Some other things about DID:
It requires a lot of mental energy to make it work. When we're young that seems to be OK. But as we get older the task of maintaining those "partitions" seems to become greater.
DID started for me when I was a very small child (3-4). A "neighbor" was using the boys in the neighborhood for what I figured out many years later was kiddie porn. At that time I didn't know what a movie camera was. DID can happen fairly easily at that age. I was the youngest. The older boys bullied me because I was the smallest and most vulnerable. This left me with severe deficits in ability to relate to people and I had all the symptoms of mental dysfunctionality from early abuse (dyslexia, ADHD, etc.) All of this was going on under the radar of all of the parents.
The whole thing was made much worse by being terribly abused in a scout camp when I was 12. I have already posted at length about that.
A journal I kept for awhile when I was about 20 years old was written in a different handwriting every day. Even the color of ink or pencil was different. The style of writing was different. No wonder I had trouble remembering the information required in order to pass an exams in college. I did succeed but not wonderfully.
When I became aware of the different alters I contained, (some won't like this idea), I could sense when there was a change of alter about to take place. Sometimes the alters emerged as a result of some kind of trigger. Sometimes they simply wanted to have their time in the driver's seat. When I started to sense what was going on (in therapy and by reading), I started to have some control over who would come out and when. One day I drove to the shopping mall as a 12-year-old alter. (not Buzzy and not necessarily advisable). I walked around the mall like that. I caught the attention of various people. People never said anything.
Some alters are depressed and they don't know why. Some get triggered easily and they don't know why. There is that prevailing amnesia, depression and anxiety before healing starts. The healing can start with the unveiling of the cause of the system. When the amnesia comes down, the anxieties go up!
Here is a recipe for healing. These things brought healing before I started therapy:
1) Marriage to a good woman (I think I was difficult but she was sweet)
2) I started having some trustworthy friendships.
3) I read and studied every day. Doing the same things every day will gradually break down the partitions.
4) I memorized long passages. (I actually memorized chapters of the Bible). Memorization is more difficult with DID because it has to transgress those alter partitions. But that's the very reason it's beneficial.
5) I was trusting God.
When I started working with a T in recovery, in my forties, I learned how to draw up the various younger alters by conscious choice. I started to integrate them by conscious choice. My T showed me how to do this in therapy sessions. I got "carried away" with the process and in impatience I started doing it at home. Like a runaway train I ended up crashing.
1) A diagram or list of the alters is constructed.
2) I prepared and memorized an agenda for each session.
3) I put on pre-recorded children's music.
4) I would put myself into deep relaxation in a dark, quiet place.
5) I Pressed the play button for the music.
6) A certain child alter (predecided) would come out and listen to the music.
7) I (adult outward me) would talk to the child alter. I had to convince him that he wanted to integrate. The reasons for integrating alters are: less confusion in the body, greater intellectual and physical strength, better rest, a feeling of healing. Reconciliation of what really is one anyway.
8) I would ask the child alter to integrate (The little child alters in me never refused).
It was exhausting to do the above list of activities. I would often fall asleep afterward. DID is exhausting anyway. Sometimes alters don't sleep at night and they can remain awake, keeping the body from fully resting. Some alters who remember abuse will plunge into a terrifying dreamlife during "sleep".
The exhaustion from this kind of activity can lead to sleep deprivation and vitamin deficiencies.
I was not able to do this integration scheme with the difficult alters. Buzzy who was age 12 and who had all the memories and contamination of terrible abuse would not consent to this strategy. So we dragged on for many months without healing in this area. I was co-conscious of being Buzzy and adult. I also had the ability to switch when I wanted to.
I compare this situation with the situation in the book: A Fractured Mind
by Robert B. Oxnam:http://www.amazon.com/Fractured-Mind-Multiple-Personality-Disorder/dp/1401308686/
Finally after years, EMDR brought unification of many of the difficult emotional systems.
Talk therapy has helped me to regain trust in people. First (in chronological order) friends, then wife, then therapist, then fellows in MS. Writing out our stories and our responses is very healing. I will post about this sometime soon.
The lasting result is an adult me who remembers a lot of evil stuff done to me and some good stuff from childhood. I still feel like a kid inwardly. I have had memory problems. I have posted elsewhere on memory problems. They are slowly yielding. I am slowly becoming a more joyful, more adult, more trusting person.
I had gained skill in certain important areas from a long time ago. But the skill was concentrated in certain alters. Unification of these alters in some cases left a deficit in the ability to access these skills. At least they were more difficult to tap into. I still haven't recovered some of the abilities left behind. But healing is well worth it. It was a terrifying roller-coaster ride to have DID.
Why did I write this post? I've suffered a lot because of the DID systems sit up in me by others when they abused me. I cannot regain what I have lost in life. The best outcome is to share openly what my symptoms were and what contributed to their healing.
I was helped by many books and by hearing lectures and reading the books of James G. Friesen:http://www.amazon.com/Uncovering-Mystery-MPD-James-Friesen/dp/1579100627/http://www.amazon.com/Uncovering-Mystery-Mpd-Shocking-Surprising/dp/0840743858/