Introduction for Singular Systems
This is under construction while this notice is on the page.
Most resources on this site are intended as self-help for plural & multiple systems, but of course much of the information on the site can be useful for singular allies, spouses, friends, acquaintances and coworkers. Here's some articles and notes that will be helpful for dealing with and understanding plural/multiple systems better.
The article title is a little tongue-in-cheek. Folk who are not multiple or plural (systems) are a singular (entity) or singular (system). Everyone is a system (our YouTube video "Everything is a System"), technically speaking. We're each members of other systems, and contain subsystems (like a belief system, or digestive system). Plurals & multiples contain other mental entities within their overall system, and sometimes have other groups of entities nested within their system. But most multiples & plurals use "system" to mean multiple or plural system, not singular system. We think leaving out the descriptive noun only works within the context of the overall plural community.
If all you know about plurality or DID is based on movies, mass-media representations, the grapevine, etc., or if your opinions are strongly swayed by the same, you definitely will want to listen to New (or read the script for) "Beyond the Movies: Debunking myths about DID & plural systems" New.
Whetherthat's too long and you can't digest it, or you want something more specific — here's a short article for the worst-in-show myths: How dangerous are Multiples? New.
Dealing with Plurals & Multiples
- How can you tell when a multiple switches? New
- A brief guide to Etiquette when dealing with Multiples
- Explaining the Experience of Being or Meeting Multiples
Shifting Your Paradigm
It can be difficult to wrap your head around this person you have known for a long time being many people now. Here's some ideas to help make the paradigm shift easer.
If you're in a very close relationship with a multiple system, you're likely to trigger a panic reaction at some point, even if you try your best not to. Not everyone is aware of or can compensate for all of someone else's triggers.
- Here's some information to recognize the various ways that folk in a plural system may react to their own panic reactions. New
- This is a terrific podcast episode to listen to with your new plural or multiple acquaintance New especially if they're new to their diagnosis, afraid of their own system, and still reeling. You'll both benefit from it. It's the first episode of the System Trust Issues New podcast series for folk who have trouble getting along with their headmates, but it may help you both have more understanding and compassion around what is going on.
- Long-time community ally & singular supporter Jim Bunkleman created a conference session for singular allies: Supporting Plurals.
Plural Support Community Issues
While singular people have no particular rights or clout within discourse about plural & DID systems, identity labeling, or experiences, if these arguments and stances have gone across your news feeds, or if you have a desire to get told to butt out, you may want to be more knowledgable about what is going on, and why the arguments alone are a problem. The divisions in the plural/multiple community are hugely problematic, and allies would be best off being observers than participants. Even then, knowing the basics about what we're arguing about is fair, and this section will help with that.
- Information on inclusive plural community vs. exclusive multiple community (also known as "Syscourse" or system discourse) New