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Boyfriend with DID

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Q. This is the problem. I have been told by my boyfriend so many things I can’t keep track of them. First he said he was in the occult then he said he was into this and into that and when I ask him about it again he denies saying anything about it. He keeps me at arms length and says things like you need to run from me because I am not good for you, you don’t want to be around me and he once again denies he said it. This is a merry go round. Some of his personalities are very nice and some are mean as heck. When I ask him to get help he says that I am narcissistic and attacks me emotionally. He attacks then he cools off and comes back as meek as a lamb. Understanding him is impossible. He presents himself to others as a very nice guy but attacks me emotionally to the point where everything is my fault and he will tell everyone that it is! Help!

Boyfriend with DID

Answered by on -

A.

You need some clarity and he needs the assistance of a mental health professional. Does he legitimately have dissociative personality disorder (DID) or is he just acting out because he is mentally unstable? I cannot determine this information based on your short letter.

This situation is concerning for two reasons. One reason is that he may in fact have a DID diagnosis and be unaware and unable to control how he behaves when one of his “other” personalities emerge. If this is the case, and he loses control when this situation occurs, this may put you and he at risk.

My second concern is that he doesn’t have DID but is just mentally unstable. Based on your letter, his personality changes rapidly and unexpectedly. And when it does change, you become the target of his abuse. This is not only unfair to you but the fact that his personality changes so dramatically and unpredictably puts you in danger of a physical attack.

Under each scenario, you are targeted, blamed and as you have said, emotionally abused.

Please know that people with DID are not known to be dangerous. I only mention dangerous as part of this response because of the unpredictability of his personality shift and the apparent inability he displays to control his actions when his personality changes. His personality shifts seem abrupt and often when these incidents occur, as you have said, he emotionally abuses you. I would offer this same warning to anyone who is dealing with an unstable person who is acting irrationally.

For your own protection, ask him to seek professional help, and at least a psychiatric evaluation. If he refuses help and his out of control, emotionally abusive behavior continues you may have to strongly consider ending the relationship. I hope this helps.

Boyfriend with DID

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Boyfriend with DID. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 23, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/05/26/boyfriend-with-did/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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