online conference transcript
What's it like living day-to-day with DID/MPD (Dissociative Identity Disorder, Multiple Personality Disorder)? There are many issues for DID patients.
Psychologist, Randy Noblitt, Ph.D. specializes in the treatment of DID patients. He says because of the experience of abuse in childhood (child abuse), many are suffering from disturbing flashbacks, dissociative switching (switching alters), and losing time. Then there's the depression and mood swings, thoughts of suicide, and lonliness that accompanies many serious mental illnesses.
Along with the above subjects, we discussed managing dissociation and getting your alters to work together, treatment for DID and integration (integrate your alters), what is life like after integration, hypnosis and EMDR treatment for DID, how to get your partner to understand MPD and how a significant other can help their DID partner.
David Roberts is the HealthyPlace.com moderator.
The people in blue are audience members.
David: Good Evening. I'm David Roberts. I'm the moderator for tonight's conference. I want to welcome everyone to HealthyPlace.com. Our topic tonight is "Living Day-to-Day with DID, MPD (Dissociative Identity Disorder, Multiple Personality Disorder)." Our guest is Randy Noblitt, Ph.D. In private practice in Dallas, Texas USA, Dr. Noblitt specializes in the treatment of individuals who suffer from the psychological aftermath of childhood trauma with special interest in dissociative disorders, PTSD, and reports of ritual abuse.
Over the past 15 years, Dr. Noblitt has evaluated, treated or supervised the treatment of more than 400 MPD/DID patients. He also co-authored the book Recovery from Dissociative Identity Disorder, a consumer's manual for finding and obtaining competent therapy, social services and legal assistance.
Dr. Noblitt lectures widely on the existence of ritual cults and mind-control techniques, and has served as an expert witness in a number of child abuse cases. He is also a founding member of The Society for the Investigation, Treatment and Prevention of Ritual and Cult Abuse.
Good evening, Dr. Noblitt, and welcome to HealthyPlace.com. We appreciate you being our guest tonight. Is it difficult for people with DID to find competent treatment for their disorder?
Dr. Noblitt: Hello, David. Thanks for inviting me. Yes, it is difficult and getting more so all the time.
David:Why is that?
Dr. Noblitt: Managed care is increasingly limiting funding for adequate treatment. Additionally, the very real threat of litigation has caused many excellent therapists to leave this field.
David: I'm also wondering if there is an abundance of skilled therapists to treat Dissociative Identity Disorder or are there relatively few?
Dr. Noblitt: There are fewer therapists than needed. As you probably know, there is a prejudice in the mental health field regarding DID (MPD) so fewer people are going into this area. This is extremely unfortunate since individuals with DID have significant needs. They are often known to fall between the cracks not only in the realm of mental health but in the social services arena as well.
David: In my introduction, I had mentioned that you have treated, or supervised the treatment of, some 400 DID (MPD) patients. In your experience, what are the most difficult issues for DID patients to cope with on a day-to-day basis?
Dr. Noblitt: The difficulties experienced by DID/MPD patients vary. One significant problem is suicidal and self-destructive impulses. Many individuals with DID/MPD also experience clinical depression, mood swings, and disability causing unemployment and poverty which further restricts their quality of life.
David: The depression and the mood swings are very difficult to cope with. What are your suggestions for dealing with that?
Dr. Noblitt: Individuals with depression often rely on psychoactive medications, although a high percentage with Dissociative Identity Disorder (Multiple Personality Disorder) do not get adequate relief from medications alone. The development of caring and supportive relationships and psychotherapy is often helpful.
David: Many with DID, and this is from email that I receive, live a pretty lonely life, in that they find it difficult to share their DID with others.
Dr. Noblitt: Yes, this is common. Isolation tends to increase a sense of hopelessness and depression. Taking the risk to develop caring relationships can go a long way in reducing one's depression and sense of isolation.
The reason that many DID patients experience loneliness and isolation stems from their experience of abuse in childhood by family members or other trusted individuals. This early betrayal of trust is devastating.
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