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Therapist Warnings: The Unprofessional

Updated: Oct 20, 2021

So we have encountered some terrible medical professionals but here is one that really stands out. I had been helping a friend look for a good fitting therapist so I both helped set up appointments and go over what was needed/what would be asked for the first step general intake. Managed to get them their appointment to see someone who we thought had a good grasp of DID.

For those who don't know what DID is, it means Dissociative Identity Disorder which used to be bunched together with Multiple Personality Disorder. DID is a condition that tends to happen to victims of severe abuse by a person's identity fragmenting into two more distinct personalities. Usually, during these 'switches' from personality to personality, there is a 'haze' or full amnesia. It takes the individuals to be aware of others cohabiting the same body and hopefully getting them to work together. Different Alters, as they are usually called, can store and hide information from others thus creating awareness and a means of communication between them is needed to allow them to function better. This also helps with their stress, anxiety, and depression amongst other things.

Some may not believe this but there are plenty of research papers pushing this further to learn what this means. I read a really good article that covers the possibility of those with DID just happen to be more prone to daydreaming or exaggerating their conditions. They had hired some actors and actresses, explained the diagnosis, and give them examples of those with DID and how they acted. Within their study, they solidly proved that it could not have been an act and that there is actually a valid seriousness we need to take with this diagnosis. I'll link the article once I find it again. From personal experience, their whole demeanor changes, what they are able to do and withstand changes, and even sometimes their hair just sits differently as if I'm looking at someone completely different. It's a fascinating human condition that needs to be addressed and helped.

Now at this point, we were still trying to work out the PTSD portion that is pretty ingrained in someone with DID. It makes it difficult for each of the personalities, we will call them 'facets' (as my friend didn't like the term 'alters'), to work together to help piece together what happened. Each personality is 'born' typically from a traumatic incident and will hold memories when they are hosting. So having each of them work together is important. I'm not going to get too much into DID today and you can feel free to look it up on your own. I just wanted you to get an idea of something more specific and how this counselor handled it.

We met this therapist, Kevin Bogstad, that we thought, at first, was helpful. He brought a book for my friend to read through to get a start on understanding what was going on. He also had been properly trained in EMDR which was a relief at the time having a bad encounter with some 'fake' EMDR therapists. Unfortunately, he didn't like me being in the appointments with my friend and tried pushing me out. Except for a huge problem with DID is the memory issues and it DOES require outside assistance to keep track of any information. That's where I came in. We had discussed outside of appointments that whenever he is ready for me to step out of the appointment, I would. Such as the first few appointments I would sit through the whole thing to speak up when he needed information. As some of the following appointments came and went, I would leave perhaps halfway through. We even started going over what he would need to discuss or write things down prior to going in so he would have something to refer to on his own. Our goal was for him to be ok and prepared to handle a full session by himself. I was trying to wait until my friend was ready for this step as it is a big and stressful one. The therapist didn't like that and seemed to think he knew better.

But not only did he insist I did not come in or he wouldn't treat my friend (who has stated from the beginning that HE would decide when I wasn't needed in the appointment), but Kevin deeply insulted my friend by saying that two of his facets were having something inappropriate.

Full stop.

This is highly unprofessional and should NEVER happen. If you have a therapist say something like this when talking about TRAUMA, get a second opinion from another professional. As in finding someone else.

That was the third strike The second strike was pushing my friend to make decisions he wasn't ready for and causing distress before he even stepped in. The first was Kevin taking my friend's appointments and throwing in complaints about his wife. Again, highly unprofessional.

If a therapist acts in this way, you may have to find another therapist. They shouldn't be throwing in issues that they have personally. The session is about you and their attention should be on how to help YOU.

Hopefully, you don't encounter anyone like this! Keep an eye out for our other posts on the medical professionals we have encountered and hope it helps you make better decisions in your own journey.

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