I learned more about one automatic defense mechanism that needs to be addressed or disabled during my vacation.
Switching and sounding like I am talking about myself all the time when all of us in the system feel anxious and safe with a person or group.
And the accompanying feelings of shame, anxiety, panic, guilt, and loss of reality that comes with it.
Two main challenges have previously gotten in the way of disabling this mechanism:
not being able to share about having Dissociative Identity disorder
Alters unwilling to identify themselves when talking to outsiders.
Lack of awareness when this happens so that I can reflect, process in therapy, and use known coping techniques and strategies to change the behavior.
Frustration when people give advice without understanding that I know what the problem is and amnstruggling with how to resolve it. Behavior modification or change for trauma survivors requires a different approach than for “the average person”.
The first one is less of an issue now that I moved and live in a more open culture.
The second one is not so easy to figure out.
And the third one I try to address carefully, but sometimes fall back to negative strategies that work and avoid future communications.
But at least now I have words to describe to my therapist what challenge I want to work on for the present and near future.
thanks for reading.
The more I live in the present and focus on working through recovery, the more I remember my past. The memories are being unlocked as I learn to work through the pain in my body.
Less pain = more memories recovered
Less pain = more crying and grieving before the letting go process moves on
More pain = less memories and more confusion
More pain = less awareness of my feelings and instincts
Do I want less pain? Yes. Do I want to remember what is locked up in my body? Not really.
Today, after about 3 weeks of acupuncture with the new student and 3 sessions with my new counselor in between sessions with the old one, I can finally put some of the pieces of my childhood and adolescence together. The recurring dreams that turn into nightmares really did happen. And those people I remember fighting, they were real friends who became targets for the monsters controlling my life. In protecting them, I lost their friendship too.
And other people who could have made decent friends, I had already mastered the art of pushing people away by then. And it wasn’t safe either way. No matter where I went, there was always someone who recognized me and spread the rumors behind my back. Or told someone in my family what I was doing. And then the harassment (not of me, but of the people who were kind to me) began. They thought I knew. But I didn’t. And instead of talking to me about it, they kicked me out of their lives and avoided me.
Living a double life is not fun. Being drugged into not remembering that other life completely sucks. And when the truth hits, the sensation is overwhelming. The tears fall until no one wants to cry any more. The movie reels start. And suddenly, I can see my friends and any family members involved as they were back when we were children. I hear their voices. And the memories come flooding back.
The big difference here is that no one tries to stop the flood. We all sit back in our comfy chairs and watch the memories go by. From our safe bubble, the memories surround us. But they don’t hurt us anymore. Our bubble can float to the surface, bounce from wave to wave, and coast along the flow of movement instead of being drowned.
And the memories tell me that I can’t trust anyone. I can’t make friends because those friends might be targeted as employees(sex trafficking), members (of the cult), or clients (for drugs and other illegal stuff). Or they and their families will have to suffer being harassed and stalked and manipulated by my parents and the other people who owned me.
So yea, I and my alters, we all feel kind of sad and depressed today. People often wonder why I don’t pursue leadership jobs and more social activities. How can I tell them why that kind of job doesn’t work for me? That I am afraid to be noticed because the monsters will hurt me again? Or hurt the people around me. How can I tell them that I survived by staying below the radar instead of taking charge and being more independent? How can I say that I am ashamed of my intelligence and skills so have a hard time displaying them in public and around strangers who might not actually be strangers?
Thanks for reading.