One of the things I've had to vontend with, growing up as a system, is he constant contradictions in self. How can I say I'm passionate about something, when half the time I'm super into it, and the other half I don't care at all about it.
Panel 1: Person is showing Jak their phone, saying "Yeah it's a modern style, very boxy and sleek. It looks like a spaceship in my opinion. To which Jak just says "Mmhmn."
Panel 2: person is scrolling down and talking, "It's got TWO pools, van you believe it? Two pools, a jacuzzi, and this amazing garden encloses it all!" Jak is now thinking *OMG I don't care. Why is he showing me this?*
Panel 3: Person shows Jak the phone and says, "I know you like looking at architecture so I saved a couple of these places to show you." While Jak thinks, *Oh, he's trying to show Kyra."
Panel 4: person is scrolling through the phone while Jak, exasperated, thinks *Ugh, I hate not enjoying the hings I supposedly like.*
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Shout out to every single system member trying their best. You're doing great!
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Can you talk about what DID can look like for people?
DID has symptoms that the person experiences. Here is a list of types of DID.
Types of DID
Latent DID – The alters are generally inactive but may be triggered by stressors which are somehow symbolic of the traumatic event. Examples of this are when the person’s children reach the age of the person during the trauma, or the perpetrator becomes ill or dies. During such time the alters may emerge for the first time publicly, which provides a window of diagnosability.
Posttraumatic DID – Symptoms are not present until the person experiences an overwhelming contemporary event such as a great loss, rape, combat, or a head trauma sufficient to cause organic amnesia.
Extremely Complex or Polyfragmented DID – Presence of such a wide variety of alters and such frequent switching between alters that it is difficult to discern the outline of DID and the multiplicity actually disguises itself. Most individuals with dissociative identity disorder have less than a dozen alters, however at the far end of the spectrum are those individuals who are polyfragmented. If an individual does present with numerous ‘alters’ purposeful mind control is often the cause. In general, the complexity of dissociative symptoms appears to be consistent with the severity of early traumatisation. In a polyfragmented system the parts are usually in subsystems or designs which were arranged by the programmers.
Epochal or Sequential DID – When an alter emerges it takes over for a long period of time before the next alter takes over for another long period of time. While one alter is out, the others go dormant.
Isomorphic DID – Several very similar alters take control as a group and try to pass as one. The only overt signs may be a fluctuating level of function, unevenness of memory, or inconsistencies in the person’s personality.
Co-conscious DID – The alters know about one another so there is no demonstrated time loss or memory gaps.
Possession Form DID – The most evident alter presents as a demon or devil. This can be seen more commonly in cultures where religion or rituals have to do with demons and can easily be mistaken for psychotic conditions.
Reincarnation/Mediumistic DID – Alters who are experienced by the person as having a supernatural quality and communicate with the person in such a manner.
Private DID – Alters are aware of one another and have consciously adapted to pass as one.
Secret DID. The host is unaware of the alters, who only emerge when the host is alone. One might suspect this in a person who cannot account for his or her private time.
Ostensible Imaginary Companionship DID – The person has an adult version of the imaginary companion who is friendly and supportive with the socially constricted host. What the host is not aware of is that this alter does assume executive control and that there are other alters present as well.
Covert DID-This is the form most characteristic of persons with DID. Alters contend for control and influence without assuming full executive control. To people it feels as though their lives are out of control and that their actions are imposed upon them by a power unseen rather than selected by them.
Puppeteering or Passive-Influence Dominated DID – The host is dominated by alters that rarely emerge. If the host is unaware of these alters he/she feels like the survivor of influences that force behavior in a direction not chosen.
Phenocopy DID – The most important of the covert forms. Occurs when the alter’s interactions with, and influences on the host and each other, create phenomena that are similar in appearance to the manifestations of other mental disorders. For example, alters who are in conflict and are insistent on their thoughts while canceling out one another’s actions can imitate obsessive compulsive disorder. When a person has alters who harass one another, it appears to the onlooker as though the person is hallucinating, which would resemble an acute schizophrenic episode. Alters with different moods can have the appearance of an affective disorder. Alters in contention may create the chaotic appearance of borderline personality disorder.
Somatoform DID – Very common. The pain or discomfort of a traumatic event which was experienced by an alter, is felt physically by the host, who has no memory of the trauma. Examples are pain in the rectum or vaginal area, numbness or tingling in the extremities from being tied up during abuse, a sense of choking or nausea associated with forced oral sex. This should be suspected when there is no apparent physiological explanation for the pain.
Orphan Symptom DID – Closely related to all of the covert categories. This is the phenomenon of unexplained and spontaneous feelings, sensations, actions, or intrusive traumatic imagery which manifests in the host, is not understood by the host, and which has been triggered by a contemporary stimulus that relates to childhood trauma.
Miscellaneous Presentations of DID
Switch-Dominated DID – Most commonly seen in the person with a large number of alters. The switching process is so rapid and frequent that the person appears bewildered and forgetful. persons are often misdiagnosed with an affective disorder, psychosis, and organic mental syndrome, or seizure disorder.
Ad Hoc DID – Very rare. A helper alter creates a series of alters that function briefly and then cease to exist. This can be suspected when the person’s history may suggest DID or recurrent fugues, but no alter can be found to explain the missing time.
Modular DID – Very uncommon. This occurs when usually autonomous ego functions split and different altersare reconfigured from their elements. When an alter is encountered it may have a vague feeling to it, and may never be seen in exactly the same way again. These persons have been seriously abused, and are brilliant and quite creative. Kluft has also found an unusual computer literacy since childhood among these persons.
Quasi-Role-Playing DID – In this case the person is attempting to disavow the diagnosis of DID. One alter acts out when it knows of the other alters, and then informs the clinician that he/she has been feigning DID. The person states they have willfully generated this behavior.
Pseudo False Positive DID – This presentation was common in the 1970’s and 1980’s and is now uncommon. In this case a person would adopt the behavior of a widely publicized or Hollywood movie type of case, one that is very flamboyant in appearance. The purpose of this was a desperate attempt to convince the clinician of the presence of DID, while the person anticipated incredulity on the alter of the clinician. Now that DID is accepted as a valid diagnosis, this presentation is rarely seen.
Structural dissociation: A theory that builds upon the work of Janet and Myers, tying together recent developments in trauma and dissociation. Structural Dissociation is one of the three ISSTD accepted causes of dissociative identity disorder. 
Primary structural dissociation (PSD): Acute stress disorder (ASD) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) fit into this category. The person will have one ANP and one EP.
Secondary structural dissociation (SSD): Other specified dissociative disorder (OSDD), trauma-related borderline personality disorder (BPD), and complex-PTSD are in this category. The person will have one ANP and typically two or more EP
Tertiary structural dissociation (TSD): This is dissociative identity disorder (DID) according to the theory of structural dissociation. The person will have more than one ANP and more than one EP.
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Hiding being a system is so exhausting. But being open about being a system is just as exhausting if not more exhausting. Being a system is exhausting.
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just a reminder that your experiences don’t have to line up with everyone else’s. you will always be valid regardless of how many or how little alters you have. you will always be valid whether you have an inner world or not. you are valid as a system because your experience as a system is a unique one. you are and always will be valid.
DNI if endogenic/tulpa/supporters
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this might be totally incomprehensible idk but like
i swear gaslighting is the most fucking insidious form of abuse. because it's like. something happens that is clearly upsetting. then you get in trouble when you're rightly upset about it. then when you try to call them out for being shitty while you were upset, they twist the narrative so that they never actually said anything like that. they gaslight you about gaslighting you.
and this happens so consistently that you start to wonder if they're right, and eventually you no longer feel like you can trust your own reality (which is the point) and then you rely on them more to tell you what's real, but what they say is real doesn't feel real, but nothing else feels real either, and then you feel like you're going crazy.
for us it extended into the realm of almost psychosis. eventually we couldn't tell what was real and what was imagined, and then we couldn't determine how much of our disconnect from reality was dissociation, how much was the gaslighting, and how much was actual psychosis.
god i'm so tired of being mentally ill. please let me die.
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A not so friendly reminder that we absolutely hate endogenic systems. Endogenic systems do not exist nor are they real. You are either a traumagenic system or not a system at all. Endos piss us off so much, no words can describe just how much. You are ableist fools who spread misinformation and further stigmatize an already stigmatized disorder. Either acknowledge that you have trauma or stfu about being a system. Unless you have trauma, then you aren't a system and that's a fact. Endogenics are so annoying and so are their supporters. Y'all fucking complain because traumagenics invade your spaces as if you guys don't literally fucking stigmatize DID/OSDD, spread misinformation, speak over us ACTUAL systems, and invade OUR spaces. Endogenic systems are a fucking joke. We wish all endogenic systems a very step on a lego.
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I got really confused because in our therapy notebook we’d been dating sessions like it’s still September so it looks like we had two Septembers. Clearly my subconscious doesn’t want it to be October either 🤦
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Hi! I wanna preface by saying I don’t believe the ST DID theory but i’m curious as to what the problem with it is? 100% believe that it is problematic as I’ve heard multiple people say so but I’ve yet to find out why. I try to educate myself on this stuff as much as possible when I don’t understand bc I’d never wanna hurt anyone by perpetuating smth that is harmful, so I just wanted to ask. :)
hi, thank u very much for asking so politely ^__^ i'm just gonna state what my problems are with the popular theories as the host of a system.
and also use this discussion to educate on DID YEAH SCIENCE
1. the mind flayer is compared to a persecutor & DID is compared to possession
a persecutor is an alter in a system who intentionally harms the system/other alters and interferes with healing. they can do this for many reasons, for example:
they are re-enacting abuse
they hold the system's feelings of self-hatred
they believe that controlling the system to keep their behaviour in check will protect them from abuse
they believe that a period of peace will make the system unable to handle future abuse, so they try to normalize abuse
they believe that therapists/psychiatrists will harm the system so they interfere with treatment
they are an introject of an abuser and don't understand that they aren't the abuser themselves
as you can see persecutors are not Evil Alters (which don’t actually exist contrary to popular belief, thanks hollywood) ... they’re the same as the rest of the system, traumatized and worthy of understanding and help. they just have skewed perceptions of the world, bad coping mechanisms, etc. but they can absolutely be rehabilitated.
i am really trying to not be Emotional about this explanation bcs i am bad at expressing my feelings but god ... i can’t tell you how hurtful it is when i see these things conflated like it makes me heart physically ache. especially as someone who’s had a persecutor alter whose fronting has been compared to possession!! it’s so incredibly dehumanizing.
i mean the story of the mind flayer is that he possesses will, latches onto him like a parasite, and will is saved by the mind flayer being expelled out of his body. and people are like, oh yeah! that’s what DID is like! it’s actually so sick.
comparing DID to possession and persecutor alters to parasites that need to be killed in order for the host to live happily. i really hope i don’t need to explain further why that’s disgusting.
2. every theory is very host-centric, which shows a fundamental misunderstanding of DID
now as someone who’s been diagnosed with DID for 6 years, i definitely know a lot about the scientific side of it
let’s talk about the theory of structural dissociation! i’ll try to explain it the best i can ;-;
basically, none of us are born with a fully integrated personality. when we’re babies, we have different ego states that take care of our needs, ie. feeding, play, learning, interacting w/ caregivers, etc. at a young age, these ego states fuse into one cohesive personality. this is why DID can only develop when you’re very young, before your personality is integrated.
severe/prolonged/repeated trauma can interfere with this process. ego states can’t merge with each other due to conflicting needs, trauma responses, etc. and disorganized attachment (which is a whole other can of worms i don’t need to explain rn). instead, the alters remain separate from each other, and grow to form their own personalities, identities, beliefs, etc., while still having dedicated “jobs” like baby ego states do (although their jobs can change). and later in life, the brain can create more alters to respond to trauma/stress, and will always have this ability even if the system chooses to integrate/fuse in therapy.
to illustrate my point about alters having different “jobs” i made a little diagram of some of mine. graphic design is my passion. notice how there are multiple ANPs.
this is in total layman’s terms and i don’t have the best grasp of it myself but i just wanted you to understand the basics of DID. now time to complain
where peoples’ lack of education on DID really jumps out with these theories is the way they paint will, the host, as the “core”/”original” personality. whether his alters are the mind flayer, will the wise, the other residents of hawkins (man wtf is going on in this fandom) they are always an extension of will. will is the true person, and his alters were created to help him cope with trauma.
this comes from the common misconception that we are born with one personality, and alters are created after trauma. like i explained above, no maam.
in reality: the host is just an alter. to be more specific the host is an ANP, but like i said before there are multiple, and there is no fundamental difference between the host and other ANPs. the word “host” literally just refers to the alter who fronts the most and takes care of the day to day stuff. the host is NOT the original, core, or real person. in fact the host can change, i’m the 3rd or 4th host of my system to my knowledge (which is why this particular misconception really rustles my jimmies!!)
once agaiiinnn this viewpoint boils down to dehumanizing alters who aren’t the host and pushing the idea that DID treatment = getting rid of everyone but the host. it’s not as blatant as literally comparing alters to an evil interdimensional being that takes over peoples’ brains, but the implication is still there: will is the one real person. his alters are something else.
3. all of you are stupid and i hate you
let me just add this all-encompassing point. none of you know how to talk about DID respectfully. because none of you know anything about DID.
i feel this way about certain uncommon traumas i’ve been through as well, and the way people talk about them. it’s so foreign to you people. it’s a fairy tale. it’s a movie trope. i think that’s the underlying issue. you don’t see DID as a real disorder that people -- your friends, your tumblr mutuals, people walking down the street -- are living with. it’s so far removed from your life and your experiences that you don’t even consider us. that’s just my opinion anyway.
i can’t stress enough that all of this affects the reality of people living with DID. every system i know has horror stories about friends, loved ones, even THERAPISTS!!! who see alters as parasites or figments of the host’s imagination, and tries to make the host get rid of them so they can live as the core/original. that is what you (not you anon, the people who spam this theory everywhere) are perpetuating.
i don’t really think people care much about the implications of what they’re saying though. which is why i unironically joke about these people seeing us as evil/parasites/demons or w/e. but hopefully these clarifications were helpful.
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Heylo, time for another asking a question post.
Okay so… I hear that a lot of systems can’t “control” their alters. And I’m sorry for being absolute dumb-dumb about this but I’m often times very confused about what someone means by “control”.
I can control fronting, in the sense that I can ask a alter to front if I really wanted to, but only if the alter wants to do it. I can ask my headmates to do a lot of things, doesn’t mean they’re actually going to do it though. Alters usually ask me about wanting to front/other things first before doing it. I can tell them “no” or “yes” (dissociation used to be bad, so before I would say no in certain situations) and they’ll sometimes work with me.
So… is that what “control” is? My therapist tells me it’s good communication but everyone else makes it sound like I’m willy-nilly-ing my alters around.
What’s an example of someone “controlling” their alters?
I’m sorry… I don’t know why I’m confused about this but I am.
Is good communication like this considered “controlling” your alters?
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My name is Jake, I’m a kid in a system, and I have an uncle named Jon. Today he told me a lot about buckets. He said that there are love buckets and tough buckets.
I already knew about love buckets, they’re buckets everyone has and they’re buckets that need to be filled with love, or else you feel empty and can’t give anyone else love.
But tough buckets are buckets that you don’t want to be full, or else things spill over. Some tough things are big and bulky, and some are small and like a bunch of beads.
Some people have bigger tough buckets, and some people always have stuff in their buckets, like my uncle Jon. Kids have smaller buckets, but they usually get bigger when they grow up. They can be filled with sad things, and angry things, and painful things, and other things that are tough to deal with.
And when they get too full, people get too sad or tired or hurt to be okay. Sometimes you can’t take all of those things out so they’re not full anymore, but sometimes you can help take others out, if your bucket isn’t full too.
And sometimes, when you take other things out, they get turned into love, and that fills the person’s love bucket a little more. I think a lot of adults think it’s hard to explain hard things to kids, but it seems like talking about tough buckets and love buckets make it easier
(Edit: this post can be reblogged :) )
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Passive aggressive maybe, but like...healing and getting better isn't easy. When I see people make posts about "LOL google says I should make a schedule to help manage my ADHD but I can't make a schedule bc I have ADHD" it's like. People saying that stuff know it's hard. That's part of why you gotta do it.
Sometimes healing is easier. Sometimes it's something really small that becomes routine. But sometimes it's hard! Sometimes you gotta push yourself to do something and it sucks! But I don't know what to tell you, other than that you don't need to be good at it right away.
Using the calendar example, I have ADHD + semi-frequent memory loss, so it can feel really difficult to try and make a calendar when both of those things can directly get in the way. So I started with making sure recurring events were in it, like therapy and med reminders. Now I'm usually able to remember to put in appointments or other one-time events in as soon as I know about them. It takes a lot of work.
I don't know. I just think sometimes people on this site are sitting in mud and complaining about being dirty. You really do need to try.
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this post hasn't left my mind since i've first saw it
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Things that don’t make you a bad person:
Displaying “scary” symptoms of mental illness
Being diagnosed with multiple disorders
Having one or various personality disorders
Being diagnosed with NPD, BPD, or ASPD
Having very low empathy, or no empathy
Having symptoms that cause anger, emptiness, or paranoia
Having triggers or “strange” personal boundaries
Needing extra help or accommodations
Having intrusive thoughts about upsetting or scary topics
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Just Additional System Things
- having to justify why an introject isn't exactly like source
- having to justify why an introject is exactly like source
- having to justify why an introject is only sort of like their source and sort of not
- having to justify why an introject exists
- introjects who don't have accents similar to their source characters & get ridiculed for it
- when gender and sexuality are kind of just one big blobby jumble of stuff because there's so much conflict going on inside
- having to explain why polyfragmented is not just 100+ alters
- having to explain why polyfragmented is a traumagenic-only term
- flashbacks but ✨spicy✨
- flashbacks but you have absolutely no emotional connection to the events so you're just sitting there remembering all this stuff and you're like huh. interesting.
- emotional numbness
- your sense of self is nonexistent
- can't keep your story straight on anything
- i'm a cis girl. i'm a cis guy. i like pineapple on pizza. i hate all fruit. i'm an excellent navigator. i have no sense of direction. i love you so much. i'm not capable of feeling love.
feel free to add on~!!
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I actually don't recall ever seeing a positivity post for ppl w ongoing amnesia caused by trauma disorders. I'm not talking just repressed childhood memories, I mean perpetual long-term memory loss. I mean continuing to forget non-traumatic things that happened or ppl you knew a few years or even months ago. I mean struggling to retain any information you're learning if you don't constantly go over the same material over and over again, and losing it all once you stop repeating it
If you have amnesia like me, you matter. We navigate the world a bit differently but that's okay. Just bc our brains are broken doesn't mean we can't live happy and fulfilling lives. Be patient w yourself when learning new things. Surround yourself w compassionate ppl who love to tell you stories abt past exploits you may have forgotten. Also, hey, who else gets to watch a movie for the first time every time? Above all be kind to yourself.
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what a nice pride month to remember neurodivergency complicates stuff
so here's to everyone whose delusions make it hard to tell who they're attracted to, or can't tell if their gender experience is the way it is because of a delusion
here's to everyone whose gender fluctuates and changes due to their hyperfixation or special interest changing and evolving over time
here's to everyone who can't quite figure out if their gender is theirs, or someone else's bleeding into yours
here's to everyone with any type of neurodivergency.
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