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Dissociative Identity Disorder: Case study part 2.

Updated: Aug 10, 2022

I am in my kitchen cooking sausages and potato mash. My son is watching football (soccer in Australia) on the TV and letting me know the play by play. I can hear my partner and daughter in the next room finishing off my daughter's homework, which she luckily doesn’t mind doing as she's just turned 11, is starting high school next year, and the school we are sending her to is a private school. We picked that school for its values, not because it's "fancy", but we both know it takes time to get into routines.


My son jumps into the air throwing his hands up. "Goalllll!!!!! Did you see????? That one was awesome!!!" I go to rush over but as I do my phone vibrates.


"Let me know when the replay starts!" I call out. I check my phone and I see one unread email from my client today. Odd, we didn't organise a check in and the client rebooked with reception after I left.


I hear a shout from my son, "Replay! Replay!"


I rush over and watch one of the best goals I have seen played in a long time, "Woah!! That one was awesome!! Nice!"


After a moment of my son and I commending the play I return to my sausages in the kitchen and read the email. It's short but interesting.


Hey,

Sorry to bother you, I just wanted to say thank you for today. I appreciated the chance to talk.


Interestingly, it finishes with:


Be careful though. I can be manipulative.


Interesting. Typically manipulative people don't tell others they are manipulative. I wonder about why they sent this email and the need it fulfils. As I am considering this though, my phone vibrates again. It's another email from the same client, but it doesn't clarify anything, in fact it makes things all the more intriguing.


You will never be good for us.

H


I am not sure what the second email means. The client appears to be concerned with my ability to hold and support them, which is a very understandable concern. So I send off a reply.


No need to thank me. I appreciated the chance to hear your story.


I sign off with "regards" and my name and send the email. I go on to eat my dinner with my family (talking mostly about the goal my son and I just watched, with my partner and daughter staring confused at our animation over the topic) and after cleaning up I check my phone again. I see another email. The clients reply states:


We no u can helps us Dr. We want to be loved and happy.

L


As I stand in my kitchen, a few things fall into place. I think this client is emailing with the letters at the bottom as different initials. It is almost as though the client is replying as different people. This would indicate Dissociative Identity Disorder, but the client has no trauma in their past. I am unsure how this all fits into place, however I am certainly curious and still here to support the client. I reply:


I am here to support you in understanding how to feel loved and happy. We can chat further about this when I see you next week if you like. :)


Intrigued, I make a note in the clients electronic file about the interaction and sign my mind off for the night. Little do I realise that this client will become one of my longest standing clients with four years of therapy and a therapeutic relationship that teaches both me and them more than either of us could learn from any amount of rote learning.


At the time however, I am just curious about how our next session will go.

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