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K.J. points to the excellent Layman's Guide to Multiplicity, a great resource on what's sometimes referred to as Dissociative Identity Disorder and used to be called Multiple Personality Disorder--but many plurals don't consider themselves to have a disorder. See also the Astraea's Web Multiple Personality Glossary for preferred terms, including definitions of "plural" and "multiple" in this context.

(And because I can read my readers' minds at a distance, I'm pretty sure that at least eighteen of you are already, before you even finish reading the preceding paragraph, preparing to recommend that I read Set This House in Order. Which is one of those books that's been recommended to me by so many people that I'm going to have to read it sooner or later. (And the facts that it's by Matt Ruff and won a Tiptree Award make me even more interested in reading it.) But given that it took me about ten years to read Tigana after people started recommending it to me, I recommend not holding y'all's collective breath.)

I'm especially intrigued by the term "walk-in"; a concept I had encountered before, but I didn't know a name for it.


Guess I'm not one of the 18. I normally enjoy Matt Ruff, but was not impressed with Set This House in Order. I'll grant that it's probably worth reading for the cultural context so you know what everyone else is pushing on you, though.

Jed, this is fascinating. I'm doing my psych ward rotation w/nursing school, and this one schizoid pt was telling me about her sister who is inside of her...this is great reading. Thanks for the url action!


Not sure what prompted this, but thanks for posting. I haven't read all the links, but those I have are valuable. A dear friend of mine is multiple/plural, and it is good to get more information.

This is not fiction (but for me it reads as interestingly as most people find fiction) but I recommend Dr. Cameron West's book, "First Person Plural: My Life as a Multiple". He doesn't as much have "blackouts" like "Sybil" but more frequently his people will be present in groups, each coloring the mix like one of those old "transparencies" on a projector from the 1970s (as one person described it). That way of being isn't as widely known about, but it makes a lot of sense.

There are some good reviews on Amazon, too.

Twig: Huh -- I think you're the only person I've heard say anything negative about that book.

Erin and Ellen: You're welcome!

A couple of people have now asked me what prompted this post. What prompted it was that KJ mentioned the site at some social gathering or other and I, having long been interested in multiples, went and checked it out; I thought it was interesting, so I linked to it. Nothing unusual or mysterious. I'm not sure what prompted the questions about what prompted the post; if y'all were asking "are you multiple?" or "did you just encounter someone who's multiple?", the answer to both questions is no.

Ellen: Thanks for the book rec!

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