One of the best books I've ever read. I was desperate for something to read whilst on a long trip and picked this up at a drug store, more of less out of desperation. Once I started it, I couldn't put it down. Dr. West's account of how he came to terms with his multiple selves was fascinating and inspirational and riveting.
This is an incredible book about a man with Multiple Personalities. From the cover...Meet Davy, a four-year-old boy with harrowing memories of sexual abuse; Clay, an eight year old who longs to own a scooter; Switch, an aggressive, angry child who harms himself; Dusty, a sweet and shy twelve-year-old girl who loves to cook; and Bart, a fun-loving ladies' man-all unique individuals with their own feelings and memories, and one thing in common: they live, along with 19 others, in the mind of Dr. Cameron West. In First Person Plural, West tells of "my guys." and his struggle facing Dissociative Identity Disorder, formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder. As the people who haunt his mind insist on telling their story, West desperately hangs on to the slender thread that connects him to his wife and son and some semblance of normal life. Heatwrenching, humorous, and ultimately hopeful, this story will make you stand in awe of the power of the mind to protect itself and cheer for West as he battles to gain control of his life.
This book helped me understand my own disorder and be able to explain it to others. A rare book in the sense that Cameron is male and most with DID/MPD are female. Much better than Sybil as it is written by the person with dissociative identity disorder. A more modern and realistic view of this disorder. Also one of the few books that does not push integration.
I spoke to the author via email shortly after I finished this book. I asked him for an autographed copy. Rather than permitting me to send him a copy of the book to sign, he chose a hardcover edition from his collection, signed it to me personally with a beautiful lyric of original poetry involving life and peaches, and sent it to me the following week. I was cradling the book as if it were made of the purest gold. I felt exactly as if I knew Mr. West, that I had been with him through his ordeals. That I had his handwriting - both inside the book and on an inserted card! - was very moving.
This is an important book. An educational book. And, at heart, it's a gutsy book. This man has poured himself nakedly into the pages of this autobiographical volume, and you will bear silent witness to his challenges, his mistakes, his success. Other books on this topic (and I've read almost all of them) did not hit so hard for me. They were "titillating," perhaps. I felt as if I might be neck-craning as if at an accident. But this book gives you no such feeling. The author is exquisitely present: all his pain, all his reality. I highly recommend this book.
Excellent book to help explain Dissociative Identity Disorder - DID (Multiple Personalities)thru the life of Cameron West. Not technical, very compassionate. Easy read....holds you to the very end. Could not put this book down!!!! Nothing like Sybil!! Not graphic!!
Pamela B. reviewed First Person Plural : My Life as a Multiple on
Very interesting about the technical aspects of DID. However, the writing is so filled with corny puns and similes that it was very hard to get through at times. If you can ignore the "jokes" and puns, there is a lot of good info and an interesting story.
This book is a fascinating read, from the perspective of one who has DID, formerly called multiple personality disorder. The author is honest and tells an interesting story. It is very touching at times, also contains graphic descriptions of sexual abuse. Not for everyone.
Dawn R. (DawnGR) - reviewed First Person Plural : My Life as a Multiple on
Facinating. I finished the book in just over a day because I could not put it down. The sections detailing the childhood abuse/incest were very short, with minimal detail, so there was no "sensationalism" to them. The book instead focuses on how Cam, and his wife learn to accept that these things happened, and accept his alters. This is the real struggle for Cam. The denial of his DID is the biggest problem he has to overcome.
If you are looking for the shockingly brutal abuse scenes in Sybil, this is not for you. If you want a story of one man's brave journey to come to terms with his condition, and learning to accept himself (ALL of himself), and an honest glimpse into the struggle of his best friend and wife, this is it. It is by turns funny, heartbreaking, and inspirational.
Cameron West was in his thirties, a successful businessman, happily married and the father of a young son when twenty-four distinct personalities began to emerge over a period of several months and recount memories of horrific abuse that had been kept secret from West all his life. The author offers a poignant account of his efforts to understand the workings of his fragmented mind and to heal his damaged spirit as he desperately hung on to the slender thread that connected him to his wife, his son, and some semblance of a regular life. There is rare and unprecedented insight into the fascinating workings of the mind of a multiple and his alters' coexistence with one another and with those "outside." This book is heartwrenching, humorous, and ultimately hopeful.
Interesting and well written book about the author's life as a multiple. I can see how one could develop multiple personalities but it is harder to figure out why it is so difficult to unify the alters once one knows they exist.
This was a beautifully written, autobiographical story of a "multiple personality". The correct term is Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). Dr. West certainly went through hell and has come out on the other side. What a fascinating and horrifying story!
I stand in awe of Dr. West's wife, Rikki, for standing by and with him through all of his personalities and with a 4 year old son! He's a lucky man to have such love in his life.
I loved every minute of this book and suffered with him through his remembrance of the bad times when his identities came out without his control.
This has always been a special interest of mine and Dr. West brought it to life beautifully.
This was a stay up all night book. I loved his humor in the face of trouble and I highly recommend this book. He was blessed to have such an understanding wife who guided and supported him through his discovery and therapy. Hopefully this book will help others understand, too.