Media’s Take on D.I.D. Part 1

Or one more time, how they get it wrong.

I was online last night trying to catch up on some shows that have returned this fall. With everything going on with the move, I am still behind on so many things that I am watching some shows online after their airdates. One new show last season showed a lot of promise, Lie to Me. It is about a deception expert and his agency and some of the cases that they work on. It is interesting.

This post is about the specifics of the first episode of the second season, The Core of It, so if you want to see it and don’t want to know the specifics of the episode you shouldn’t read any further. Here is a link if you want to see the episode:

The main character is far from honest, straight-forward, ethical. That concerns me. It showed up really badly in the season opener, a D.I.D. episode. I suppose they were hoping to exploit multiples like every show that has felt the need to do a requisite episode on a multiple serial killer or faker. They should have used an expert consultant on this episode and if they did, they need to get their money back and hire someone else next time.

A young woman shows up at a book signing to confess that she is a psychic and she witnessed a murder through a vision. The deception guy knows she is telling the truth. The fact is he only knows that she thinks she is telling the truth.

He and his staff quickly learn that she is multiple. Some “alters” come out to play and they feel perfectly free to hypnotize her. One of them, a sickly goody-two shoes type mentions another person’s name who told her she was the core of the person, who sounds like a therapist, but they never pursue that or try to get permission to do the things they are doing to them.

They learn quite easily a number of parts and their names. They learn of the grandfather’s sexual abuse, the genesis of the multiplicity. Really? Fucking really? This may take several therapists and over ten years to get a diagnosis and to the root of the problem, but you jerks manage it in a few precious minutes?

He even feels free to lock her in a room and attack her with the threat of rape in order to get her to switch to a protector, who was the witness of the murder.

Then she switches and the protector comes out. His partner in the business shouts a warning, alters are one-dimensional. If I wasn’t so insulted we would have laughed ourselves silly. How ludicrous. Yes some alters can be. No they aren’t one-dimensional, even those who have only been subjected to abuse and do not come out into the world much or at all. No we are not some cartoon characters. We are pieces of a shattered person, a shattered soul.

Just because the protector could not speak does not make him one-dimensional. You just insulted every able challenged person who cannot speak. No they are not one-dimensional because they cannot speak. And because he could not speak does not make him one-dimensional.

And what is it with the concept of having one part being the only victim and the only protector? Really? I don’t know any system where only one part is the abuse victim exclusively, even in a smaller size system. I don’t know many victimized parts that later become a protector. Though I’m sure it happens. My victimized parts are still too scared of the abusers to say much, let alone fight back with fists when assaulted, verbally abused and threatened with rape;  like this part does on the show.

And really a part who is a prostitute who commits crimes by stealing from johns? Please get fucking serious. Multiples do not commit crimes in a higher percentage than the general public.

Then to use her in a police operation to try to entrap the killer into making a confession. Really? To get her “power” back? Really? You have got to be fucking kidding me. You don’t think that everything you did with the system was disempowering, using, abusing, a breach of ethics, illegal? Really?  I thought I was watching Lie to Me not Insult to Me.

9 thoughts on “Media’s Take on D.I.D. Part 1

  1. I used to get really upset about the misrepresentation. I had the feeling it was going to make it harder to be me. It does not seem to have much effect.

    I do have a pat answer.It depicts being multiple as accurately as Hogan’s Hero depicts living in a German concentration camp. It is entertainment. I probably find it as entertaining as someone who survived the camps.

    I am not being dismissive about your feelings. It is wrong and ridiculous. I just wanted you to know that for me now it is OK and that it was not.


    • “I probably find it as entertaining as someone who survived the camps.”

      Yeah, I probably do as well. (Actually Hogan’s Heroes depicted service men in a soldier prisoners of war camp. Based loosely on the dramatic film, Stalag 17.)



  2. I’m glad you wrote about this. I saw the episode and it upset me… but at the same time, I couldn’t look away- I wanted to see how they would portray it. I have never known of anyone with DID who is that open to a complete stranger accessing her system. Of course, I was also appalled at the threat of rape to get information from the protector part.


    • I agree with you. No one shares like that, and no one seems obvious when they are switching, though at least they went with a more subtle switching on this one. Multiples are better actors than anyone else who has pretended to be them. Actually they all do a rotten job of acting the parts. I don’t see how they could portray themselves in the episode as the good guys after they abused her and her system. They just don’t get it. It was abuse. It was a violation of all of them, their mental health, and their rights to be self-determining. I am really dissapointed that their protector didn’t hit him more. He deserved it.

      Thanks for commenting. Good and healing thoughts to you.



  3. Kate,
    Yep. Amen. That episode offended my husband more than it did me. I think I was just sitting there in shock thinking really?
    I like the way you expressed it better! Although considering where I am in my process ( which I think you get) I understand why I just sat there staring. I am going to read him this post and he will agree I am sure.
    He liked the second episode of the season even less!!
    I am so proud of you for writing this. I think you should send it to the network.

    I am going to be very honest here about something that is incredibly sensitive in my marriage. My husband always had an anger issue. My therapist always tried to help me see this and have the power to stand up to him. Three years ago this coming Jan. I didn’t retreat inside one morning when he went of screaming at one of my boys. He had hit him by the time I made it in the room and got in between them. I became that mother Bear we fantasize about having. I told him to leave and not come back. He had intense therapy for several months. It was the best and most proud moment I have ever had as a Mother. He did not come back to our home for almost 4 months to live.

    The kind of courage to stand up and speak for yourself takes years of retraining and can NOT be shown in a Television show with any kind of respect. The producers and writers of Lie To Me are lying to themselves if they believe that show was respectful of Anyone who need to stand up for Themselves!!

    Thank you Kate.



    • Hi Vicki,

      Thanks for letting me know. I am so proud of you for standing up for your son. And for insisting he get the help that was necessary to break that cycle for himself. Yes it makes sense that you sat there staring. I think a lot of survivors do that. It is a coping mechanism from abuse. I do watch all the shows once I see where they are going, but it is not pleasant. It also is not entertainment. I have been thinking of sending them a letter, but I am not sure that I consider them smart enough to “get” why I am appalled at the episode. Thanks for your kind words of support.

      Good and healing thoughts to you.



  4. Kate,
    As always another good post. Your blog makes me think alot. After reading this I did a little experiment aka I did a twitter search. I searched DID/MPD to see what people are tweeting about it. I found the majority were using our disorder as something funny.

    The Media doesn’t help reinforce the seriousness of DID either. I found that after United States of Tara more people talk about DID yes, but I dont think its getting the right kind of attention. Especially for people who have no knowledge of DID. And it always seems that we are portrayed as criminals.

    I think it would be interesting if someone with a medical disorder like cancer, was portrayed as a criminal they would feel differently. I feel that the media may never give one in the DID community validation of what they survived and continue to survive. This makes me so angry because all DID survivors deserve the same respect that a cancer survivor gets. Why can’t we get our own month?

    I am in no way discounting a cancer survivors struggle, I am just saying that DID &; mental illness in general deserves to be free from exploitation.


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