How can you tell when a multiple switches?
This article is a Stub. Needs some editing.
We've (The Crisses) seen switches take place with "tells" for some systems (we've known a lot systems in-person) and never had the "droop" issue — but it is something more like "lag" — here's some different ways we've spotted other systems' (and sometimes our own) switches:
- Complete shift in posture/ergonomics
- How they carry themself completely changes, so they can even seem to grow or shrink several inches.... so someone who naturally has a lower self esteem and bad posture — slumped shoulders, curved back, no core strength to hold themselves upright — switches to someone more badass and they are upright, more core strength, more centered, shoulders back instead of forward, etc. And it's unconscious, not forced... it is like they unfold over a minute or so. (when we do this sometimes it comes with stretching because as we're shifting our body feels uncomfortable and we need to stretch muscles we're about to use lol)
- Rapid blinking/eye movements
- Almost like open-eye REM lol —— they're "thinking inside" and sometimes a switch can occur during that time. Eyes may look up and to the side, may become a little heavy-lidded as a conversation goes on inside. Then they're looking at you again and fully present.
- Unconscious facial tension/muscles
- Facial muscles can shift and change some facial details slightly. Like our boyfriend has a bump on his head from a childhood accident, but when 1 person fronts, a vein stands out right over the bump, making it more obvious.... they have no conscious control over that.... but I know instantly who it is by the set of the jaw, the throbbing vein in their forehead, and other micro-tension facial tells.
- Different speech levels/pitch/accents
- It's not always major. One ex girlfriend had more of her childhood Russian accent sometimes. Her pitch would drop. Her tongue would roll differently around words. This went along with posture etc. changes. You might hear more childish language even if the voice doesn't completely sound like a child's voice (they may be trying to "mask" a switch!).
- Unconscious mannerisms
- gait when they walk, how much they talk with their hands, gestures they use while talking, how they flip their hair or push it out of their face changes, knuckle cracking, word choices, cursing, formality level, etiquette knowledge, knowledge in general, interests, beliefs, religion, cognitive ability (curious, know-it-all, do-it-yourselfer, etc.), physicality (loves working out, doesn't lift a finger for anything, etc.) — all can change. Body image changes — one can be perfectly happy with their weight or size or gender etc. another is really UNhappy with it.
- Physical comfort/discomfort
- Once a switch takes place, they may now be too hot, too cold, need to change something about what's touching their body (Erin needs to put our hair up, she hates the feeling of hair on her face and neck), such as jewelry or a scratchy sweater. This doesn't usually become a full wardrobe change like is sometimes portrayed on TV or a movie, but it can be a sign if something they were perfectly comfortable with a moment ago is now no longer comfortable. Especially if it comes with complaints like, "Argh, I hate bracelets!" :)
Basically pay more attention to singlets and how differently people walk, talk, move, think, speak, act — and that all becomes possible in a DID system. Once you start looking at these things in general, the easier it is to spot them when with someone with DID.