In my junior year of High School we watched the 1976 movie, Sybil, and ever since then I have been so intrigued by multiple personality disorders. The belief is that MPD is caused by severe childhood trauma and through having multiple personalities; the victim can escape the reality of their trauma. This is such a controversial disorder because it is impossible to diagnose. The majority of people who suffer from MPD do not show symptoms under they begin receiving treatment with MPD proponents.
Before 1970, there were less than 200 cases and by the 1990’s, there were tens of thousands of cases! One of the most interesting things that I came across while reading more about this disorder was that this disorder dates back to ancient forms of shamanism and demonic possession. The idea that an individual can have multiple personalities is present in many cultures, each with distinct differences, but the biggest thing that all of them have in common is that these individuals are greatly influenced through hypnosis because they are in a dream state.
It is amazing to me how there is still a debate on whether or not this is truly a disorder or not. I also agree with the argument that both the client and the clinician can be at fault for this “disorder.” The following YouTube video points out that this disorder became a cultural phenomenon after the movie Sybil came out. This special New York Times report does an amazing time discussing the history on Eve and Sybil. I highly recommend watching this video to see how the case of Sybil evolved.