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Every person under the Sun, they have normal awareness (conscious mind) and unawareness (unconscious mind). We all have memories deeply engraved in our unconscious mind. But many unconscious memories are severe and traumatic.
In order to prevent them from emerging on the surface and disconnect from that stressful event, they create those extra personalities in their head. It's their way to maintain a relatively healthy level of functioning, as though the trauma had not occurred.
However, they do inflict pain upon themselves when some of their personalities thinks that it's easier to endure physical than emotional suffering. Cutting, attempts of suffocating or drowning are quite common.
A word of SENSATIONALISM
"Somebody played a trick on you.
["Frankie and Alice" DID film]
These people have been crucified due to the media sensationalism for so long. More than any other Personality disorder Dissociative Identity Disorder has been associated with and stigmatized as one of the most brutal mental disorders breeding serial killers and "psychopaths".
Only 1/8 of these movies are based on the real lives stories while the others are entirely fictional. Fiction being falsification which inflicted so much pain on persons diagnosed with DID. Indeed what was meant to be exciting and shocking produced collateral damage, beyond repair. Only a few of them like "Voices within" tackles many of the common DID stereotypes and key misunderstandings such as the total amnesia stereotype of DID.
A word of DID PERSONS
As described by many of them their life is completely unmanageable. Persistent flashbacks make them dissociate and lose time. Oftentimes they end up in a place with no idea what had happened. Also, one or few of their personalities bring themselves in increasingly dangerous situations. Sometimes they try to escape problems by drifting from one alcohol or drug-provoked haze to another. Consequently, they get fired more often than being employed.
Also, "sharing" a body with other people can be enormously painful and exhausting. It's like you live with 6 or whatever number tenants in a bachelor apartment.
On the other hand, some persons find their DID condition pretty manageable. Their alters are on pretty good terms with no need to hurt or kill one another. This is especially a case when people alter are kids. For example, several kids from 3 to 17 years old coexist peacefully with their main self. Not to mention that they are happily married or enjoy healthy relationships with their friends, family members and coworkers.
When reading their journals they can see notes, sometimes heart-breaking ones, and signatures of all of their alters. It helps them to understand what happened during the blackout i.e. dissociative episodes.
Although there are many DID symptoms and signs, it is still very difficult to diagnose the disorder.
According to the recent research people with a dissociative identity disorder, spend, on average, seven years in the mental health system before accurately diagnosed. This is because many of the DID symptoms are similar to those of depression, schizophrenia or anxiety. In fact, some of these disorders may relax with the dissociative identity disorder.
But here are the basic 5 criteria for DID
To be diagnosed with Dissociative Identity disorder a person must have:
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