant times were spent. Time alone (alone?!) or with a friend, time away from my family’s insanity most of all. And so when Susan mentioned using a tree as a meeting place for my system, it wasn’t all that farfetched. You can nail a sign to it, she suggested, explaining that anyone is free to leave a message whenever they want.

Maybe it’s my imagination, but it seemed like many of my alters perked up their ears at the idea of their own fort. I’m at the point where I’m willing to try just about anything which seems feasible. I told Susan that whenever there’s emotional pain to deal with, I usually stay on auto-pilot and let my parts handle all the pain. They normally work so well together that this isn’t a problem. But now that doesn’t seem to be working, and my acknowledgement of this excited her. “That’s a really good sign of progress,” she said, “the fact that you can see how you normally process pain, and the fact that you know it is no longer working.”

Progress? Moi? Well, maybe so. I’m one of those old lumbering turtles who won’t win any prizes for speed—-but maybe for being slow and steady. I’m not always that steady maybe, but every now and then I get something I didn’t get before, and it gives me a smidgen of hope. A smidgen I didn’t have five minutes ago. Sometimes that’s all we have to cling to: smidgens, rays, crumbs and dribble-drabbles. And sometimes that little bit is just enough to keep the pilot light of our faith from going out. I didn’t have this smidgen of hope yesterday, I have it now. And I’m as content as can be with what I have.


Monday
Jan072013

Wish I Could Set My House in Order

Lately I've had DID on my mind more than usual. I mean sometimes days and weeks go by without my even thinking about it. My system functions pretty smoothly, for the most part, so I don't feel the need to do much monitoring.

Maybe it's partly due to the home movies I viewed, I don't know. Something has stirred things up, and then to make matters more complicated I just read Set This House in Order, by Matt Ruff. This novel is touted as a "romance of souls," in this case the souls being the alters in a DID system.

I've so many conflicting emotions about this book. First off, this guy can really write. He tells a story that grabs hold of you from the first page and doesn't let up until you've reached the last line. I'm in awe of such talent and, probably, a bit envious.

But that's the observations of a writer. When I consider the book and all its intricate characters and plot lines as a reader, I must do so from the viewpoint and perspective of a multiple. That's what I am, a multiple. I need to tell myself this often, or I'm likely to forget. I'm likely to expect of myself things I have no business expecting, due to the fact that I'm not a singleton and can't relate to the world around me as if I were.

I think my first twinge of wariness with this novel was that the alters or insiders in the main character's DID system are referred to as souls. I'm not sure why that would bug me, but it did. It wasn't quite creepy but it did bother me.

Mostly there were more things right than wrong with the author's take on multiplicity. Of course we multiples are unique, so no two of us will experience our DID in the same manner. One thing I can't help wondering is, is it really this easy in real life for one to "call up" an alter? The book would have you believe that all you have to do is call out whoever you want to front, and it will happen. Maybe it does for some, I just don't seem to have that ability. Likewise, the main character would simply tell one of his less appealing alters to knock it off if he didn't like their behavior. I couldn't help but be distracted by the ease in which this was done, and also the character's battles at times to wrest the body from an unruly insider. I suppose that when a novel's subject matter is multiplicity, there's no easy way to portray it without it, at times, coming off just a bit ludicrous.

I like this about the novel: it takes multiplicity seriously. More seriously than I take my own. The storyline is a wild, wild ride. By the time you finish you may need to take a really long nap, and not even think about DID any time soon. That's what I should do, but after finishing it I find myself dwelling on my own multiplicity, comparing it with the book's.

Maybe I'm making mine up, is an easy thought to surface. Maybe mine doesn't seem like that in the book because I'm not even a multiple.

I don't know when or how I'll ever totally accept my DID. Denial is right around every corner, waiting to accost my unsuspecting self. Denial hisses at me that I'm so lame I've taken to pretending to be a multiple. Denial says that I'm a lousy fraud, and I should give it up already.

The more I read or think about DID (or spend time with another multiple) the more I actually feel like a multiple. The less I think or read about it and the more time I spend with singletons, the more I feel like a run-of-the mill mono-brained, big fat liar.

Well. Obviously this book has got my mental wheels spinning. Another thing I envied about the book is the character's ease with telling those closest to him about his DID. He doesn't even try to hide it. I wonder though: in real life aren't there usually at least some individuals close to us who would only scoff, and not accept our diagnosis? Do most people just accept it?

I didn't even mean to write about Set This House in Order; I simply meant to mention how the subject of DID has been so much in the front of my mind lately. I don't know if that means anything (like an insider or two trying to prod my wavering attention.) I don't like thinking about it much; it confuses me. Really confuses me. I'm supposed to have DID and I don't even understand how the disorder works.

I don't get it. But I did get something out of this book: an admiration for the respect with which multiplicity is handled by the author. And too, I found myself picking up on little things in the characters' lives, and how they resolve certain issues, thinking that maybe that'd be something I could try. It couldn't hurt anyway.

If you've got time on your hands (the book's nearly 500 pages), and an interest in DID (yours, or someone else's) this is well worth the read.

PS: If bad language offends you, this is not the book for you!

 

Friday
Dec282012

Not Fade Away

 

We are scared.

We try to hide so no one will see us and decide to get rid of us.

We don’t want to go away.

We don’t deserve to be treated this way but Willie Ray is a bully and the mother doesn’t care, and we have to come out so Debbie can hide.

Now she is watching movies. There is Willie Ray smirking. There is the mother smiling like nothing’s wrong. There is the older brother. He will soon be sent away. She is watching this and plotting. Plotting to get better which means plotting to get rid of us.

We love her more than the mother ever did, but she will get rid of us.

She sees the movies and thinks she is going back in time, but it is always that time for us. Stuck in the Sixties is not a funny phrase. For us it is real. We hear Willie Ray’s voice and we try to tune it out, but no matter who comes out they have to listen and pretend to be obedient or you know what happens.

The mother has a new baby but that doesn’t change anything. In the movies they make she holds and kisses the baby, but sometimes Debbie watches it more than anyone else.

Nobody ever asks us how we are doing. No one notices us or cares if we are blue or angry or lonesome. It is very lonely in here because we don’t all like each other, but I’m not telling who is writing this. Nobody better tell, it’s my secret.

Willie Ray is a bully and the mother prefers bullies to being poor, so she’s not about to make him leave.

There is a cold wind blowing in here and we can’t get warm. Some in here are howling louder than the wind. No one on the outside guesses that we are all grieving for something. We help Debbie act normal and happy, but she’s not. Willie Ray and the mother have their games and their dishonesty, so we can have ours. Ha ha, they can’t control everything, not even Willie Ray with his tattoos and his stupid jokes and the billy club he plunges into us whenever he wants.

Williey Ray is a bastard. We can’t say what the mother is because she’s the mother but she’s not so nice herself, only looks like it from a distance or in movies. You notice her beauty and how kind she seems but it is not kindness to let Willie Ray shove us around all the time. All the livelong day shoving and smirking and shaming. What a stupid stupid man.

We don’t want to fade away like we never existed. It’s not fair.

I know it’s not nice but I wish Debbie will stay all broken so that we never have to leave. We can help her better than anyone so she doesn’t need anyone else but us.

We don’t want to fade away.

This was written by none of your beeswax.

Sunday
Oct072012

Thicket

She is perhaps 12, with shoulder-length uncombed hair, matted from years of neglect. When she is home in the house shared by the system, she exists in the turret, the only room in which she feels a slight sense of safety, as it has no corners for lurking predators.

Her face is streaked with dirt, her eyes dull with a pain beyond her years. She wants nothing, expects nothing, and most of the time feels nothing, not even the pain so evident in her once intelligent looking eyes. She squats in her turret, ready to spring up at the least creak or odd noise; sits on her haunches and frequently glances about the room, wild with an unnameable, barely suppressed terror. The interior of the room is swathed ceiling to floor in thick velvet draperies in deep, rich reds and purples. No light enters, except for the few seconds it takes her to slip out the door on her frequent journeys deep into the forest, for all the windows are boarded over and covered in velvet.

Thicket takes to the woods at the slightest sense of unease or danger within the system. In her scuffed hiking boots and long, threadbare cape, her sensitive little face framed in its hood, she makes a pathetic waifish figure, though she is beyond even the spurious comfort of self-pity. Thicket is a responder, not an initiator. She does nothing to attempt to alter her situation, for she knows nothing for her will ever change. She hides, she crouches, she lives on hyper-vigilance and little food, mostly the berries and nuts scavenged on her forays into the woods. Her eyes scan the environs of the woods, expecting the worst, ready to flee at the least sign of impending doom. She lives in the flight mode, this is what she does.

No one has ever heard her speak, or grunt even. She has no use for vocal chords and words. She doesn't reach out to others nor allow anyone close enough to reach out to her.

I am Thicket. Thicket is me, the 12 year old me who felt the bottom drop out of my world when my mother witnessed my molestation and chose to stay with my abuser.

Thicket lives outside of time, in a universe of her own making. Not by choice, exactly. She was sent into exile as the result of the mother's selfish decision. She knows nothing of time; everything is the present with her, and the present doesn't change it just exists.

I am Thicket, something I'm just beginning to process, barely. Somewhere deep within me a roaring begins as the truth of this sinks in.

I am Thicket, she is me, and we are stuck with one another. We are one another, world without end.