Interested in a retreat, created specifically for dissociative survivors?
The P4 Retreat: North Carolina 2023 is designed specifically for dissociative trauma survivors.
** This resource is for DID trauma survivors only.
This is not a beginners level retreat.**
Are you ready to have layers of fun
as a dissociative person
at a DID-inspired retreat
designed specifically for you and your system?
There are SOOOOO many good things that will be happening at NC '23. I can't even begin to list out all the good stuff that will be happening there. The fun, the learning, the discussions, the play time... It will be the highlight of the year, I have no doubt about it. Our Montana retreat was an incredible experience, and I expect an even better 10-days in North Carolina.
However, to make the retreat be and stay as wonderful as it could be, there are a number of serious topics we have to address first. Retreats are GREAT fun, but... they are only fun if everyone keeps the peace.
SO..... If you are interested in attending any of the P4 Retreats, please keep reading. Hopefully, you will appreciate the boundaries and guidelines discussed below. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact us for further information.
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Let me ask you a few things --- not to scare you off --- but to reassure you that this retreat will be a place of safety, a place of learning, a place of community, a place of healing. It isn't easy to create that kind of space with so many people present, but I am determined to make it so.
With such high standards in mind, I have drawn a lot of strict lines in the sand, so to speak.
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I want the Retreat to be awesome.
YOU want the retreat to be awesome.
The only way that can happen is if we agree on the guidelines.
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In order to make NC '23 as wonderful as it can be, and as beautiful as it should be, let me explain the LIMITS that also have to be in place as well.
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Are you comfortable with being DID?
NC '23 is designed for trauma survivors who are comfortable with and accepting of their dissociative diagnosis. This retreat is for DID systems who have a solid awareness of at least some of the insiders in their system. NC '23 is for people who are open to learning more information about their insiders and their internal system. NC '23 is for people who are willing to let themselves and their system participate in positive new experiences that promote growth and healing. NC '23 is for dissociative systems who are not afraid to be DID, and not afraid to be around folks with DID.
This retreat is not for DID newbies or for people who feel "freaked out" by their dissociation. To attend NC '23, you must be at least somewhat comfortable with your dissociative system, have a solid awareness of being multiple, have a solid understanding of what that means, and be familiar with what it looks like and feels like to be multiple. It is preferable that you have been officially diagnosed, but discuss this issue with Kathy if you have questions or concerns about your diagnostic status.
Will you be comfortable being around other multiples?
Being at a DID retreat for dissociative trauma survivors, you will see other multiples. Lots of other systems, potentially similar to you, but not the same. Not every dissociative system is the same as the next -- y'all are still unique to yourselves, unique to your history, unique to your life story. In some ways, you will relate to other systems, and in other ways, you'll be very different.
AND, they will see you. Multiples recognize multiplicity, DID survivors recognize DID, so as much as you'll notice dissociative qualities about others, they will notice this about you as well.
Being at a DID retreat, you will see other people who are dissociative, actively multiple, and potentially switching to their various parts. You will notice people not remembering certain things. You will see differences of perspectives, differences in behavior, differences in age. You may hear different voices, a variety of preferences, a flip-flopping of opinions, and different mannerisms. When someone is multiple, they tend to change a lot. There will likely be a consistency of the person in the greater overall self, but you will see shifts between the various selves, some subtle, but others will be obvious and drastic differences.
And yep.... they will see you and your various inner selves as well. You can bet on that.
Are you okay with switching between selves?
The NC '23 retreat is for dissociative trauma survivors, so let me stress again: you will see other multiples. Lots of other systems. And, of course, you will see other people who are dissociating, actively living their multiplicity, and switching to their various parts. Are you comfortable with that idea? Because people will switch at this retreat. Including you. Yes, you will switch during the days of this retreat. And yes, people will notice when you switch, maybe even before you do, or maybe when you don't remember switching at all. Can you manage that okay?
Getting to know you and your insiders is a lot of the fun at this retreat! Kids will get to know kids, and teens will get to chatter away with other teens. Of course, we'll have plenty of adulting time as well, but yes, a whole range or your system insiders will be welcome to participate in the activities designed for them and their age-group.
The point of this retreat is not to be confrontive or antagonistic. There will be no sharp interventions or verbal aggression about your DID-ness. You may keep your system pretty quiet -- that is allowed too, absolutely. However, be prepared to know that your DID and dissociative ways will be seen and easily recognized there -- far more easily recognized than in other settings. You will be in a group of experts who know what DID is. Other DID folks are not easily fooled!
You will most likely see yourself switching as well, you will feel this happening (maybe!), and you may experience switching in ways that you have not seen or feel before, due to the very nature of the retreat. Living in an environment where you may switch openly can be part of your growth and learning experiences. Be prepared for this to happen. It can feel both freeing, and strangely uncomfortable, but letting your insiders have the space to breathe and "be out front" is allowed.
If you are resistant to being DID, or too afraid to see or experience switching to other selves, or too unstable in your ability to manage your personal safety, this retreat will be too challenging for you.
Will you be okay with Behavioral Guidelines?
Being that this is a dissociative retreat, and all kinds of possibilities can happen, there is a very long list of Behavioral Guidelines that come with this retreat. This event is intended to go smoothly, with no hiccups, with no drama, with no trouble.
The purpose of this event is for education, for friendly dissociative support, to create a safe and welcoming environment for learning, and to have fun. It is a highly unique and rare opportunity to have this kind of setting, where you can interact comfortably as your dissociative selves, and that environment needs to be safe for you and for everyone else. Hence the giant long Behavioral Guidelines List.
Honestly, I have very little patience with people who want to act out, cause trouble, or create chaos. If you are a trouble-maker, don't even bother signing up. This retreat is not for anyone who wants to create messes, conflicts, or stir up trouble, or make drama.
If you are too scared, or too anxious, this retreat may be above your comfort level, and again, not suitable for you.
If you are drug-addicted or an active alcoholic, this retreat is not suitable for you. Everyone will be expected to properly manage their own medications and not be ruled by addictions. Do not show up high, or drunk, or in withdrawals. If you are unstable in your use of drugs and alcohol, please do not come to this retreat. Fully responsible adult behavior is essential regarding this topic.
Personal safety, including safety from self-harm and personal injury, is also essential. You will be responsible to keep yourself and your insiders safe from harm the entirety of this retreat. Self injury of any form is not acceptable, nor is it okay to put any other attendee in danger or harms way. SO.... if you cannot guarantee your own stability and personal safety, this retreat is not an option for you.
I fully expect everyone who attends NC '23 to be so relieved to have this opportunity, so ecstatic to finally have a retreat made just for them, so excited to be in a place where multiplicity is the majority, so eager to learn new healthy stuff, so happy to be there that their willingness to HAVE AN EXCELLENT-POSITIVE-AMAZING RETREAT IS THE TOP MOTIVATING REASON for their attendance.
I do not expect people who attend NC '23 to be there to cause problems. I expect every single attendee to be there for all the right reasons, and for all the right motivations. If that is YOU, please come!
Are you okay being with people who have different beliefs than you?
This group or retreat attendees will be coming from all different perspective in life. We'll have attendees from all political viewpoints, from many different religions, from a variety of countries and cultures. We will NOT agree on everything, but frankly, we don't have to. The point of this retreat is to not have to agree on topics of spirituality, or politics, or culture, or music, or fashion, or food, or anything of that nature. These issues are NOT why you would be attending a DID Retreat.
If someone has a different opinion in life than you do, live and let live. No arguing needed. No one is there to confront, convert, conform, criticize, or challenge others. Y'all just be yourselves, be gentle with everyone else, and patiently listen to other perspectives. But really, the main point is to focus on why we're there. Again, live and let live.
You will be at NC '23 to learn about dissociation. To learn about your system. To allow your system insiders to have new healing experiences. To let your people learn how to interact and talk with others, both inside and out. To ask questions that will enhance your understanding of DID. To learn more about system work. To explore methods of internal communication. To gain more skills in dealing with your insiders. You are there for healing experiences, not for political debates.
Do you want the best experience possible?
To get the best support and have the most comfortable experience while at the P4 Retreat: North Carolina 2023, it is strongly recommended that you join the DDCF Forum and be an active, participating DDCF member well ahead of the retreat. Becoming familiar with your fellow retreat attendees before arriving at the retreat location will make your in-person experience much easier.
We've seen, via our previous events, that those who are the most connected in and comfortable with other retreat attendees ahead of time will have the best retreat experience. It's highly recommended that all Retreat Attendees join the DDCF forum as quickly as possible to become familiar with the other retreat attendees.
Even better, join DDCF and participate in several of our Zoom group discussions. This will let you see who you will be with, and the others can see you in return. This level of visual familiarity helps a lot in the building comfort and safety level of the retreat setting. Meeting new people is difficult for most dissociative systems, so get a jump start on that by joining the forum today.
DDCF has a variety of extra discussions and related retreat information available to them as well. If you're not part of DDCF, you'll be missing out and coming at this retreat with a disadvantage.
If joining DDCF is not an option for you, and if you are a person new or unknown to Kathy, you will be requested to have at least three 2-hr Zoom Video consultations with Kathy prior to attending this retreat. AND also, most likely at least one Zoom Group (video on) ahead of time with a group of other Retreat Attendees. We will want to meet you ahead of time.
This may sound like a lot .....
And it is a lot.
But also, it is crucial that the Retreat be safe and comfortable for everyone. This retreat takes a lot of time, effort, energy, and resources to pull together. It's a giant, expensive, time-consuming adventure for every single everyone who joins in, including me. I am not interested in having anyone's AMAZING retreat experience ruined by someone else's poor behavior.
SO... only those who can manage this setting are invited to participate. If this scene is too hard for you, then don't come.
THAT being said... I hope YOU are someone who can benefit from this retreat experience. I hope YOU are someone who would respond kindly to group support, helpful discussion, and interesting challenges.
This year, in North Carolina, we are going to have everything from art projects, to nature walks with waterfalls, and clay board work to address intense feelings. We are going to have 2 ESA dogs there to provide emotional support, entertainment, and security. We are going to do story-time and daily adult discussion time. We will have large-group and small-group topics varying from DID internal system work to addressing sex trafficking. The simple things, the difficult things.
It is a lot.
AND.... It will be a very helpful step in your healing journey.
I hope to see you there!