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#304637 - 09/29/09 02:52 PM Dissociative Disorder
PatchworkMama Offline


Registered: 01/24/09
Posts: 54
Loc: Iowa
My husband has started having dissociative disorders at night. The first one he went out to our driveway, smoked cigarettes, talked to some friends and laid down in our driveway and woke up at 5:30 in the morning very confused.

Since then I have found him wandering the house at night. At first I thought he was sleepwalking. But then the episodes became more and more frequent and he started talking to me when I followed him. I have now met him at age 12, 14, 16 and 18. We have had discussions about events in his life I would have never known about and I have watched him physically re-live his abuse.

He tells me that his therapist calls these dissociative night terrors. And I have learned that these are a part of his life as he continues in therapy.

Recently I have discovered that my husband is listed on several gay dating sites. And have discovered some risque stuff. I have asked my husband about all this and he tells me that it is not him. I have looked further into this and it has to be him. I have solid proof. Is this another thing he would do in a dissociative episode? Would he not remember these sites?

Has anyone had experience with anything like this? How concerned should I be?

Thank you!


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#304642 - 09/29/09 03:19 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: PatchworkMama]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Patchworkmama,

It sounds like he has DID (dissociative identity disorder).

He has the history of abuse which could produce DID.

Symptoms would be:
1. Doing things he is later unaware of.
2. Losing time
3. Heavy dissociation
4. History of abuse
5. Sleepwalking (not asleep but in a different alter)

It also sounds as though his T has not figured this out yet. Some Ts don't accept that there really is such a thing. Others just don't know how to work with it. Still others have just never had a previous client with this disorder.

Allen

aka pufferfish




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#304711 - 09/30/09 08:16 AM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: pufferfish]
sono Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 1069
Patchworkmama,

There are a lot of guys who can tell you much more about that than I can, but I certainly hope you can find yourself some assistance in working through this...I just wanted to lend a voice of support to you and your family.

sono

_________________________
the family
the perp

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#304740 - 09/30/09 01:31 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: sono]
PatchworkMama Offline


Registered: 01/24/09
Posts: 54
Loc: Iowa
Thanks guys for your input. I have wondered if it wasn't full-blown DID. But I also thought maybe he has just been too ashamed, embarrassed, or afraid of my reaction to be honest about the sites and things.

I don't really know why any of this matters. Except that I would not like our four children to be exposed to any of the sites or people he might meet from the sites without an explanation. And since I am at work so much, I don't know what is happening when I'm not at home.

I would love to talk to anyone who knows anything about this or has experience with this. I am not allowed to talk to his therapist (it is a rule my H has laid down, he wants complete privacy with his therapist). I have so many questions. Is this an alter or shame? Would the alter have a different moral compass than the husband I know? Will I only see the alters at night? When/if I come across these things again, should I make him aware of them? How can I make sense of this? How can I break it down, so if my kids see an alter, they aren't scared? How do I be the best support for my husband?

Thank you!


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#304758 - 09/30/09 04:31 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: PatchworkMama]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama
Thanks guys for your input. I have wondered if it wasn't full-blown DID. But I also thought maybe he has just been too ashamed, embarrassed, or afraid of my reaction to be honest about the sites and things.


First I have to say that I don't know your husband and so I have made a remote diagnosis. I may be wrong. It happened once before. blush

DID involves being super-blind to one's own problems. This is often called amnesia. It is not dishonesty. He set up the system as a very little boy. It was set up to protect himself against stuff that was too terrifying for a little boy to face. If he faces it too rapidly it is too shocking (even for an adult) because his fear system is probably still intact.

The alter that you know is most likely to be unware of the others. If you try to break it to him too suddenly it can be an extreme shock and/or just rejected. A T has to help him little-by-little to gain insight as to what's going on.

Since he is already seeing a T he may have achieved some level of insight as to his own system, whatever it is.

DID is very different from one individual to another because each little person figures out how to do it all by themselves. (It is set up by the very small child to handle abuse that is overwhelming them). It is almost like setting up a play house with a lot of little characters in it. Except it is very much real. In a way it is a house of cards or like the Japanese houses with paper walls. The walls are very thin but very real and are maintained by the belief that they have to be there. They are called "alters" for alternate-personalities. Just for example, one alter will be the front-man or host or the guy who presents himself to the public. This is probably the guy you know. Then there will be one or more alters who deal with the sexual stuff. There is probably a high level of amnesia between that (or those) alters and the main front-man alter. The activities or those (presumed) alters are what you have described.

There are sometimes alters with different functions. Sometimes there is one who numbs out if there is danger of the system being exposed. Some DIDs have a policeman alter to protect the system (it depends on their situation: What did they need protection from if anything). Sometimes they have a bunch of child alters who like to play or do childish things. Sometimes they have names and functions all of which are unknown to the host alter. Sometimes there are incompletely-formed alters or fragments. That is the amnestic barrier maintaining them is incomplete.

Since the whole system is based on amnesia, it is in one sense fragile but in another it can be very difficult to deal with.
You're name is "PatchworkMama" but he is in a sense a real "Patchwork Papa".

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

I don't really know why any of this matters. Except that I would not like our four children to be exposed to any of the sites or people he might meet from the sites without an explanation. And since I am at work so much, I don't know what is happening when I'm not at home.


There's a lot about your situation that I don't know, such as the ages and genders of your children. Therefore I don't know the degree of danger to you or your children.

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

I would love to talk to anyone who knows anything about this or has experience with this. I am not allowed to talk to his therapist (it is a rule my H has laid down, he wants complete privacy with his therapist).


You really need to become educated about it. I have read several books. The one I recommend to you is:

Amongst Ourselves: A Self-Help Guide to Living with Dissociative Identity Disorder, by Trach Alderman and Karen Marshall. New Harbinger Publications. It is not expensive.

http://www.amazon.com/Amongst-Ourselves-...0428&sr=1-1

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

I have so many questions. Is this an alter or shame? Would the alter have a different moral compass than the husband I know?

As I said above, he probably has an alter or alters just for the sexual stuff. Too bad, but that's how it works. Yes, that alter works by have a diffenent attitude towards sexual stuff. It (or he) had to in order to deal with sexual abuse to which he was subjected as a small child.

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

Will I only see the alters at night?

There is a tendency for the alters to come out in the times when they were originally formed. So possibly yes, this may mean that they (or it) comes out at night. You might not even know that was happening unless you know what to look for.

This is how it worked with me. (I think). This is getting too long to say very much about me now. There are 2 other books which describe other types of DID. I have read both of these:

Miss America By Day, by Marilyn vanDerber.
http://www.amazon.com/Miss-America-Day-B...0909&sr=1-1

I see this one is getting hard to obtain. Get it from the library or a used book store.

The other is Breaking Free, by Herschel Walker.

http://www.amazon.com/Breaking-Free-Diss...1026&sr=1-1

Both Marilyn vanDerber and Herschel Walker are kind of "super people". They live very much above average lives. This shows that DID is often a disorder of very much above average achievers. They are not phantoms or anything.

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

When/if I come across these things again, should I make him aware of them?


NO. Be careful about this. Breaing the amnesia abruptly can cause trouble. Maybe there would be some way you could 'provide his T with information' while respecting his confidentiality.

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

How can I make sense of this? How can I break it down, so if my kids see an alter, they aren't scared?


Do some reading. Read some of our stories here at MS. Some of my story is here.

Alters your kids might have seen might not be scary at all. Maybe they have seen some child alters. They just think that 'Daddy is a lot of fun to play with'. There is no reason to believe that he would be at all dangerous to your children. If your children have seen alters, or if you have, you may just passed them off as being moodiness. Being DID doesn't make somebody dangerous.

Originally Posted By: PatchworkMama

How do I be the best support for my husband?


Good attitude to ask that question. Do some of the reading I recommended. Don't panic. Don't give up. Don't get angry. Make sure your own needs for people are being met. Do you have friends that you can pal around with and who can be fun for you to be with? Build your own support network. Keep on believeing in him. Be patient as he goes through his therapy. He must already have some idea he has problems. He is building into your relationship the "amnesia" that he has in his own life.

Let me know if you have more questions.

Allen

aka pufferfish whistle


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#304983 - 10/02/09 02:04 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: pufferfish]
PatchworkMama Offline


Registered: 01/24/09
Posts: 54
Loc: Iowa
Thank you Allen,

We have been married for almost 12 years. We have four children - 11, 9, 7 & 5. I work as a baker in the early morning and as a cashier at Wal-Mart on the 2nd shift (45-50/wk between both jobs). I do not have a very good support system. I do have a therapist, but since I worked at home until recently, I haven't had a chance to meet a lot of people. I am by nature shy and think that having a lot of friends is too complicated. We live in a smallish town - 21,000 people, there aren't a lot of resources here and I don't have the time or the money to travel very far. Just some background.

My main goal here is to find out how to best support my husband, get some answers and take care of our family. How do I find out if my H or an alter has done something that would affect his health or mine? Will this get worse before it gets better? Is there hope?

I believe that the H I know is one of the most brilliant, facinating, and amazing people I know. I find him loving, attentive, supportive, and very handsome. I have stayed by his side before and shall as long it is safe for everyone now. But fear is a great motivator and the primary source of fear is a lack of knowledge. I shall attempt to get and read the books you suggest and will do my best to read them. And I will work on building a support system as I can crawl out from underneath my shell and allow someone into this chaos.

Thank you so very much for sharing all that you have shared. You have helped me so very much and I appreciate everything. If there are others who would like to shed some light on DID - it would be much appreciated. What is it like for you to live with DID? What would you like for support from your SO?

Thanks again!


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#304988 - 10/02/09 03:30 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: PatchworkMama]
pufferfish Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/26/08
Posts: 6875
Loc: USA
Patchwork Mama,

Here are a bunch of links to discussions of DID/MPD here at MS. Some of these are posts I have made. There are several here who most likely have it. You will be able to see this.

Do you know how to use this? Just position the mouse pointer over the link and click the left mouse button. Your computer will move to the post at the end of the link.

Answer to DouglasLloyd
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...1280#Post301280

Major post to MPD-DID thread
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...9954#Post299954

Major post to MPD-DID thread
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...9420#Post299420

http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...9090#Post299090

Daniel_forgotten’s Self Disclosure
http://www.malesurvivor.org/board/ubbthr...3322#Post303322


Allen

aka pufferfish





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#304989 - 10/02/09 03:57 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: pufferfish]
DJsport Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1742
Hi, Patchwork Mama.

I am supportive of your efforts to take care of your family.

I am going to be careful with my wording.

Allen, has given some great information.

In light, of this post I can understand his behavior better now.

I have seen my T regarding the csa and I asked about DID and was told - the PTSD shows the same symptoms within myself as DID.

I wish you and your family well.

Peace,
DJ



Edited by DJsport (10/03/09 12:49 PM)
_________________________
Live to your fullest potential

Never make someone a priority if your only an option

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#305014 - 10/03/09 02:30 AM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: DJsport]
Daniel_forgotten Offline


Registered: 02/07/09
Posts: 479
hello patchworkmama

i'm DID. diagnosed some months ago.

they seem to be addict to habits. i've also found gay porn in my computer, but me (front, main ones) are straight and we are grossed out with the idea of two men together.

i will try and explain some stuff later, can't say much right now, i'm sorry.

I understand it must be so hard for partners but you're are an amazing person for standing by his side through this.


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#305217 - 10/04/09 08:29 PM Re: Dissociative Disorder [Re: Daniel_forgotten]
takingflight Offline


Registered: 09/23/09
Posts: 32
I hope I can shed some light on a part of DID. I am NOS (not otherwise specified) DID. I don't lose time, which is rare, but I go away a lot, and think and act like different people, even though I am aware of nearly everything that has gone on, and have a killer memory (also somewhat unusual).

A bigger problem for me is PTSD - or C-PTSD in my case "complex PTSD). Many in the field think that PTSD is on the same arc as DID, just less severe. So I have severe PTSD mixed with some of the less intense parts of DID.

I was more dissasociated until I was 26, since then I have become more unified as a person. I tend to do this when I'm triggered by very abusive people - esp. women.

I have a friend who is very DID, she has dozens of personalities, some male. Some angry. Some sad. She loses time all the time.

It's a complex story for everone that has it. I believe therapy and a lot of time and effort yields the best long term results.

I hope anyone with DID, or suspicion of DID gets help. I didn't really hit it head on until about 2002 when I was 45. It won't go away on its own - at least not at a rate that can do much good IMO.

Take care.


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