Who am I?

Who am I?

Who am I?

This has been the question in the forefront of my mind recently.

My psychiatrist suggested to me that I am an alter. I have very specific tasks within our system. I forget, and avoid almost everything trauma related or stressful. I do this so that I can function day-to-day. It means I can work a small amount, maintain friendships, and appear relatively ‘normal’ on the outside.

It works. Honestly, it does! I function quite well day-to-day. Most people would have no idea that I have mental illness of any kind. It does mean that I can go from appearing okay, to being in a psychiatric  hospital very quickly, with outsiders questioning what happened because I seemed okay.

My psychiatrist’s comments have made me question who I am. I’ve always thought of myself as the core, or the original person that alters or parts fragmented from. I’ve been aware that the body’s name is not my own. My name is a shortened nickname taken from the body’s name. I don’t know if we have a part that has the body’s name, or if there is an original, core part.

I initially felt quite insulted at the suggestion that I was an alter. I felt that being an alter or a part made me, somehow, less of a person. Less real. Less me.

Now I’m questioning where I fit in the system. I still know who I am, that hasn’t changed. It’s my whole understanding of our system and how it works that’s changed. If I’m not the core, or the original person/part, then who is? Do we have a core hidden somewhere inside?

Thankfully I have a hospital admission coming up, and can hopefully unravel and explore some of these issues.

11 thoughts on “Who am I?

  1. I can barely begin to imagine how complex and confusing it would be to try and figure out even the response to the suggestion that you’re an alter. I hope hospital helps you find your way.

  2. Hi,

    Can relate to the feelings you describe a lot; I think many “ANP” parts will. It can come as a bit of a surprise to see it, but it looks like you`re dealing with the concept pretty well. For me, it was actually a relief to see it, after the short period of denial over it.

    Hope hospital goes well.

  3. Have you considered that this alter is co-conscious with the host? Maybe they are working together. Sometimes, when I am most functional – I feel that my alters are all co-conscious, as if everyone is present somehow. It’s only when one decides to take over and the others go quiet do I really feel distraught.

  4. The framework of core, host, and alters is a good fit for some people but not so much for others. I think the suggestion that you are an alter is a very interesting one, good food for thought! It can feel extremely weird to consider that – I have been there, but the perspective shift can bring some very valuable things with it. In my case, we don’t have either a host or a core. We are all parts together, playing different roles in the system and with each other. I don’t HAVE parts, I AM a part, among many. Or as we once put it in a poem “I am not the tree, we are all leaves”. It’s a big shift but if you treat leaves as real and whole and important and worth listening to and having their needs met… then it’s not really different from thinking you are anything else. It doesn’t mean you’re less real. It does mean you have a tribe to understand and connect with. But then, you already knew that. 🙂 xx

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