I believed it happened to “those alter personalities” inside of me. In order to move forward and out of survival mode, I had to face what caused me to go into survivor mode.I had to face what caused me to fragment into multiple personalities. I thought I could just keep going forward and forget that stuff from so long ago. I was withdrawing from life more and more so my quality of life was poor.The way that I was raised was not healthy nor was it “normal”. They disconnect from themselves without developing other personalities to cope “for them”.The dissociation in itself is the coping method.)I also developed multiple personality disorder (now known as dissociative identity disorder), which means in my case, that I fragmented or split into multiple personalities as a method of survival.The first time I realized that it was MY body that was violated I sat stunned, repeating over and over again; “That happened to me… ” I finally connected one horrible and frightening event to myself.I was shocked that I’d never realized that it happened to ME and in fact I was realizing it for the very first time.I had to shift my focus from being fascinated with my alter personalities, to realizing where they came from and that each of them was really me and that each of them held memories of things that happened to ME. My children were beginning to suffer from my dissociation and dissociative identity issues and my children were getting old enough to realize that mommy was often “somewhere else”. But when I thought about it, all my life I had been taught to deny the truth.I believed that I had wonderful, hard working parents who did their best for me. I had no frame of reference for any other way of life. I had to validate the pain that being devalued, dismissed and treated as “not quite valid” as a person had an effect on me. I dissociated (hence the term “dissociative identity disorder) and dissociating enabled me to cope.(Regarding Dissociative Identity Disorder and Multiple Personality Disorder ~ not everyone who has dissociative identity disorder or dissociative issues, fragments into alter personalities.
It was so important for me to believe that my childhood had in fact been difficult.I had been brainwashed that my childhood was wonderful, normal and that I was one of the “privileged” people in the world.I had effectively disconnected myself and my body from the feelings and the pain and even from the truth.Furthermore I convinced myself that because I had split into “more than one person” that the abuse did not actually happen to me, but instead, I believed that it happened “to them”. Although as a child, having dissociative identity disorder was what kept me alive and it was how I coped and survived, it was also what was in my way as an adult.
I believed that something was wrong with me because I had so many struggles with depressions and emotional issues. I was in my early 40’s the first time I connected that the sexual abuse in my childhood had happened to me.I felt guilty that I was so unhappy because I had been convinced that I was so fortunate to have grown up in the family I had. I had effectively separated those events from myself.