Why Do I Write About Dissociative Identity Disorder and Trauma?

I write a blog about life and trauma, why?

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Why Do I Write About Dissociative Identity Disorder and Trauma?

No one understands or is more qualified to tell of the pain of being harmed by people who are supposed to love them than survivors. I am a survivor, and I am choosing to use my freedom of speech to tell my story and of my journey to peace.

While some of my work has been controversial, there are many things that need to be brought out into the light of day so they can become open discussions. For too long speaking about what happens to people who were severely traumatized as children has been relegated to papers and opinions of mental health specialists. It is now time for people like myself, who have personal experience with the horrendous maltreatment experienced by survivors, to speak out.

Why? What is so important about telling the courageous and true stories of survivors?

There are many less controversial topics I could choose to write about.  I could write about college life, being an aunt, or what it is like to be in my fifties. I don’t have to write articles that draw negative gut reactions from people who mistake what I am saying. I could also just take the recovery I have achieved and walk silently away.

But I don’t. I have chosen to yell as loud as my computer keyboard will allow me.

I write about not only the pain I have endured on the road less taken but also I try hard to relate to all who will listen the things I have learned on those travels.

I have learned so much.

Not just about what happened to me, but about life. I have been in therapy for 30 years, that’s three decades. In those years, I have taken a hard look at myself and often didn’t like what I have seen.

To anyone who would shake their head at the number of years I have been struggling in therapy, I would say the following:

Have you looked in the mirror of your heart lately?

Do you acknowledge your fears, feelings, and flaws?

Do you love yourself?

To all these questions I can give an emphatic yes, can you?

I have felt shame and the overwhelming feeling of not being good enough to exist.

That I just don’t belong on planet earth and that I needed to self-destruct.

I have attempted to snuff out my life more than five times in my life, four of those times during my recovery.

I have felt so tired of fighting to get well that the weariness has forced me into the hospital psychiatric ward over thirty times.

This fatigue has grown so bad that I lost seven and a half years of my life being confined to an inpatient psychiatric ward.

I have had to make some very hard decisions too.

Such as deciding I will live, and deciding I will get better.

However, the struggles I have faced are not extraordinary. There are millions of people around the world who suffer just as much or even more than I have in my short life.

Why do I write about dissociative identity disorder and trauma?

Because I have been there. I have been there. I have been there.

I don’t speak idle words from opinions I have formed from reading books or speaking to clients. I speak from heart-wrenching experience.

My main goal in writing about DID and trauma is to raise awareness and to help those who are struggling forward in their recovery.

That is why I write this blog. That is why I even bother.

That is why when I could get a degree in computer science or physics I have chosen to earn a degree in psychology.

I have reached a point in my life, after so many years of work, to move on and never speak of my struggles again.

But…

I choose to write and speak out about the pain and free-for-alls people like myself are forced to face in therapy.

I am not a troll.

I am not lying.

I am not saying things to get famous.

I am certainly not making much money doing this.

I do it because I am one of you.

“Pain is a pesky part of being human, I’ve learned it feels like a stab wound to the heart, something I wish we could all do without, in our lives here. Pain is a sudden hurt that can’t be escaped. But then I have also learned that because of pain, I can feel the beauty, tenderness, and freedom of healing. Pain feels like a fast stab wound to the heart. But then healing feels like the wind against your face when you are spreading your wings and flying through the air! We may not have wings growing out of our backs, but healing is the closest thing that will give us that wind against our faces.”
― C. JoyBell C.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Why Do I Write About Dissociative Identity Disorder and Trauma?

  1. Shirley! I know you are not a troll, because they live under bridges. You are ON the bridge, traveling…going forward. Hooray for that! (I smile writing this – my small attempt to inject a wee bit of humor into a serious discussion…)

    “My main goal in writing about DID and trauma is to raise awareness and to help those who are struggling forward in their recovery.” There’s the plain answer to the question your title poses. I am certain that your effort has clear value, and that you surely are achieving your twin objectives.

    I would add that writing, whether there be readers or not, seems to have inherent value. It leads to greater clarity, improved focus, and often even to the calmness that follows catharsis. It’s one of several essential tools some of us use to keep our rudders in the sea and our sail in the air.

    Finally, you write: “I speak from heart-wrenching experience.” I assure you that every clinician who writing on DID I’ve ever read does the same. Working with those with DID requires compassion of the sort that is sure to lead to direct contact with and experience of the pain of our clients. This has its own distinct dangers for us, which is why there is a distinct and important literature in my field about secondary traumatisation and burnout among therapists. This is deeply serious business, regardless of where you live in the DID world.

    1. Thank you Tom. Love your joke about trolls. I had the same therapist for many years, and saw her weep more than once. Therapists do indeed face some pretty serious emotions of their own when treating anyone who has severe childhood trauma in their history. I often wondered how she was able to separate herself from the traumatic issues we had to work through. When I was new to therapy I would feel angry and put out because she went on vacation for several weeks in August every year, but after I began to think more clearly I realized these times away from her office were necessary for her mental health. She had a very hard time saying goodbye to me when she retired, even though I had come a long way under her care. Paula will forever be the mother I ever had, but she is not taking care of herself and I may never see her again. My loss of her is nothing compared to the hell she went through helping me gain a life from the anguished woman who walked into her office that fateful day in February of 1990. In fact, you have given me a wonderful idea for a blog post tomorrow! Thank you. Yes. Survivors are not the only people who suffer from the things that happened to them as children. We tend to leave our mark wherever we go, sometimes leaving victims such as ex mates and therapists we leave without saying goodbye. We sometimes forget that others, especially therapist, have feelings too. I always enjoy your comments Tom. Thank you. Shirley

  2. Thank you for your words, your advise, your voice. I was only diagnosed with DID a few years ago and it has been and will continue to be a long journey to healing. Your blog has been very helpful!

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