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CandyFrog

531d

This may be a confusing and long question/post, but I really don't know who else to ask or what disorder this may be related to. For as long as I can remember, I've always kind of "adopted" different personalities whether that be me wanting to look like someone else or act like someone else completely. Ex: I'll go from wanting to be very soft spoken and very happy go lucky and maybe dress more girly and such, to wanting to be more assertive, outgoing, and maybe dress more tomboyish or something like that. That's just a short example of it to give you a glimpse. In the past it would last maybe a week until I found a different style/personality to adopt and so forth. Nowadays, it changes every couple of days and it's super stressful and tiring and makes me feel more anxious and depressed. My past counselor said it may be related to a mental disorder and not me going through "phases" due to me acting this way for almost 5 years, which is why I wanted to bring this post here because googling what I've typed so far will of course lead me nowhere because I'm not even sure what's going on. Even my last 2 counselors are unsure as well. I've considered personality disorders such as DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder) but after doing research on it, I don't think it is. I know this isn't a short get-to-the-point question, but I want you all to know the details so it's not misconstrued. I really wish I knew what was going on and how to fix this, so if you read this far. I truly appreciate it and if you have any advice or resources or any assumptions on the symptoms I've listed, please comment them below. I have nowhere else to turn and feel lost.

Top reply
    • Leebit

      524d

      I have BPD and what I've come to describe as "masks." I "wear" different ones around different people or just subconsciously change them depending on mood swings. For example: I enjoy a lot of really specific things, and if I feel I may be judged by someone for that, I omit it from my usual self by putting on a "mask." Even if there's no hint of that judgment being real. I essentially have a different "personality" that I apply to everyone I know without it being alters. The difference between this and DID is that it isn't a full blown switch to a different person, just a mood swing that may activate a mask. Say I get sad, yeah? I get stuck in that feeling, as if that's all I exist on in that time period. Same with other emotions, they bring out more traits of masks I've built. It's worth checking into with a professional to see what the best course of treatment is therapeutically and through medication therapy if you choose.

    • Leebit

      524d

      I have BPD and what I've come to describe as "masks." I "wear" different ones around different people or just subconsciously change them depending on mood swings. For example: I enjoy a lot of really specific things, and if I feel I may be judged by someone for that, I omit it from my usual self by putting on a "mask." Even if there's no hint of that judgment being real. I essentially have a different "personality" that I apply to everyone I know without it being alters. The difference between this and DID is that it isn't a full blown switch to a different person, just a mood swing that may activate a mask. Say I get sad, yeah? I get stuck in that feeling, as if that's all I exist on in that time period. Same with other emotions, they bring out more traits of masks I've built. It's worth checking into with a professional to see what the best course of treatment is therapeutically and through medication therapy if you choose.

    • L_innt

      530d

      Hi! So this seems super stressful and annoying! I completely understand what this feeling is :) I call it mirroring. My version is just a but different though. I would mimic or mirror people (real or fictional) to fit in or keep friends. My best advice is getting used to yourself. You can be any one else if you are yourself yk? Do self care and try to understand the "lenses" you are looking through, kinda like rise colored glasses. Like how are you seeing you, a person, a feeling. It will just take time once you figure out what works! 💕 :)

      • CandyFrog

        524d

        @L_innt Thank you so much for this comment, knowing that you and many others understand to an extent really gives me relief. I mirror fictional characters all the time too which I completely forgot to mention! But I do hope you're right about it being resolved over time, patience is something I'm working on too haha, thank you so much for the advice and reassurance, it means so much! 💗

    • j_Bug

      530d

      so like all the other responses here, this is filtered thru the lens of my own experience, but I'm wondering if it might be tied to autism? I know I really don't feel like a person, and I could see how that could push you to "try on" different things as a way of masking. if that's what it's stemming from, then it might bring some relief to work on just existing, without expecting yourself to feel or perform a certain way. I like being alone or with my cats because then I don't feel person-shaped, and no one's perceiving me as one.

      • CandyFrog

        524d

        @j_Bug After seeing your response and all the others, I'm starting to wonder the same thing. Which makes sense why I haven't thought of autism being the reason because I was diagnosed late at 21 a few months ago, but I've dealt with this issue for many, many years and never understood what was going on. And what you mentioned about spending time alone with your cats and not feeling like you need to be a certain way, I can relate to that in a sense too, I have 2 dogs and always feel safe with them knowing they aren't judging me, and even when I'm not spending time with them, anytime I'm alone, I usually don't feel that urge. Sometimes it comes about if I'm scrolling through social media, but alone time does give my mind a break when it comes to that.

    • AnimalBoy

      530d

      From reading all your comments on it it sounds like you're describing a very similar situation that my ex described to me while we were together. Shortly after the first time they mentioned some of these symptoms they spiraled and then diagnosed with BPD and placed in an outpatient program. That therapy on top of regular therapy and a low dosage of medication helped quite a bit but they will had issues with pinpointing personality traits and things they were interested in, including gendered things. Eventually their therapist was involved with several strikes at the clinic and the clinic didn't assign them a new one, so no meds either, until a few months later when they spiraled again over an issue that changed their personality drastically and in a way that conflicted with the rest of their life, after being medicated again the doctor noticed their left over symptoms match with OSDD. I would suggest talking to a therapist about both of these conditions, especially if anything traumatic has happened, even if you don't have both you might have one.

    • Marshmello

      530d

      That is ADHD and Autism mirroring! It's a form of masking to some and to others just a habit. Its actually really concerning that none of your counselors have pegged it as such. Seems they're a bit uneducated to me. I noticed both in your list on here so that's definitely odd they wouldnt notice.

      • CandyFrog

        524d

        @Marshmello Omg I've never heard of that, that's crazy that I haven't even heard of that or my counselors. My newer counselor is finally listening to my concerns with it, but I've only been under her care for a short time so far, but my last 2 counselors that i was with for years just kept saying it's me going through "phases" and saying stuff like "I'm not sure why it bothers you so much, can't you have 2 or more different styles to choose from?" And hearing that infuriated me because while I understand what they mean, they must've thought that's all I had issues with, and it's because, yes, at first it was me figuring out my style and how I wanted to physically express myself, but then it evolved into me switching personalities down to every detail as well so of course all that put together is going to bother me because I wasn't sure what was going on and they weren't listening to me. Seeing everyone around me at school being able to be themselves and not have to mask or unmask 24/7 added to it as well. So I'm very happy honestly that you mentioned that, it actually opened up my mind a bit about it and is very helpful so that I can finally look into how to cope with it. Thank you so much, seriously!

    • A.S.H

      531d

      Hmmm. Maybe you need to do some self discovery. Find out what style of clothes, hobbies, music, etc. you truly like, not what your brain says to like. It sounds like your brain is in some kind of adapt-to-survive mode. I would try to recognize when your brain is giving you a thought about needing to change yourself. Then ask yourself if it is a logical thought. Do you really truly need to look a certain way in order to do something? No, definitely not. Maybe try to write down the thoughts you experience. Try to notice a pattern, like if there’s focus on certain traits, or if it goes from one extreme to the next. This could give you an idea of what the source is. Is it a need to not cling to your own person because you’re subconsciously afraid of being rejected or disliked, or possibly you lost that version of yourself as a result of trauma and your brain is scared it will have to experience trauma again if you look or act certain ways. It’s normal to look and act differently depending on the social situation, and so is changing what you like/dislike. Instead of giving in to the thoughts, wait and see what happens, and try to be curious instead of scared. I’m still trying to find my own identity so I don’t know all the tricks and tips. But definitely being curious, instead of scared or upset or giving, has helped me a lot in changing my perspective of what I’m experiencing

      • CandyFrog

        531d

        @A.S.H Thank you so much for all this advice and for being willing to listen to all the details and what I'm experiencing through this. I truly can't thank you enough along with all the other comments. Knowing that someone can somewhat relate while also being willing to give advice to help really does help me feel less alone in this.

        • A.S.H

          530d

          @CandyFrog Of course :) no one should ever have to feel alone. I’m always here to listen, talk, give advice, anything. I really hope (and believe) you’ll discover something about yourself and your thoughts. If you ever need an outsider’s perspective, I’m here to help

    • E_belli

      531d

      There can definitely be a diagnosis associated with this, though I don't think it is DID, that's different. But it can also just be a search for an identity that you relate to. Trying to find who you are and you haven't found it yet. Which can def cause some strong depression and anxiety when it's not who you want to be. And sometimes you have to do some soul searching. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. But it sounds exhausting and rough, what you're experiencing. I'm sorry you're going through that. I hope things get better for you.

    • A.S.H

      531d

      I’m curious as to what your thought process and feelings are when you’re transitioning from one persona to the next, and what triggers the transitions. If you’re unsure of who you are, and change your characteristics because you’re not comfortable with one version of yourself, it could be Borderline Personality Disorder. Did anything significant happen five years ago? If so, it could be complex ptsd, or if the event made you feel like you lost yourself or have no control of yourself, that could be the reason. It could also be a control thing that comes with anxiety. When someone doesn’t have control over a certain aspect of their life, they often control their physical appearance, personality, or how they appear to others.

      • CandyFrog

        531d

        @A.S.H When I'm transitioning to different personalities, I typically get this temporary feeling of excitement because I think "Maybe this is who I am and I can finally stop changing my personas so much" but very shortly after, I get very depressed, anxious, and even overstimulated because I get either bored or tired of that persona or feel like its not me, when I don't even know who "me" is. These transitions are typically triggered from very small things such as movies, social media posts, and even meeting someone out and about who I wish I was more like can trigger it too. Which sounds weird because to me it is, I shouldn't feel the need to change my personality, clothes, hair, etc, everytime I see something different that I "think" I'll like better for me to be. I have gone through trauma before in my past, but I think the moment that started it perhaps was in middle school when I was heavily bullied for my personality and style, so much so I changed myself to whatever was trending at the time just to fit in. That lasted for so long at a very young age, that I guess my brain has kind of forgot who i was and i lost who i was. Nowadays I don't do that to "try and fit in" or even follow trends, my mind just automatically wants to be something different nearly everyday.

        • A.S.H

          531d

          @CandyFrog I can definitely relate to changing how I want to be perceived. Especially because I lack a true sense of self. Does your mind tell you what you should be like? Or does it just tell you that it doesn’t like who you are that week and that you should change?

      • MandazInTC

        531d

        @A.S.H I was having a similar thought process as you. Sometimes we have mood changes without realizing it because of changes that have occurred in our life. Not that these other diagnosises are not valid, but many people with depression, anxiety, PTSD, trauma, or other related diagnosises will have behavioral changes. For example, with my depression in the past year, not only have I been more stereotypically sad, but I have more anger outbursts and anxiety. There's more to it then that obviously, just like any other mood diagnosis, but these things are very complex.

☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision

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