Family of Origin and Stupid Suggestions

My brother left me a message yesterday, very excited, wanted to suggest something. I called him back. Sometimes we have an okay conversation and sometimes he just wants to argue. I hate arguing, that is an old family tradition.

First let me say that he knows I am multiple, that I am a ritual abuse survivor and has sometimes called me with suggestions or questions. None of which are helpful, understanding, or healing.

He started out by asking me if I know any ritual abuse survivors who are healed and not having any abuse related issues. I told him no I don’t. He kept asking me over and over.

The hard part about dealing with him is that he gets a little knowledge and goes a bit berserk about it all. He once listened on the radio to an interview with a therapist who worked with multiple clients. I was thinking oh this is one of those times, someone told him something and he is trying to make a point.

He didn’t want to believe me. He said well there must be some out there. I said yes, there are. I just don’t know any of them. He said well there must be survivors who heal and have a life and all of that. Yes, I affirmed, there must be. Some of them write books, I just don’t know them.

He said well I have a suggestion for you. He didn’t say where he got this suggestion. I should have asked. But every time I tried to say something he would just talk over me.

So his brilliant suggestion for me was to take a drug called MDMA. I wasn’t online to check out what it was. In trying to get some information out of him, I asked is it a hallucinogenic? Thinking this is the kind of thing he would suggest. I asked him is this a psychoactive drug? He said no. Well it is, he just doesn’t realize that it is.

He said it is ecstasy. I told him no. He continued to highly recommend it, because “it could help open up parts of my mind.” Apparently that is what it has done for him. That it could help me with healing.

He said that it was used in couples therapy. Yes before it was criminalized.  Online it says depression as well. Though the efficacy has never been proven.

Apparently someone is looking at clinical uses for the drug, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and anxiety for cancer patients. No results have been published yet. Not one study.

Told my brother no. I am anti-drug and anti-med and he knows it. I told him that medications that others might be able to use are not necessarily okay for someone with DID to use. He still believes I should try it. I assured him that parts of my mind were opened up enough.

This is the level of familial discourse I have. I’m not sure if it is better or worse than the silence I get from others.

8 thoughts on “Family of Origin and Stupid Suggestions

  1. I’m sorry that you have to go through this. It must be very frustrating. I have a mother-in-law that does this with my parenting skills.. I just try to ignore it, but it can get to you at some point.

    We need our growing space, not necessarily fixing! I don’t really have an opinion on the drug. Although I would like to know what others think! I have heard that ecstasy was used for a number of things. My opinion is that it takes away your control and that is what we are aiming for- to be more in control of our lives. I think that as multiples if we trust ourselves we know what is best for us, sure sometimes we need some guidance and to see things in a different perspective but deep inside ourselves we know!

    I think its important to see this in perspective. Your brother asked you if you know people who are multiple who are healed etc. I have thought about it a lot, and a lot of times it gets me down… it takes away my hope of living a normal healthy life. I want to encourage you – by what I read, the things you wrote! It’s amazing!! Remember that even if we weren’t multiple and didn’t have to suffer abuse – everybody has issues, even “normal” people. Don’t let him label you!

    Do what you feel is right for you!


    • Hi Identity,

      I’m sorry you go through that with an in-law and about parenting, that makes it even worse.

      I think you are right about the issue of control. The drug brings down inhibitions, from what I have heard and read. That would not be helpful or healing in our process or life.

      My brother knows that I have never taken an illegal drug and never plan on it. I think you are right about deep inside ourselves we know what is right for us, drugs have always been wrong for me.

      I explained to my brother that the multiples that I know are working on healing. That is what I am doing and that is why I have been involved with them in person and online. I would probably not be friends with integrated or healed multiples, I have explained to him in the past, due to a lack of shared interests. Healing binds me to other survivors who are working on healing. The more interests and the commonalities, the stronger of a bonding present.

      I have heard from therapists and from books that healing does happen and that it can be significant. I believe in that level of healing for us all.

      My brother’s agenda, which I should have mentioned, has always been to convince me to “get over it” rather than to work on healing or for him to understand that healing from what multiples went through is a long and ardous task. So his label would be to put me into being healed within a short period of time rather than labeling me as someone who wouldn’t. Sorry, I didn’t mean to be vague there.

      I think that he has always been heavily invested personally in the concept that you can just mind control yourself out of your pain and abuse history, since it worked for him. I really don’t think it did, but he does and I would call that denial rather than true healing.

      Good and healing thoughts to you.



  2. *sigh*

    Drugs don’t heal. Never have, never will … any more than religion heals, or any other panacea. Healing heals, and it’s hard, and it hurts. Your brother wants an easy fix, and thinks he’s found one … and if you buy into it, it will validate his delusion, which he’s clearly desperate for you to do.

    Poor guy.


    • Hi David,

      I agree with you.

      My brother has spent over twenty years trying to convince me that I don’t need to work on healing, and that is after knowing that I am a ritual abuse survivor and a multiple.

      His personal healing method is positive thinking, drugs, and pushing down the pain from our family of origin. He has been supportive in some ways. However he is not supportive of my working on healing.

      It hurts him to see that I am still in pain; emotionally, psychically, and physically. It hurts him to have to see me dealing with the aftermath of abuse, especially when he won’t deal with his own stuff. I have always considered this stuff seriously deluded. I don’t cut him any slack on this stuff, but being honest and straighforward with him only gets me so far. It doesn’t change him. It doesn’t change his mind.

      I am very honest with him and he is very pernicious in his views. Underneath is a love that he has for me. That helps to deal with him. But his issues are very huge and that also is always between us.

      It would be nice to have a family of origin person who I can talk to about being multiple and healing, but this is the level that my sibs have risen to. It is pathetic while being amusing all at the same time.

      Thanks for your kind words and support.



  3. Anybody who attempts to persuade you to do illegal drugs is not your friend. I’m glad you have the courage to tell him you won’t do it.


    • Hi Ivory,

      Sometimes relatives and their own agendas are very counter-productive to healing. Since he has known me all my life and knows my beliefs, he would know my response. He has never suggested this before and probably won’t ever again.

      I have never used drugs. I don’t like taking any medicines and I am quite sensitive to side effects. I don’t feel like it took courage, just a very opinionated belief system and a life spent shunning drugs. Thank you for thinking me courageous.



  4. Hey Kate,
    What your brother is trying to do sounds like ‘bargaining’ to me. It’s possible he might have seen/heard something about DID that confronted him with the truth that it does exist and other people take it seriously, and then went jumping for a way not to have to experience the grief of knowing that his own sister has DID and it really is that bad.

    I think people jump through a lot of wierd hoops in order not to experience grief. My older brother avoids me mostly, I think, in order to not have to think about or feel our family tragedy.

    Your post has got me thinking, wondering if the real way to answer my brother (and maybe yours) is to say something directly about the grief like: “I know when faced with something this serious and tragic we want to look for ways to avoid it or make it go away. I want you to know I survived and I’m healing, and that all I need from you is to accept that, feel your own feelings about it and love me.”

    I’ve never done any drugs either and avoid meds too – sounds like for similar reasons. However, if I had something neurobiological that meds were the best option to help with I’d take them, just like I’d take antibiotics for a serious infection.

    Thanks for sharing about your brother, Kate.


    • Hi SDW,

      I think you are right about my brother. When he heard this interview he learned some things and I know he believed in the abuse and my being DID beforehand, but I think hearing it made him feel it and believe it on a personal level. This therapist was talking about integrating one client. He wanted that for me. I have been very frustrated with this therapist who did not tell the whole truth, how long of a process integration is, how it would take years, how you have to process and feel and heal very abusive memories that come up. So his concept and his need was to believe that it could be quick. He still insists that is so, even though I tell him it is not.

      I have given the words you are suggesting. It doesn’t help, but I keep trying to tell him versions of what you are suggesting. I am tenacious.

      He tells me about this person he knows who is multiple. She has a worse history than me, more health issues than me, and was even homeless for a time, living in her car and having health crises. And his big point is she has an upbeat personality and demeanor. He wants that for me. I think he really really wants that for himself so that he doesn’t have to be faced with what I am going through. It is not as though I share a great deal with him, it is just that knowing I am going through this is more than he wants to have to cope with.

      I do believe in meds, in their place. I think we agree on that.

      Good and healing thoughts to you.



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