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We Are Plural

·996 words·5 mins

As stated on my about page, I am plural. What does that mean you might ask? Well that’s what I’m going to be explaining in today’s blog post. For about 4 years I’ve been keeping this a secret due to the complexity of explaining it and previously dealing with harassment when trying to come out as plural before. That ends today, so I’m going to do my best.

What Is Plurality?

As stated on the MoreThanOne website:

The existence of multiple self-aware entities inside one physical brain.

In other words, there is multiple sentient entities existing inside of my brain. They each have their own name, likes, dislikes, personality, and appearance. Of course, we can’t not suddenly just switch our body’s physical appearance at the snap of our fingers sadly, but we do each have our own seperate appearance in what is called a Headspace1, as stated:

A headspace (also known as inner world or wonderland) is a place that members of a system can visit or inhabit, where they can talk to other headmates.

The best way to think of a headspace is kind of like a virtual reality in your head. It’s an entirely other world, where the entities that reside in a plural system can communicate, interact, and do things on their own without the body.

Plurality is often associated with dissociative disorders such as Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), and Other Specified Dissociative Disorder (OSDD) and the many variants of DID and OSDD that exist. It should be noted however that DID and OSDD are not the only way plurality can happen, there is also things like Tulpamancy2. Not every system is formed through traumatic experiences but is a fairly common occurrence that trauma can cause a system to form. In our specific case, we are a system with traumatic origins and are diagnosed with OSDD-1b, which is a dissociative disorder which lacks amnesia.

What Does This Mean For Other People?

Since this is a question I know will get asked, I figured I’d go over how this affects other people. In most cases, nothing is going to really change, this is not a sudden change, and if you have known me over the past 4 years, then you have already interacted me while plural! My other system members don’t really talk to people unless they trust them.

For those who want to get to know my other members though however, which would be lovely, our system currently has 4 members: Hanna (me), Luna, Lyra, and our little Aurora. Most of the time the only people who front3 are either me or Luna, occasionally you will see Lyra fronting, and very rarely Aurora, as she is extremely shy around most people.

As for things like dating? It’s kind of a complicated subject with nuances. From what we’ve experienced and have been through, there is generally 2 ways systems usually start dating other people, each with their own ups and downs:

  1. Dating the entire system as a whole, minus the littles.
  2. Dating specific members of the system as individuals.

In our specific case, we generally date as invidial people. If you choose to date one of us, you’re generally only dating that one specific member, but there are cases where we decide to date someone as a system as it is easier for us to handle that, besides this, generally just treat as as invidivuals. It should be mentioned that it is fairly common that people unfamiliar with the community and topic to refer to plural system members as part of a “whole” this is generally to be avoided and is offensive as it strips individuality.

How To Make Our Lives Easier

Plurality is more common than you may think, but a lot of people hide the fact they are plural due to harassment, misunderstanding, and the complexity of the subject. There is a lot of nuances and intracies of plurality and dealing with plurality that I could not go in depth in it without going on for hours. For this reason me and gdude are working on a section regarding plurality on the Moderation Wiki that he has started.

If you want to make our lives easier on Discord, you could add the amazing bot, PluralKit which allows plural system members to talk as themselves using webhooks. It should be noted that due to the nature of hooks that this bypasses blocks as you can not block a webhook, especially as it uses a single webhook for every plural member in the server that is talking. Once the Moderation Wiki section is up, there will be details on dealing with this.

As for software developers developing socialization software. The easiest way to make our lives easier on your side would be creating an account switcher, or something like sub-accounts, to allow plural systems to have other profiles under their “main” account. As of currently there is very little accessibility for plural systems, and this honestly needs to change as someone who struggles with this daily (no Discord, yours doesn’t count).

So What’s Next?

As of today we’re coming fully out as plural to pretty much everyone we know, as we’re honestly quite sick of hiding it. This blog post is also to help others understand the change and understand how to treat, respect, and care for us. We have added a link to information and noted that we’re plural on the top of our Discord bio to tell people that we are.

We have came out as plural to our sibling, and they were accepting and even want to meet my other system members! So to the people who are reading this, what we ask of you is to be understanding of our situation, be accepting, and treat us with respect.

We are individuals, we are not part of a whole. Respect that.
If you want to see an overview of our system, you can here.