Child, Adolescent and Adult Psychiatry


Dissociative Identity Disorder Myths

Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), sometimes called Multiple Identity Disorder, is a
mental disorder characterized by two at minimum, distinct personality states. DID is one
of the most talked about illnesses.

Most would describe what DID is but it is seldom to define what DID is not. Getting
informed about what DID is not is as equally important as getting to know what DID is.

The following are some of the most common misconceptions and stigma out there
about DID.

1. Dissociative identity disorder is NOT mentally invented.

Many people, even including professionals, still believe that DID is all made up
and those who have it are just faking their symptoms.

Dissociative identity disorder is a real disorder along with anxiety or bipolar
disorder. It is a widely recognized disorder.

2. Dissociative identity disorder is NOT dangerous.

People may have this misconception that those who have dissociative identity
disorder turn to be aggressive or violent. Those who suffer from DID are often
portrayed in movies and other media as murderers, serial killers and ultimately,
people to avoided at all times.

But it is not the case. Those with DID are not inherently dangerous or aggressive.
The likelihood to turn to be violent of people who don’t have DID is in fact the
same with those who have DID.

3. Dissociative identity disorder is NOT a form of psychosis.

Over the past decades, there has been a big misconception that DID is linked
with schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a disorder that have symptoms of auditory
and visual hallucinations.

Although those who suffer from DID do experience auditory hallucinations as
well, these are not the same as those experienced in psychotic disorders like
schizophrenia. These auditory hallucinations that DID patients are experiencing
are from their alters’ voices inside.

Moreover, DID is caused by trauma and is treated with therapy while psychotic
disorders like schizophrenia with a genetic component is treated with medication.

4. Dissociative identity disorder is NOT an advantage.

This might be the most ridiculous misconception of DID. Some might even say
that those who have DID are lucky. It won’t make things easier but it complicates
how a patient interacts with others that negatively affects almost every aspect in

Dissociative identity disorder is clearly not a benefit nor a curse. It is a lifelong
disorder that can be managed with the right support and wider understanding of
what DID is and is not.



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