survival Archive

My Experience with Dissociative Identity Disorder (Lily)

Trigger Warning: Self-Harm, Abuse, Rape, Human Trafficking

I’ve been half-aware that I’m multiple since about the age of fourteen, when I started to realise that it really wasn’t usual for people to experience severe blackouts and time loss and memory issues (lasting hours, days, weeks, months and even years); that it wasn’t usual for people to so routinely and constantly be addressed by a completely different name by strangers who will insist that you have met them and that your name is something else; that it wasn’t usual for moods and personalities and tastes to change so drastically and so constantly. I had no word for what I was experiencing; I had no knowledge and no understanding and after about a year of being so, so aware of this I finally told my (then) therapist about those experiences. The result? A long lecture about self-diagnosis and “making up more lies to make my supposed PTSD more believable” followed by being asked about where I had researched Dissociative Identity Disorder and that I did know that it was made up and not real and that nobody would ever believe me. So, for almost ten years I hid it except from a very close friend online and one of my partners (he lived with me so it was very difficult to hide).

“Good” Victim, “Good” Self-Care

I would like to welcome the newest member of our writing team, Nikki. In her first post with us, she talks about the expectations placed on abuse victims/survivors. Thanks for sharing with us, Nikki!

There was a thing going around Tumblr that I can’t find now because I still don’t totally understand Tumblr, and it was about being a “good abuse victim.” How a “good victim” never gets involved with abusers again. “Good victims” have scars to prove their abuse, they get everything documented, they go right into therapy. They get fixed, they don’t get abused again. “Good victims” publicly call out their abusers… or wait, is it that “good victims” just talk about it with people close to them and work it out themselves and never make a scene? I don’t know, I never did it “right.” I marched around calling myself a Survivor for years which, to me, was like a “better victim,” a stronger one. Cuz when you’re a victim you’re weak and when you’re a survivor you’re strong and you did “good victim” properly and graduated. I said FUCK YOU to victimhood like it was bad. But in retrospect that’s saying there’s a right and wrong way to handle abuse, and that’s bullshit. As a repeat VICTIM of abuse I wanted to look strong even though repeat abuse makes people look weak. But fuck these hierarchies of who handles abuse the best. I am a victim of abuse and I’m surviving.

Survival: Living From One Milestone to the Next

“Living from check to check” is a common phrase in today’s society and economy. In virtually every country in the world today, and particularly in the United States, and whichever state you live in here, the number of people who survive ‘check to check’ has skyrocketed. Not only do I really live check to check, but I live… no, survive from event to event in my life.

Staying In vs. Coming Out

I have no beautiful words to share or anything to make the pressing issue of coming out an easier one. I have nothing to offer but the advice I have been given and continue to follow in protection of myself.

It is very much okay to stay in. It is very much okay to find safety in the proverbial closet. Staying in, is in itself, sometimes needed for survival. It is okay to keep your sexuality/lack thereof, gender/lack thereof, tucked away and safe within your chest.

Today, Like So Many Others, Is A Great Day

Editor’s note: This story mentions some severe triggers. Please be careful about reading this story if you are easily triggered by the topics mentioned in our trigger warning.

Trigger warnings: Abuse, including torture and child sexual assault, forced confinement, rape, violence, bullying, and hate crimes.

Yesterday/today was/is a great day. A day to celebrate. Any day that slaps me upside my head and and asks, “WTF you bitching about?” is always a great day!

Sick of capitalism: The chronically ill body as a site of resistance.

I’m sick. I have chronic illnesses which cause me lots of pain and fatigue. The specific names and causes of my illnesses are not important (and not even totally known by me or my doctors). I spend a lot of time in bed. Sometimes even weeks at a time. This is not something I have […]