Hi there, I wanted to just let u guys know some stuff, because I have mentioned and elaborated on it in the past but this is a better way for me to explain it in full in a way that won’t get immediately buried, ya know?
So, to put it bluntly:
My name is currently Acorn, and I am part of a system.
Pls read me
Below I will list a lot of information about systems and DID. As much as I would love to be able to claim otherwise, I am not perfect, and some of my facts may be incorrect. Feel free to correct me if necessary AND IF YOU ARE ALSO A SYSTEM.
When I say system, I mean Dissociative identity disorder, to be exact. Another user on here has made a topic about it, but I wished to make my own to make things easier to navigate.
There are three main types of dissociative disorders that involve systems:
DID - Dissociative identity disorder. To put it short this is when you have alters and significant memory loss when they switch to front.
Osdd-1b - Otherwise specified dissociative disorder - 1b. This is very similar to DID, except the host experiences little to no amnesia.
Osdd-1a - Otherwise specified dissociative disorder - 1a. This is also very similar to DID, except that the alters in the system rarely or possibly even never switch, and only for short periods of time.
All three types are very valid and deserve representation. Personally, I either have DID or osdd-1b, but I’m not sure. I am self diagnosed, simply because the evidence that I have this disorder is very much present, but attempting to get a diagnosis is potentially dangerous for me in my current living situation. I hope to get one once I leave home. Yes I have done extensive research, and sourced most of my information from diagnosed people with DID/OSDD
An alter is an individual person in the system. They have their own personality, gender, age, ethnicity, pronouns, religion, ect. A system can have between 2 and 2000 alters (more than 100 is known as polyfragmented) Most alters have a role, some of which may be unique to the system. Alters can have many roles, and roles can have many alters. It’s very flexible.
The term ‘headspace’ refers to the place where the system’s alters go when they aren’t fronting. This can be a house, town, alternate reality, room, anything rlly. For some systems a headspace is a form of escapism too. Many systems (like me) don’t have a headspace. Both experiences are valid.
“Switching” refers to when the alter who is fronting ‘switches’ place with another alter. The new alter is now fronting. These can be anywhere from instantaneous to hours or days long.
Going dormant refers to when an alter disappears, and is unable to be contacted by anyone else in the system for a period of time, spanning from days to months and years.
Fronting refers to being aware and in full control of the body
Co-Fronting refers to fronting with another alter, and sharing control over the body
Co-Conscious refers to when an alter is aware of what is going on around them, but has no control over the body (a different alter is fronting)
Dissociation can be a warning sign to a switch being about to occur
Blendy/Blurry is usually used to describe when it’s difficult to tell which alters are fronting
Here is a short list of some of the roles an alter can have (common roles):
- HOST: The alter who fronts the most
- CO-HOST: The alter that fronts the second most, or the same amount as the host.
- CORE: Simply known as the ‘original’ alter, before the brain formed DID. The host isn’t always the core.
- Little: Alter under the age of 8 (I think). Their role is often to help the system remember a time before the trauma
- Middle: Alter between the ages 8 and 12-18 (I think. Bit unsure on these)
- Trauma holder: In the name. This alter holds a significant amount of the system’s trauma, and often prevents other alters from learning/remembering the trauma by doing so. Possibly also a Persecutor
- Memory holder: Also in the name. Holds a significant amount (or all) of the system’s memories, good and bad.
- Physical Protector: Protects the body and system from physical threats (perceived or real)
- Emotional Protector: Protects the body and system from emotional threats (perceived or real)
- Sexual Protector: Protects the body and system from sexual threats (can be perceived or real)
- Verbal Protector: Protects the body and system from verbal threats (perceived or real)
- Caregiver: These protectors are specifically designated for caring for younger or more vulnerable alters. They are also often tasked with caring for the system’s body when other alters are unable to.
- Persecutor: A type of protector, however they actively harm the body/body’s relationships/system’s alters. This is because they either feel that, by doing these things, they are protecting the system from further harm, or they find it difficult to differentiate between themselves and the system’s abuser. These alters are not ‘evil’, they are just extremely traumatised and in need of love and therapy.
- Gatekeeper: A gatekeeper is an alter that controls the switching in the system, as well as access to memories or certain alters. The existence of a gatekeeper in a system can very stabilising for a system, granted that the alter is emotionally capable for the job.
- Introject: An alter in the system formed from an outside source, can be a physical person, object, animal or idea. A Factive is an introject of a real person. A Fictive is an introject from a fictional source, such as a movie or book series. Both are valid and real.
- Fragment: A fragment is an alter that is not fully separate from other alters or developed. They may only have one purpose, or be unable to pass as a functioning person if fronting on their own. These alters are still people, if underdeveloped, and are valid whether or not they develop into complete alters in time.
About alters of different ages
These alters are often mistaken for pedoph!les in disguise or ‘just age regressors’, neither of which is true. An alter can be a different age to the body, however it must be made aware that the age of the body is the qualifier for any age-related activities. An adult body cannot have relations which a child body, even if the alters are of appropriate ages.
Likewise, it is ped0ph!l!c to try and have sexual relations with a system when a minor is fronting. Don’t do that please.
About alters of different skin colours
Like with the age thing, the body’s ethnicity is the decider for most things.
An alter can have pale skin and thin, straight hair in a poc body. They are not White, however they may adopt “white” things like fashion ect., as those are rarely of cultural importance. If they do have cultural importance though, I would personally advise against it if the body is not belonging to that culture.
An alter can have dark skin and 4c hair in a White body. They are not Black, and should never try to adopt Black cultural things such as braids, slurs or fashion. They are however valid in how they perceive themselves, as long as they don’t try to do Blackface or somesuch. Most poc alters will understand this anyway.
Just as a disclaimer, this is how the alter perceives themselves in the inner world/headspace. Mental disorders to not pander to social constructs such as racism, no matter how serious an issue it may be.
(If you have any questions about any of this feel free to comment them below and I’ll do my best to answer)
One quick last thing before I get into more personal stuff.
There are two descriptor terms you may see being thrown around about systems:
- Endogenic System (Systems that were not formed by trauma)
- Traumagenic System (Systems that were formed by trauma)
I will say this once.
There is no such thing as an endogenic system. DID and both forms of OSDD are caused by severe and/or repeated childhood trauma before the age of 8. It is very valid if you do not remember or know the trauma that created your system. It is not valid to run around trying to claim that you have no trauma but are still a system. It is very harmful to the community to do this. Please don’t.
Now, into the more personal stuff. In my bio you will find an emoji code for my alters, simply to make it easier for us to identify ourselves when we’re typing. We have considered making separate accounts, but that ends up being a lot of hassle, and many of the other alters in my system don’t use social media anyway.
Our system is relatively small (less than 20 alters that we know of), however I will admit that communication is very bad at times. So, if an alter introduces themselves that isn’t on the list that I will put in here eventually, please encourage them to insert themselves and make themselves known.
Below I will list all of my alters along with a brief description of each for you to look at :]
PRONOUNS: TheyThem or Xe/Xem
I am the host, I will be fronting most often and unless otherwise specified, it is usually me you are speaking to. :] (idk what else to say lol)
Hey, I’m James. I’m the system protector and I usually front when something’s up with the current fronter (usually Acorn hah). I am not someone to mess with, get angry easily, but I do apologise when necessary so everyone has flaws ig. That’s all.
ROLE: Core, Little, Trauma holder
Ellen rarely fronts and is mute, so we can’t get a description from her. When she does front or become co-conscious, everyone else in the front also becomes mute, and as a system we start to struggle, causing James to eventually step in. If you see her fronting on her own, please encourage her to leave the screen and find somewhere quiet to play and self-regulate (unless another alter is with her and says it’s fine) -
Hiiii! My name is Tulip and I can’t really read but my brothers and sisters and friends will help me understand you and type out my responses :) I love sweets and stuff, as well as Cat!! He’s really fluffy. (Typed by Acorn)
Hello, I am one of the caregivers of the system. If someone isn’t taking care of the body correctly I will front, I also partially front often to help the current fronter regulate their emotions and remain calm in stressful situations.
ROLE: Caregiver, Memory Holder, Fictive
Hello, I don’t front as often as my primary role is to take care of the little ones in the headspace, but if you see me about don’t be afraid to say hi! I am very sociable and love to interact with the body’s friends, online and off :)
ROLE: Middle, Memory holder
Hey, I’m Thomas. I actually like ball sports, contrary to most of the losers in here. I’m kidding, sorta. Anyways, I prefer the inner world and don’t front much, so there really isn’t much to say. Seeya
ROLE: Persecutor, Trauma holder
Alice is an out and proud goth, however she is rarely permitted to front due to her self-destructive and anti-social tendencies, which could wreck havoc for the rest of the system should she front and exercise them. She is sweet at her heart, but her intentions are often misguided. -
SEXUALITY: Ace and Aro
ROLE: Verbal protector
Yes, hi. I’m Maxy, don’t front often don’t plan to front often. If you need me to yell at anyone sure whatever.
NAME: (Doesn’t have name. Refer to him as ‘Cat’)
ROLE: Emotional support, Factive
Cat doesn’t front unless the current fronter is in significant emotional distress. He was created as an emotional support in his youth, and that is how he continues to function now. He is a ginger tabby and very cuddly, although prone to playing common kitty pranks.
Wow that was long
I may add to this as time goes by, I hope it was informative