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What It Is Like To Date Someone Who Has Multiple Personality Disorder
By Izza Sofia, 16 Mar 2017
Your personality is a complex thing that is totally unique to you. Despite its complexity, most of us have only one personality.
“In order to survive, a brave person has split off continuous understanding of what’s happening to them. So, a child who can’t fight back or can’t run away finds another part of the mind to retreat to in order for normal service to continue.”
But a few people encounter love, life and loss through the lens of one identity which, usually through a history of abuse, gets fragmented into anything up to 30 distinct personalities. Most of us may only encounter this mental disorder through the realms of fiction, in fantastical narratives such as Split, Fight Club and Sybil.
But the reality of Disassociative Identity Disorder (DID) is stranger and much different from fiction, according to leading expert and the founder of the Clinic for Dissociative Studies, Dr. Valerie Sinason.
“Disassociative Identify Disorder doesn’t just pop out of the ground, it happens due to extreme trauma.”
Dr. Sinason explained that DID is estimated to affect 1 per cent of British people but is an ‘unpopular condition’ among psychiatrists as it usually occurs after immense childhood trauma that most of us could not fathom.
DID affects both the sufferers and those close to them. In her thirty years of treating patients with DID, Sinason has known many brave individuals who are able to control the fragments of their disassociated identity and function perfectly happily in society, with anything up to 20 fully-fledged personalities.
“Trying to find out what they’re communicating is really important, both for you and for them because having somebody that accepts you is key.”
While DID takes it to a different extreme, Sinason believes, ‘we’ve all had the experience of dealing with changes we do not like in someone we wish would stay the same, be consistent and even-tempered’ and coping with a loved one who has DID requires ‘the same rules of behaviour for all of us’.
Read more about this article here.
[via Unilad, opening image via Shutterstock]
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