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Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 2
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Disassociation DisorderPage 1 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
When this gets deleted for being off topic, as it is likely to, you might try copying it into the "Off Topic" forum. That's the only one where I think it might be secure.
I'm sorry, I can't myself suggest any help to you, as I have never dealt with something that powerful myself.
Joined: 2/10/2009
Msg: 6
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 9:12:13 AM
I think you confuse DID (which is actually the same thing with multiple personality disorder) with out-of-body experience.
It seems your friend suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which makes sense due to her troubled past and the last years of her life. The only way to overcome that is to confront what happened to her and learn to accept it as a part of the past, not as a weakness. She needs to come to terms with what has happened, let her talk about it and assure her that she is safe now.
Look for supports groups on-line, she might get comfort from talking to people that went through similar situations.
As for the relatives you mentioned, may all of them rot in hell!
You are a true friend, I wish you all the best.
I wish your friend all the best as well!
 Friendly widow
Joined: 11/24/2009
Msg: 7
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 9:55:21 AM
Obviousy your friend needs professional help and I would suggest that POF forums are not where to find this! Be her friend but do not try to diagnose and manage her until she has a consultation. If need be take her to an emergency facility where she may be admitted for observation.
 Quazi 100
Joined: 3/2/2008
Msg: 8
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 10:29:43 AM
I don't have dissociation disorder, and I don't know anything about it.

I have borderline personality disorder, and I have had two dissociative episodes.

During these episodes, I didn't know if I was really here, or if I was a figment of my imagination....I know that sounds ridiculous, but that's the only way to describe it.

The episodes were brought on by real and perceived isolation, and led me to wonder if I was here on earth.

I was aware that this was happening, although it was very real......

The second time it happened, I suspected what was happening....I grabbed a heavy object (don't know what it was) and threw it on the floor....hard. The crash on the floor, knocked me out of the dissociated state.

For me, it is like a form of self hypnosis that developes over time under certain circumstances.

I also have had bouts of "blind rage"....where I would "lose time".....large amounts of time. The solution to that was to train myself to put a "cap" on my rage. I don't get that angry anymore....I don't allow it.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 11
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 10:50:00 AM
Your friend needs 2 kinds of professionals assisting her.
A psychiatrist and an attorney...she may have some recourse against her late bf's family. sounds to me like they OWE her for acting as a caregiver.
OP, you can certainly be supportive and advocate for her whereever possible.

Taking care of a person suffering from dementia can be incredibly exhausting. She needs to step up one more time and get professionals involved in assisting her, then maybe she can rest more.

And there IS an excellent point here that goes directly to relationships. And that point is PROTECTING yourself in a relationship when your partner develops a catastrophic or teminal illness. Much as you may long to make their caregiving needs your responsibility, cutting your own financial throat is not the answer.
I'm horribly sorry to have to say this,but if your ill SO has other family, chances are good, that without some documentation in place, you WILL end up sucking hind tit after it's all over. PROTECT YOURSELF.
Cindy O
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 14
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 11:01:37 AM
OP I have met people that are like that. They think of themselves as two people that alternate between the other on a situational basis. Moreso as a protective or defense mechanism. A multiple personality would seem to occur without control of the person. I'd suggest to your friend to at least read on the topic herself.
Joined: 4/9/2009
Msg: 15
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 11:07:10 AM

for someone who says that don't want drama, you go in and invite it to stay with you..Hmmm, makes me wonder?.... And what the heck are you asking a bunch of love screwups for advice about this? very contradictory if you ask me! this is not a subject that should go on here.....try somewhere else thank you
(message #5)

This guy is a WIENER!!..

Helping people is commendable. Keep it up

someone has to do it. Who is gonna take care of that A$$hat when he needs help?

hopefully no one
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 17
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 12:41:12 PM
Mr Asshat;
I made the same point,without being quite so insulting.
However, what's DONE is DONE. The OP is asking for input from people who might have dealt with someone( SO, family member, dear friend) with DID. Frankly, not having been given any info on how long since the bf passed, it's my thinking that the OP's friend may be suffering from complete mental and physical EXHAUSTION.

and this other person did not have family??

He did. They are the ones who tossed the OP's friend out on her ear after the man passed. I suggested that the OP's friend seek legal counsel to see if she has any recourse to get compensation for services provided. Also, if the OP's friend is so drained that she's exhibiting psychotic symptoms, a lawyer might help HER file for SSDI,so she has some income while she acheives whatever degree of recovery is possible.

I stand my ground on asking people on this venue about advice on this subject...

Ummm-so people who've had a relationship or marriage fail can't possibly have any valid input on stress-induced illnesses? About Alzheimers? About protecting oneself from exploitation? Having the intestinal fortitude and integrity to stand by a partner afflicted with a life altering/terminal illness? FYI, not everyone here is a "love screwup" quite a few forumites lost their SO to death.
Just to set you straight, the only thing I screwed up on was falling in love with-and marrying- a man destined to die at a relatively young age. Unfortunately, so many men I've met since returning-off and on- to the dating scene, are as damaged, resentful,selfish and jaded as you are. Having actually LIVED a good relationship, I was able to say "thanks but no thanks" or limit the extent of my involvement with them, so as to AVOID a "love screwup".
What's YOURS?
Cindy O
Joined: 2/4/2006
Msg: 18
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 12:55:50 PM

IMO professionals just make it worse because they talk about the problem which brings it to the surface and traumatises you all over again, but bringing the problem to the surface and not EMOTING (crying) will keep it inside you - unless you are able to cry and get comfort from a therapist - good luck with that. I have found friends are much better at that but the trend nowadays is to "outsource" to "professionals" who don't really know you and don't really care about you IMO and it can greatly worsen the situation.

You are actually really suggesting that a woman that is having dissociative episodes regardless of what the ultimate diagnosis is, should eschew professional help and invest in Kleenex?

She was a fool for quitting her six figure income to take care of a BOYFRIEND ?
Not even a husband
Why are women so foolish when it comes to finances ?

Some people actually love someone enough to believe that the honor and blessing of caring for a loved one in his/her last days is priceless. The boyfriend was short-sighted apparently in not taking care of necessary paperwork or perhaps he was deluded and believed that his relatives could be trusted to carry out his wishes.

As you do not know what one or more conditions may apply to your friend, I think until she sees the psychiatrist you try to do what you can to create a calm environment and listen if she needs to talk. You don't need to have the answers for her, knowing someone cares and will listen can facilitate some of the healing.
Joined: 9/17/2009
Msg: 19
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 12:58:34 PM
Last year I tried to install a drop ceiling in the basement by myself.
It didn't come out nearly as nice as it looked in the picture at home depot.

Get professional help.
You'll end up like my basement ceiling.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 23
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 1:54:13 PM

asinine pizzing contest

Op, a freakin' ARMY of d*ckheads wouldn't stop me from;
1. Commending you for being an incredibly caring friend-ain't it a damn shame that some people are so effed up in the head they cannot understand the concept of CARING about someone/something other than oneself?
2. Again suggesting that the wisest thing for you to do is encourage, and assist if/where possible, your friend to seek trained and knowledgeable support and guidance for her issues.
3. She has just found out how incredibly sh*tty some people can be. That in and of itself, can be an INCREDIBLE shock to one who believes in goodness, fairness, love and doing what is right. Hopefully this experience will not destroy her faith in humanity,unselfishness and love, but will help her accept that some steps have to be taken to protect oneself from those who seek to screw over good people.
I don't know how long it' been since the death of her SO, but if she was pretty much the main caregiver, she's probably grieving a lot of things, she may in fact be beating HERSELF up for allowing the family to screw her over...unfortunately "no good deed goes unpunished" is way more true than we'd like to think. Which is NOT to discourage good deeds, just make sure you can deflect the punishment.
I think your friend is to be absolutely commended for not turning her back on her SO,now it's time to look after herself. If she's having dissociative episodes, she needs trained professional care. She may also find support groups targeted to the bereaved, to exhausted caregivers, etc.
You may need to help her/advocate for her in some of this,other wise you may be faced an unpleasant choice, either getting sucked into her drama vortex, or distancing yourself to save your OWN sanity.
Cindy O
 Quazi 100
Joined: 3/2/2008
Msg: 26
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 3:50:01 PM

The best thing might be to bring her to Emergency at your hospital, or get her to a Trauma center, for evaluation.
A professional intervention is best.
There's NO shame for her. She's suffering from shock.

She needs the BEST help, she can get. Most people are simply not qualified to do that.

Best of luck, to both you, and your friend.

Based on the SHOCK analogy, I agree with verityone.

I've been in shock, emotionally, and medically, and crying out my pain was not on my short list of things to do.

I didn't see a professional, and I didn't cry for a very long time. Trying to make some kind of sense of what had happened to me, was my immediate concern. Unfortunately, it took going to a professional, and being told that I would never make sense of what happened to me, because what happened to me didn't make sense....after that, I cried.

I think that a trauma center/professional intervention is the best thing to do.

When I "lost time", I did something that I had no intention of doing....getting a box of kleenex, and crying it out, wasn't going to solve this problem effectively.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 29
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 5:41:31 PM
Forumologist makes a good point...the best place for her to start is probably her own doctor,and/or spiritual adviser if she has one.
A grief support group, or a support group for exhausted caregivers, might be another good first step.
Cindy O
Joined: 9/30/2009
Msg: 31
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 6:40:44 PM

This allows you to quote a previous post. Maybe the hospitals are different in the US than Canada but up here they don't have psych staff in emerg and only take people who are homicidal or suicidal - others they keep for a few hours or so and send home. (EDIT)
If emerg was going to take in all the traumatized people then all the street people who are totally effed up would wind up there and I assure you they get an overnight stay if they are very lucky. That's why the city centers are full of them wandering the streets, filthy dirty, hungry, cold, talking to themselves, yelling at passing cars.

Nope , it's the same way here unfortunatley.

OP not sure where your at in Texas but google NAMI-National Alliance for the Mentally III (NAMI)'ll give you local resources

UT has inpatient and outpatient programs in the metro area..also check out Harris County gold card's a public assistance program for those who don't have insurance which I take it she doesnt... or maybe a COBRA?

Kudo's to you for intervening, just remember not to neglect yourself in the can happen.
 Quazi 100
Joined: 3/2/2008
Msg: 32
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/14/2010 8:40:54 PM

She woke up in her car & had no idea how she got there or where she had been

Maybe the hospitals are different in the US than Canada but up here they don't have psych staff in emerg and only take people who are homicidal or suicidal

If there are periods of time that a person cannot account for-it's a huge black hole....that person needs to seek professional help. These black hole periods are dangerous, and the person could very well be homicidal or suicidal while in them.

They allow the affected person to do things that they normally wouldn't do...........
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 35
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/15/2010 7:37:28 AM
OP I also think that it is great that you are being supportive of your friend. There are some great suggestions and advice provided. As mentioned encouraging her to read on the topic is important because it allows her to understand what she is going through. Grieving comes with several stages and it doesn't have to deal necessarily with a person it could be employment, divorce, etc. Some people when going through these stages may not acknowledge that they are in fact in such stages. In some instances it could take months for a person to realise what they are or have going through. Often employers offer these services without charge and as stated some programs are offers in the community outreach. It is not uncommon for those going through such stages to turn to substance abuse. Intervention is critical because it allows the person to understand that what they are going through is not abnormal it is healthy to talk about it to get through the stages.
 Quazi 100
Joined: 3/2/2008
Msg: 36
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/15/2010 8:20:37 AM

Her biggest concern right now is getting a job, however she is concerned & very worried she may have an episode while at work. Right now she can control her episodes by avoiding places & people that she knows will trigger stress. But it isn't logical to assume she can continue doing this, especially if she goes back to work.

With your friends history of being abused as a child, and this recent episode, she'll be feeling very intimidated right now.

She needs to stay on the horse, but ride around the periphery of the corral for a while, until she can get some footing back......and it will come back.

This might be ambitious, I don't know, but even joining a website, like a fan-club where she can talk to people that she has a common interest with might help....verbal exchanges and common conversation can do a world of good for self-esteem....and help her cope when she's out and about.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 38
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/15/2010 9:32:37 AM

Her biggest concern right now is getting a job, however she is concerned & very worried she may have an episode while at work. Right now she can control her episodes by avoiding places & people that she knows will trigger stress. But it isn't logical to assume she can continue doing this, especially if she goes back to work.

This is why it is important for her to get as much medical documentation as possible...she may be eligible for SSI or SSDI while she recovers. If she forces herself to work, and has a couple of negative experiences(disciplinary action/termination) it's simply going to ADD to the overall stress picture,as well as putting negative information on her employment record. Some employers are understanding/helpful/accommodating but many will not be.

Again, if the OP's friend is reasonably coherent,my advice would be that she seek legal counsel as well as medical help,for a couple of reasons. For one thing, if the bf's only been gone 6 months, his estate may still be in the probate process(unless he had some sort of family trust set up)-if it's in probate she may be able to put in a claim for compensation for her caregiver services or have some legalrecourse to being tossed out in the street with nothing...particularly if she can prove she financially contributed to his care.
In fact, if she's not in any immediate or urgent state of medical or mental instability, I'd say seeking competent legal advice would be a very important step to take ASAP. If she's completely destitute, Legal Aid or any "pro bono" organization may be able to at least help her get a start. Call your state bar association.
To the poster who brought up all the concerns about the OP' s friend being some kind of liar/scammer/parasite. Your points do have merit, but as I have said SO often in these forums, unless one sees a significant discrepancy,contradiction,change of story,whatever-we can only respond to the information we are given.
Unfortunately, "undocumented" SOs, and even family members, get screwed over every damn day when it comes to looking after incompetent or terminally ill people. That is one of the reasons I say over and over again to middle aged and older people about relationships...both marriage and cohabitation can pose some threat to socioeconomic wellbeing...this is the place where a pre-nup and appropriate guidance from a legal professional versed in estate and eldercare issues can be crucial.
OP, good luck, bless you for being such a supportive friend, and yes, don't forget to take care of yourself!
Cindy O
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 40
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/15/2010 10:18:38 AM

The son sold the house & all of the belongings in less than a week & has spent every penny.

If she can prove the son sold stuff that belonged-or partially belonged-to her, she might be able to get a civil judgement against him.Civil judgements can run to wage garnishment, liens on property,etc. I still thing she needs to engage legal counsel. Obviously, prevention is the best defense to being screwed over,but she still may have some recourse.
Cindy O
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 43
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/15/2010 2:16:07 PM

One, was said that she gave up a six figure job to take care of this guy...
Next its said that the least amount of stress can "set her off" ....

Have you the remotest clue what it's like to be the primary caregiver of a loved one suffering from a dementia condition that only gets worse as time goes on? It's not at all unknown for that stress and fatigue to all but DESTROY the caregiver.

I'm wondering what would have happened had the bf's kid posted a topic about how Dad's gf walked out on him the minute he was diagnosed...would we be ripping HER apart for being a shallow,uncaring self-serving witch(with a B)?

it does not add up to can't get someone out of a house and everything sold in a week..well, you can but she could have stayed and fought then. and the business of getting legal advice?

Yep, that's exactly WHY I recommended legal advice,this woman may be the victim of a crime or an actionable offense against civil or probate statutes. People bully and bluster all the time to get away with exploitation of the vulnerable. And the money issue is why I suggested Legal Aid and/or any Pro Bono service that might be available in that state.

I just wonder why someone would let themselves get in this situation...

So do I, but I have actually seen very similar things happen to people who did what they felt to be right,out of the love in their heart.(have any clue about that?) At any rate, in the situation outlined here in this thread, what's DONE is DONE, and what we have is a genuine friend(have any clue about that?) trying to help someone they care about. It's a damn shame that people who take any kind of risk to help anybody else, to behave out of kindness and love, are so frequently screwed over that standard advice seems to be "don't get involved".
No, I stand by what I say. While conceding that somehow or other this deal of the caregiver getting the bums' rush, and instantaneous sale of his home before the man was even cold in his grave,smacks of something rotten in Denmark-which is precisely WHY I suggested seeking legal advice.
Or are some psters here recommending that the OP just toss her friend out in the street, calling NMP(not my problem) "sink or swim", "tough love" "well if she survives she'll know damn well that love, caring, trust, kindness and compassion have no value in todays world"....?
Actually, if at all possible, I think the OP should accompany/assist her friend in seeking legal counsel...that way she's on top of any possible "scam" her longtime friend just might be running on her.
Cindy O
Joined: 5/12/2009
Msg: 48
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/16/2010 8:20:40 AM
I think it's probably rare enough that you're unlikely to find anyone here who's dealt with this clinical diagnosis.

A mental health forum is a better bet-a mental health professional even better.
 Quazi 100
Joined: 3/2/2008
Msg: 49
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/16/2010 9:34:03 AM

Nobody forced her to be a caregiver ... but it is one way to keep a boyfriend isn't it ?
She wanted to be a saint to his "martyr"
People don't do this for someone they are even related to
She was a fool and always will be a fool and people should learn something from this
Heartless people at least have some common sense
And being a caregiver should never mean caring less for oneself in the process

What everyone is overlooking, is what happened to her as a with her Aunt and Uncle....

I mean the woman no disrespect, but is it realistic to think that she would be "normal"? You are judging her in terms of being "normal".

If you want to educate yourself on how this happens, look up....dependent (him) and co-dependent (her) personalities.

Dependent has problems making decisions, taking responsibility etc. Co-Dependent is a nurturer, and care giver etc. There's lots more to it than that.

I think that being a "fool" would be much simpler.......
Joined: 11/11/2009
Msg: 50
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Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/16/2010 10:32:52 AM

Professionals generally are not trained to be supportive while you howl your pain out. They generally won't be very responsive at all. They can be very detached and distant emotionally. I understand they have to guard against compassion fatigue but that's a very cold response to someone in deep emotional pain. What they need is love not just cold rational analysis is all I'm saying.

This is absolutely false! Therapists, like anyone else, have individual personalities, but as a profession are not taught or expected to be detached or emotionally distant. Quite the opposite, in fact. And, FYI, long-term psychotherapy is extremely rare in practice today. While crying is very healthy and can be an effective coping skill, it WILL NOT cure DID or any other mental illness.

OP, there is a difference between having a dissociative, or dissociative-like episode and having DID. Extreme stress, fatigue, etc can cause a person to experience this kind of episode. Encourage your friend to speak to mental health professional, and by all means accompany her there for support.

We talk a lot, which really seems to help. Usually once a week we get together with three other friends & let her talk & cry it out, this seems to be real affective for her.

Keep doing this. As her friend, this is the best thing you can do for her!

Her biggest concern right now is getting a job, however she is concerned & very worried she may have an episode while at work. Right now she can control her episodes by avoiding places & people that she knows will trigger stress. But it isn't logical to assume she can continue doing this, especially if she goes back to work.

This is what the professional can also help her with. They can teach her coping skills so that she can successfully function in a job.
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 51
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/16/2010 11:44:43 AM

So why would an extremely educated woman sit back & let a 30 year old crack head sell her home & all the belongings? I don't know. The only thing I can say is she was totally beat down mentally & physically.

If the son truly is a a deadbeat crackhead, he probably threatened her.

but she would not allow me to pursue it. We have to pick our battles & she chose her health.
Sounds more and more like the son threatened her. As a completely practical matter, I agree, the only thing she can do is recover her own health and move on with her life. Civil litigation is for disagreements/disputes/financial wrong doing by CIVILized people. Crackheads and lowlife bullies aren't civilized.

But this thread can be of real value to mature people who are cohabiting couples. If marriage is not an option/not advisable, then they should be creating documentation to get out ahead of exactly this kind of situation.

but as I have said SO often in these forums, unless one sees a significant discrepancy,contradiction,change of story,whatever-we can only respond to the information we are given.

Noootttt quite. Professional (not crazy) scammers rely on people wanting to help out.

But I'm talking about the tendency of some posters on some threads to go WAY out in left field,pulling possible scenarios out of their ASSES,based on NOTHING indicated, discussed, mentioned in the OT. Did you not catch the places where the OP mentions having known this person since their college days?
I know it's difficult for people to grasp when all they ever care about is their weiners and their wallets...but there is such a thing as loving someone and being committed to making their end-of-life experience be in the comfort and security of familiar surroundings and the presence of loved ones.Yes, even if it interrupts/interferes with their own career progress, family life, or the pursuit of their own happiness.
Cindy O
Joined: 2/14/2006
Msg: 53
Disassociation Disorder
Posted: 3/16/2010 12:18:03 PM
Imsa, you too are probably a good person, and I do understand that people need to look out for themselves these days. But perhaps you need to go back and re-read the OT. Because the way I read it, this woman had an excellent, high paying career, AND a longterm relationship with a man who unfortunately became terminally ill with a dementia illness,and she chose to put his wellbeing ahead of her own concerns( and yes, believe it or not people do this every day-not everyone abandons their spouse, SO,parent or other loved one when they become seriously/terminally ill.)
If the only family he had was a crackhead son, what SHOULD she have done? Walked away and HOPED some concerned person or entity stepped in before he died of starvation or grievous injury?
Anyway, I do not read it that the caregiving ended 3 years ago and that she returned to work. What I read was she cared for this man for 6 years, and is now,due to some kind of machination by the man's family, homeless, jobless, exhausted and stressed to the point where she's having dissociative episodes.
Cindy O
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