DID

I raced to call my psychiatrist when I saw this:

Heading – 46/112. Your dissociative identity disorder test result, dot dot dot.

Your result is high risk.

Your results are highly consistent with dissociative identity disorder.

This wasn’t surprising at all and in fact it was a relief. At first. This is my coming out story. I, Karen Michelle Kaiser, have DID.

It’s a result of c-ptsd, and I’ve had it since childhood. Thank you in advance for listening.

I’m nervous to talk about this topic because I don’t know anything about it. I do remember that I used to dissociate when I was a child. I’d daydream for hours on end and get stuck in my head. I couldn’t get out. By the end of the day, I’d have spent hours dreaming up imaginary scenarios and I didn’t know where the time went. It felt like a hypnagogic hallucination that I couldn’t escape from. There were bright colors and strange sounds. It happened on a daily basis.

I could dissociate like this no matter where I was or what I was doing. Sometimes I didn’t know what was real and what wasn’t. I’d have to pull myself out of the scenarios and force myself to stay in the present. It was often a chore. Even now I can separate my psyche like this if I want to.

There are three distinct people that makeup who I am, I’ve come to realize. Karen, Sakinah and Michelle.

Karen

Karen is the person who I was born as. She is who went to church and sang in the choir. Karen played the piano and studied ballet, tap and jazz. Karen was a swimmer and a lifeguard. Karen tells people what to do. She is a teetotaler and a teacher. She is a black and white thinker. She can’t accept mistakes. She is a consummate perfectionist. She is the ultimate establishment “Karen”…

Michelle

Michelle is who I always wanted to be. I remember being 10 years old and thinking to myself that I’d prefer to be called by a prettier, softer name. I liked my middle name better than “Karen”. In my mind, I became Michelle. It was a Black name. I saw myself as Michelle from then on…

Sakinah

Sakinah is the Muslim me. She is god inspired peace and tranquillity. She came into existence formally at the age of 21 but informally at the age of nine. Or so. I’ve always been Sakinah. I’ve always had a sense of tranquility about me and this name suits me so people might say. I’m bubbly and easygoing. Slow to anger (before the mental illness) Sakinah is the main me…

People ask me what name I prefer to be called and I’m always confused. Now I know why. I can use Karen or Sakinah per my did issue. I prefer Sakinah because I’m trying to integrate these personalities. But any name will do. This is new territory for me so please be patient

And please be prepared for me to mess up sometimes. Thank you 🙏🏽

UPDATE…

DID II

What’s in a name?

Karen

This is the name my father gave me. I’m proud of it and it means pure. I didn’t know any Black Karen’s growing up and I didn’t have a sense of self because of the DID symptoms. My brain made me feel worthless about this name however, and my body followed suit. When people teased me and said I wasn’t “something” enough, I equated that with my first name. My psyche split and I became “Michelle” until I was comfortable with “Karen”.

Michelle

She is pretty. She is confident. She is gregarious. She is hypomanic, happy and grandiose. Michelle can do anything she sets her mind to. She is given to psychosis…

Sakinah

She is moderate and even tempered. She has and sets limits. She is bipolar and willing to take her meds. She enjoys sobriety and stability.

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