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Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

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Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:07 pm

Hello.

We keep starting up a journey thread with a bunch of background context and current goals, but then we get worried about giving too much at once, work to edit it down, and eventually just give up and don't post.

The benefit is giving ourselves a clearer picture of present day. Not so helpful is that we aren't actually making a place for ourselves.

Some agreed-upon system goals, for our mental health:
- finish mapping the system - we're close, I think?
- improve system communication
- live more in corporeal world
- develop healthy sense of entitlement
- continue seeing T regularly, possibly get referral to dissociation specialist but current T is good right now
- partial integration, towards total integration

Some agreed-upon system goals, for our life:
- get treatment for chronic illnesses and medical problems
- get routine medical care - keeping up with this is exhausting, but we're doing okay at it
- find a new job ...chronic illnesses have had us too disabled to work for awhile, we keep thinking we're well enough to look and then end up not functional for 2 weeks straight again...trying yet another new medication for most disruptive illness in the next week.
- figure out what kind of work to pursue, system is not in agreement
- move to a new place, current one is poorly-maintained and frequently surrounded by construction, yelling, noise

Goals not everyone agrees on:
- lose another 20-30 lbs ...a dormant-but-slowly-resurfacing part wants us to regain the 15 lbs we've lost because she is uncomfortable with how noticeably different the body is, and others don't care because they won't relate to the body at any weight
- get physically stronger
- find love or date or get laid? Very little consensus, some don't even care about any of those
- meet new people, make some new friends
Last edited by SeveralCrows on Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:24 pm

Previously we had posted as a fragment, Blank Slate.

We appreciate everyone's feedback, thank you. It gave us a lot to think about.

Blank Slate didn't show up again for awhile, but did last week, and there are two major things the two instances have in common that we noticed:
1. Time of Month (we have PMDD, still trying medications to manage it)
2. Blank Slate appeared right after an overwhelmingly stressful discussion of shame and trauma.

While two data points is insufficient to determine a pattern, we wonder if Blank Slate appearing means we don't have to risk feeling shame and also to wipe us clean a little for the next part to come forward. We experience a fairly continuous working memory* between parts, except when Blank Slate comes in or when we fight too much against switching. That said, the parts who have worse communication with the main block who have okay-to-good comms also tend not to be able to experience as continuous of memory, meaning that it's not a feature unique to Blank Slate. Continuity of memory is directly correlated in our system with level of communication between parts.

*We do not experience continuous emotional memory, though we may have factual information about the previous part's feelings and beliefs.

**Trigger Warning: Discussion of Integration**
This is illuminating for me in thinking about eventual integration, which is a system goal. We have been improving communications and all of the main adult fronts have experienced co-consciousness with each of the other main adult fronts. Integration will probably be when we can have more continuous emotional memory between parts, because we will be reconciling conflicting desires. There will still be conflicting desires, but when we can hold those conflicting feelings together, that is probably a key.
**End of Trigger Warning**
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
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Consumer 2
 
Posts: 51
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Wed Nov 07, 2018 2:47 pm

System Management Updates:
    - Blank Slate is now going by Blanca. We've been making an effort to make sure everyone has a name name, if you will, rather than a description.
    - Our young teen alter chose a human name after being able to bond with a newer adult alter
    - Old-Sev is finally resurfacing in a significant way and not just for moments

I seem to mostly post here at the same time each month. We show up throughout the month to see what others are up to, and we write replies but then stop ourselves from actually submitting the posts.

On our young teen alter and B'i
Our young teen alter is the best threat-detector we have in system. She is also usually very self-destructive. Adults in the system have a policy of "not letting her out" around other people, and when she fights her way to front, an adult makes sure that we get away from social situations immediately to keep ourselves and them safe. She has never and would never cause physical harm, but we know she will puff herself up to be as scary as possible, by yelling and sobbing, and she is not averse to saying hurtful things to other people. **Trigger Warning: mention of abusive behavior** Due to psychological abuse in childhood, she knows how to quickly target what words would most effectively hurt someone else, and contrary to how the rest of us feel, she feels completely justified in doing this to people who hurt us. **End Trigger Warning** This behavior is why we don't let her around others if we can avoid it.

B'i is a new adult in our system. She formed a little while after our young teen made us aware that we don't trust her and that she doesn't trust us. Even though it's obvious now, we didn't think about how dismissive we were of her, which is especially troublesome because she is the most skilled at noticing when someone external to us is a threat to us. We've been trying to trust her more, to open up conversation rather than shutting her down and keeping her subdued. Doing those things has made it much easier for abusers to take advantage of us, which has happened repeatedly in adulthood. B'i not only trusts our young teen, but she is also not concerned with whether she causes harm to anyone external. She knows she won't physically hurt anyone and she knows that even though our young teen might try to employ the occasional abusive statement, she doesn't engage in systematic abuse of others the way that our abusers have. She reacts tactically within a situation, but she has no larger plan: she is just trying to hurt hurtful people enough that they either stop or they go away. B'i doesn't necessarily think that her approach is good or that she should be allowed to actually do that, but she values our young teen's feelings in a way that no one else has.

B'i seems to be a fragment to help our young teen - and she might be someone our young teen can grow into. Our young teen is still in a lot of pain, but it feels less all-consuming and less sharp lately.

On Sev and old-Sev
Sev broke off of old-Sev for the purpose of handling therapy. The intention was that no one would be able to discern her from old-Sev, though she was kind of a "lightweight version of the program," so to speak. Sev isn't as passionate about our old work, but has all of the technical skill to perform it, for example. The goal was that Sev would reintegrate into old-Sev once each had healed enough - Sev doing the active learning in therapy, old-Sev getting to rest and benefit from the active learning Sev was doing.

We didn't expect old-Sev to stay dormant as long as she did. Sev actually forgot there ever had been an old-Sev, or anyone else in the system, until this year. Sev grew into herself in the meantime. Now that old-Sev is back, it turns out that she is just as impatient as she has ever been, and she isn't even exactly in denial about the rest of us being here. She just doesn't really want to spend time on it, because she feels that before our recent abusive ex she was doing well enough without worrying about the overall functioning and collaboration of everyone in the system. She is aware of the fact that we were vulnerable because of being ignored and that we aren't stable in that same way right now. Her attitude is clearly sourced in the body's mother's influence: she thinks a person can simply choose not to have particular feelings.


We have no conclusions today. Blanca was around last night and her presence was still felt this morning, but seems to be fading. I still don't know what her needs are. She doesn't know how to feel joy. She is so tired that she doesn't want to do anything. Still, we got out of bed when we woke up today, instead of going back to sleep, "because there's nothing to be awake for."

Like yesterday and the day before, we are going to put on a complete outfit and go somewhere. I don't know where yet.

-Morning Blend (I am not sure who I am right now, as is frequently the case first thing in the morning)
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
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Consumer 2
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2018 12:12 am
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Tue Nov 13, 2018 2:32 pm

S' is the part in our system whose whole interest is making the body feel good. She doesn't necessarily identify with the body, but she loves experiencing pleasure in it, and increasingly over the last year she has been trying to convince mostly Sev that we should get laid. Sometimes she is more casual about it and sometimes she's a little more dramatic and is like FFS JUST DO THIS.

Yesterday Jake was co-con with Sev before our T appointment. He pointed out that we're being very restrictive and not trusting S' just like we weren't trusting M (our young teen). With B'i appearing and placing trust in M, M was able to stop being as self-destructive. There are still boundaries for M, but we're actually working together. Jake thinks this will apply with S' as well, and it may apply with many others in our system, so we're going to have a look at trust in all of our internal relationships and see what progress can be made through building trust.

Blanca, our blank slate state ... she has felt guilty before for being antithetical to who and what the system as a whole is. None of us have good direct communication with her still, but both she and some of us who are in better contact with each other have been exploring the idea that she can be, rather than a blank slate, a "fresh start" - she doesn't have to be beholden to our past or what any of the rest of us are interested in. I think she felt like she was letting us down to such a degree that she didn't want to then "be selfish" and have her own needs and interests, she just took on a too-selfless support role, but couldn't support. Her exploring new things without old obligations is a good support for all of us, and maybe some of us will veer towards her new-found interests too.

Assorted updates:
- We started attending a twice-weekly social group. It only meets in November, but this is still really good for us
- Our new medication this month isn't making the body feel sick! Not sure yet if it helps
- We are considering joining a gym. We've never done that before.

-Morning Blend
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Thu Nov 15, 2018 9:36 pm

We had to discontinue the new medication due to severe unexpected side effects. Jake called the pharmacy about it this morning. He's very good at calmly handling medical issues, especially serious symptoms, and I think the pharmacist was alarmed at how calm he was. I expect the doctor, whom we contacted via email, will think we made a decision out of anxiety and be impatient with the fact that yet another medication didn't work for us, but that's why we had Jake call the pharmacy. Previously we've had medical professionals be skeptical of our choices to discontinue medications that clearly are impacting the body negatively, and this time at least one medical professional - one whose job it is to know about medication, no less - is on our side.

I (BR) have been out for the past few hours, cleaning and enjoying some music. I'm starting to feel tired, so I suspect someone else will be switching in soon. We see a few of the people that S' has been interested in next week, so we need to have a System discussion to determine whether any of the parties in question are someone we can all, or at least mostly, agree on.

BR
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
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SeveralCrows
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Tue Dec 18, 2018 3:55 pm

Our system has been undergoing some good changes lately, difficult though they have been.

Our young teen, M, has been processing a lot. She is now more sorrowful than enraged or self-destructive. She still has some inclination towards self-destruction, but the volume of that is much quieter, if you will. System adults, Sev especially, have been making an effort to listen when she is upset. M gets most upset when there are threatening people in our life, which came up again recently. Initially we acknowledged her but continued contact with this person, and as her sounding of the alarm increased, we backed away from this person.

Two very important concepts have been relevant for us lately:
1. Trust. A few of the members of the system have a need to control and do not trust most of the others. There is a difference between trusting someone's insights and opinions and trusting them with responsibility to act. We are learning to develop trust within the system, to listen, but keeping the responsibility of action with a few.
2. Adults being responsible for adult things, children being responsible for child things. No one listened to M, who is a child, so she would try to take responsibility for adult issues into her own hands. Listening to her now, we can trust her insight and an adult can take appropriate action to protect her, which also models healthy responses for her. We're starting to acknowledge this with our youngest known little, who loves everyone indiscriminately and expresses affection even with unsafe people. A current goal is for system adults to set appropriate boundaries for this little and develop better communication with him so we can help him to experience and express affection safely.

Assorted updates:
- We joined the gym. It seems to be good for the system so far.
- We have been pushing ourselves to go out more and it is tiring, but also working out okay.
- We made a new friend and are out to them about being multiple and they think it's no big deal, in a good way.

Jake
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
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SeveralCrows
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Posts: 51
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:44 pm

We've been seeing one of our longest-time friends a lot lately. It's been gratifying to see her for many reasons, and a really cool thing is since we showed her selfies of different ones of us, she has been able to correctly identify who is out in new selfies. She really sees us! :D

Last night we had trouble sleeping. Maybe the wine we had, even though we stopped imbibing several hours before bed? Our mind started playing memories, out of order, from every time in our life. We are more on the OSDD end of things, having a more continuous memory and more disconnected emotional recall, but lately factual memory has been more difficult. These memories were from lots of us, recalled as our collective own and as respective selves' own. We couldn't tell who was out, either, and while we tried not to assign meaning, we wondered if it was a sign of in-process integration for someone(s). We are still our Morning Blend self, but as we wake up we may have more information. Morning thought: might be improvement in communication. We definitely need that. We set up a lot of big plans for this year and we've been trying to keep mindful of everyone as we set them. Maybe this intensive work has helped with whatever was going on last night?

Just as we were nodding off the first time, the body awoke with a jolt because someone had provided some very silly dream imagery and another laughed us awake. Annoying, but hilarious.

-Morning Blend
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Wed Jan 02, 2019 1:35 pm

I think the memory replay served to connect me to the rest of the system. As far as I can tell, no merging of parts has occurred, but I can actually feel others closer than before and I have a better understanding of shared memories.

In my first thread, before I had a name, Johnny-Jack suggested I might have the unique ability to look at others who have hurt us with distance, like Ulrich from his system. This didn't sound like me and others in our system have this ability, but I think I now have the ability to look at our own past with distance. I am so unlike everyone else in the system and still disconnected enough from all of them that it isn't that uncomfortable to revisit the past. I haven't looked at our worst trauma memories yet.

It feels like someone else wants to front now, so I am signing off.

Blanca
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
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SeveralCrows
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:11 pm

Switched on the way to the grocery yesterday and still not sure who it was that came out. She's vegetarian and decided someone else could buy meat another day. She also bought different vegetables than planned, and overall it was still food that worked for our budget and our health needs...we just aren't sure who it was. There are two parts who it could have plausibly been, could have been a self-confused blend of parts, or it's someone we don't know. Something is going on in the system and it's very confusing. Blanca is in better communication and is better known, not sure if that change unlocked this part or if she was starting to merge with someone else during this.

We noticed an unlabeled part or blend of parts on NYE too. The one who went to grocery is vegetarian, has no Fs to give, talks to herself or us out loud, and is slightly judgemental. She felt frumpy in jeans. NYE part was slightly bubbly, gently optimistic, dreamed big, wrote with rounder letters, was full of love for the world, and was excited.

Trying to approach with interest and trust. Trying to be patient with not knowing if these two are new parts, blends of old parts or the start of integration of parts, or just experiences that will go without explanation.

Need to get ready for gym.

-Morning Blend
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
Consumer 2
Consumer 2
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2018 12:12 am
Local time: Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:36 pm
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Re: Flocking, Nesting, Migrating (journey thread)

Postby SeveralCrows » Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:34 pm

In December Jake wrote about adults being responsible for adult things and children only taking on child responsibilities. What neither he nor any of the rest of us considered when he wrote that was taking on the role of guardian to the system kids.

So many of the changes which help the system feel obvious as soon as we put words to them, see them. Adults caring for kids is so natural, we know that this is right, but it wasn't the way of our world growing up and so we don't even see it not occurring within us.

Last month, our youngest little sidled up to Jake as a parent figure. Jake has taken to the role really well, though at first he was baffled and emotionally a little overwhelmed. Last week he started caring for our second-youngest after she had a very bad scare. She's a little more uncertain about relying on an adult this way, but she's doing okay.

This morning I greeted all the kids and hugged the littler ones good morning. We're trying to get into a habit of being proactive and affectionate with them. It's new to everyone, except our youngest who is full of love, so we're acclimating together.

Had a very bad migraine two days after the little's scare. Spent the whole weekend recovering, slept a ton.

We've been looking at jobs and there's a lot of disagreement over how many hours to try to work. We can get by on fewer and that would allow us to spend time on other work, such as returning to our self-employed work from before taking leave, and be more manageable in terms of stress tolerance. Working more hours, if we can manage, would give us greater flexibility to move somewhere that feels more safe. There's no reason we couldn't start with fewer and either ask for more hours or find a new job later, so my inclination is that.

There are a few things I'd like to do before we need to leave for the gym, so I'm signing off for now.

-Sev
C-PTSD, major dissociative disorder, attachment disorder
Sev (main part in charge of daily functioning, 31, she/her)
Jake (protector/caretaker, 32, he/him)
At least 18 others, including fragments
User avatar
SeveralCrows
Consumer 2
Consumer 2
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2018 12:12 am
Local time: Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:36 pm
Blog: View Blog (0)


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