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I think my friend might have dissociative identity disorder.

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His other side takes over...
I think my friend might have dissociative identity disorder. His other side takes over everytime he is mad. But the other side threatened saying if I tell my friend about him, he will take over completely. The other side also said that my friend locked him away a long time ago. The other side seems like he can take over whenever he wants and also he can make my friend think that he was talking to me the whole day while the other side was in control so my friend doesn't realize there is anything wrong. They have completely different personalities and ways of talking and thinking. Last Wednesday, the other side decided to take over completely and he said that he locked my friend away forever. I want to ask if that is possible in a dissociative identity disorder case? And also is there anyway to bring my friend back and tell him about his problem? Since that is the only way he is going to get treated. Because the other side would just pretend there is nothing wrong with him.
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Mental Health
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Answered in 49 minutes by:
8/4/2009
Mental Health Professional: Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional replied 8 years ago
Carol Kryder LMFT
Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 808
Experience: APA Board Certified, Diplomate,Substance Abuse Professional, 20 years family therapy experience
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Hello:

This is a significant problem, and you should not try to deal with it yourself. I suggest you find a therapist experienced with DID and ask them for assistance.

To answer your question, it is not possible to "lock away" an alter personality forever when the patient is in the hands of an experienced and I mean experienced therapist. This takes careful handling by a skilled professional.

As for bringing your friend back, it is important that he has very little stress and obviously learn how to control his anger. High stress situations make dissociation worse. If your friend's other side will talk to you, you could try to negotiate with him, and see if he will allow your friend to surface sometimes. However, it sounds like you will be punished if you tell your friend about this other side, and it also sounds like there is co-consciousness, meaning that the other side knows what is said to your friend, while your friend has no idea of the other side. This means the other side is stronger, so you must be very careful.

Understand this angry side was created to help protect the more vulnerable part of your friend. Make sure you don't antagonize this part and make sure he knows you have no intention of hurting any part of your friend.

As you can see, this is quite complicated, which is why I suggest that you get some council from an experienced and skilled professional. Please let me know if you have any other questions about this most distressing situation. I wish you well.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Thank you for your help. The problem is I can't even talk to my friend. I tried talking to him today. All I got from the other side is No. Goodbye. He said that he doesn't like my friend and he wants to take full control forever. So I have no idea how to bring my friend back. It's very weird because it seems like he really doesn't like my friend. Also he made it so I am the only who knows the differences. The other side is acting like my friend so no one else knows that there's anything wrong. I approached his sister to observe him and she told me that there is no difference. But I asked my other friends to observe him. They have told me that when he is just by himself thinking, his face changes. Is it possible that my friend will resurface by himself anytime soon?
Mental Health Professional: Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional replied 8 years ago
Hello:

As I said previously, this is a terribly difficult situation. It is very common for the more aggressive alter personalities to dislike or even to sabotage the main personality. They will do something the main personality would never do, for example, drink and drive, then switch just as the policeman comes up to make the arrest. The poor main personality has no idea how he got behind the wheel or what is happening. That can make this very dangerous, which is why you really need to get some expert help.

To answer your question, yes, it is possible that your friend may resurface, but probably not soon, and probably not without some expert and very skilled assistance.

I am sorry you are going through this nightmare, but if you want any hope of talking to your friend, you need to make some sort of connection with the other side. This will be difficult because he doesn't trust you. Not to be a nag about this, but you really need to get some expert help. Please do so at your earliest convenience.

Good luck to you. I wish you the very best.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Thank you very much for all your help. So it's possible for a psychiatrist to recognize his problem even if the other side is lying saying oh i don't have a problem or oh it was just all a prank to avoid the therapy session?
Mental Health Professional: Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional replied 8 years ago
it is definitely possible for an EXPERIENCED mental health professional-psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker, or counselor, but the key here is EXPERIENCED, to recognize this problem.

I would suggest that if you want to help you friend, you visit this professional by yourself at first, then develop a strategy to get your friend into treatment.

Best of luck to you!!!
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Okay! One more question. Since my friend is under 18, I need his parents' approval. But his asian traditional parents would never believe me since I tried already. What is the best way to have him see a psychiatrist? And does a psychiatrist have the power to have a student removed from class during school?
Mental Health Professional: Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional replied 8 years ago
Hello again:

This is a most difficult situation. You do not have the cooperation of your friend, his parents, or even the law. You cannot get him out of school wihtout his parent's permission, and this situation is like trying to roll a boulder up a huge hill.

The odds of being able to get him to treatment are very small. I suggest you find a therapist who is experienced in DID and see the therapist by yourself in order to come up with a plan to help your friend. I think given the circumstances, that is the best you can do for right now.

Good luck. I wish you well.
Carol Kryder LMFT
Carol Kryder LMFT, Mental Health Professional
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 808
Experience: APA Board Certified, Diplomate,Substance Abuse Professional, 20 years family therapy experience
Verified
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Carol Kryder LMFT
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