So this is my first post here. I haven’t got much written in my journal yet, since we’ve only had everybody aware of being multiple since around Halloween and we didn’t have internet until about a week ago, but feel free to read it. I’ve been spending most of my time in this journal reading this community. There two subjects that I’ve seen quite a bit written about in here, and I just wanted to toss in my 2 cents on each, and ask a few questions about things that we’ve experienced.
We know that some of our splits are trauma induced, but definitely not all. In fact, we’ve got one person in here who seems to excel at building new people just to do things that nobody else wants to or knows how to do. We’ve got a lot perfectly normal human beings in here, but we also have people who would class as “otherkin.” And then there’s those that know they’re really human, but sometimes like to imagine themselves with wings, pointy ears, fangs, horns, etc. Most of the time, this isn’t a problem, because people do realize that no matter how they see themselves, there are limitations to this physical body. Personally, I like the descriptions or drawings that people provide of themselves and the worlds they come from! These also come in really handy when we play role-playing games or run campaigns. We just base characters off of the abilities that people see themselves with, or design campaign settings on the worlds they come from. Our gaming group is aware that we’re multiple, but sometimes it’s still easier for them to accept wildly different behavior and attitude if it’s expressed as playing a character.
That leads me into the second subject: coming out. Jocelyn, our front person who was unaware of being multiple, was okay with her boyfriend being told once she became aware, but didn’t want anyone else to know, but a lot of the rest of us wanted to tell people. So we eventually argued Jocelyn into it, and for the most part, it’s gone very well. A lot of people have responded with “That explains a lot!” Several other people have responded that they know someone else who’s multiple, including the one case where someone, or rather one of her alters, stepped forward and explained that they were multiple too. It hasn’t all gone this well, of course, like my mom still doesn’t want to accept it. We’ve had several people immediately ask if there’s a dangerous personality, but I blame Hollywood and the media for that. (We’ve decided to start answering “Yes, and you’re talking to it,” to that question, just on principle.) We’ve had some friends who grew up with dysfunctional, unaware multiples arrange a confrontation and insist that we seek psychiatric treatment, and we did agree to see a psychologist (more on that later). But we’ve also had the very special experience of “awakening” another formerly unaware and possibly partially (badly) integrated multiple. He had some initial disorientation, but seems to have developed a much more positive outlook on life since getting to know his others.
Overall, I’d still say that coming out has been a good idea and a mostly positive experience, though I don’t think it’s a good thing to tell an employer. We also don’t want our biological son’s father to know, because he’d be guaranteed to have a hysterical reaction, try to take custody, allow only supervised visitation, if any, and all sorts of other crap. I’m sure we’ll end up telling the ex eventually, but we’re going to wait at least until the kid is old enough to speak on his own behalf in court. We’re also going to have to tell our son one of these days, but I don’t think he’s old enough yet to understand. For anyone who is thinking about coming out, I’d have to say trust your instincts. If you don’t think some one can handle it, you’re probably right, but if you think they can, then go ahead and tell them. However, a little preparation does go a long way. We have generally called someone to tell them we want to meet up and talk, and that it’s about something important and unusual, then we meet with them and tell them, and then we generally let them go off and absorb it and get back to us when they’re ready to know more. We haven’t lost any friends yet, although some are not comfortable talking about it. (That’s okay; some of the members of this body still aren’t comfortable with talking about being multiple.)
So anyway, this takes me into some questions I wanted to ask based on my own experiences and observing other aware multiples. (I know and get together with 3 other aware multiples at least semi-regularly.)
First of all, I’ve read about other multiples having different levels of sensitivity, depending on who’s up front. Joey is highly sensitive, especially sexually, yet she also has the highest pain tolerance of anybody in here. She also has a phenomenal alcohol tolerance, exceeded only by Jade’s. Anakin, Jayne, Jocelyn, Myriad, and Lia all have extremely low tolerances, though Lia bases herself largely on our biological older sister and thus, drinks heavily anyway and gets absolutely plastered. The others of us who have experienced alcohol seem to have tolerances somewhere in between. We do not recommend anyone deliberately getting drunk to find out, but has anyone else switched over with alcohol or drugs in their system and found that different people feel it very differently? (Jade finds it very amusing to switch back and forth with Anakin when she’s drinking, because he immediately starts stumbling and weaving when she still feels stone cold sober.) Also, Joey can harness body strength to lift over twice her body weight, while many of the rest of us are lucky if we can lift more than 50 lb. We also seem to need different amounts of sleep.
Second, while we do choose to remain multiple, we have had some integrations. Janna, who appeared during Russian language immersion program, woke up speaking Russian, and then informed us that there were too many people in here already and she wanted to integrate with Jayne. Janna already appeared to have been built on the high school German class persona named Anna, who was never a complete personality but did have the base for rapidly learning a new language. All we had to do was wake Jayne up and ask her if she was willing to integrate, and they just stepped right into each other. Jayne is still Jayne, but she goes by Janna when she’s speaking Russian and Anna when she’s speaking German. Now they were very similar already, both having professional appearances and experience dealing with people from very different backgrounds, and for whatever it’s worth, Rhiannon, who reads auras, says that Jayne’s is bright yellow and Janna’s was light yellow, and the colors being similar is important. We’ve had a couple other people want to integrate, but it didn’t work, and yes, their aura colors were very different, as well as several of their personality traits. What we’re looking for here is opinions on integration in general and experiences with it that anyone else has had.
I’ve got so many other questions, but this entry is getting long, so I’ll ask just one more. I mentioned that we play role-playing games. Most of our friends are people from our role-playing group or else friends of theirs. Including myself, we have 2 open multiples in the role-playing group, and just about everybody that was ever in the group at any time knows another multiple, aware or not. It makes perfect sense that stuff like role-playing and acting would attract multiples, since it gives their others a chance to get out and be themselves. I was just wondering if anyone else out there is into role-playing and if so, if it is your others that come out as characters during sessions.
So that’s about it, but I did promise to get back to this. We do see a psychologist, and we got really lucky, because not only has he had experience with multiples, but he also does not believe that integration is the only way to deal with getting fully functional. He seems to be taking the approach of figuring out who’s best at what and helping us figure out how to make sure that people show up to do the things they’re best at, and how to make sure we don’t end up with people who absolutely can’t handle something trying to do it. (The 8 yr old showing up behind the wheel of a car would probably be really bad, for example, but we couldn’t ask for a more perfect playmate for our biological son.) The psychologist has also been helpful with getting some of our people who did have issues to start dealing with them and move past them. He deals with us all as different people, and helps us get more on the track of working together as a group instead of each pursuing his or her own interests without regard for anyone else.
So there’s my introduction or rant or whatever you want to call it. I hope to hear back from people and meet you all.