A Host's Perspective
Updated: Sep 3
I am the host of a DID/OSDD system. It's really weird to say that. Maybe it gets easier over time. It's weird to say because you probably don't know what that means, and I only have an idea of what it means.
I've been diagnosed for over three years and I still feel caught off guard when I'm confronted with evidence of dissociative identity disorder in my life.
Some of it feels really normal though, but the aspects that feel normal to me are things other people don't deal with. Like the conversations going on in my head between alters all the time. Ok, not ALL the time, but most of the time.
As I write this, two of the other alters are watching.
One of them wants to see the post because she is the main author of our current book. Lexi. She wrote Mercury Rising. She knows I'm going to post these blogs on our website and she's not sure if she wants "this stuff" connected to her story.
The other alter watching wants to monitor the post to make sure it's safe for the public. That's Jax. He's a system protector, so he's always watching out for us. Talking publicly about DID/OSDD is something he has encouraged, as long as we keep the content within certain boundaries.
Being the host of a system can feel like being a main character. I'm living in the world the most often, and interacting with people in our lives more than everyone else. But, like many main characters, I'm not the most interesting. I take solace in knowing that we are all a part of each other. As a whole system, we make up the person that most people know as Lilly.
Dissociative identity disorder is so different for every system that experiences it. Which must mean it's different for people who interact with systems as well. For example, other systems might tell you when they switch. We don't do this because it's jarring to the conversation. Most of the time, I'm co-concious anyway, so I will remember what's been talked about. Secretly, I like it when the person I'm talking to notices.
It makes us feel known.
However, if I bring it up before they notice, the conversation turns awkward. And I'm not a fan of awkward unless it's amusing in some way.
Being a host doesn't mean I'm the boss, or even that I make most of the decisions. There's a network of communication that goes on in my mind to make decisions. Everything from life decisions to clothing choices. It used to be worse though, in my teens and childhood I wasn't a part of the decision making process. I was just given information after the meeting took place.
It's better now. Time, a safer life, maturity, and hard work in therapy. That's how it got better. Now we are focused on communication and working together.
It's not a perfect system, but it's one that works.