First Things First
Getting Down to Basics
Please Sign
Ponder This

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!








This area does not yet contain any content.

Blogging Again

And just like that, I'm blogging again.


Recently I was telling a friend that I often feel emotions that are unconnected with anything going on in my life. Sometimes a tsunami of despair plunges me into such a vast darkness that I don't expect to ever see the light of day again. Or a sorrow so deep it causes me to instantly begin weeping though I don't know what the tears are for. He suggested that my parts may be stuck back in my childhood home where no child was safe. Though I was diagnosed with DID over ten years ago I've never really gotten to know my system very well. I haven't wanted to. I haven't wanted to invest in the time and effort and pain I knew this would involve, and what would be required of me, so I shut myself off from my parts as best I could, hoping by doing so they would disappear or at least not bother me.


My friend's words hit me hard. They rattled me. Instantly my thoughts flew back to that suburban home where I was accosted by my stepfather every time I turned around, and left to flounder by a mother who didn't want to admit what she knew. And everything within me recoiled at the thought that my parts were living in perpetual fear, cringing at every sound, waiting always for the other shoe to drop and being afraid to even whisper for fear the stepfather would notice them and the cycle of abuse would begin all over again.


I've hoped to slink through the rest of my life not dealing with any of this because, quite frankly, I'm weary of it. But now it's time. Time to become acquainted with my unique selves and learn to value and nurture them. I can't understand let alone explain why I'm ready now when I so clearly wasn't before, I just know I am.


Already I feel stronger and more authentic just by making this one decision.



Poetry Book

Growing up as the abused redheaded stepchild who had a burning passion for writing, I never thought I'd some day put my own truth into written words. My step-dad mocked my writing and I froze. I wrote fiction instead. I couldn't afford the price it would have cost to stick to the truth. But that was then, this is now.

Now, as the grown up version of that little girl self, I can afford all kinds of things. It took one kind of courage to stifle my truest self and endure the endless molestings and rapes back then. Today it takes another kind of courage to tell the world what was done to me in words that are as true as I can make them. I decided somewhere along the line that my step-dad wasn't going to have the last word on who I am. I didn't belong to him then, and I don't now.

I've published a little book of truths--that's how I think of them, truths, rather than poems. They may or may not explode into someone's life and make some kind of difference. I hope they do. I hope someone reads them and feels the beginning of an emotional earthquake that shakes them out of their futile efforts to pretend that their own abuses as a child didn't happen, or that they did happen but didn't matter. Because the reality is that we're all in this together, all of us, whether or not we want to be. As part of the human race, what touches one touches everyone. If you suffered as I did from any kind of abuse I'm outraged on your behalf. My words don't have to sell a million copies or make some best seller list, they have only to bring light into darkness.

This slim volume is one way of letting my light shine into the darkness. See, is what these poems say to those who have ears to hear, this is how bad it got. This is the evil that permeated my childhood. But see also: I've lived to tell about it. I've lived long enough to choose to begin to heal. And if I can, you can, because there is enough light and healing to go around. More than enough.

PS  Click here for the ebook version.







After Grief

A friend once told me, after I'd lost a twenty-something year friendship, that I definitely needed to grieve my loss. I needed to figure out what I missed most about that friendship and ask God to replace those things in my life.

This was nearly ten years ago, and in all this time I've barely allowed myself to miss this person, let alone grieve her loss. And then today I found an old email account I haven't accessed in about seven years, and found many, many emails I'd saved from people who are no longer in my life.

Once upon a time (ten years ago now) I began this blog. Within a year I had a little DID support system going made up of fellow multiples I'd met online. We visited one another's blogs, left comments, gave each other a bad time, made bad jokes, exchanged DID technical knowledge and, in general, supported one another. Someone was always having a bad time of it, we were all always having a bad time of it. But there were others who were going through the same fears and depressions, or who had gone through them in the past and knew just what to say to throw a bit of light our way.

Finding these emails gave me so many mixed emotions. I teared up immediately, stricken with the loss of the individuals who for years had been part of my life in cyberspace. I miss that keenly. There is now no one in my life (except for one individual who was married to a multiple) with whom I can discuss the confusing, convoluted life of a multiple. No one. I'm not sure what happened to everyone. Oh, I know what happened in some cases but with others there wasn't any breaking point or closure, they simply drifted off and disappeared as if I'd dreamed them up. Some, I found out later, had quit blogging and no one knew what became of them.

None of us can go backwards and mostly I think that's a good thing. But sometimes when I allow myself to feel some of my losses I wish that I could. I wish I had the anticipation every morning of booting up my computer with a mug of hot coffee in hand, and reading the latest comments on my blog or the latest posts from someone in my little circle. I miss the fun. I miss how quickly we all leapt to the defense of anyone who needed it, or rushed to provide some form of comfort to one who was raw and hurting. These are not things to take lightly, and I didn't. I don't.

I needed that sense of camaraderie and I still do, but now I don't know where to find it. Either the world of DID cyberspace has drastically changed or I've lost my knack for finding those kindred souls who once saw me through so many hard times. 

Yes, I do need to grieve. I have a lifetime of grieving to do but the thing no one ever tells me is what exactly am I to do once I've done with it?









So You've Decided to Heal

Dear Brave Soul,

Don't laugh, I call you this because, even though I don't know you, I know the amount of courage it took you to face up to the fact that you need to heal. And then from there to decide, okay, I want to do this. I want to heal. You've perhaps come to the conclusion, as I did years ago, that time itself does nothing but age you. It doesn't heal, it simply moves you physically further from the season of your abusive childhood, offering you no healing properties in the process.

And so here you stand (or slump, or lie facedown on the floor, whimpering) with a steadily growing conviction (that you need healing) morphing into a coherent resolution (I want to begin the healing process). The good news is, you've taken the first step which will set all kinds of things in motion. The bad news is, you've taken the first step which will set all kinds of things in motion.

Your decision to begin a journey of recovery from your traumatic childhood is going to stir up all the memories you've been trying to shut out for years, or decades. You will wonder why you ever thought dealing with your childhood was such a great idea. No one told you it would be this painful! What's the point, anyhow, if all you have to look forward to is more pain?

The point is that by facing and confronting the memories your pain will begin to be manageable. Some days it won't seem like it because some days you will feel raw, and everything around you will feel like salt in your open wounds. But not every day will be like this. Like everyone else, you will have your good days and your bad days. Some days and weeks it will seem as if your entire universe revolves around your healing, and you're right because it does, at least initially. In the beginning of the journey you're about to embark on, you will necessarily have to focus on you and everything that made you who you are. You can't accomplish this without looking back from where you've come. It's unavoidable. But you won't have to live simultaneously in the present and the past forever, at least not to such an extreme as is required in your early season of healing. 

Life will seem not to change much, perhaps for a long while. You must expect this so that you can be tender with yourself (or, if you're a multiple, your selves). You must believe, even in the face of no such tangible evidence, that one day you're going to come into your own. You mustn't crack a whip over your own head in a frenzy to force yourself to arrive there before you're ready. Your abuser did that when he introduced you to sexuality on his timetable. You mustn't continue what he started. Forcing yourself to move faster than you are able to along your journey of recovery and healing will stall you out. Healing takes time; it can't be rushed or forced. 

You will have nights when every cunning demon in the universe seems to be whispering your name in your ear like a contemptuous taunt, nights when sleep is like an offended friend who has turned his back on you in disgust, and refuses to return. Nights when you recall with clarity every detail of your abuser: the color of his hair, the pores of his sweaty face, his favorite brand of aftershave which you can smell again there in the night, alone. You will convince yourself that this is all you have to look forward to for the rest of your life: these night time horror fests when bits and pieces of your childhood come up like vomit, and you powerless to stop it.

In spite of this, you mustn't allow yourself to give up your resolution to recover. Though this resolution may not seem like much, it's the strongest thing you own. No one can snatch it from you, it can only be freely surrendered. You may relapse and throw in the towel on an especially hard day, but don't let that rob you of your future. There is a certain rhythm to this process of recovery. You might take one step forward and then fall back five, but that's okay, it's just part of the process and not to be taken as a permanent failure. You're not a failure, no matter how often you stumble. You are stronger than you think: you've already survived the worst thing that ever happened to you!

I've been dealing with my own recovery for close to 15 years, and I can honestly say I never thought I'd be where I am today. And yet there are moments when I despair of ever being totally free of my past. Though it doesn't loom over me in the way it once did, I must face the fact that we can only choose how to deal with our childhoods. We are never quite free of them, though the hold they've had on us can be loosened to such an extent that we can live without remembering the brunt of the abuse every minute of every day. Once we've got some mileage under us along the road of recovery we can choose what to focus on. We can choose, and make little adjustments along the way, because, well, because why not? We're in charge of our lives now!

Some days I just sense that I need to address certain issues. For me that usually means I need to deal with my DID system, something I don't like to do. But for every day like that there are many, many more where I barely think of what was done to me in the first place that made my many personalities necessary in order to survive.

As you head out into the first steps of your oh-so-brave journey, with nothing more than your wobbly resolve to guide you, hear my blessing over you from one overcomer to another:

May you find the footprints of those who have gone before you to help guide your way, and encourage you in the heat of the day and the cold of the night.

May you gift yourself with all the time in the world you need for your journey, remembering it is the journey itself that brings the healing you so yearn for, for there is no destination at which you will magically arrive.

May you allow yourself to be the intelligent, sensitive person you've always been beneath the heavy, dreary weight of trauma and abuse.

May you find like-minded souls for friendship, nurturing and as a source of encouragement along the way.

And, may you some day find yourself on the other side of your worst struggles and fears, standing strong as you cheer others on, away from the past of their victimization into their true place under the sun.

All my best,






Passing the Torch

Sometimes I'm weary of the whole DID thing. If it were simply a lifestyle I decided to try out to see if I liked it I would have said long before this, "Uh, thanks but no thanks." 

Recently I read The Minds of Billy Milligan. I found this true account of multiplicity quite intriguing, and that's another thing I don't much care for, that I can read about DID in reference to someone else and even admire that person for persevering and knowing so much about their system. But when it's me and my system? I get exasperated. Impatient. Angry. I don't see one single thing to admire about my own management of a group of insiders I barely know. They are strangers to me, I'm barely aware of their existence most of the time. Reading the Billy Milligan story gave me a bad case of DID envy. I mean, everyone but me (or so it seems) who lives with this disorder knows their system inside and out. Why don't I know mine? Is it because I put up resistance? Are they deliberately in hiding from me, and if so why? If they are here to help then why play hide-and-seek?

Another thing that gripes me is that I'm turning 63 next month and here I am still plodding along not dealing with something I should be dealing with. I've never figured out why this is so hard for me. I can't get to the bottom of it, it's all a murky mystery. I've a sinking feeling it's never going to get any better than this. As Jack Nicolson's character said, "What if this is as good as it gets?" Well it probably is. I mean if I haven't figured this out by now what are the odds I will at some later date when my health is failing, and my memory too?

This is one of those posts that have no real resolution. I didn't think when I began that by the time I reached the end I'd have arrived at any conclusions. So in that respect I'm not disappointed. I'm slightly relieved that I took the time to write this; I'd forgotten how good it feels to blog about my troubles. Whether or not anyone is reading it feels good to write it.

I spent nearly the entire day working on the revision of my poetry book. I don't mention DID in these poems, but they were written about the time in my childhood when I was mauled and raped by my abuser on a regular basis. I'm at the point of editing and so of necessity I must read every word, something I absolutely don't relish. Hard to write such poetry in the first place and double hard to read it later at different stages in your life and not feel as if it's all whining. I swear at one point I wanted to yell, "Just get over it already!"

All kinds of mixed up thoughts ran through my mind while editing. In addition to "just get over it" I found myself thinking, rather defensively, that if I hadn't been raped for 8 years I wouldn't have had to write such poetry in the first place, and wouldn't now be having to edit it in the second place. And then I thought how writing about such violence is supposed to be healing, and sharing your sufferings in the form of writing can be like passing the torch to someone whose pathway has been ill-lit and scary.

So. Here I am passing the torch. I do this in the poetry I so despised today. Forging ahead with the editing even though everything and everyone inside of me was protesting, is me handing that torch over. Everytime I make no explanations or excuses for my often quirky behavior to someone who doesn't know its source, I'm passing on the torch. Because how easy it would be (and has been for much of my life) to laugh along with someone else about what a goof I am, how I can't do anything right and my memory has more holes than swiss cheese, etc. I must make a choice whenever I am met with another's humor or scorn at my ineptness at this whole business of living. I can hide inside my shell, laugh along with them, make up something that sounds halfway credible...or I can do none of those things. Instead, I can take one for the team. Not just my unique little team of insiders but also in the bigger sense of the whole DID community, however small or expansive that might be. If I take one for my team then I'm not adding to the misinformation that's already out there circulating about us. I'm not encouraging the stigma attached to this mental illness by scoffing at it or making myself the butt of a joke.

Passing the torch and taking one for the team--these are two things I can do even though I don't understand the world inside of me. And for now that will have to be enough.