We claim we are multiple, yet not DID nor MPD. Let's take a moment to break this down, and let's take a more in depth look at that claim.


First, let's start with MPD.


Multiple Personality Disorder.


Multiple: Yes, we are multiple. There are more than one person living in this one, shared body.


Personality: This is a grey area...

per·son·al·i·ty

noun, plural -ties.
1. the visible aspect of one's character as it impresses others: He has a pleasing personality.
2. a person as an embodiment of a collection of qualities: He is a curious personality.
3.
Psychology .
a.the sum total of the physical, mental, emotional, and social characteristics of an individual.
b. the organized pattern of behavioral characteristics of the individual.
4. the quality of being a person; existence as a self-conscious human being; personal identity.
5.The essential character of a person.

In one definition, a personality is a collection of characteristics. We are more than collections of characteristics.
In another definition, a personality is the state and quality of being a person. In that sense, we would be personalities.
For the sake of this article, we'll say yes to this one. Personalities, ok.


Disorder: We are not disordered!

dis·or·der
[dis-awr-der] Show IPA
noun
4. a disturbance in physical or mental health or functions; malady or dysfunction: a mild stomach disorder.

A disturbance in physical or mental health or functions. Our multiplicity does not disrupt our abilities to think rationally, hold a job, interact in public, keep social relationships and friendships, conduct necessary business such as banking or keeping appointments, or even reacting to outside emergencies. It doesn't disrupt our daily life! Some of us, individual, have other issues that impede life at times (such as my PTSD symptoms), but the state of being multiple is not the cause of any of our daily life issues. Everyone has problems, we're no exception - but our multiplicity isn't one of those problems.



Let's break down D.I.D.
Dissociative Identity Disorder

Dissociative: We don't consider ourselves dissociative.

dis·so·ci·ate
[dih-soh-shee-eyt, -see-] Show IPA verb, -at·ed, -at·ing.
verb (used with object)
1. to sever the association of (oneself); separate: He tried to dissociate himself from the bigotry in his past.
2. to subject to dissociation.
verb (used without object)
3. to withdraw from association.
4. to undergo dissociation.

dis·so·ci·a·tion
[dih-soh-see-ey-shuhn, -shee-ey-] Show IPA
noun
4. Psychiatry . the splitting off of a group of mental processes from the main body of consciousness, as in amnesia or certain forms of hysteria.

Let's pick these apart. To sever association of oneself. What would that even mean? I'm myself. I didn't sever anything to be myself.
Ok, so the splitting off of a group of mental processes from the main body of consciousness. My consciousness, all of what makes me Miakoda, has always been as it is now. I didn't originally have the name Miakoda, but I have always been the I that I am! I've grown and matured as a person, but I am me. My headmates have each done the same. They've always been as they each are, just growing and maturing as people. There was no "splitting off". We are as we are.
...With one single exception. Seventeen. He is not an original member of our system. He was added here later by an outsider for the purpose of manipulating those who were already here. Seventeen is made from Kate. If you would like to consider him a dissociation, we won't object. However, he will disagree. He considers himself something else.


Identity: Another grey area, just like "personalities".

i·den·ti·ty
[ahy-den-ti-tee, ih-den-] Show IPA
noun, plural -ties.
1.the state or fact of remaining the same one or ones, as under varying aspects or conditions: The identity of the fingerprints on the gun with those on file provided evidence that he was the killer.
2. the condition of being oneself or itself, and not another: He doubted his own identity.
3. condition or character as to who a person or what a thing is: a case of mistaken identity.
4. the state or fact of being the same one as described.
5. the sense of self, providing sameness and continuity in personality over time and sometimes disturbed in mental illnesses, as schizophrenia.

We think of ourselves as more than just identities.  I, Miakoda, being different than Jenn or Rebecca, is in no way shape or form the same as the other screen name, the other identity, I have on some web sites of a private nature.
However, if you look at the definition "the condition of being oneself", I am definately one self myself, with other selves who are not part of me.
Identity.... We consider ourselves more than just identities, we're people.

Disorder: Since I already covered Disorder for M.P.D., I won't cover it again here. It means the same in both.

Now let's take a peek at the criterion for D.I.D.: I will address each one seperately.

1. Disruption of identity characterized by two or more distinct personality states (one can be the host) or an experience of possession, as evidenced by discontinuities in sense of self, cognition, behavior, affect, perceptions, and/or memories. This disruption may be observed by others, or reported by the patient.

This criterion assumes that a body should only have 1 "identity", 1 person in it. That's false right there.
However, there are more than one distinct people in this body with their own senses of self, their own memories, etc. I'll mark this criterion as a yes for us.


2. Inability to recall important personal information, for everyday events or traumatic events, that is inconsistent with ordinary forgetfulness.

Each of us has our own memories. If I was front, I remember it within reason. If you ask about things I was not front for, I can ask my headmates for you if you are currently talking to me. We can each just ask whomever was front for the info.  This criterion is a NO!


3. Causes clinically significant distress and impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

We love this criterion! This is unanimously our favorite criterion of all time for anything ever!
We hold a job, we have friends, we've dated (SEPARATELY!), we go out in public, WE HAVE A LIFE, A DECENT LIFE!
Most of the people in our life know us individually! Here's the shocker... It has NO NEGATIVE IMPACT ON OUR DAILY LIFE! NONE!
Our friends love us! Our clients at work like us! We're not lost in the middle of the city with no idea how we got there!
We take notes if we need to keep continuity. We hand off information before we switch, such as where we are, where is our car if we brought it, who are we with, why are we where we are and why are we with who we're with!
At work, our call sheet is marked so the next one front knows exactly what is done, what needs to be done, and where in our schedule we're currently at.
In other words, when it comes to being multiple, we have our shit together!
This is not to say we're perfect at it. Yes, some days we fail. However, our "bad days" are no worse nor more frequent than any singlet having an "off day".
Even better, when we do have an error, we each know how to correct the situation and get back on track. The effect is minimal.
In fact, our multiplicity has given us an advantage! At work, one of us is tired, switch. 2 computers at the same location? We can co-front and rip both apart simultaneously! One of us is stumped at work? There's a handful of additional minds to run the problem past!
Our multiplicity is not a disruption of our daily life!


4. The disturbance is not a normal part of a broadly accepted cultural or religious practice and is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g., blackouts or chaotic behavior during alcohol intoxication) or a general medical condition (e.g., complex partial seizures). NOTE: In children, the symptoms are not attributable to imaginary playmates or other fantasy play.

Ok, well, we're not on drugs and we're not channelling other spirits, and these aren't imaginary friends. Number 4 is a yes.


All that being said, we just do not fit D.I.D. or M.P.D.
Does this make us better than systems who do? Absolutely not!
We just feel our multiplicity is not something in need of repair. Just because our white car isn't the same color as the blue car next to it does not mean it's white paint is broken and needs to be fixed. The same here. Just because we aren't the same as other people does not mean we are broken and need help.
We are multiple. We are happy being multiple. We are functional in our multiplicity.




 
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