I am dissociative identity disorder
Literally the voices in your head
Your different personalities
Maybe you have a vicious, demonic personality
But you might also have a sweet, cuddly personality
It’s hard to keep all of these different people in line in your brain
Make sure you don’t use personality #3 with your mom
She likes personality #5
Make sure you don’t use personality #7 with anyone
Only you like that version of yourself
You wonder how your mood can switch so quickly where you almost feel like a different person
The answer is me
Dissociative identity disorder is characterized by a person having multiple personalities, which can impact the person’s behavior in different situations. In the USA, about 0.01-0.1% of the population is formally diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder. This disorder is usually caused by having had a traumatic experience, usually occurring at a young age. However, scientists have found that children who are neglected also are at risk of developing this disorder, even if they were not being harmed in any way. If the person is put in a situation that is too difficult for them to deal with, they can change identities as a coping mechanism. By shifting to these different personalities, a person loses their own identity, making it difficult for them to progress and grow. This disorder can be harmful to relationships because some identities might not be compatible with certain people.
Some people have had up to 15 different personalities that they take on based on the situation presented. These identities can be so diverse that they range in his, her, their, gender, age, race, and sexuality. The identities usually have different mannerisms, such as different postures or tones of voice. Sometimes, people get so caught up in an identity that they’ve created that they will develop a full back story that can cause them to lash out violently or commit felonies because they feel obligated to do so. In these instances, people forget what they are like naturally and almost feel trapped in certain behaviors to fulfill the identities they create. Switching identities often can lead to amnesia, since a person may strongly associate a memory with a certain identity and once they have switched, they have difficulty recollecting that memory. This struggle with memories may make it difficult to differentiate between thoughts and reality.
Dissociative identity disorder is linked to having experienced a traumatic event, so treatment involves discussing this trauma with a therapist that you trust. Sometimes, hypnosis is used to gain more control over switching personalities. Also, medication is sometimes prescribed to lessen anxiety, which may worsen the condition.