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Greetings to all the systems in this course. I/we are going by “Chris&” which is short for “Chris and company”, as we have not yet picked a system name. We’re a 51 years old polyamorous plural mildly autistic male with multi-gendered headmates. We figured out we were a system in approximately 2003 through listening to our own thoughts looking for what was going on with us, because we had “watched our body do things like it was a movie” a few times over the years, as well as other kinds of behavior we were confused by. We didn’t know to do this until we reconnected with someone that admitted they were “multiple” that we had known years earlier, and whom we are honored to still be connected with today. We have not yet been diagnosed with dissociative disorder yet, but there’s no question — we either have DID or something along those lines.
We still aren’t sure how many headmates we have, because there are a number of us that are “below deck” where we don’t have “visibility” of them, don’t hear their thoughts, and only occasionally get glimpses of them. A good rough guess is that we have at least 20 headmates, and at least one “headmate” is a subsystem. Our system generally switches between headmates very fluidly, such that it is not uncommon for a switch to occur mid-sentence as we’re speaking. For plurals that are mindful and aware, we have a number of known “tells” where who we are can be observed in our physical expression as well as our voice and mannerisms, and we have generally have distinct handwriting between headmates.
Our system has evolved quite a lot in recent years doing various plural classes (such as this one) as well as therapy for PTSD. We slowly “onboarded” a number of headmates over a period of years from “stowaways” to “passengers” and then some of us to “staff” and to “bridge officers” running our “ship”. Our officers tend to “blend” a lot now, where several headmates are co-fronting at once, and this has led to a new kind of fluidity that has yielded a much more resilient system and has made things really interesting for us in new ways that we would not have thought possible. We generally “pass as singular” around singletons that are not plural-aware.
During the Jitsi calls for the course we will most likely have Gunther, Chris, Toby, and “Mr X” and/or Sakker blending together at different times. Chris will be notable as having a calm voice, being introverted, and avoiding cursing (where the rest of us is willing to when it feels appropriate). Gunther will be notable as being more flamboyant, animated, and extroverted. Mr X is notable for speaking with a more gruff voice — he is a system protector today but used to act as an internal persecutor. Toby is more passionate and feels emotions stronger than most of the rest of us can. All of our headmates are special to us and we all do our best to care for one-another and keep ourselves safe and content.
We find ourselves most comfortable being around and speaking with other plurals, which we now do several times a week. We appreciate the opportunity to communicate with all of you as part of this course.