Just as I did when I was a child, when I find myself stumped by something I turn to books. A book may not have the answer, but it can provide a direction, some preliminary answers.
I did a search in our public library’s catalog, as well as a search on Barnes and Noble. I came up with a list of books, but the last of the Sunshine Holidays put a crimp in my plans. Since this is Labor Day weekend the library is closed until Tuesday. I will be thrilled to put to bed all the Sunshine Holidays after Tuesday.
I took myself to Barnes and Noble and they had one, just one book on dissociative identity disorder in stock. The book was alright, a place to start.
At this point I realized that I needed to put my fear on the high shelf if I had any chance of evaluating the situation. As an investigator I approached a case with as few preconceived notions as possible. I just kept turning stones until there were no more stones to turn. So I took my fear of DID and put it on a high shelf, and went to work. It started to feel like the good old days of investigating. As an investigator I was never afraid of the truth.
So I took stock of what I knew:
- There is a long period of time in high school, at least two years, where I wore camouflage pants and berets very regularly, along with a loner “don’t mess with me” attitude. All of this was a departure from the way I previously conveyed myself to the world. I only learned of this behavior in high school last year, and I still have no memory of it. Even scarier, the behavior reported to me by an old high school friend was corroborated by my sister Cate.
- I read in the one book at Barnes and Noble today that one of the signs of DID is inner voices. When I read that I nearly dropped the book. I assumed everyone had these inner voices that I have. I’ve never mentioned them because I thought they were one of those things in life that we never mention like farts, burps and, you know, inner voices. Everyone has them, but doesn’t talk about them … guess not. Yes, I have the cacophany of inner voices in my head. I’ve had them as long as I can remember.
- There are unexplained instances of self-harm when I’ve lost time. I’ve chipped a tooth, hurt my neck, and I’ve even awakened with bruises on my arms. I just thought all of these things happened from bad nightmares.
There are other things rolling around in my head, but I’m too exhausted to go any further with this. But at least I’m freaking about it less. This is a good start.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Good for you…what an incredible skill to be able to put this away and focus on your own investigation. I understand about being a dedective of lost time in your own life. You simply amaze me. Keep going…:) by the way, if you can and want to, will you explain a little bit more about the voices in your head and how they might relate to ‘self talk’? If it’s not comfortable to describe, no worries..take care 🙂
Thank you so much for your ongoing support. It means a lot to me.
As far as the voices go, most of them are voices of me as a child at different ages. The voice that comes up the most is a child around 6 years old. The most common phrase from that child is something like, “Mommy, mommy … ” The child is always looking for mommy. It’s happened for so long I’ve just grown accustomed to it. It can get annoying though. Now it makes sense that the 6 year old child starts looking for mommy when the environment gets chaotic and loud. When that happens I can’t make sense of anything. Now I am starting to understand why my brains starts to feel like its going to explode when people start arguing, and I have the 6 year old voice going off in my head.
Thank you for explaining…you’re so articulate and gifted at written expression, which is probably just the beginning of your giftedness
How funny. I too hid the fact I had inner voices for the longest time. I battled with them and told them to shut up and had full blown arguments with them but it wasn’t until I truly listened that things became less friction riddled. Anyway- I am glad to hear you are freaking less and indeed things are starting to fall into place. Take it slow. You’ll be okay xx
Yes! I’ve done the very same thing, had arguments with my inner voices. I just attributed it to consequences of living as a bachelorette for too long. Thanks so much, Bourbon!
I have a link on my blog to some suggested reading on dissociation. I own many of the books in the link and they have been very helpful. However, I was never able to find anything at my Barnes & Noble and certainly not in my local library. I ordered them on amazon.
Here is the link so you don’t have to scroll to the bottom of my page: http://www.sidran.org/sub.cfm?contentID=143§ionid=4
The books that were the most helpful were:
Amongst Ourselves: Good for the investigative side of you. Backs things up with both experience and clinical information. Has a few self-administered quizzes, a chapter for loved-ones, and a chapter for therapists.
Got Parts?: Good if you need a very, very simple breakdown of DID and ideas on how to manage it in your day-to-day life.
Be safe and well!
Thanks so much for the recommendations. Both books were on the list of books I found in my search. It’s good to get actual recommendations from someone other than Amazon. 🙂
You are right in that there are not a lot of sources in B&N or in the public library. The few sources the library had were checked out for the most part. I think that says something about an unmet need. That’s the librarian in me speaking!
Thanks so much for the leads and resources. It is much appreciated.
Hey, great post. You’re doing a great thing, keep going.:) I also for a second when you said voices wondered if you meant voices or self talk, but then I read the comments under. I guess we all deal with trauma differently, and I think the voice of small kid calling out is exactly that. I’ve learned that trauma has it’s own way of introducing millions of ripple effects in our lives, most of which we don’t realize until something makes us see. I also like the “investigative” approach. I called my own “university” approach, because the way I researched rape and tried to figure out steps to be taken in recovery, statistics and usual result reminded me of the way I was preparing for projects in university. But it helps. I found out demons are less scary when they are put in light. It’s a lot easier dealing with something defined with certain solutions to be tried, than with fears growing in the dark, that make you think it’s impossible to move on.Good luck with your process, and I’m here if you ever need to talk.