Helen suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder, a rare condition characterized by the presence of multiple distinct personalities or alter egos.

Among Helen’s seven alter personalities are Alex, a playful five-year-old who enjoys toy guns, William, a cheerful six-year-old who loves the Mr. Men series, and Adam, a cautious ten-year-old restricted from outdoor play. Brenda, a spirited 13-year-old, Karl, a rebellious and temperamental sixteen-year-old, and Jamie and Elizabeth also manifest as distinct personas within Helen.

Helen transitions between her core identity and these alter personalities suddenly and without awareness, experiencing amnesia for periods spent in alternate states. Under the influence of Karl and Brenda, Helen struggled with substance abuse, leading to alcoholism and over 100 non-fatal overdoses. She has since recovered from these addictions.

Ruth, a support figure in Helen’s life, delves into the origins of her alters and uncovers a history of extensive childhood abuse. Helen reveals that her alter personalities emerged as coping mechanisms to distance herself from traumatic experiences. Karl and Brenda, in particular, serve as avenues for escape through self-harm, offering a physical release from emotional distress, while the younger alters provide refuge in various stages of her childhood.

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