Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Why Now?

Has anyone ever wondered why you did fairly well most of your life, dealing with DID, trauma, PTSD, abusive parents/family, and then Poof! you reach 45 and fall apart?

Have you ever wondered why your life is tanking now? Why, if you've had DID all this time, you can't manage, or cope with it now?

Till I was 48, I managed to get by. I worked at it, but I got by and then everything tanked: my marriage, my emotions, my life as I knew it, my job, everything, tanked. I couldn't get thru the day without calling Mr.S, heck, I couldn't get past 3 consecutive hours without calling him.

Anyone have any theories?


Ethereal Highway said...

I have some theories.

1. SAFETY - When my life became outwardly stable, financially comfortable and very safe, the memories came. Because they could. It was finally safe and they'd been waiting a really long time.

2. TRIGGERS - Maybe it's just a matter of time before something sets things off. It could be a death in the family, a marriage, a divorce, the birth of a child, children leaving home, a career change, a relocation - sometimes we just finally bump into something that brings it all down like a house of cards.

3. TIME - I picture the dissociation like an old, decaying wall. I can see it in my mind. Chunks of mortar are falling away from between the bricks, cracks are appearing, the wall is crumbling. And like the Berlin Wall and the fall of Communistic oppression there, there are people on the other side of the wall waiting for their freedom. They want to be welcome in the rest of the world and they can't wait anymore.

Just Be Real said...

Oh my gosh Ivory! This is so very true. We are able to hold it together so long, then 'bam.' Hmmm..... waiting to see other readers here and their theories, as this is an interesting one. Thanks for posting.

VICKI IN AZ said...

Hi Ivory.
Wow! It is gorgeous over here. I love your new blog look. How fun to have a makeover. I am proud of you.

I hear you on this one. I don't have any answers but I know you are right. We are in this together.
I will think on this and get back to you.

Thanks for all of your love and support. You mean so much to me too ;)


Michael Finley said...

I have lots of theories.

Our bodies change the same way that everyone else's does. What is similar is they change how they change is different as our bodies grew up in a different environment.

I think that each time our bodies go through a change that is brought on by age we know instinctively something is wrong so we try something new, over and over again we try, driven and failing as we can not do it alone and no one in our life can help until we find a therapist.

There may be life events that coincide with the bodies changes.

I feel what is important is there is a cause and it is not our fault and that we can heal.

I have done well on the outside most of my life. Better non the inside now and worse on the outside.

I found it helpful as best I could to understand that for parts of me things got better the day the trauma came into my consciousness and that it got worse for parts of me. The ones that were doing worse hold the keys to me living the life I deserve. Bad news is they were really hurt. Good news is they are more clever and wise than I.

David Rochester said...

Personally, I think it's a question of time and space; most people start to really fall apart once their lives have stabilized a bit, because there's a bit of stillness for those hurt parts to make themselves heard.

The other thing that can cause it is a retraumatizing incident that breaks down a memory wall, and that can happen at any time.

Michael Finley said...

I see walls crumbling in my thoughtless dreams. I have seen beams suspended ready to fall, a slab in the air with grass all around it, cellars that I know can not last much longer, crumbling walls beside doorways, empty caverns that were buried under mud, hills of sand with jewels buried underneath.

Has the reason why been discovered? That it starts just as soon as there is some semblance of safety and then it all falls apart?

That the life like a building seems like it is in pretty good shape so we decide to see whats what and try to make a repair and the whole thing is not stable at all and collapses? Makes sense in my case. I was working 4 days a week, and golfing two of them. I had a place on the lake and was going to be all but debt free so I had the bright idea of making a few changes. Maybe the crash was just waiting to happen.

That the triggers were not the case they just happened to be there is all? That it felt safe to look at them.

Kerro said...

I'm not sure why this happens but it does, and it certainly did to me too.

For me it was possibly memories triggered by my father's (abuser's) illness... and a therapist who knew which buttons to push.

I have questioned and analysed, and questioned this again, and again, and again. The only answer that is helpful to me is "just because". Because it's happened. And because it did. And because of all that I have to deal with it now. Just because.

(((safe hugs))) to you.

Kate said...

Hi Ivory,

My main abuser died and within a year I was too sick to work. I moved in with my mother abuser, who I didn't know was a sexual offender, but my system did. I knew that there was a connection between my huge health issues and my past. I didn't know what, but I started therapy. It was one reveal after another since then. It all started when I was about 25 years old. If I hadn't had excruciating health issues and back pain I wouldn't have gone to therapy.


castorgirl said...

I've asked myself and therapists this question. I've gotten various responses, including: "it was your time"; because I was strong enough to handle it now; because there was one last piece of abuse that crumbled the dissociative walls (similar to what Ethereal Highway describes).

In my case, I had a car accident which resulted in a concussion. This is what disrupted my coping mechanisms and put the system on an overload that couldn't be covered up or recovered from without help.

Take care,

Saving Grace said...

For me, depression was something I have always struggled with ~ off and on...I kept everything at bay by staying busy and surrounding myself with friends and 'pretending' and 'faking' my way through life.
Then I moved across country and suddenly I was no longer surrounded by my friends and there was 'quiet'...(sort of how I feel about the 'distraction' (DBT) I did that for YEARS and when I sat down - the quiet came and there it all was.
Nearly 4 years ago, an event triggered me into full on depression/panic attack/flashback hell...and between the 'quiet' and that 1 event (I walked in on my hus f-ing a 'friend' of mine - whoa-did I just write that? - yep -it's true) and the hell has not stopped since then.
Email me, when you have a chance: grace.is.good.enough@gmail.com

LostShadowChild said...

I have thought about this question again and again, since I received the diagnosis. In the hospital where I was in 2008 and where I'm now, I met 2 other survivors which have DID, too. Also both were older than 35. The thera in the hospital explained, that it takes often years until the correct diagnosis is made. In my case it has taken 5 years. Why I was "high functional all these years before"? This was my next question. Meanwhile I know, that the perps forced us to be high functional in any way since our childhood. We had to be high functional to survive. The dissociative walls prevented our collapse. In my case, the collapse started after a great operation = first flashbacks, memories and overload of our system.
Take care LostShadowChild

Ivory said...

Oh, my gosh! Thank you all for all the wonderful insight. You are all so wonderful! This has been an eye-opener for me. It has also made me think... Question #2.


Hillary_C said...

Another answer: My T and my Pdoc have both said it is very common to come to therapy in your 40s. It is mid-life for many people, you start to look back and wonder what is next.
For me, the journey was triggered by a health crisis. I had to change how I was living to keep from dying. I am keen to resolve some of the issues from my past before I die (I am now aware of my mortality). My parents are both alive, and I'd like a chance to heal that relationship before it is too late.
It grated on me when the T talked about "everyone" having a mid-life crisis, I am not alone. Finally had to tell him "I am unique, my situation is mine alone, I am not comforted by being one of many." He stopped bringing it up.

Ivory said...

Hi, Hillary!

Yes, I don't like to hear that "everyone" has a midlife crisis. I don't think I did.

A lot of responses agree that a crisis of sorts is what triggered their change, and awareness of DID. For me, tho, Everything really bad happened AFTER I discovered I had alters. I hope we figure it all out someday!