Sarah E. Olson was diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder (DID) in 1992. Using session transcripts and letters she faxed to her therapist, Howard Asher, Psy.D, she fully documented four years of intense therapy process in Becoming One: A Story of Triumph Over Multiple Personality Disorder, first published in 1997, and translated into Japanese in 1999.
Sarah began leading online support groups for survivors of childhood sexual abuse in 1992, and has spoken with thousands of survivors, including many formally diagnosed with DID. To further that end, she created The Survivors Forum on CompuServe in 1997. Sarah recognized even then that support for post-traumatic stress (PTSD) in veterans was woefully inadequate, and provided a private section of The Survivors Forum for them. She now curates PTSD resources for trauma survivors with a focus on child abuse survivors and veterans on Third of a Lifetime, as well as on Twitter and Pinterest.
In November 2014, her imprint, Swan Pond Press, published an updated ebook version of Becoming One with a revised title: Becoming One: A Story of Triumph Over Dissociative Identity Disorder. The paperback edition of Becoming One followed in February 2015. She currently is working on the follow-up book, Becoming One Every Day: Living Purposefully With Dissociative Identity Disorder.
A note from Sarah:
The phrase “Third of a Lifetime” was borne of a three year period of darkness following the collapse of my integration in 2000 after my father died. My therapist, Howard Asher, worked overtime to keep me precariously stable. One thing he said occasionally that always got my attention: “Time is passing. In the great scheme of things, you may have a third of a lifetime left to live. How do you wish to spend it?”
So much of my life was willfully squandered by my abusers, first, by their direct damage inflicted; and then by the long struggle required to make sense of who I really am, and how I got to this place. What I know for certain is: my final third of a lifetime will not be surrendered to those abusers.
Thank you for reading, and for being here.