I believe it is very helpful to learn how to take something that is very negative and turn it around into something very positive. I am going to share an experience, it is not fiction it is fact. It started out very negative and ended up educating many people opening opportunities.
In a bit of a triumphant tangent, there were statements made about diagnosing someone with multiple personalities. The diagnosis was not made by a professional who had met with the person. However, that label was placed quite publically.
Since I am not skilled in diagnosis I cannot say if it is true or not. It did open a door to look at illness and learn more about it. It happened in the workplace.
It was noted that some days this employee would come to work and act and present himself as very professional. He had two different name tags with different names on them. His appearance and name tag were a clue of what kind of behavior he might display during the day. (Could it have been that he had Dissociative identity disorder (DID)?) Of course, it may have been accurate and the manner is was presented in was still negative, wrong and hurtful.
Most often the way to remedy these situations is simple education. Unless a person is a narcissist, you should be able to give reasonable education and expectations to change the behavior of how to approach the situation.
Sometimes it is helpful to understand some of the things that may have caused these behaviors to occur.
“Why some people develop DID is not entirely understood, but they frequently report having experienced severe physical and sexual abuse during childhood.
The disorder may first manifest at any age. Individuals with DID may have post-traumatic symptoms (nightmares, flashbacks, or startle responses) or post-traumatic stress disorder. Several studies suggest that DID is more common among close biological relatives of persons who also have the disorder than in the general population.
Once a rarely reported disorder, the diagnosis has grown more common—and controversial. Some experts contend that because DID patients are highly suggestible, their symptoms are at least partly iatrogenic—that is, prompted by their therapists’ probing. Brain imaging studies, however, have corroborated identity transitions.” source
Extensive training took place in the workplace. Co-workers adjusted to the personalities that presented themselves and responded accordingly. Co-workers who couldn’t do this were eventually released from the company.
For those who were ready to learn the information and understand it turned into a great learning and compassionate experience.
This was originally written in 2008, in an unpublished report for the company I was working with on a project. It was interesting at the time to identify those who accept the employee as he was and those who eventually had to leave.
Disclaimer: Unless mentioned by name there is no real or inference, referring to anyone on this site, real or fictional.