Dissociative Identity Disorder(DID), previously referred to as multiplepersonality disorder (MPD), is a dissociativedisorder involving a disturbance of identityin which two or more separate and distinctpersonality states control the individualsbehavior at different times. When under thecontrol of one identity, the person is usuallyunable to remember some of the events thatoccurred while other personalities were incontrol.
The different identities, referred toas alters, may exhibit differences inspeech, mannerisms, attitudes, thoughts, and gender orientation. The altersmay even differ in "physical"properties such as allergies, right-or-left handedness, or the need foreyeglass prescriptions.
A person with DID may have as few astwo alters, or as many as 100. Theaverage number is about 10. Oftenalters are stable overtime, continuing to play specificroles in the persons life for years.Some alters may harbor aggressivetendencies, directed towardindividuals in the personsenvironment, or toward other alterswithin the person.
Retrieving and dealing with memories oftrauma is important for the person withDID, because this disorder is believed to becaused by physical or sexual abuse inchildhood. Young children have a pronouncedability to dissociate, and it is believed thatthose who are abused may learn to usedissociation as a defense. In effect, the childslips into a state of mind in which it seems thatthe abuse is not really occurring to him orher, but to somebody else. In time, such a childmay begin to split off alter identities. Researchhas shown that the average age for the initialdevelopment of alters is 5.9 years
A. The presence of two or moredistinct identities or personalitystates (each with its ownrelatively enduring pattern ofperceiving, relating to, andthinking about the environmentand self).
B. At least two of these identitiesor personality statesrecurrently take control of thepersons behavior.C. Inability to recall importantpersonal information that is tooextensive to be explained byordinary forgetfulness.
D. The disturbance is not due to thedirect physiological effects of asubstance(e.g., blackouts or chaoticbehavior during AlcoholIntoxication) or a general medicalcondition (e.g., complex partialseizures). Note: In children, thesymptoms are not attributable toimaginary playmates or otherfantasy play.
Treatment for DID consists primarily ofpsychotherapy with hypnosis. The therapist seeks tomake contact with as many alters as possible and tounderstand their roles and functions in the patientslife. In particular, the therapist seeks to form aneffective relationship with any personalities thatare responsible for violent or self-destructivebehavior, and to curb this behavior. The therapistseeks to establish communication among thepersonality states and to find ones that havememories of traumatic events in the patients past.The goal of the therapist is to enable the patient toachieve breakdown of the patients separateidentities and their unification into a single identity.
Strangers from all differentwalks of life are caught up in asevere rainstorm, stuck at amotel in desolate Nevada. Soonthey realize they may be at themotel for another reason whenone by one, people start gettingkilled off. As tensions flare andfingers are pointed, they have toget to the bottom of whytheyre there. Meanwhile in anundisclosed location, apsychiatrist is trying to provethe innocence of a man accusedof murder in an eleventh hourtrial.
In the opening scene we hear the recordedconversations between a psychologist and hispatient. Symptoms of D.I.D. become apparent.
The alters realize they all have the samebirthday, bodies disappear without a trace, and Mr. Malick informs Ed of the alters. This clip displays many symptoms of D.I.D.
This clip shows more symptoms of D.I.D. as well as the transition from reality to what is going on in the patient’s mind, and the integration of personalities.
DSM–IV–TR (2000) 4th ed., text rev. NAMI. (n.d.). Dissociative Identity Disorder. In National Alliance on Mental Illness. Retrieved March 25, 2012, Identity [Motion picture]. IMDB. (n.d.). Identity (2003). In Internet Movie Database. Retrieved March 25, 2012