Send Your Replies to Carolyn:
I just read your about problem with dealing with a multiple mom and husband.
First off I applaud you! In my experiance not many people will become involved with a multiple. Most people don't know much about D.I.D./M.P.D. except for maybe the movie Sybil or The Three Faces of Eve. Or unless they know someone who has it. I/we have D.I.D. And it's been very hard on us. At first when I was dx. with D.I.D. I told my family, my boyfriend, and my best friends, not thinking much of it in telling them.They were close to me and I thought it would be ok to tell them, so I did, and... well I have no more friends, my boyfriend left me, and my family treats me so much differently than they used to. I haven't changed any, I'm still the same person (or should I say persons) but that didn't matter... everyone ran from the unknown. So needless to say I don't tell anyone about us anymore... but that didn't stop the pain of losing everyone.
As far as helping someone with this dx. I would have to say, stay supportive. I know it's been hard on my family to deal with all of us but the one thing I wanted most was to know someone cared about us and that they wouldn't leave us no matter how hard things got, that they were there for us in happy times and sad, thick or thin! But I also know that you have to stay healthy yourself too, so I think a support group for yourself would be wonderful or even if you had your own therapist to help you out when you needed it.
I also read the other comments people wrote back to you, and I think that you might find a survivor's group in your local area or even check with your local mental health center... they may have a group. But if you just can't find the support you need, there's a place on line called Meetup.com. It's a great place they have a group for just about anything there is. I found out about Meetup.com thru a friend on-line and just checked it out. We were looking for a D.I.D. Support Group in our area and they didn't have one, but you can sign on that you’re looking for a support group in whatever topic and when one becomes available they contact you. I waited about year and then one day I/we got this e-mail that a D.I.D. Support Group had started up in our area! We were really nervous but we went to the first meeting and after about 30 minutes you would have thought we were best friends for a long time. The person who became our leader has D.I.D. herself and was looking for a group. When she found none she said “So I'll start one”, and she did. Now there's 11 of us and we’re very happy to know other people who suffer from the same thing. Our leader knew nothing about running a group when she became our leader, but it's all worked out. We each bring topics that we want to know about and we research it during the week. Then we all bring info together on our Meetup days.
You can always get info from the people who run the web-site Meetup.com as to how to run a group. You can also go to different D.I.D. web-sites for people who have D.I.D. Where they can talk and write about their problems, because in most that I've been to, they have a forum for support people who support someone who has D.I.D. Or have been a victim of abuse. You can get a lot of help there. But first make sure you’re OK and then stay supportive of your mom and husband. Let them know often that you’re right there beside them, willing to help in anyway you can, but don't forget about yourself in the process. You won't be any help to them if you’re suffering! Take care and good luck finding the right group or therapist!
I am a partially integrated multiple still on the path to healing. I worked for years to heal so that I could have children, love them and not pass on any pain. When things seemed finally good my partner and I had two children of our own.
I now have four children. One step daughter my partner raised and I love, one adopted 25 year old son whom I knew when he was a boy in a foster home who also suffered abuse, and two little girls 3 and 1 whom I had the pleasure of bringing into this world. I’m 38. Unfortunately I’ve had some more painful memories come up recently that I’ve had to deal with. It pains me to burden my children’s hearts. When I read your note my heart hurts to see your personal struggle. It is painful to know and love a multiple. I know from the other side of things. What I would tell my children and what I tell my spouse is “take good care of yourself. Be happy and find your own peace. Know you can’t fix this, but we can. What you can do… is just be yourself, your loving kind sweet self. And in the midst of our pain we will see that example of goodness and love and know where the light out of the darkness shines.”
Here is my theory on finding the support group that you are looking for… If you can’t find the group you so desperately need, then start your own. I have no doubt that there are a ton of people out there like you. Try making the support group more general like a support group for people who know/love survivors of abuse. This way you can get a larger group.
When you start to see people whose abused partners are men, you’ll now have a new reason to start a men’s group, etc… Publicize your group in Many Voices, in your local newspaper and on those internet sites where you can’t find a group. Make sure you meet in a public place for safety. If you don’t know how to start a group, go to an open AA, Al Anon, CoDa, OA, ISA or any other 12 step meeting that you might qualify for. Al Anon is a group for someone who loves someone in addiction. There is also CoDependents anonymous for when you are intangled with someone elses pain. AA alcohol addiction, OA food addiction, ISA incest survivors, etc. These groups are easy to find and can help you get an idea of how meetings and support groups work, if you don’t already know. Certainly there are people other than you whom love your Mom and Husband. Get together with them so you are not doing this all by yourself.
Dearest Carolyn… free yourself of your own pain and find peace and happiness, it’s what a mother would want for her child.
I'll be glad to send you a free sample issue of MV. I send them to anyone, in the US or elsewhere, upon request. Also, I recommend checking through our list of Themes on this website, for back issues that may reference Partner's Pages, or info about men. I'm always glad to hear from supportive family members and friends of traumatized people, and print appropriate articles from them ASAP in the newsletter as often as I can.
Finally - MV is planning to publish a book directed specifically to Partners, Family members, and Friends of people who dissociate or have PTSD. I'll be sending a questionnaire to anyone interested in participating or providing input. Also, writing or artwork contributions to the book are welcome. Email me and I'll send more information.
Stay in touch for helpful information about partner support, etc. and Good Luck!