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Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

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Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Pocketwatch » Sun Dec 29, 2019 10:49 pm

Hey everyone,

I'm new here but I think this is the best question to start off with. I've been going to therapy for about 5 years now, and have been able to work through stuff like social anxiety very well.
3 years ago I was too afraid to leave my house, and now I can go out without being all too worried. Some anxiety still pops up though, especially in stressful situations.

Thing is, when I first went to the psychologist, it was for things like memory blanks and anger outbursts, erratic behavior. I was mostly playing games online at the time with friends, and my closest friend online told me about DID. So I brought it up with my therapist.
We never expanded on it though.

This year (5 years later), my therapist left and my new therapist is a nice and understanding woman, but I don't feel comfortable discussing DID with her. I fear she would dismiss it.

So that brings me to question number one, should i bring it up with her?

On the other hand, last summer I was diagnosed with PTSD, by another therapist, and I will start emdr therapy with him next month. I'm both fearful and hopeful that I will switch in those situations, since they'll be very trigger-heavy.

My boyfriend is convinced I have did, and has experienced multiple switches on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, depending on the alter. I personally am terrified I am somehow making this all up and tricked myself into this.

So question 2, Should I discuss it with this therapist instead?
And lastly, have you guys ever felt like you've tricked yourself into believing you had DID, even though other people are convinced you have it?

I'd love to know, and thank you.
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby SeveralCrows » Mon Dec 30, 2019 3:23 am

Definitely discuss it with your T. I know that it feels intimidating, but it's worth it. Also, anyone who has DID/OSDD-1 or a high degree of dissociation needs a special protocol for EMDR. Your T may or may not be trained in that special protocol. Before this, our system was diagnosed with C-PTSD and we saw a T who we did EMDR with and who wasn't trained in the special protocol. It didn't cause harm, but it wasn't as useful as it could have been, and the times when we couldn't accomplish anything were because other alters held particular memories or pieces of trauma or because we dissociated. I encourage you to get a T trained in DID/OSDD-1 and appropriate EMDR protocols - if you want to use it - just so you don't waste your own time and effort and money.

I don't know of a system who hasn't had recurrent denial about having the disorder and worries about having made the whole thing up. I think that's part of the dissociative protective mechanism: if you think you made it up, then maybe nothing was that bad, and also you're not going to touch the parts of memory where the worst traumas are stored. They're compartmentalized away in this way to protect you, to help you survive, and if you question that that's even going on, you'll stay protected.

Good luck, and welcome to the forum!

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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Johnny-Jack » Mon Dec 30, 2019 3:31 am

Hi Pocketwatch and welcome! I think you do need to speak to both therapists. EMDR therapy for someone with DID has the potential to be quite destabilizing if you're not properly prepared, if you're not in a generally safe and stable environment, and if the therapist doesn't follow recommended protocols for using EMDR with someone who has DID.

It's absolutely normal for someone with DID who does not yet have a diagnosis to be fearful of being crazy and of faking it. It's got to be the most common concern for newcomers to this forum. It's normal to believe you're making it up and to deny it's true or vacillate between denying it and acknowledging it's true or it's likely true. I can say that these were all how it was for me at one point, and I didn't have anyone close telling me they knew I had DID.

The good news is that DID is a developmental condition, not a biological one, and it's fully treatable with someone who knows what they're doing or is willing to learn. Also, DID is not rare.

I assume you trust your boyfriend and know at some level he would have no reason for making this up. In any case, I assume it's matching some symptoms.

I explored odd experiences and evidence that there were others of me many years ago but stepped back from a therapy just when we were about to discuss it openly. It took me about 15 years before I addressed it again and this time it was due to a complete breakdown, where I was so dysfunctional I put myself in the hospital. I regret more than anything in my life those many years lost to numbness, pain, and confusion.

Be honest with your therapists. Their job is to help you, no matter what's going on. If you ask your new therapist about DID and that one indicates they don't believe it or don't believe in DID, that will be the best evidence you can have that you need to get a new therapist.

Heh, heh, this is pretty much the same that Crows just posted. I'm pretty sure no one here is going to tell you they've been tricked into thinking they have DID. Still, we've all been in a place where we doubt whether it's true. Dissociation from memories to the point that they aren't recallable or that they don't seem real is built into a DID mind, so denial about having DID and alters who hold those memories seems an inevitable, if temporary result.

Let us know how it goes.
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby SeveralCrows » Mon Dec 30, 2019 4:04 am

Oh, one more thing, about EMDR with a T not trained in special protocol for dissociative clients: I often left session highly dissociated. My T didn't realize I was dissociating - she never noticed my dissociation, actually. It's not supposed to be noticed. Anyway, she didn't notice that I left sessions extremely dissociated and I didn't know that wasn't supposed to happen. It seemed normal enough to me. That is not good and not what is supposed to happen. I went through a lot of extra dissociation due to my T not being trained in dealing with dissociative clients and not even recognizing what she was doing. Please stay safe.

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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Skaya » Mon Dec 30, 2019 9:18 pm

Yup, echoing the sentiments here - but like, we were majorly freaked about telling our T about our concerns re: DID (we have a big Thing about being invalidated after a very difficult/traumatic experience with previous disclosure) so I totally get that it's scary AF. But - totally worth doing.

And yeah, EMDR without knowledge of DID is a risky business.

Hope that helps. Jen.
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Pocketwatch » Wed Jan 01, 2020 3:15 pm

Thanks for the information, I'll bring it up with the therapist, though I have no idea how to.
If you guys have any ideas on how to open that can of worms I'd be happy to hear!
I've never been really good at expressing myself when speaking, I tend to go around a subject rather than getting to the point.

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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Johnny-Jack » Wed Jan 01, 2020 4:16 pm

If you guys have any ideas on how to open that can of worms I'd be happy to hear!

That could be just an expression but I just want to remind you that it's you, your experiences, and your life we're talking about. If by "can of worms" you mean things getting messy, well, yeah, it might be messier than continuing on a level that steers clear of everything happening with you. I regret like anything our insistence, many years back, of keeping things on a pleasant, rational, non-messy level with Ts before. And I resent them for letting me get away with it. Therapy sessions now do get messy and they're infinitely more effective. Sessions a couple decades ago were like more like social visits by comparison.

I've never been really good at expressing myself when speaking, I tend to go around a subject rather than getting to the point.

I think a lot of us here will recommend writing it down on paper, then taking it to your next session. Even just a few sentences to get things started, since you may be too nervous or scared or embarrassed to start it out loud. Then you either read it or hand it to your therapist. A lot of us have trouble expressing our initial concerns. Most people don't revel in describing things to a person, even a therapist, that they (erroneously) feel border on "crazy."
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Pocketwatch » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:01 am

Okay. I will write it down, therapy is this wednesday so I'm getting more and more nervous. My partner is thankfully coming with so if I can't do it he will push through for me.
Thanks so much for the comforting words as well, honestly it really helps to not immediately be questioned by someone.
And yeah, can of worms is indeed an expression, sorry if it was too harsh.
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby debetoile » Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:03 pm

Pocketwatch wrote:Hey everyone,

And lastly, have you guys ever felt like you've tricked yourself into believing you had DID, even though other people are convinced you have it?

Pocketwatch


I go through cycles nearly 10 years later where I don't believe I have DID. Just the other day I wanted to yell at my therapist that I don't have it. But then remembered a conversation where she said she often chats with the kids so I found it really hard then to stay in denial. Right back when I first worked it out, when it was a massive shock and no one actually told me the name for it, I told my therapist she was making it up and that I was one person blah blah blah. All she said was "how old do you feel right now" The answer in my head was 5, so I went oh, relaxed and realised that she wasn't pretending I had it, I FELT that age, I felt the alters.

As for telling a T, I'm lucky I have never needed to. I have just let the kids come out and chat to them, and then let it go from there. My kids are a kind of protector for us as if the other person accepts them and interacts with them in a positive way then we feel safe around them and our "secret" (of being multiple)

Good luck
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Re: Nervous to discuss potentially having DID with my therapist

Postby Johnny-Jack » Tue Jan 07, 2020 4:09 pm

Hi Pocketwatch. You mentioned in another thread that you and your boyfriend are having problems. I do hope he'll still be able to accompany you to your therapy session this week. It could prove invaluable to you and for your therapist for him to give a third-party observer's opinions that confirm your thoughts.

I do understand the nervousness. I think you'll find that once you've started the conversation, it will be a lot easier than you'd anticipated. After all, you're talking about it, not generating or deciding on an immediate diagnosis. It's just another thing to talk about and you can move forward with it or with any topic as a pace that works for you.

Best of luck!
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Ab Ad Al Am An Ar As Ba Be Br Ca Cb Ch Cl Cm Cn Co Cp Ct Cu Cv D Eb Ed Er Es F Fl Ga Gd Go Gr Gw He Hk Hs Ht I J Jh Jk Jn Jy Ke Ky Li Lu Md Mi Mt Mx Mz Ne Ni O Pe Pi Q Ra Rd Ry Sc Se Sh Sk Sx Tk Ty U V Wa Wi X Y Ze Zn
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