When a person is diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), there are very often a mix of ages, personality types, strengths, weaknesses, physical ailments and even genders within their system.
I was able to easily understand how I could have children of many ages and even adult females but it confused me to have Helpers older than I am or that had physical differences (varied heart rates, blood pressures, sight, and so forth) between them. . That said? These issues are easy for me to just accept as “it is what it is”. I don’t fight these differences at all. I just accept the fact that this is the way it works and I am okay with that.
Then there are the boys and the men. I found that VERY hard to understand. I am a woman. I have no gender role confusion. I know that I want to be married to a man and that even though I am not the most girlie-girl out there, I do like to look nice, wear make-up, and I have an absolute obsession with earrings. MUST HAVE EARRINGS. There are never enough earrings. 😉
So how is it that I can be certain of my gender identity yet have men and boys within my system. After so many years of abuse by mostly men, why would my Helpers want to create and accept males in to their “team”?
The only way that I have come to accept and even begin to understand this is by assuming men were created as protectors. I also came to realize that even though our society is getting better and better about equality, there are still certain traits that are more acceptable to have as men. Considering my male Helpers were created in the 70’s and 80’s, this was even more obvious back then.
My male Helpers feel more comfortable expressing a strong opinion without the fear of being branded as a b!t@h. They don’t tend to be very concerned with what others will think or how a certain action will make them look. As a woman, I would LOVE to say this does not matter to me either but being seen as a bad wife, bad mother or bad friend, would really get to me. Most men just don’t seem to care as much.
For a long time I was resistant to the idea of men being in my system of Helpers. I always referred to them as “the men” or “those men”. I wasn’t really able to accept them as part of me and I kept them at a distance.
It took a rather jarring event to understand why they are part of me and now that I understand it better, I’ve been unable to accept them wholeheartedly.
I was dealing with someone who got very bullish with me and he was really making me nervous, suddenly I feel myself beginning to dissociate and I just allowed it to happen this time. I knew this situation was going to really bother me a lot and lets face it… why remember this sort of thing if you don’t have to? 😉
When I returned/came back to the front, the man who was previously bullish with me was standing there looking frightened and he said “Calm down buddy! I’m leaving. I’m sorry!” (Funny that he referred to me as “buddy” rather than “Miss” isn’t it?)
This was the moment that I understood why there are men in my system.
This “gentleman” was using his size and power to be threatening and intimidating. One of my men can do the same. Thankfully the men in my system don’t seem to realize that I am only 5 foot 2 inches (with shoes on). They feel big, strong and capable of taking over to protect us and it seems that they do a good job at it.
So now I call them “my boys” and I say it with an endearing tone. I appreciate that they are a part of me and I am thankful for the roles they play. They are very valuable to our maintaining a sense of safety in situations where we feel very unsafe. Understandably, that is often. I see danger where most people would never even think to look.
As time passes and I become more aware of my Helpers, I’ve been able to have a few simple and short conversations with a few of my boys. They will not tell me their names and neither will Julie so I’ve named them myself and told them that if they do have another name, let me know and I will use it. I’ve named them after men who I know and really like/love based on their personalities.
A few of my friends from the hospital with me in January and February 2013 will likely remember a couple of these names. They were important to me and giving males Helpers with no name (that they are sharing), these persons names is a real compliment.
Meet James. He’s definitely a force that is not smart to mess with. A teddy bear on one side but if needed, he can morph in to a very impressively scary man very quickly. I have a feeling it was James that dealt with the man in the parking lot. Thank you James. ❤
Meet Rick. He’s an impressive man as well for strength and a real temper. He’s not the teddy bear that James is but he’s a very contemplative man who thinks before he talks unless talking is no longer good enough. His temper can go from 0-100 VERY quickly. Rick has dealt with one of my brothers a lot. Thank you Rick. ❤
Meet Robert. He’s a chronically cranky SOB. He has nothing nice to say about anyone and he’s always complaining but I feel he does that because it balances me out a bit. I tend to be too friendly and too accepting most of the time. He helps remind me that I am important too. He also helps me size people up more quickly. I ignore the cranky talk but under the cranky lives a very wise man. I pay attention to his wisdom. Thank you Robert. ❤
Meet Reid. He’s a lover, not a fighter. He’s a sweetheart and I believe he spends a lot of his time with my younger girls. The 4-14 set. I’d say Reid isn’t much more than 14 and he acts a lot like a big brother. He teases them, plays with them and sticks up for them when needed. He doesn’t seem to mind stepping in Roberts way and preventing Robert from being nasty to the little girls. Thank you Reid. ❤
There are a couple more men but I haven’t been able to get close enough to them yet to know what they are like or why they came in to existence but I assume each plays a very important role and they do their best to help us as a whole. Thanks boys! ❤
I think every person has some male and female traits no matter which gender you are. I know women who’d rather cut wood than cook supper and I know men who would rather take care of their children full time more than they want a career. It doesn’t make you less of a man or less of a woman when you cross typical gender roles. It just means you are a human being with a crazy mix of likes, dislikes, abilities and gifts that are unique to you. Embrace both sides.
Now… there is no need to start cross dressing in order to embrace your other side… unless you want to. 😉
Have a great week everyone and spend some of it trying to just embrace who you are. You are perfectly imperfect just as you are. ❤