Factitious/FAKE DID: The Expert Checklist | Dissociative Identity Disorder

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A regularly discussed issue: who's faking DID and how can you tell?
This video takes into account an expert's checklist on the issue, whilst reminding others that we need to handle these situations without shame or aggressive confrontation.
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===Whilst we may give self-help tips and advice, we are not a replacement for any mental health professional===
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★ Resources: ★
★ Additional references: ★
☆ Challenges in the Treatment of Factitious Disorder: A Case Study
☆ Iatrogenic dissociative identity disorder—An evaluation of the scientific evidence. (Brown, Frischholz, & Scheflin (1999)).

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💬 Comments
Author

Thank you for this, Jess. It will be extremely helpful going forward in raising awareness and training professionals in correct diagnostic skills. Very well balanced, drawing on key research and offering insight from your own perspective. This will become a key video to point people towards when they doubt their own diagnosis. Clinically, my experience is seeing people with DID who do not hit these flags, and helping those people understand what DID is through expert-by-experience is critical, so your educational videos help enormously. Keep up the good work!

Author — Mike Lloyd

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My brain: I’m faking DID.
The facts: There’s no way you are. You fit all of the criteria and you don’t want to tell people so it can’t be for attention.
My brain: I must be watching this video so I can get better at faking DID.
The facts: Wait-

Author — Tyler

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So I found the DID community on YouTube about a year ago I only found you a couple months ago. However I did just recently meet a girl I really like that has DID and she was so concerned about bringing somebody new into her life and honestly I want to thank you because I at least had enough education to make her feel welcomed and they are some of the most amazing people I have met!

Author — The_underestimated

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I appreciate she's not shaming those suffering with fictitious did. They are still suffering and need help even though it's a different condition. I don't know what I have and often doubt myself and tell myself I'm making it up, and that isn't something to put more guilt on myself . Speak to a professional regardless I think.

Author — Emily Geddes

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I have an emotionally abusive ex who faked having DID only after we started dating. He admitted in the beginning that he was purposely role playing his alters so they could date mine. This made me extremely uncomfortable when he was “creating” very young alters to date an alter in my system who I considered my child. I said something to him about it and he told me he had never said he was creating them, that it was offensive that I even asked him about it, and that I was being cruel. I reminded him of what he had said previously and he insisted he never said that and that I couldn’t trust my memory. He also told me my own trauma, which I have evidence of from others in my family, was something I dreamt up. He maintained that he never had amnesia throughout our whole relationship and said he could control his alters, until he cheated on me with my friend and then suddenly he had amnesia and no control over what was happening. I definitely think he needed help, yeah. But what he did was definitely harmful and I have spoken to other people with similar experiences. Sometimes in abusive relationships, especially if you have been through previous abuse as a child, you can’t just distance yourself from the person. Especially if they have distanced you from everybody else in your support system.

I’m glad you covered this topic though, because it’s something I feel like so many people in the community are afraid of talking about.

Author — System K

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Also, people know of they’re intentionally “faking”. If you didn’t sit down one day and thought up a disorder to fake, you’re most likely not faking. I don’t have DID, so I can’t speak on that experience, I’m chronically ill and disabled and I’ve been accused of faking by doctors and friends and family members many times. And it really made me struggle with believing myself and my symptoms, and just made me question my reality and memories. But I know I didn’t sit down and decide to fake chronic pain. I’m not gaining anything from not being able to do things anymore. And I think it’s important to remember if you’re struggling with worrying if you might be faking, that it’s a conscious choice. Because if it isn’t you definitely still need treatment. You deserve to feel better.

Author — Anja

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i think this is the most honest video I've seen about faking DID

Author — Kela

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When my dissociative symptoms first started interfering with my life, a friend actually confronted me saying "is it you today or (alter name)" and I was pretty confused. She told me to look up DID, so I did and thought it was interesting but nothing I could have. A few months went past and the thought of DID would just pop up in my head when I least expected it, so I looked it up again, and sort of had a moment when I realized some of my symptoms matched up. On top of that, another friend had informed me I had introduced myself by another name at one point. So, I went to therapy when it got to the point I couldn't take it anymore, and started off by bringing up DID, which was not the best idea. The psychologist I saw immediately wrote me off as a faker for going there with the idea of DID already, when really I was just concerned. I could see it in her eyes, the exact moment she stopped listening. I'm definitely not faking my symptoms, and as time goes on I'm more and more sure I have DID. But to many people the fact I came to my own conclusion means I'm pretending. I actually often doubt myself for that reason, and the reason that I came to the online community because I felt alone in my struggles. The only reason I would prefer a diagnosis, whether DID or not, is because I won't be able to stay with my current psychologist forever, and having a clear "label" would help ensure I was able to continue treatment somewhere else.

Author — Roo C

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My ex-boyfriend faked having DID. He admitted to it over a year after I met him. I knew that if he was lying about it, he needed help in some way and he just didn't know how to show it so I stayed with him and was supportive as possible. Although, after he cheated on me all of the awful things he would say to me as his alter came back. He would use his fake alter to cheat and be awful without consequences. I hope that he didn't make anyone at school doubt the legitimately if DID. I can see how their experience with him could hurt someone they meet with legitimate DID

Author — Kar Thawne

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You handled this very tricky topic with such maturity and compassion. Thank you for helping the community by creating this resource. There was a lot of loving reassurance for both those with genuine and factitious DID here. I don't think anyone but you could have created that environment so well. -Wyn

Author — The Entropy System

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I think it's SO important to try and not see people with factitious disorders as 'bad' or malicious. Often there's a deeper reason why they feel the need to (consciously or otherwise) mimic DID symptoms, and that reason is often more innocent than you might think.
If you really can't bring yourself to show compassion or understanding-step away. There's a huge gatekeeping problem in the online community (I've not been in said community for a while for that very reason).

Author — The Blanket Fort Cohort

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I will say, as someone who experiences a state of mild-severe dissociation/derealization daily, and suffers from bpd (extreme mood changes daily), I did ask my psych whether it was possible I had d.i.d. I never pretended I had it, or tried to emulate it... I just wanted answers. They gave me a simple test, and it was able to let us both know that I do not suffer from d.i.d. However, I am finding IFS therapy very helpful, as the therapist or yourself talks to the different parts of oneself, only I do not have the amnesic walls between those parts of oneself that someone suffering from d.i.d. experiences. (sorry if I misspoke on any part)

Author — Puck

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At the risk of getting hate, as someone who has " considered having did" you KNOW when you're faking. It just feels different. you can tell when youre talking to your own self. Its like reading both parts to a script. That you wrote lmao. ( These were only internal thoughts never verbalized to anyone or for any gain. Simply introspection to asses my life and consider possibilities, it was quickly ruled out )

Author — Fern Flowers

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“Distance yourself” - best advice in general for anyone becoming uncomfortable around anyone (boundaries!) but even more important in delicate instances like these if for example someone is becoming particularly offensive to you and you want to avoid huge conflicts/getting involved in addressing something only a therapist should be dealing with. Great video

Author — Claudia D

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I feel like this video is the strongest and most effective response to a topic that comes up again and again in the DID community.

Author — BeAwesomeful

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We flip-flop so often, as host I find the times where my head is finally quiet I manage to convince myself I'd made everything up - the moment I hear someone or they come forward again I remember just how real it all is. We needed this today!!!

Author — Maddie Breed

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Me the host: I’m faking this

All my alters: damn guess we aren’t real!

Author — Clipping insect Studio

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This is so complex, isn't it? Because consistency and a motivation to prove validity seem to be listed as markers of faking. At the same time, this disorder is so often misdiagnosed and misunderstood, that it's not so surprising a system would want to come in with the correct paperwork. I think the study overall comes with good intentions and it had potential, but there needs to be way more research before we make these big claims.

Author — Joelle Bouwman

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I almost convinced myself I had DiD at one point. I've always been interested in mental disorders and how the brain is so complex. In school I'd always go for brain problems specifically when given the option to research something. So when researching stuff like schizophernia I had to reasure myself I didn't have it from time to time. I believe there is a word for that. The more you look into it, the more you can identify with the symptoms.

I do not discredit the fact that I do have other types of problems (as we all do) I am just saying that with the problems I have, I see how other people may lean into diagnosing themselves with something (as I see it) so massive. Because lets be real guys, its scary and not something to glamorize. Its scary, plain and simple. I did bring it up with my therapist at one point and within that week my "symptoms" stopped because I started dealing with what was really wrong rather than covering it up.
Now, this is my expirence alone. I still went to my therapist with this and sorted it out. Because again, this isnt something to glamorize and it was scary. So of course I wanted to know whats was wrong. If you feel something is wrong, then something IS wrong. You may have an idea of what it could be, but always be open to what it actualy is. Seek help!

Hope my rambles made sense. Remember to take care of yourself with honesty.

Author — T Fig

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I'm curious to know if you've read much of the research coming out of Harvard in recent years with regards to DID/OSDD? I've found many of the articles and research done by Bethany L. Brand and her colleagues to be very interesting, especially those related to the validity of the various instruments out there intended to measure difference in dissociation between the disorders and which ones are able to differentiate simulated DID and genuine DID. If you haven't read much of her work, I highly recommend it. Thanks for this video! Very well done.

Author — D.I.D. and Me