Whether or not you’re both physically ill alongside having DID, you’re always going to have doctors appointments to go to and from. Doctors appointments can be scary, especially for kid parts, but for grown-up parts too! With us being right in the middle of getting diagnosed with whatever is happening to our physical body, I’ve had to find my own ways of dealing with the stress of medical appointments.
Below is a list of my tips for dealing with the doctors, though they could be applied to any situation!
- Remain present. Helping to keep yourself and your system in the moment can help keep your body (and mind) from slipping into a flashback or other dark place. There are many ways to remain present. Some I like to do are sipping cold water, rubbing a smooth stone, or even fidgeting with my hands.
- Bring someone you trust to advocate for you. This is a big one especially if you find it difficult to get words out in the moment. They could be a trusted friend or family member, or even a social worker.
- Write things down. Writing things down can help keep you focused on whatever problems you might be having. Having a list of symptoms can help you remember them for your appointment. You can also try and take notes at your doctors, or even ask your doctor to write things down for you.
- Remind yourself that you’re safe and that you can say “no” at any time. Practice this with a therapist too beforehand, that can help increase your confidence in being able to say “no” to people who seem like authority figures.
This is just a very basic list I’m writing while waiting to be picked up after my very nervewracking GI appointment. Remember that a lot of people find hospitals scary and gloomy places, it doesn’t make you weird or mean you’re broken.