I’ve written before about how I am currently integrating from Dissociative Identity Disorder. This includes a lot of things for me, such as dealing with new or old parts that I was unaware of and dealing with the fear that myself and the parts have of integration. Last night, I became aware that some parts wanted to come out and show themselves. As usual, I became full of fear. But then I decided to do some grounding. I looked around my bedroom and looked at the different objects that were around me. I looked at the floor, and at the ceiling. Everything was in place, and that’s when I realized something: none of this will change if and when these parts come out, nor will it or “I” (focusing on the word “I”) change when I integrate.
Dissociative Identity Disorder, you see, changes how we see the world and ourselves. We live amongst a system of parts, alters, and/or personalities. So for us, the thought of integration raises all kinds of questions. Will I be a different person once I do it? Will I lose parts of me? What will my new world be like?
And then there is this sense that our whole world will change if our system changes. For much of integration, I did feel as though my whole life and world were changing due to it. I read into this and found others who had integrated talking about how everything changed after integration, which only fueled my fear and panic about it. It did feel like everything was changing, and integration basically felt like death itself. But now I’m realizing that I do not have a real reason to feel this way.
I’m starting to realize that integration is simply an integration of my parts into a whole. I will still be there. I guess before I did not fully realize this. When I logically began to think about it, I realized that it’s not as scary of a thing as I am making it out to be.
The disorder itself is what caused a lot of my inconsistencies of thinking and my fears about what integration is or was though, and my perception of it. Today I realize that this is the big barrier that many of us have when it comes to integration: we just can’t get to the part where we look around and realize, “Oh, those are parts of me. When I integrate, I will still, as a whole, be me” because we don’t really even think of ourselves as me. We just perceive ourselves to be something else, maybe The Host, maybe, in my case, Meryl, maybe by names we have given to other parts, maybe a collection of parts/alters. But we just don’t really understand that “I am me”.
I think that the difficulties of making this shift are what makes it so hard for someone to recover from Dissociative Identity Disorder. What I did to get to the place that I am just today, which is to say “I am me and will always be here” was consciously call myself me even when I didn’t feel like it, and write and talk using I statements even if it felt uncomfortable or went against what I felt inside. This created a lot of dissonances within myself but still has led me to some pretty good results.
Some people choose integration like I have, while others choose to stay within the “We” or “System”. I know that I’ve made the right choice for myself, and am glad that I am overcoming the barriers that are keeping me from reaching full integration. It seems as though in one night somehow my perception changed, but I know that it was a process.
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