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*~Multiple Personality Disorder~*



Multi Personality syndrome.

Sybil's Different Personalities

When you were growing up, did you have an imaginary friend? Did Mom and Dad have to set a place for him/her at the table and serve him/her invisible food, or did all your famliy have to pet your imaginary animal when the came over to your house?So is a child pretending that they are someone else, forcing their parents to call them a diffrent name, convinced them that they have something even though they're only five. But what if this were an adult, someone who should "know better" convinced that they are someone else. If this were to happen, society would label them as crazy or delusional. Or, maybe, this adult suffers from a Multiple Personality Disorder.

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Multiple Personality Disorder (or MPD) is a psychological disorder where a person possesses more than one developed personality. These personalities have their own way of thinking, feeling, and acting that may be completely different from what another personality is like. To be diagnosed with multiple personality disorder, at least two of the multiple personalities must dominate over the others on a slightly frequent basis. This results in an abrupt change in the way a person acts. Basically, they become another person in either an extreme or complete way.MPD was first recognized in the late nineteenth century by Pierre Janet, a French physician. The disorder was later brought more to public awareness by The Three Faces of Eve (1957), a movie based on the true story of a pristine housewife who was diagnosed with MPD when she couldn't explain why she would suddenly become a very sexual person and not remember it.

Multiple Personality Disorder can be caused by many reasons such as childhood abuse, social environment of the patient; problems in brain functioning, over-exposure (i.e. repeated episodes) to some traumatic situations, lack of proper support from someone in countering stress filled situations, influence of a particular personality may be from surrounding or from history etc. Situations where mental stress and pressure are high induce vulnerability of a person to this disorder.

A person suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder undergoes change in personality in just a few seconds. The patient then acts as a completely different person than he/she is in reality, the patient imitates characteristic and behavioral traits, name, history etc. of the person he/she thinks he/she is. People suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder sometimes undergo change in personality where they have alters of different genders, sexual orientations, ages, or nationalities. Some people alter to something that is not even human; they alter to some spiritual force, sometimes to different animals, sometimes to some extra terrestrial life force etc. Generally, people suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder has from 2 to 10 alters but at situations there have been as many as some hundred alters.


*Causes and symptoms*

The severe dissociation that characterizes patients with DID is currently understood to result from a set of causes:

* An innate ability to dissociate easily

* Repeated episodes of severe physical or sexual abuse in childhood

* The lack of a supportive or comforting person to counteract abusive relative(s)

* The influence of other relatives with dissociative symptoms or disorders

The relationship of dissociative disorders to childhood abuse has led to intense controversy and lawsuits concerning the accuracy of childhood memories. The brain's storage, retrieval, and interpretation of childhood memories are still not fully understood.

The major dissociative symptoms experienced by DID patients are amnesia, depersonalization, derealization, and identity disturbances.

Patients suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder loose memory in the form of major chunks. They do not remember things happened in their lives over an extended period of time or sometimes they forget what had happened with them between particular periods of time. For example, people forget everything about their childhood or sometimes they forget about whatever happened during a time period say some 3-4 year of time. When a person alters and a different personality dominates them, they do not remember what they did after they become normal.

Depersonalization is another symptom people suffering from MPD experience. Patient feel as if his/her body is getting dissolved, sometimes they feel as if they are out of their own body and watching something happening to there own body but do not have any control over it, sometimes they feel as if their body is not real and is changing in size, shape, color.

Patient also experience derealization as one of the symptoms of this disorder. Patient experience whatever he/she is looking at, that thing is changing in shape, size or color. Sometimes they feel as if the things they are watching are not real.

Any stressful situation may trigger in altering of the personality of the person who is suffering from this disorder. The person then acts, behaves as if he is someone else.

*Hypnosis *


While not always necessary, hypnosis is a standard method of treatment for DID patients. Hypnosis may help patients recover repressed ideas and memories. Further, hypnosis can also be used to control problematic behaviors that many DID patients exhibit, such as self-mutilation, or eating disorders like bulimia nervosa. In the later stages of treatment, the therapist may use hypnosis to "fuse" the alters as part of the patient's personality integration process.



Treatment of DID may last for five to seven years in adults and usually requires several different treatment methods.



Some doctors will prescribe tranquilizers or antidepressants for DID patients because their alter personalities may have anxiety or mood disorders. However, other therapists who treat DID patients prefer to keep medications to a minimum because these patients can easily become psychologically dependent on drugs. In addition, many DID patients have at least one alter who abuses drugs or alcohol, substances which are dangerous in combination with most tranquilizers.


Herschel Walker's MPD

Fact or Fiction



Sybil and her Personality Disorder