I should have guessed that there would be inevitable issues when you have to suddenly change therapist while you’re neck-deep in issues of an immediate nature. However the issues that I’m having with my new therapist are stressing me out really badly.
Two sessions ago I divulged that I have imaginary friends, friends that I’ve had since I was little that I keep because they basically serve as my family. These friends are different from my DID alters but there is an alter ego that interacts with them that I didn’t consider part of my DID system at the talked about it.
After I left that session I was bombarded with feelings of fear and warnings that a system of safety that has been in place for decades was in danger. The biggest surprise to me was that I’d had no idea that my alter ego and imaginary friends were part of my DID until that moment of communication from my internal system. I was very confused. On top of that, the next day or so I lost time briefly which hasn’t happened in a while. It wasn’t anything big or bad, it just got my attention.
That week I had another appointment set with my therapist (I’d been doubling up for a few weeks because I hadn’t been able to see her for a month). We were continuing the conversation about my imaginary friends but I was cautious now because of my internal warnings. Here’s where things got bad with my therapist.
While talking a little about my DID alters she said that they need to know that at some point they’re going to have to go away (the term is integrate). My internal reaction was quite strong which I told her; we, including myself have no interest in them going away. My parts have been there since I was very small and I’m comfortable with them; what I want is the same thing I’ve always strived for with DID: co-consciousness. That seemed to throw my therapist a bit though and she asked me why I was in therapy, what made me come to therapy in the first place? This was not good either as I felt that she was basically saying ‘What are you doing here then? What’s the point?’ I did not like that. I told her what led me to therapy originally: being diagnosed bipolar and trying to learn how to live with that. Then my mom stuff came up and later the sexual abuse from my uncle. I think those are good reasons to be in therapy don’t you? The DID was discovered later after I’d already been in therapy for a long time, it wasn’t the reason I came.
This is all difficult because my original therapist and I had 14 years of relationship building. Even when we had a problem with communication or a misunderstanding, we could always work it out in one visit and get back to normal. She was very gentle and nurturing. My new therapist is very direct, which in some cases has actually been good as she can get to the point of what’s up immediately but…my internal system is all out of whack with feelings of anger, resentment and rejection. The general feeling inside is that my parts helped me to get through my life; through sexual, physical, verbal and emotional abuse and while yes, we’re no longer in those situations anymore, no one has the right to tell us that the way we’re made is wrong and that they need to go away. We’ve only known each other a few months really and we had no relationship buliding, we just had to jump right into the deep end.
Many people have tried to tell us how we should be, or as my therapist puts it have, ‘intruded upon’ us. Now, here’s another person intruding and trying to tell us what should be done with our body/mind. Not okay.
It actually caused me a lot of panic and anger last night as I was trying to get to sleep and there was a lot of internal feelings and discussions going on about how to handle the situation, there’s a struggle between the parts who want to express our anger and resentment, and the host (me) who hates confrontation and if I’m honest has always had a very hard time confronting my therapist (either one) because there seems to be a power imbalance there and I’m intimidated.
There were suggestions that perhaps we should quit therapy but that’s not good either.
I really don’t get therapists who are so uncomfortable with these aspects of DID. My original therapist had to get used to it to. They know it exists,so what’s the problem? And all of them make this assumption that you need to integrate. Why?! Because they’re taught that it’s the successful resolution to DID? Because some psychologists wrote books saying this is what should happen?! Screw them! I say what happens to me.
I believe that over time some fragments of alters that are less formed than my full personalities could integrate naturally and so be it. But to tell me that pieces of myself need to go away. Uh uh. She also has this thing about wanting me to take my power which implies that I don’t act like I have any. That is insulting because she honestly doesn’t know me well enough yet to think that or to know my life outside of the 45 minutes in her office.
Either way, I have to see her today and I have to say something because the turmoil that’s been caused is too much for me to handle. Wish me luck.