(La Mirada, CA) In an attempt to highly compartmentalize her life, one woman has created multiple personalities… online.
As of time of writing, the woman maintained four Twitter accounts and two Facebook accounts, plus numerous profiles and alternate profiles on various dating and social networking websites.
“I’m shy,” the woman responded.
An unsatisfactory answer, Multiple Personality Disorder, now known as Dissociative Identity Disorder, is in fact a mental health disorder where a person becomes disconnected from their thoughts, feelings, memories or sense of identity. This can result in separate or distinct personalities, each with their own sex, age and race.
And while this is a real disorder, what the woman suffers from appears to be an extreme need for maintaining appearances, and want of privacy. These are exemplified by her Twitter accounts:
1. Professional. Reflecting her professional persona, these tweets mainly consist of re-tweeting work-related news stories and articles as well as those related to state and local government.
“I try and maintain a very particular impression of myself at work,” the woman shared. “Being promoted so young, I felt extra pressure to present a professional image, separate from my personal life.”
“I leave out all the sarcasm, and hence humor in my opinion, from these tweets.”
2. Personal. Her personal, and primary, account reflects her truest feelings and thoughts on a variety of topics.
“Even more than Facebook posts, I find myself being honest with this [Twitter] account,” the woman confided. “It helps that I have a handful of friends as followers rather than the hundreds of ‘friends,’ some of whom are colleagues, on Facebook.”
This is also a private account, which serves her well. That is, except on the occasion she gets fired up and wants to respond to someone not following her.
3. Blog. Under the safe guise of her online writing persona, these tweets provide links to her published stories as well as reflect concerted efforts at wit and humor.
“I try and be particularly funny with these tweets,” the woman admitted, “without the risk of exposing my identity if I fail miserably.”
“Which I never do, of course.”
4. Public at Large. Least used, this account comes in handy for public tweeting in hashtag contests, about products, etc.
“I received one reply from AARP and was SO excited,” the woman shared. “Since then, meh…”
With increasing concern that there is too much personal information accessible online, the woman feels justified with the multiple layers. But mostly, the woman just wants to keep these parts of her life separate.
Except when there is a comedic punch. The line between these personalities will blur when one persona re-tweets or comments on another persona’s Facebook status.
“Who doesn’t want to manage their image… be a better version of themselves? And if I can do it while making people laugh?”
“Sure, I’m in.”