It’s the Easter weekend — a complicated and conflictual weekend for most dissociative trauma survivors. So many layers of your inside levels will be awakened, aware, involved, wondering, waiting, going, sitting, thinking, watching, feeling, remembering, refusing, believing, fighting, crying, calling, hiding, etc.
It’s a time of being pulled in dozens of different directions all at once.
Lots of headaches, that’s what that means.
And lots of pain. Ouch, ouch, ouch.
So yes… I am thinking of you all, and wishing peace for you.
I know it’s difficult. Really difficult.
The Easter season is typically overloaded with the triggers, external pulls, family complications, and spiritual battles.
The inside battle within your system may be raging at full intensity.
Easter can be a time rich for accomplishing some important DID System work. Here are some ideas.
DID System Work:
Sit with those inside who are struggling.
As best you can, remember to sit with each other in your system, and learn what you can about the others that you see nearby. What struggles are they having? What thoughts are in their mind? What feelings do they hold? What feelings do they avoid?
Is there anything you can do to help them? What can you do to give them comfort? What can you do to make the struggle less sharp? How can you keep your system safe, both on the inside and outside?
Learn new info from others inside.
Intense weekends such as this are usually heavily overloaded with information, from your past and maybe in your present. These are things you need to know. It’s from your life, and you can know what you and your insiders have been through.
You are allowed now.
It’s okay to know.
It’s good to know, even when it’s difficult to know.
Be safe, even with yourself.
For many of you, just making it through alive and well is the goal.
Self-injury may seem like the “best option”, but it really doesn’t help in the long-run. Look for other options to handle this time of stress. Read through the bunches of articles here that give other options to consider.
The intensity of what you are feeling will gradually subside… You don’t have to cut or purge it away.
It’s okay to feel what you feel. Your feelings belong to you — you are allowed now to have them.
Comfort others in your system.
For others of you, you may feel solid enough to use this time to make headway in reaching others in your system who are struggling more than you. It can be painful to hear and connect with the trauma memories held by many in your system, but it really is okay to remember what has happened in your life, and you don’t have to be punished for that anymore.
Find ways to heal your wounds and comfort your heartaches.
Be kind to each other. Kind, gentle, soothing. Come together. Be a team.
Enjoy your weekend.
Some of you will be far enough in your healing journey that you can find the good things to enjoy about the holiday weekend.
Maybe you can enjoy a warm walk outside in the sunshine, or a handful of the kids’ favorite candy. Something near you may smell really nice – where is that?
Breathe deeply, bringing in things that are good.
Yes, there will be beauty in this weekend — see if you can find it.
Speaking of finding things….
Can you see the two caterpillars in the picture?
In my personal way of thinking, good beats out evil, so …. do your best to hold on tight till the darkness passes, and as soon as you can, find ways to reach those places of goodness, peace, comfort, joy, and love.
It’s okay to let go of that darkness. You don’t have to stay there any more. You can move over to a life of warmth now. You are allowed to do that.
You can do it, I know you can.
I am thinking of you all, and I wish you the best in your healing journey.
Happy Easter everyone.
Copyright © 2008-2018 Kathy Broady MSW and Discussing Dissociation
It really helped to read this I come from a cult background my body has been reliving an Easter eve when my baby was sacrificed your blog gives me hope that I can get on the other side of this
Thank you for the reminder, no matter how many times we try to tell ourselves it’s going to be okay, it is never enough during these holidays. I appreciate your insight and the knowledge you share!
the Collective says
ok. what the heck. i think i have posted two comments to this article and both have disappeared. i wont get paranoid i wont get paranoid lol
Kathy Broady says
hi Collective —
Both your very wonderful and meaningful posts went thru’– they did, they did! I was away from my computer and slow in approving them so they could be seen. Your comments were very good, thoughtful, encouraging, heart-written, and thank you for posting them.
As an FYI for everyone — I still choose to manually approve every comment made on this blog. I don’t leave this blog to just sit here open and vulnerable for anyone to post on. That’s just toooooo risky if you ask me — I weed out trash talk or spam or pure darkness. Don’t need that stuff here! SO….. that means, I can be slow in approving comments for viewing, but it makes it safer here. So don’t stress — I’ll get to it, I will, I will. 🙂
The Collective, I wish you the very best in your healing journey, and I’m glad that reading here is a comfort and help for you. Thank you for coming by. 🙂
the Collective says
Ahh ok i see now. Paranoia averted. I’m happy to know you protect this site. Very cool 🙂 I hope you had a Happy Easter. It the great state of Oklahoma it was raining and a bit chilly…perfect sleeping weather in which we took full advantage. We like that you have a good sense of humor.
the Collective says
Thank you very much for posting this Kathy. It popped up right when I needed an outside source of comfort. This time of year is so hard. In the past I would have been doing anything and everything to avoid feeling anything and everything. Today, I sat on my couch and wrote. For us as a collective, we wrote. It was painful. We will write more too. It will still be painful. What we didn’t do was self-harm. We are fighting and in chaos. We found a way to get it out without hurting ourselves or anybody else. I would never have thought that other people were having the very same internal struggles as we are. I like coming to this site and seeing that what we feel is not unlike many others. I never knew and would have never thought my thoughts and feelings would be understandable. Some moments i feel like I can breathe but a lot of times I feel i am not going to make it out of the dark. I searched the site for other Easter posts. You have several. They are all good. Thank you for them. Thank you for caring. You don’t even know me, but today when I needed comfort and care, the email link to this article popped up and I felt cared about.
the Collective says
Thank you for this Kathy. You take really fun pics. You are an excellent writer, too. I was just sitting here thinking how much cutting would make the chaos stop and battling out the decision in my head. Although I know there are others having a hard time too this week i thought i was the only one thinking about the things you wrote about. If you were writing to a lot of people and you know how we are feeling then I cant be making this up or be crazy. And I am not alone. If I am not alone I feel like I can make it. My alters have been doing such a great job lately of coming together and working and playing too, then we started going downhill, then this morning hit. But we will read and read this article again. I may print it out and put it on my wall above my desk. We made it last year and the year before and so on. We are stronger this year, we know more. I really liked what you said. Thank you for reposting it.
Forget dignity we wanna take a bar of soap and write COWARD all over his car !!!!!!
No maybe curl up with my kitten and read pretty stories
Wait. Go down to the water
Breathe in the salt air
Pretend i never met him
Never heard his voice
Never told him
Say to myself don’t give up even though he did.
I haven’t written for a while. i started hurting myself again before Christmas and was ashamed.
I am confounded as to why i always have had a hard time because spring is such a pretty time of year. I do know that this past week was hard as it marked the anniversary of abuse that drove me into therapy, was the birthday of my recently deceased parent, and the occasion of a terrible accident for loved ones. Also i have recently joined the ranks of discontinued people.
My therapist of several years told me when our session was over that i am out of his realm and should be referred on. He has known a good deal about my dissociation for a long time and coaxed me in that last session to tell him more. I did so carefully, and told him i was afraid to say because of how it would sound. I told him i felt alone with it though and that i needed the sense of connection i sometimes felt in our sessions. I have never asked for anything outside of our sessions, was never out of control, always came on time and waited, and paid my bill promptly every time. But that was it, pronouncement at end of session, session over, no referrals. How long did he know he was going to do this?
He called 12 days after that last session with the names of two therapists he had just found that morning; one doesn’t take my insurance and the other is a strong proponent of a type of therapy that was a horrible experience for me with longlasting repercussions. He asked if he could call me back in a couple of days to check on me and i said yes thank you. And that was almost two weeks ago and no word from him.
I read your article about suddenly losing your therapist and everyone’s comments. I’m trying not to do the things that “the DID survivor tends to” do.
Can i be strong enough not to let this hurt and define me?
Do i risk a new therapist? Can i hang on to the progress i made or do i need to push away from therapy memories?
I don’t want to have to ask him for anything more. I feel like i want to wrap my tattered dignity around me like an old threadbare shawl and walk away. I can’t afford any more mental entanglement there. So maybe i’m better off? I know i am the only one who can decide these things.
Thanks, Kathy, for being here- teaching, understanding, responding, caring. I appreciate the work you’ve taken on.
Thanks also to all who contribute with their comments- may you find peace from your pain.
Kathy Broady says
Reblogged this on Discussing Dissociation and commented:
Maybe some of you are triggered by finding Easter eggs. Here is an Easter related post, but we are looking for caterpillars instead.
Do your little ones see the funny caterpillars??
Have fun when you can. 🙂
Thank you for this excellent post – at what is a pretty rotten time of year for many with a history of abuse. Also this week appeared an article suggesting DID and Dissociative Disorders were a ‘fad’ – here are some links showing the opposite it true
Jill Summerville Sparks says
It isn’t just Easter that’s a struggle. If it were the holiday, it would make sense. Not for us though. March and April are particularly bad for us. We just wish we knew and understood why.
We are reason finders, looking for reasons to why this and why that. If it doesn’t make sense, we go to great links to find the answers. This though, just has no answer.
It is an empty blank page sitting here in front of us. It is marked by great pain, depression, and anxiety with no logical explaination.
Then there is this great guilt that we should have a reason for feeling as bad as we do. We don’t.
We just suffer.. Knowing others struggle too this time of year… Yet they
Seem to have a reson for their tears. We wish ther was a reson for ours too.
Somtims its not ok to no stuff.
But thank you for riting this its a nise leter.
This dos be a intents wekend.
Reblogged this on MirrorGirl and commented:
A therapist discussing dissociation and also gives encouragement for those affected with it now this eastern. Remember: you’re all butterflies just waiting to transform
Good that you share your concern for people struggling. Is it okay to reblog this post?
Kathy Broady says
Thank you for reading Discussing Dissociation.
And yes, of course, it is ok to reblog this post — just please keep my name and links back to this blog included. 🙂
I wish you the best in your healing journey –
I will do that 🙂 have nice evening 🙂
Thank you so much for this post, I can’t tell you how much we needed to hear it.
Kathy Broady says
Hi minn70 –
Thanks for reading this blog. I appreciate hearing from you, and I am glad that the writings here have been helpful. That’s excellent.
Please take kind, gentle care of yourselves….
It`s been building up for weeks. Flashes of memory I don`t want to remember and shame for surviving.
It`s kind of you to remember there are people `out there` who really struggle with this time.