Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Reality

Around the time we met, completely unbeknownst to me, Monty developed dissociative identity disorder. This is what most people would know as multiple personality disorder, but it's not as simple as that term implies. It allowed him to explore something within him that no person should ever know. It manifested in his reality. That is what the FBI calls evidence.

It should be noted that I have his assurance, and no logical reason to doubt, that no person was ever in danger of direct physical or mental harm from him. His crime, which mostly for legality I will not go into, was indirect. It is a felony nonetheless, but it was never committed against another person in his physical presence. He told me this. The side of him that I knew, that I always saw of him, has no reason to lie to me. Especially since he is not denying his crime or running from it. I am, however, blissfully ignorant of many details. That is ok, I don't need them.

DID is something that has been a part of him for as long as I have known him, but I did not know that part of him. He kept it from everyone. Of course, he would. Wouldn't you? This knowledge of him that I now have has not changed him, he is not a different person from the person I knew. It was a side I didn't know.

I think that's what I'm holding on to now: the fact that my friend has always proven to be true to me. Yes, something was kept from me, but what I knew of him was true. I know this is quite a complex.

I admit that I'm no longer clear on the time-frame. So much has happened since things really began, to me, to him, to our friendship. It might have been a year and a half ago. I remember that he called me to say that the FBI had raided his home looking for evidence. They left a bag with that word on his eldest son's bed. That's when reality hit him, I think. I was prepared to support his innocence, that's what I knew of him at the time. I think it was a year after the raid when they had enough to charge him with the crime.

Being charged did not land him in jail instantly, per se, but allowed him to bargain. While the prosecutors wanted time to prepare their case, he also wanted time to prepare. He was granted that indefinite time, but the fact of his crime could not be ignored. The terms of his bargain were that he could not be in the presence of his children without another adult present, he could not have free run of a computer or the Internet, and he could not have freedom but to go to work, doctors, lawyers, and church.

His shackle became a literal one, a cuff around his ankle that will alert authorities if he leaves his home at any time other than what had been previously agreed. Since he could no longer live in his home with his wife and children, he was forced to move in with his in-laws. That tiny, very old home, and the curtained-off area of the basement has been his prison for months.

As part of his bargain, he has been getting medical help for his DID during that time. He sees a therapist regularly, takes medication to keep things in balance. He also meets with a lawyer, preparing his side of things. This is not to deny the charges against him or try to get out of paying for his crime, but to prepare. He wants to show that he is working on getting better, he wants to go before the judge with progress. It will show that people can reform. This may reduce his time in prison, which is the hope. It is not to say he is trying to get out of his punishment, but that maybe there can be some of his life left when he is through. It's a fair thing to want.

Just the other day, he asked me what he is teaching his children. Is he showing them that he is running, or delaying the inevitable? I don't think so. I think it is showing them the value of being prepared, so there is something left of his life and his sanity when he has served his time. It shows that he is facing the penalties for what he did, but the process of delay is only to prepare. His life as he knows it has to be put on hold for the time he is incarcerated, that's no easy feat for anyone. I hope he knows how lucky he is to have the chance to do it.

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