Posts Tagged ‘Jerry Mungadze’


More Thoughts on Herschel Walker and DID

April 16, 2008

OK. I have been doing a lot of article reading and video interview watching since this was first brought to my attention. Naturally, I had to first work through what was being triggered by my own reaction to seeing and hearing Mungaze. So, I have taken some time to really look at this and think things through. Setting my own feelings about Jerry aside…these are my thoughts on this.

I wonder…where is the severe trauma that I have always read/heard is needed for DID to develop? I do realize that it could be unremembered, but Herschel has insisted that there was no sexual abuse, physical abuse, etc.

So being fat and having a speech impediment and being teased can cause DID? Hmmmm. I am not saying he does not have it. His wife certainly describes things that sound right on the money. Yet, I am concerned.

Something just does not feel right to me. The lack of severe trauma causes me to wonder if there is not, at least on some level, a publicity thing going on here. This brings Herschel’s name back into the limelight. Remember, this man thrives on drivenness and accomplishing things…different things…new things. That is what I pick up on from reading so many articles about this. Is this book just another part of that? Is it part of a need to be recognized? Or to be pushing himself into a another new thing…both the new thing of writing a book and the new thing of being in the middle of a controversy? I don’t know. I just know my gut does not feel real good about this whole thing.

I am very concerned about the seeming connection being made between having DID, being teased for being fat with a speech impediment and having a “murderous” alter. Multiples have been a laughing stock for a long time now and I am afraid this just might fuel the fire rather than serve to quench it.

There are always those who will jump on the bandwagon. I can just see it now…people who are teased suddenly start having DID and DID becomes the catchword for people with anger issues, just as most every person who has difficulty sitting still suddenly has ADD, which hurts the ones who really DO have it.

Will DID became a catch all, causing the naysayers to point their fingers and say “See! We told you so! All it takes is a well known person to come out with having any kind of condition and suddenly the number of diagnoses being made skyrockets! Just like after the release of ‘Sybil’ and ‘Three Faces of Eve’!”?

I know…there are some key indicators of having alters, but a true diagnosis can be tricky to come by, especially for those who are very co-conscious/present. But there ARE also the theatrical ones who will be very suggestible and who can appear to have DID. High dissociators, even if they do not have DID, ARE very suggestible. And there ARE some therapists who, if a diagnosis is made socially “acceptable” will push for that diagnosis…sad to say. The good ones won’t…but then, it is never the good ones that cause me concern. It is always the bad ones.

Aren’t we all already fighting an uphill battle for acceptance and to be believed, especially in regards to our having experienced the trauma we experienced…in addition to struggling with whether or not to share that we have DID? With this being made public, I would be even more hesitant to share that I have DID for fear someone might think I might have a murderous alter that I don’t know about. Or that they would be hesitant to take me seriously after hearing that you can get it for simply being teased while growing up.

I know…it could be a good conversation starter for what DID is REALLY all about. Hubby and I have talked about that. But I am just concerned about the picture of DID that this is painting. If Herschel Walker really does have DID, he is only one example of how it can work. From what I have read, he fits in the minority profile of how it manifests.

So, THAT is what I am afraid will happen. Maybe it won’t. I sure HOPE it won’t! I hope this will only serve to open people’s minds to reality…but somehow…something in my gut tells me this may end up hurting things…not helping.

My personal thought on this book? I think it was foolish to publish it without first uncovering what trauma he experienced that was so severe as to cause DID. In fact, I think it may actually be bordering on totally irresponsible. I am saddened that Jerry would encourage this. I am truly fearful that we are going to see more negative backlash coming from this than positive forward motion.

I sincerely hope that I am WRONG!!!!

Just my thoughts. I may be waaaaaaaaayyyy out in left field on this one…or even out of the ball park completely.


Herschel Walker, Jerry Mungadze and DID

April 15, 2008

As I started to mention briefly in a previous post, I have been reading and watching the story about Herschel Walker and his new book about his battle with DID. I am also looking at the comments made by Jerry Mungadze and by Herschel’s ex-wife. It is going to be interesting to see how this pan outs. Will it help those with DID to be more understood? Or will it just create more stereotypes, thus making it more difficult? I really don’t know.

I have a difficult time, admittedly, listening to anything Jerry has to say. It is not that I do not believe him. It is just that I have had a negative experience with the man. While I do not doubt the experiences of Walker, I cannot help but notice that Jerry writing the forward in the book will definitely help to put his hospital and program on the map. It does bring him into the limelight, as it were. Nope…not gonna give you a link to his site. You will have to find it yourself.

I have met him in person…Jerry, that is. I have communicated with him via phone, IM and email. I am not impressed. Oh, at first I was, when I met him at a conference given by a friend. He seemed to me then like a pretty awesome guy and I was very won over by his personality and his kindness. He very graciously offered to help me out with something then…and again later. The first offer did not pan out…no fault of his. The second, I simply did not ever take him up on.

I stayed in contact off and on after that and then did ask him for help with something, to which he again graciously agreed. I don’t know if he changed in the time between meeting him in person and actually ending up trying to work with him; or if I just did not see him as he really was back then. All I know is that I happened to disagree with him about something and it all went downhill from there…fast. Is it him? Is it me? Is it both of us? I don’t know. What I do know is that I had a very negative and hurtful experience with him and have no desire to see or talk to him again. Although, if he is willing to answer the questions I kept posing to him and have a real dialog…I would at least think about it. **smile**

Anyway, back to the book! I sincerely hope that the publicity brought about by this book will do good for those who struggle with DID. I truly hope that the only motivation for publishing the book is to help others. I don’t know Herschel at all, so I cannot speak for his sincerity. As for Jerry, who it would seem encouraged him to write it since it has been stated that it was an important part of Herschel’s therapy, well…I just don’t know. There was a time when I would have thought I knew…but not any more.

I pray that those in society who have DID will not end up paying some kind of price for this notoriety. I have to say again that a very big concern I have is that Herschel openly says, and Jerry affirms, that he has a “murderous” alter. I would hate for people to think or believe that this is typical of people who have DID. From what I have seen, learned and experienced…it is NOT. So, that really concerns me about all the publicity surrounding this book. Many multiples have a tough go of things as it is. The last thing needed is for them to be painted as being murderous…or even just plain wierd.

It also concerns me that Herschel identifies himself as being mentally ill. Dissociative Identity Disorder is not a mental illness. It is a normal coping mechanism to an outrageously abnormal and horrific situation. I also do not like Jerry, or anyone else, saying that people ARE DID. People ARE NOT a disorder. They HAVE a disorder. **sigh** It always irritates me when people identify themselves as “being” DID…instead of “having” DID. I am so disappointed that Jerry did that same thing when talking of Herschel as “being DID”. Come on now, Jerry…you, of all people, ought to know better than that! You are the “expert”!

So, again, it will be interesting to see how this unfolds. I wish everyone involved well.

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