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I don't know what to do

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I don't know what to do

Post by Guest on 5/23/2012, 7:54 pm

I have a friend that is DID and I am trying hard to support them but if I don't do exactly as they say or come every time they want me there they threaten self harm and say I an abandoning them. I don't know what to do. I give them as much time as a I can and I feel guilty when they threaten to self harm like it is my fault. Thing is later on they contact me like nothing has happened.

Please Help.

Healingangel
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Like A Pheonix
Like A Pheonix
Like A Pheonix

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Like A Pheonix on 5/23/2012, 8:23 pm

Hello healingangel

It could be you're speaking to different personalities, it certainly sounds like it. Like maybe they have one (or maybe more) who is/are demanding and need to get the attention of others. I know for my system, talking that way is usually a cry for help, the self-harm part. Is this friend in therapy? I'd highly recommend it, they need trained professionals.

I have had incidents when an alter has slipped out, and i know nothing about it at all, and they were then angry or demanding, and many other things. I didn't know about it until i was told they were doing it. Could be why she doesn't seem to know, she might not know.

Its difficult to support some one going through this, I wish you the best of luck.

-San
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sasha69
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1,000+ Posts

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by sasha69 on 5/23/2012, 10:00 pm

yes, do you have surport?

is this person in therapy?

it is so hard to help someone that is empty, but someone that has many parts of herself is even harder.

Can you journal your activites together?

can you find something that will help this person find self worth and acceptance?

have you read any resource books on DID?

but above all else remember you can only help someone that is willing to help themselves.

listening and caring.
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Guest
Guest

Re: Help

Post by Guest on 5/23/2012, 10:48 pm

It sounds to me like this person or persons need someone to sit down with him/her and insist that during the conversation, that the others listen in, and very lovingly explain that though you care, she needs to learn self-help skills. She needs references of where to go and/or who to call when friends cannot come to her aid. She needs to be told in a very caring and loving way, that there needs to be boundaries set. That includes limiting the amount of time she expects her friends to have to spend with her. Say, limit visits to no more than twice a week, and set limits on the time spent together. Make sure to explain that it doesn't mean that by setting boundaries or cutting down the time, it means you don't care. It's for the purpose of improving your friendship (helps her learn to help herself more, and it gives her a chance to prove how much she cares for you, by showing she won't be selfish by not allowing you to have a life outside of her's).

My response is pretty much how I would like to be approached, when this type of situation is about one of us.
Here's some ways I'd like a friend to approach this:
A good friend would go book shopping with me, and have me read a book, when I'm away from her, and report where I'm at, when we see each other again. Or, we could play computer games together, and find one that's enjoyable enough to do on my own. We could go shopping at Michaels, and find a hobby to do.

What it comes down to, is this person(s) NEEDS to be SHOWN (and probably physically taken to places) how to find a hobby and/or other interests. She also needs to get some referrals and a good therapist, because that's NOT the friend's job and ALL of the alters need to understand that fact. Don't be afraid to use tough love. What you can do is during the conversation, ask that whatever alter is the more maternal one for their system, to take over explaining your position on it, to any of them that may get angry or misunderstand you. It would reeeeeeally help you and this person(s) to have someone on your side that understands you have a life and aren't a therapist. Believe it or not, most systems I know about, all have a more adult/mature alter that will definitely "get" where you're at, and be able to explain it to her alters that are causing the trouble.
good luck!
Cathie & Catherine
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Old Soul
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Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Old Soul on 5/24/2012, 6:35 am

It's difficult when a friend is in crisis. I agree with what others have posted, your friend might not be fully present and it is another part that is demanding the time and attention.

When your friend is able to be receptive to feedback it might be a good time to sit down and talk about other supports, keep it in the context of what your friend needs, and how you can best help her, because you can not be her only support. Help her to come up with a plan for others she can rely on too. Do some reading, there are some excellent resourse books on how to support persons who SI, and DID.

Know your own boundaries, and stick to them, if your friend is in crisis and you can't be there, let her know this, but make a plan to connect with her, and encourage her to contact another person or crisis line.

Old Soul

mochabear
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Re: I don't know what to do

Post by mochabear on 5/24/2012, 8:18 am

We echo all that has been said, especially about the therapy part for your friend and maybe even yourself to find a way to communicate wanting to met your friends needs in balance of meeting your own as well.
Your friend is lucky to have someone to support her.
Putting boundaries in place protects both of you really. You can't help anyone if you become ill or overwhelmed yourself.
Here listening and supporting...........

pilly13
1,000+ Posts
1,000+ Posts

I don't know what to do

Post by pilly13 on 6/3/2012, 11:43 am

Angel
Our heart goes out to you. This is the most difficult of all things to deal with. It may be an alter, it may be an underlying mental or emotional issue, but no matter what it is it is not fair or safe for you (or safe for your friend) for you to take responsibility for keeping another person safe. We respect the kindness and hear your sincere desire to help, but please, have a private plan...a few crisis numbers ready... the name of the therapist, psychiatrist or a trusted family member of theirs (if safe and applicable) who can deal with a crisis.
Boundaries need to be set. It is so difficult to do that, especially when a friend is saying they need you.
We agree wholeheartedly with the others who have made practical suggestions about getting the friend help, therapy, support groups, keep them from isolating and create nice times with them doing things you like to do together, but please, always keep in mind that it is not within your power to keep another person safe, no matter how much you care. Thinking of you.
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Guest
Guest

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Guest on 6/23/2012, 12:51 pm

i would like to wish you the best. but we would like to suggest that if person is in therapy that maybe say i need to talk to you about something and maybe we could do it together in therapy session for help and safety issues. that is the way i would like it to happen if it were us. for me as well as friend to better handle similar situations. wish u all the best
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Guest
Guest

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Guest on 7/4/2012, 2:46 pm

If you're really stressing, try and find a trigger that will switch them out. Indigo (our friend) does it with us sometimes: he's stumbled across certain 'key words' or visuals that force us to switch. It's not a nice thing to do for the alters but might be a good solution to take some weight off you. (And, it's not your fault- that alter probably just has abandonment issues.)
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Guest
Guest

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Guest on 7/15/2012, 11:47 pm

Hmmm,
I wonder what my own trigger words would be. This is something worth getting to know. I am homeless right now, living in a one room hotel (church putting us up) with my 2 kids. I worry about how my kids deal with my dx, but so far anyway, it hasn't become a major issue for them. I do know I've switched to a younger alter, and when my daughter realized what had happened, she panicked and called "mommy" to come back. That worked, but I'm sure there are other trigger words for other situations and people that would really be of benefit to learn. That's a reeeeeeaally good thing for me to work on, especially considering I'm on my own with my kids at this point.
Cathie
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Sals Pals
1,000+ Posts
1,000+ Posts

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Sals Pals on 7/17/2012, 10:54 am

Just here for support. Had to use big meds so cant think much but we care.
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Fireflies
1,000+ Posts
1,000+ Posts

Re: I don't know what to do

Post by Fireflies on 7/22/2012, 3:57 pm

If someone threatens to self harm, or does it. It's never your fault. It is their decision to react that way. I'm a former self harmer myself and I had to learn to take responsibility for my actions before I could heal from it. Although it hurts when someone says "that's your choice" because it's not what you want to hear when you feel like self harming,

However, what is important here is that you take care of your own needs first, before you try to take care of another persons needs. I've said this many a time to people in a caring role. You come first. Always. If you put yourself second you may find you are not in a fit state to care for the person in need. Don't let things drag you down. Even explain to them that in order to really be there for them you need to know that she has other support when you're just not able to be there.

I've had very needy friends in the past that I've had to set boundaries with. They did not like it at all. sometimes people can react to your boundaries by trying to put you on guilt trips or threatening more self harm. Don't take on false responsibility over this. Remember, their actions and reactions belong to them and not to you. If they are a self harmer it will happen with or with out your input. My friend couldn't handle my boundaries and we parted ways for many years. We are now friends again and both more well so the boundaries don't even need to be set. They are just automatically there out of mutual respect for one another.

One of your boundaries might be "don't talk about self harm if I can't be there for you because this hurts me deeply. If you feel like self harming contact professional that can help you with it since I'm just not qualified to help you in that area. Find yourself another support source when I cant be there for you."

So give them the boundary, tell them why your giving the boundary and how it makes you feel, and offer an alternative for them so they don't feel to abandoned and stressed.

I tried never to lean too heavily on one person when I was in crisis because I knew how it felt. Not everyone is able to do this. If your friend is not able to spread out her support and ease up on you then you will need to set firmer and firmer boundaries. This does not mean you don't care about her. it means you care enough to take care of your own needs in order to be there for her on a higher quality level.

Hope that made sense.

Fireflies. (Host pesonality)
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