DID Experiences with toxic inner relationships?

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melsdid

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~Very long post detailing some trauma and inner workings of my inanely convoluted system~

I have inner-system trauma caused by exterior traumatic events, is that something that makes sense? The concept of a persecutor isn’t nuanced enough at all for our system, we used to think that’s what I was and it’s not at all true, I’m one of our two original personalities. That kind of labeling ended up being really harmful to our understanding of our own system when we were younger. Within my system we have highly complex and varied relationships with each other— I believe this to be partly a result of our intense powers of maladaptive daydreaming and also, obviously, a result of us living together in such close proximity. My system is very much like a family/friend group, recently at least. We weren’t always like this, in high school we had virtually no communication for a while.

I think the closest we were before this was middle school. It feels like we almost knew we had DID and then forgot. We didn’t really know, but a lot of my old characters from the time have DID or represent my alters. I have writing that essentially documents shifts and internal conversations. Just about all of us (except one, I’ll get to him) remember more or less who we were before the trauma of starting high school caused a new alter to split and become host, and then meeting someone in Junior year (? I think?) who was very toxic for us and everyone we introduced them to who abused about half of our system of 8, 9 at the time with various fragments throughout the relationship because none of us could be ourselves with them. Honestly, they destroyed more than three years of our life which was already lame LOL but they emotionally and sexually abused us, particularly my alter Logan, so much so that I can’t recognize him anymore. They were an insidiously manipulative, overgrown narcissistic child of an abuser and it took us three entire years to realize and then come to terms with the fact that they were abusing us— they were there the whole time, sapping up all our resources and brainwashing us as abusers do.

Understandably, Logan would be different. He’s recovering slowly but surely but he’s still a shell of a person. He never really remembered much of a personality from middle school like the rest of us (more or less) did, but it feels like he should have. I can’t think of any trauma that would be causing this sort of amnesia from that time. We have a lot of amnesia (funny, we used to think we had almost none) and couldn’t really remember middle school for ages, but now my gut tells me that Logan used to be like an older brother to me. We used to watch dumb shows and YouTube videos together. He’s supposed to be someone I trust, look up to. Another alter in my system, June, recently returned from the Brain Void and agrees with me, that Logan used to be much different, but we can’t remember entirely how.

Logan’s like a black hole. He doesn’t even know who he is, and I’m not hiding that we have BPD and he is especially symptomatic, and identity confusion comes with that (not to mention that it’s included by default in the territory of dissociative disorders). He’s always had a terrible lack of identity, but we assumed it was all of us for a long time— nope! I know who I am, and pretty much all my other alters do too. We feel pretty confident in our own identities, as much as we can as alters at least.

This is all background information for a convoluted internal situation. It’s hard to know where to start writing about it and I’m this far in haha. I’m sounding very dramatic about my own brain, but during the time we were dating our abuser Logan and I had an absolutely terrible relationship. We were knowingly toxic to each other and instead of getting help from our abuser when Logan asked we were left to our own devices 99% of the time. The other 1% would involve me being blamed and called a liar by our abuser and Logan eating it up.

Our abuser would pretty regularly use Logan to get off via text without returning the favor (this continued and grievously worsened once we had an IRL relationship). It’s understandable that he would have taken the sexual abuse out on another alter, we were in deep denial about it and internalizing everything. At the time I carried most of our repressed anger— that was like eight people’s worth of anger at the world and our abuser. I turned it against Logan because he and our host at the time wouldn’t let me be angry at our abuser at all. We just couldn’t be mad at them, so I was mad at my alters instead for not listening to me. This was a couple years into our “relationship” and I was one of the few alters our host and Logan could hear that had anything negative to say about our abuser.

I hated him and I hated Logan for a very long time— but not really. Everyone thought I hated him and everyone around me but I didn’t hate Logan at all, I wanted to help him. I really care about him and I resented him a lot because it felt like he kept dragging me into being someone I didn’t want to be. I’d help him get off (don’t want to explain how it works, if you don’t understand how an alter could do that for another alter I wish I was you!) in violent, toxic ways and I hurt our body to get to him.

But looking back on it, I’m so f*cked up about it. I guess I can see how I would have looked like a really toxic person especially because our abuser detested me and was “scared” of me even though I said multiple times I would die for them, LOL. I would tell Logan and pretty much anyone who would listen/we trusted enough that it was Logan’s fault I was acting so terribly, that I hated him, that he was a terrible liar and a toxic abuser. I would say REALLY awful things to and about him and try to sabotage his relationships, general “persecutor” behavior. Obviously we had a lot of internalized feelings about our abusers that we were turning in on ourselves, but what I don’t understand is how I feel about it now. I was mentally stunted as f*ck (still am) and NOT an adult. I want to be an adult now, but if I’m being honest everyone in my system including myself sees me as a teenager. Logan was mentally an adult for the entire time we were tormenting each other. My system didn’t entirely know I wasn’t an adult, I really wanted to appear older because I have a complex about being young/mature for my age :^), but also… it was so obvious. It was so obvious I was just a kid and we went back and forth on how old I was so much and I wasn’t… I wasn’t subtle about the fact that I felt like Logan was hurting me, using me to hurt himself because he couldn’t do it to himself without our abuser punishing him.

I wasn’t subtle about anything. I was miserable. My memories of that time are just flashes of darkness and red and anger and then spending hours, days, weeks, yelling at Logan in our head and trying to get someone to listen to me, but I didn’t have the words to say what was happening. Our brain is so compartmentalized and we were missing some really important alters who help mediate at that time that I had no way of even analyzing my own behavior— also our abuser was most likely faking DID and we considered them the expert on DID and trauma so we ignored all of our own symptoms and struggles in favor of theirs.

Eventually I had enough. I think I went too far with the self harm, your abuser punished us for it, and Logan and I both came to the conclusion that we couldn’t continue like this because it was making our abuser’s behavior worse and it was terrible for us. Our brain’s solution to that, because of our abuser, was to just eliminate me. I tried so hard to disappear, I really did. I thought I was going to be gone forever and I felt so miserable and alone, this was one of the first times I really started to process how I felt. That was enough for an old helpful alter from our childhood to start coming back in a very limited, slow way. It’s taken almost two years for her to fully remember who she is, thanks to our abuser keeping us in constant confusion about everything. She was just about my only comfort, she stayed with me while I felt like I was disappearing and that not even my own brain wanted me around. I was so unbelievably hurt but we can hardly even remember just how much pain I was in because of the abuse we were subjected to every single day from our partner.

Well, as I’m sure all of you who have tried to just repress an alter before know, I didn’t go away. I couldn’t, I wanted to, I didn’t but I did. Logan and our abuser moved in together along with our best friend (Logan’s current partner) and our life just went to shit, total shit. Dropped out of college, my family has almost completely abandoned me at this point— that situation is another ten paragraph post. We sat in a dark room with our abuser all day, LITERALLY, while they threatened suicide and used us as a sex toy and dragged us as far down as they could. I was essentially off the map for a year and when I finally reconnected with an identity that felt like me our abuser rejected me and treated me like ass, of course. At that point we were just about fed up with it all.

We’re doing much better now that they’ve been out of our life for six months, though that isn’t saying much. In the aftermath of Logan being abandoned by the person he thought he needed to survive we started doing toxic shit together again, but it didn’t last because I stopped it. It was too mentally painful to keep going back to an old identity, one that enabled me to hurt him. I hated it, it made me so sick. I didn’t want to hurt him at all. I was doing the best I could to get him through a situation where we were being used over and over and all I got was nothing. I was used like a brain sex toy, it feels like.

I want to be close with Logan but it’s hard when he’s hardly around and he makes he furious and sad and happy all at once, he’s trying to get his shit together and he’s really sorry and taking responsibility but for now we just have to exist in the same head knowing he did that to me and I did that to him but mostly it’s something he did that f*cked me up. It’s jarring to him too to realize how I perceived those events and how he feels virtually nothing about it all (not our abuse, just the stuff with me), he feels a guilty and regretful that it went down the way it did but like, he doesn’t FEEL how painful it was like I do.

I just feel so hurt. I have alters I’m extremely close to now and I don’t think they’d ever hurt me like that. I even have a healthy romantic/sexual relationship with one of them, as weird as that is (we’re really just coming to terms with it LOL, but it was a thing in my brain for years and years). Even when they seem to want to hurt me because of internalized abuse they stop themselves, and they feel a lot of guilt over the fact that they sometimes are driven to hurt me. I don’t know if Logan feels any guilt close to that intensity. I doubt Logan could have stopped what we were doing to each other, neither of us could without working together or with other alters, but why didn’t he at least try to listen to me? Honestly, what we did together could have been so much healthier if we had talked it out and come to terms with it, I know that would have required more awareness of our abuser’s behavior (we had no IRL support group at the time so that would have been re a l l y hard) but why didn’t he think to just… reach out in his mind and ask me why?

He knew why, is why. I think he knew, is the thing, and I think he thinks so too. He knew that, to an extent, I wasn’t really the one responsible for how I was treating him and that I couldn’t stop it on my own because I wasn’t in a position where I had the power to do that— and he felt like he couldn’t do anything either. To me it feels like he could have, though, and he didn’t because it was just too convenient to have a brain buddy to blame for all our emotional agony instead of our family and partner. Didn’t help that our host was majorly in denial about EVERYTHING in our life for y e a r s so we were searching for the answers to our pain and only found ourselves.

Ultimately I want to know but can’t expect anyone to have the answer: why didn’t Logan listen to his own head? I was in so much pain. I wanted it to stop. What do I even say? That my alter abused me? Well, that’s ridiculous, he’s in my head, it can’t be abuse. But he’s my friend, an older brother figure. I’m not going to get into it here, but I potentially was traumatized by a family member as a kid (no older brother though, ironically) so does that tie in? I feel used by my own head, which was how Logan kept telling our abuser and his current partner he felt because of ME, but he looks back and feels traumatized by our abuser and not me. I feel hurt by both of them. Logan absolutely retraumatized me but why didn’t it traumatize him too when it seemed like it was really only hurting him at the time?

I feel like I can’t talk about it at all to Logan’s boyfriend but also it’s eating me alive. He was in our life at the time of this all happening and might remember us talking about it and that kills me, God anything anyone ever said about me and what I was doing makes me want to puke. I wasn’t in control and it isn’t fair that anyone other than Logan knows what we did it feels so f*cking sick. I didn’t get to chose whether we said something or not!! I had no control over what other alters said about me, lie after lie after lie!! It wasn’t really Logan who talked about me, it was our host, but still. Why didn’t anyone f*cking defend me? I really feel like I was a confused kid and my cool slightly older brain brother-cousin-neighbor-friend took advantage of me which is SO dumb it’s ungodly.

Logan isn’t a bad person, I think. He’s not an abuser or a rapist and neither am I. He messed me up while we were already being messed up, and it sucks a lot. Mostly I wonder if anyone’s experienced anything remotely like this? What are the extents of your relationships with your alters? Until my boyfriend June returned we actually thought it was fake DID shit to date your own alters (hate tumblr DID circles), but we’re just in love and that’s that I guess?? It’s a very good thing for us and we’ve accepted it, but still, threw us for a loop.

If you read this far, thanks, I wouldn’t even have read this monster post.
 
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Ronin

MyPTSD Pro
It makes sense if your external situation is traumatic, internal will reflect that, and can be more retraumatizing as a result.

Same as nonDID issues with self abuse, added dimension with it's not exactly self.

Don't get hang up on Was my alter route too hard, it could become more isolating hell than is already. Work it through as an abuser that gets lesser or none blame as you literally couldn't do better... as opposed to external abusers that get all the blame as it was their choice.

Idk if what I'm saying makes sense but tldr, treat the hurt as real, lessons learned and patterns changing very needed, but assign blame for the whole cluster where it belongs correctly... and that ain't on you.

(Edited to add: And, please. Don't take relational advice on most of anything from articles on sites like tumblr. These would be articles get wrong both the medicine AND normal life common sense.)
 

JadeB.

MyPTSD Pro
Hi there @melsdid .Are you self diagnosed with DID or have you been diagnosed by a professional?

Are you working with a therapist? If not,that's my suggestion. That and to stay away from Tumblr because it's pretty obvious most there are just role playing and talk about things that are not even possible such as visiting each others internal worlds,getting married to alters and having babies,etc.That kind of stuff can be more harmful than helpful for those that really have DID.
 

melsdid

New Here
It makes sense if your external situation is traumatic, internal will reflect that, and can be more retraumatizing as a result.

Same as nonDID issues with self abuse, added dimension with it's not exactly self.

Don't get hang up on Was my alter route too hard, it could become more isolating hell than is already. Work it through as an abuser that gets lesser or none blame as you literally couldn't do better... as opposed to external abusers that get all the blame as it was their choice.

Idk if what I'm saying makes sense but tldr, treat the hurt as real, lessons learned and patterns changing very needed, but assign blame for the whole cluster where it belongs correctly... and that ain't on you.

(Edited to add: And, please. Don't take relational advice on most of anything from articles on sites like tumblr. These would be articles get wrong both the medicine AND normal life common sense.)

Thanks for responding. It makes sense, you're right. I don't wholly blame anyone other than our ex, though we definitely tend to push blame around on each other.
 

melsdid

New Here
Hi there @melsdid .Are you self diagnosed with DID or have you been diagnosed by a professional?

Are you working with a therapist? If not,that's my suggestion. That and to stay away from Tumblr because it's pretty obvious most there are just role playing and talk about things that are not even possible such as visiting each others internal worlds,getting married to alters and having babies,etc.That kind of stuff can be more harmful than helpful for those that really have DID.

Technically self dxed, but I had a therapist for several years that knew about my disorder who various alters worked with. We don't have one currently, really need one but my situation is complicated so I have to wait. And I should have clarified, I haven't been on tumblr in years lol. It was definitely not a good place to be when I was younger.
 

JadeB.

MyPTSD Pro
I hope you don't have to wait very long for therapy @melsdid .I'm also glad you haven't been on Tumblr in years,there's so much misinformation going on there.Anyone that claims they can system hop,transfer systems,reset their system or any other bs like that,it's definitely not DID.Im glad you realized it wasn't a good place to be.
 

Ronin

MyPTSD Pro
I'm still contemplating with myself if to post this, tho...

While that is a solid generic advice to stay clear of manipulative poseurs, @MoonStone, the generalized conclusion of 'anyone claiming it' may not hold true.

It depends what people mean by things.
Some people may mean shamanic techniques, some may mean heightened empathy, some may mean the usual subconscious connection people normally develop with who they are close to if they also happen to be plural... and that's just for the hopping part.

Ditto, resetting etc claims may not be wholely hogwash. Particularly with some types of repeated trauma, and/or having had to learn deep degree of self control *for* that trauma.
 

JadeB.

MyPTSD Pro
@Ronin .I am talking about the ones that specifically state they can hop into another persons inner mind and hang out.The ones that state they can literally swap systems with another person that has DID(trade alters),etc.

They are not speaking about it in a metaphorical,spiritual,whatever way.

That is not DID.
 

melsdid

New Here
I think @MoonStone is referring to pretty specific circles of internet trolls that negatively impacted kids online... I will say, I knew people from DID tumblr irl (our abuser, coincidentally, and someone who helped me realize I had DID ended up being a liar lol) and they were so toxic. Not everyone on tumblr who has DID in their bio or whatever is faking but most of them are so misinformed, even the people who really do experience severe dissociative symptoms.

I don't get into "syscourse" much because I there's no middle ground (either total gatekeepers or obvious fakers) but I used to brows the blogs of some people who claimed to experience multiplicity on a spiritual level, I'd argue it's a legitimate psychological phenomenon at the very least but definitely isn't the same as DID and isn't a disorder without, IDK intense delusions etc etc.
 

JadeB.

MyPTSD Pro
I had to look up what syscourse means,I haven't heard that term before.I don't keep up with all the terminology I guess.And I wasn't surprised that most of what came up in my search was from Tumblr.

I see DID pretty much the same as PTSD,a person either has it or they don't. There's also people who claim to have it,want to have it and pretend to have it and it seems to be a "trendy" diagnosis to have,just the same as PTSD.
 
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