First Person Plural: My Life as a Multiple

This book is a true life story of Cameron West who was diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder or formally known as Multiple Personality Disorder.  When he was younger, he was abused by close family and friends.  In order to protect Cam from being mentally hurt, alters choose to form and take the abuse instead.  Years later, one of his alters lashed out and cut him, making him aware of the abuse.  The book is about him trying to live with D.I.D. and trying to keep his life intact.  Cameron West has 24 alters all together, all sharing the same mind and body.  It’s a struggle to live with the denial of abuse for Cam and it takes the whole book to get over that. He now is a licensed psychologist, and more power to him!

 There are 24 alters, but only the core group really comes out in the book.  Only a couple more come out towards the end, but they aren’t in the core group.  They are each different from each other.   Davy was the first to emerge and doesn’t come out that often anymore.  He’s four-years-old and is a sweet but very sad alter.  There are also two four-year-old twins by the names of Anna and Trudi.  Anna is the cheerful one out of the two; Trudi only feels pain and sadness.  They both remember the abuse.  Clay is eight-years-old with a stutter and tense muscles.  Switch is also eight and has incredible rage.  He is the alter that would hurt the body.  Dusty is a twelve-year-old girl that is gentle and kind.  She often comes out when there is shopping or cooking to do.  She helps take care of the smaller alters.  Bart is 28 and used to scare everyone with horrible nightmares.  Now, he protects the little ones and takes control when crises arise.  Leif drive Cameron.  In his thirties, he never takes over completely, he helps get through accomplishments.  Per is ageless and is the father figure of all the alters.  He’s poetic and has a connection to the forces of balance and nature.  Despite all the alters, Cameron is a family man.  He’s kind, smart, and wants what everyone wants; normalcy. 

 This is one of my favorite books, also one of the few books I wish they would make into a movie.  But with the graphic sexuality, I’m sure it will never be done (same with A Child Called It), even if I’ve seen worse things in movies.  I think one of the reasons why I like this book so much is that it is real and dips into a life that is way different from my own.  That realism takes me out of my own mind and makes me think that my life isn’t that bad.  But this book also inspires me.  It takes a lot of courage to control 24 alters’.  I couldn’t imagine that situation and having to live with it.  His struggles are what make him stronger and it’s a definite ride through hell.  Living with 24 people, let alone just in your head, there’s constant talking and opinions that would make anyone go mad; and he did.  He’s a strong character that truly shows that you can overcome any obstacle no matter what the condition of your mind is.  His struggles with keeping his wife and son are so sad, and your heart just aches for them.  To lose his family would be losing the world.  They are the only people left in his life that he really cares about.

 This book is at the top of my favorite book list and there’s quite a few up there.  This had an impact on my life and I enjoyed the happiness, the pain, the sorrow, the hope in this book.  Shouldn’t all books do that?