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The Different Healing Goals for Systems

History of Treatment

Fusion being the only goal of therapy for Dissociative Identity Disorder is very outdated in our understanding of the disorder today. For a very long time, fusion was viewed as the only treatment goal for DID, but now we know there are other options as well. Fusion, sometimes in the past referred to as integration, is a very valid and potential healing goal, but it’s just one of a few healing goals that are available to the patient, and the patient should always be in charge of their own goals and paths that they set forward for themselves. The two most commonly referred to healing paths for systems are ‘Fusion’ and ‘Functional Multiplicity’, though some systems also choose to simply focus on healing the trauma and not focusing on the alter count in relation to their healing path.

History of Community Terminology – Integration vs. Fusion

One thing you do unfortunately come across when dealing with a small community and a disorder that has a lot of misinformation and out-of-date information out there that people are constantly trying to update and understand is that sometimes you get changing and updating terminology. We have to stay updated and educated about that so as not to misuse the current and proper terminology as it is today. In the past, “Integration” was often used to describe what we now call “Fusion“. Integration now refers to the building of communication between alters, the breaking down of amnesiac barriers, and often the viewpoint of the alters all working together as one cohesive collective rather than a bunch of separate individuals.

Final Fusion

When two alters merge and become one new alter. The new alter is not either of the ones who came before and is their own new person, but carries some of the memories and traits of the alters who fused to make the new alter. Final Fusion is also one of the potential goals in the therapy/healing process and used to be considered the only goal. This goal would be to fuse down to one identity (the thought being to “get rid of” the disorder). The issue is that the disorder is much more than just the alters and that the brain knows how to split, and even after a full fusion if more trauma happened down the line, they could still split again.

Functional Multiplicity

Functional Multiplicity is the goal of learning to work together and to coexist in harmony in a functional and healthy way, while actively staying multiple. This often includes bringing down daily amnesiac barriers and raising communication between alters. Many systems that choose functional multiplicity as their healing goal choose it due to the importance it places on accepting alters and acceptance of your system and learning to live with DID/OSDD instead of against it.

Choosing to Focus on Healing from Trauma & Integration Rather than Focusing on Alter Count

Some systems choose to focus their healing goals on healing from trauma, managing triggers, and developing healthy coping strategies, as well as integration rather than fusion. These systems focus on building communication, lowering amnesiac barriers, and viewing their system as one cohesive collective that works together as one machine rather than a bunch of individuals working separately, but they do not put any specific weight on alter count as a part of their treatment plan/healing goal. They don’t make their goal connected to fusing to one or maintaining multiplicity; they allow fusions to happen naturally or not and focus on the healing process itself.

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