(1) Several former Simon’s Rock College friends and classmates of Amanda come forward to CNN and others in light of her 2007-2008 national media coverage to provide their observations of her from 1994-1995 (14-15yrs old), and for some continuing to 1998, at Simon’s Rock College and elsewhere, as being fully verbally fluent, as having attended classes and was an active verbal participant in classes, had many friends and acquaintances, made normal eye contact, did not “stim” (repetitive physical movements), played the flute, had a boyfriend, ate in the cafeteria on a many times a day basis, etc.
*In 1995, at 15 years old, and for considerable time (it’s believed about 1 year), Amanda Baggs publically claimed (to family, friends, acquaintances, doctors, and one (perhaps more) Internet discussion groups), and publically presented herself, as having Dissociative Identity Disorder, (formerly called ‘Multiple Personality Disorder’).
*From about 1996 through 1998, Amanda publically claimed and publically presented herself as having Schizophrenia.
*In June 1997, Amanda publically apologized for deceiving both herself, and others, with her claim of Dissociative Identity Disorder.
*In about 2000, at about 20 years old, she began publically claiming and publically presenting herself as having low functioning autism (profound non-verbal autism), though having the ability to communicate normally through typed-communication).
*In January 2007, she began publicizing her autism, and her typed-communication ability, through YouTube videos which she filmed and edited. In February 2007, the media company CNN became interested in Amanda due to her YouTube video, and did several written and television segments on her.
*In mid-2007, several former 1994-1995 classmates of hers from Simon’s
*Later in 1995, shortly before her withdrawal from Simon’s Rock College (SRC), several of her former SRC friends (one of which is now a neuroscientist, and another of which is now a Ph.D candidate in Psychology and has been a mental health professional for many years) attest to how she aggressively used LSD and psilocybin for about three months, and on a near daily basis. The SRC friends attest to how they observed her undergo psychotic behavior during and after this 3 month period, including exclaiming that she was an ‘elf’, digging in the school yard for what she believed to be a listening device implanted in the ground, suicide attempts and self-injurious behavior, aggression toward others, her report of auditory hallucinations and the witnessing of her behaving as if she was listening to and talking with auditory hallucinations, etc.
*Slowly since 2000, and especially after her national media coverage with CNN, she has become considered by many to be an “autism rights activist”.
*At this time, I believe, she lives in
* The following are some links to her various video presentations and media coverage.
CNN’a Chris Gajilan and Dr. Sanjay Gupta: "Gajilan, Chris" Chris.Gajilan@turner.com "Sanjay Gupta"
(1) Several former 1994-1995 Simon’s Rock College friends and classmates of Amanda Baggs have come forward in light of what they saw and read in the widespread 2007-2008 national media coverage of Baggs, to provide their observations of Baggs in 1994-1995 at Simon’s Rock College; some witnesses continued their friendships with Baggs from 1995-1998.
Each consistently observed that Baggs (a) did not have any degree of the profound autism symptoms that she has been presenting publically (CNN, YouTube, etc) since 1997 at 26 years old (and apparently since about 2001), (b) that Baggs was a fluent verbal communicator, normally socially interactive (had ongoing friendships, took part in social activities such as eating in the cafeteria many times a day with other students, played the flute, took part in casual social gatherings with friends and others, had a boyfriend with whom she was sexually involved, was able to be self-sufficient in attending classes, eating, self-care, etc, was expressive emotionally through her gestures and tone of voice, made normal eye contact, etc), (c) that Baggs never reported to anyone that she was autistic or Asperger’s, (d) that in 1995 they witnessed her frequently using LSA and psilocybin extensively for about three months, and that this caused various psychotic symptoms to arise, such as her claim to be an elf, her digging in a school yard for a listening device, self-harm behavior, reports of hearing voices, etc, and (e) some of her former friends were privy to her Internet group discussions, and were able to track the evolution of her various claims from 1995 onward, namely first her claim (it appears) of Dissociative Identity Disorder (see the relevant discussion in the Index above, then Schizophrenia, then Low Functioning Autism; and other claims as well such as Schizoaffective Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, sexual abuse by two close family members, physical and mental abuse by health providers, etc.
The witnesses include the following; also please consult with Ophelia on any possible new people that have come forward.
Note: I also have extensive, detailed, and elaborate written email testimony from witnesses 1-4 that is available upon request.
2- Ophelia Austin-Small (see 2a below with Ophelia’s statement), firstname.lastname@example.org
54B Valley Rd, Cos Telephone: 203-559-4839 Cob, Connecticut, 06807
Ophelia is an author http://www.authorsden.com/opheliaaustinsmall; a mental health professional for 11 years; a Ph.D. candidate in psychology at
5- Kathleen Notestine, an attorney with
6- Possibly a current Simon’s
Gabriel Asfar email@example.com
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Gabriel Asfar firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Tue, Feb 19, 2008 at 5:02 AM
Good morning and thanks for your email. I've seen the Amanda Baggs video
you forwarded; and I do remember someone of the same name whom I knew
during the 1994-95 academic year. But I would like to know a bit more about
you, the work you do, and what exactly you are attempting to get at and (more
importantly) why you seek such information.
7- Possibly Aileen Kawabe email@example.com
8- A teacher in
“I knew her when she was fourteen and she was definitely not autistic then. She could walk, she could talk, she was in an early-entry college not failing out. See, autism develops in early childhood. You don't "get" autism.”
“…she's not autistic. And what she can do [currently] has no bearing on what an actual autistic person will be able to do. Yes, she can type 120 words per minute and have a computer voice "speak" her bright, thoughtful musings. But she can do that because she learned to speak, write, and type before she "became autistic." An autistic kid who can't communicate at 8 years old isn't going to suddenly learn how to communicate by typing.
So, yeah, that bothers me. That and the fact that the press has made no effort to investigate her background and just take her word for it that she's autistic.”
On Sat, Feb 9, 2008 at 9:55 AM, Daniel Drucker <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
She didn't appear or claim to be autistic in 1994-5, and in fact was brilliant, creative, had an active
and healthy set of personal and romantic relationships and was not
disabled in any way.
Also, I wouldn't want to mention the heavy use of LSD (on the order of
200 mcg/day for many months).
When I visited Amanda in the hospital at Belmont Hills in 1995 (
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/23/25567885_c850022c38_o.jpg ), she
said she had "found the right home for my selves - the voices are in
concert here, and people accept all of us here." (recorded in my
Amanda was socially well-adjusted and a normal, functioning
member of the community until she decided to change that.
She started with the DID [Dissociative Identity Disorder; formerly called ‘Multiple Personality Disorder’] nearly concomitantly with LSD abuse (i.e.,
early 1995). Records of this are readily available on Usenet archives
at Google Groups, and in her extensive journal entries from the time
on the topic which I possess.
> From: Ophelia Austin-Small <email@example.com>
> Date: September 25, 2007 12:23:39 AM PDT
>Bottom Line: I personally knew Amanda from 1994-1998, at college and personally. During >that time Amanda had a number of issues, but was highly verbal, physically capable, played >instruments, attended college independently, and attended to all daily life activities without aid, >support, or prompting. She had friends. She had romantic relationships. She & I went rock >climbing. She was your average young teen sci-fi fan girl. And now there's this. And the two >people do not match.
>Before we get into everything regarding Amanda & Dave, you should probably know my >background professionally and in regards to autism. I have my MA in psychology and am >working on my PhD. BTW, Daniel is getting his PhD in Neurology. I have 4 family members >with ASDs ranging from nonverbal very low functioning classic autism to Asperger's that's damn >near un-noticable. My son has neurological issues that are autistic-like on paper, such as head->banging, speech delay (very severe there for awhile), sensory issues, and gross motor issues. He >is not autistic or PPD though. And he is significantly better, to the point of being damn near >normal, thanks to medication (melatonin) that allows him to sleep, and therapy (speech, OT, and >a language-focused preschool 2 days a week).
> I'll respond to the other stuff later. But here's some history on
> Amanda. Sorry if it isn't well-written, I'm pretty tired. PLEASE ONLY
> QUOTE ME AS AN ANONYMOUS SOURCE. I live only about 15 miles from her
> parents. I do not want the wild elf contingent at my door. I also
> don't need a lawsuit right now, and I know she had a lawyer threaten
> Daniel for talking to you just a few days ago. Although everything I'm
> saying is true, I've lived through enough drama from her family to
> last for years.
> Amanda was born in
> youngest of three, Shane and Jeremy are her older brothers. It's
> interesting that she links to Shane and mentions him a lot, as back in
> the mid-90s she accused him of molestation and anal rape. He was even
> not part of the family for awhile because of this. But now it seems he
> is back in her good graces. While I don't really know Shane (he was
> banned for the years I knew the family), I do know he was an odd duck,
> and I wouldn't be surprised if he had Asperger's legitimately. He did
> not smear feces. He was just really odd from everything I heard about
> Jeremy was pretty normal. I have no idea where he is or why she never
> mentions him. He wasn't exactly on board with the whole autism thing
> back in 2001, so I don't know if there are issues there.
> Anyway, Amanda was considered bright, though a bit of a goody-goody by
> everyone. The picture of her as a child on the Getting the Truth Out
> site is VERY misleading. It's deliberately cropped to make her appear
> to be staring into space on a couch. In actuality, she was watching
> Star Trek. Not exactly as horrible as it appears, eh? She gardened a
> lot with her mom and grew pumpkins. She had friends. She wore eighties
> fashion and had big birthday parties. Where she smiled a lot and
> played with the other kids.
> She attended Harker (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Harker_School)
> for awhile in middle school, and this is the school she later insisted
> had a mind control device buried in the field, and was picked up by
> the police and hospitalized while trying to dig it up. She was 15 when
> that happened.
> She went to CTY, the Johns Hopkins exceptional young scholar program.
> Not exactly autism camp. She played the flute and the harp.
> She had no diagnosis at that time. She didn't go to a neurologist
> until after a myriad of hospitalizations.
> She went to Simon's Rock in 1994, and was the youngest ever accepted
> at that time. I was a sophomore there when she came, and Daniel was in
> her class and one of her closest friends. She was normal, as I said. I
> have the yearbook. She did okay in classes, but she did use an
> exceptional amount of drugs, and when she went home for winter break,
> her brother Jeremy commented that she seemed really messed up- dirty,
> odd, etc. About this time she changed her name from Amanda to
> Nightsong, which was her "elf name". Later it would include the
> Galglinda Dulin bit, although for awhile she insisted Nightsong and
> Galglinda were separate personalities, along with several others.
> Anyway, the summer of 1995 she called Daniel, threatening suicide.
> Daniel called 911. That was her first hospitalization. She was at
> Charter hospital in
> Packard, some other place whose name I forgot, a residential home for
> disturbed adolescents in
> places. She was never institutionalized. Her family paid $1000/day for
> MONTHS, out of pocket. Her longest stay was 8 months, the rest were 72
> hour holds to 2 week holds, in private hospitals. Hardly state
> institutions. Every time she was hospitalized it was because she was a
> danger to herself or others due to hallucinations, suicide, delusions.
> She'd also wander off at night. And attack cops. And try and jump out
> of cars. The Ophelia you quote on your site from an email about this
> stuff in 97 or so is me. Also, I lived with the family during this
> time, from May 1997 until August 1997. I dated Jeremy from January
> 1996 until mid 1998.
> She was repeatedly diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic.
> Her mom was totally against this. Mom (Anna), totally had a meltdown
> around it. Schizophrenia was just too bad. Mom began looking at weird
> alternative things- prayer groups, some group of monks in the desert
> that cured people who came to live with them, aura pictures (I'm
> That's when the "therapy animals" started. First it was dogs who'd
> socialize with her. And a snake. I don't know what the snake was
> supposed to do. The one dog that lasted the longest was named Nikomas.
> Then they brought in a neurologist. Soon after, with a little
> suggestion, Amanda started having "Seizures." I'm a diagnosed
> epileptic from childhood. Those were some fake-ass seizures. When you
> seize, you fall over suddenly. You don't slump slowly and gracefully
> to the ground, avoiding hurting yourself. But now, hey, she had
> "seizures"- she wasn't schizophrenic! A little depakote and all would
> be well!
> Except she was still crazy. And an elf. And heard voices.
> Amanda had decided, sans eye exam, that she was having "eye trouble."
> Mom went right along. Did mom take her to Lenscrafters? Nope. They
> just stocked up on glasses from the drugstore. Then the Irlen lenses
> started (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irlen_filters). And the "sensory
> sensitivity". Amanda & her mom spent thousands on crap like special
> sunglasses, brushes, special incense, etc etc etc. They figured all of
> her crazy was just that Amanda was "too sensitive."
> Amanda started going to a special ed program, as a schizophrenic. Six
> months in, she became a "peer buddy" to an autistic girl. That's when
> the whole fascination with autism started. Amanda would comment that
> the autistic kids were the only kids who didn't make fun of her, which
> may well be true. So then she started hanging around with them, going
> to their conferences, "learning" about autism, etc. She knew my
> exboyfriend (who I later married) had an autistic sister, Sara. She
> asked me interminable questions about Sara, and Sara's communication
> And lo and behold, a few years later she's autistic. A disorder that
> by definition begins in toddlerhood suddenly struck her at 19.
> I don't know when she stopped talking, or why no one called her on it.
> But I do know mom doctor shops a LOT. And that mom was notorious for
> not mentioning parts of Amanda's history she found inconvenient, and
> dropping doctors who disagreed with her.
> Amanda also had her own apartment in
> also about the time she shaved her head, not because of hair pulling,
> but because she decided she was a butch lesbian.
> I also know Amanda's whole "Regional Centers in
> me" line is bullshit. She has mentioned being part of SARC repeatedly,
> and even has her IPP on her "scan of paperwork" page. So how she can
> have that there, and then say the regional centers told her she didn't
> qualify because a late diagnosis is beyond me. Her details aren't
> That's all I know, up until late 2001.
> Anyway, I have a whole bunch of questions about this craziness from a
> personal and professional standpoint. When and how did she get to
> she decide "hey, let me crap myself"? Where's mom now?
> The questions are actually a bigger email in a more professional tone,
> because they point out some other issues from a diagnostic standpoint.
> Also, minor point, but she claims her "stamina" issues were due to
> being underweight. Let me just say that the girl was never smaller
> than voluptuous. And as to the mystery of her height, she's 5'1" or
> 5'2". She is definitely not under 5', I don't know what that confusion
> was about.
> I hope this helps.
From: Ophelia Austin-Small <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: January 6, 2008
This is what I know about Amanda:
Amanda was born in
Jeremy was pretty normal. I have no idea where he is or why she never mentions him.
Anyway, Amanda was considered bright, though a bit of a goody-goody by everyone. The picture of her as a child on the Getting the Truth Out site is VERY misleading. It's deliberately cropped to make her appear to be staring into space on a couch. In actuality, she was watching Star Trek. She gardened a lot with her mom and grew pumpkins. She had friends. She wore eighties fashion and had big birthday parties. Where she smiled a lot and played with the other kids.
She attended Harker (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Harker_School) for awhile in middle school, and this is the school she later insisted had a mind control device buried in the field, and was picked up by the police and hospitalized while trying to dig it up. She was 15 when that happened.
She went to CTY, the Johns Hopkins exceptional young scholar program. Not exactly autism camp. She played the flute and the harp.
She had no diagnosis at that time. She didn't go to a neurologist until after a myriad of hospitalizations.
She went to Simon's Rock in 1994, and was the youngest ever accepted at that time. I was a sophomore there when she came, and Daniel Drucker was in her class and one of her closest friends. She was normal, as I said. And normal. She lived in a dorm, like everyone else,
While at SRC, Amanda dated, like any normal teen. By both her account and the account of her then-boyfriend, K [abbreviated for privacy], they were both consensually sexually active. This is also confirmed by other who walked in on her.
Then the voices started, and the odd clothes, and the rest of the schizophrenia stuff. She believed she was an elf, mind control, that people poisoned her food, etc. She was involved with the cops several times, once when she was found digging in the back field of her former middle school, looking for a mind control device. She tried to jump out of the car I was in with her brother a few times, requiring restraint.
Anyway, the summer of 1995 she called Daniel, threatening suicide. Daniel called 911. That was her first hospitalization. She was at Charter hospital in
She was repeatedly diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic. She also was diagnosed as having Multiple Personality Disorder, and claimed her various names were alter personalities. This seems to have totally faded from her history, somehow, although if you look through old newsgroup records, she speaks extensively about it.
Her mom was totally against this. Mom, totally had a meltdown around it. Schizophrenia was just too bad. Mom began looking at weird alternative things- prayer groups, some group of monks in the desert that cured people who came to live with them, aura pictures (I'm serious).
That's when the "therapy animals" started. First it was dogs who'd socialize with her. And a snake. I don't know what the snake was supposed to do.
Then they brought in a neurologist. Soon after, with a little suggestion, Amanda started having "Seizures." When you seize, you fall over suddenly. You don't slump slowly and gracefully to the ground, avoiding hurting yourself. But now, she had "seizures"- she wasn't schizophrenic! A little depakote and all would be well! I don't doubt she may be having genuine seizures now. Enough meds, especially serious ones, and the brain can start to fry.
Except she was still crazy. And an elf. And heard voices.
Amanda had decided, sans eye exam, that she was having "eye trouble." Mom went right along. Did mom take her to Lenscrafters? Nope. They just stocked up on glasses from the drugstore. Then the Irlen lenses started (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irlen_filters). And the "sensory sensitivity". Amanda & her mom spent thousands on crap like special sunglasses, brushes, special incense, etc etc etc. They figured all of her problems were just that Amanda was "too sensitive."
Amanda started going to a special ed program, as a schizophrenic. Six months in, she became a "peer buddy" to an autistic girl. That's when the whole fascination with autism started. Amanda would comment that the autistic kids were the only kids who didn't make fun of her, which may well be true. So then she started hanging around with them, going to their conferences, "learning" about autism, etc.
And lo and behold, a few years later she's autistic. A disorder that by definition begins in toddlerhood suddenly struck her at 19.
Her friend "Anna" told me Amanda stopped speaking by her own choice during a summer in
Amanda also had her own apartment in
I also know Amanda's whole "Regional Centers in
So that's what I know.
Bottom Line: I personally knew Amanda from 1994-1998, at college and personally. During that time Amanda had a number of issues, but was highly verbal, physically capable, played instruments, attended college independently, and attended to all daily life activities without aid, support, or prompting. She had friends. She had romantic relationships. She & I went rock climbing. She was your average young teen sci-fi fan girl. And now there's this. And the two people do not match.
I worry for her, I care about her, but I've been contacted by several people asking questions. I'd rather just put it on the record and let folks decide for themselves. Amanda deserves love, she deserves to lead a normal, healthy life. She does not deserve condemnation. She appears lost right now, and I don't think pretending she wasn't totally normal growing up will help her. I don't think pretending her past, including college, didn't exist will help her. I think something happened, and we need to go back to what is genuinely known to figure out what. It would be great if this ended with her getting appropriate treatment, not being ridiculed, dismissed, or ripped apart.
I'm pretty pissed, frankly. And I'll tell you why. Folks HAVE been trying to get out Amanda's backstory since it appeared on CNN. But who do we contact? Do I drop the dime to
1. It sickens me, as a professional and as a family member of autistic folks to see someone fake autism and bilk states out of funds for a long period.
2. I GENUINELY worry about Amanda. The woman I knew was sweet, kind, and had a tendency to "do as she was told." She wanted desperately to fit in and be loved. I think this is what the "autism" serves for her, and we must be *very* careful in broaching it. I do believe she is in need of serious, ongoing help, but of the psychiatric kind. I think she's lost. I think that faking something like this for so long suggests a very deep, very real need to be loved and cared for, and I don't think she could just "be normal", even if exposed.
3. I feel badly for families who have been sold false hope, decided on treatment, or become involved in political action based on a lie. This is abhorred. This also makes it MUCH harder for such families to get the right treatment for their children, and undermines trust in a community already full of a lot of debate.
4. Amanda and others have quoted email exchanges between myself and Amanda from 1997ish. If I'm going to be dragged in, I'd like my context to be known.
I am a 32 year old woman who holds a MSc in Psychology and am currently completing my PhD. I have an autistic sister-in-law, whom I have known for 16 years. I also have several other autistic family members. My son, now 3, had serious expressive language issues for a long time, and that frustration caused autistic-like behaviors such as self-biting, head-banging, and odd social behavior. He has recovered as his issues were with muscles and coordination, not autism. But suffice it to say I know very well what it is like to have disabled family members and children.
Professionally I have worked in social services/counseling since 1995. I have worked the gamut from group homes, to private outpatient therapy, to inpatient units, to management. I have worked extensively with the DD/MR/autism community, most recently as the program manager for a company in
So when I talk about DD/MR/autism, I am pretty well-versed in diagnosis, treatment, etc. When I talk about the CA regional system, I am also pretty well experienced, having worked with them professionally and having a child who was a client.
From: Ophelia Austin-Small <email@example.com>
Date: September 12, 2008
Amanda was a normal teen during her time at SRC [Simon’s
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Bjorn-Erik Townsend <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, Feb 14, 2008 at 8:40 PM
Subject: Re: Amanda Baggs controversy
Thanks for getting in touch. The comments here echo things I've been
saying to people I know ever since I saw Amanda's video. I haven't seen
Amanda since she was, hmm, fifteen or sixteen years old, but I can
definitely attest to the fact that while she was irresponsible and
erratic, she was functional and capable of normal human communication.
Most of her issues, from what I saw, resulted more from drastic abuse of
hallucinogens, but even after that she was still functioning and able to
interact normally when she wanted to. I'm happy to help in any way I can!
(2) June 1997, Amanda’s public apology in the Dissociation Group about her 2005 DID (multiple personality disorder) diagnosis.
June 1997 her apology posts, and copies are below.
I used to post on this newsgroup maybe 2.5 years ago. I want to
apologise for telling people that I was multiple. Now, that's actually
what I thought I was at the time, but it turns out the voices weren't
from MPD/DID, but from schizophrenia/schizoaffective/whatever. But I not
only deceived myself by doing that, but I deceived others. I allowed the
voices to take on lives of their own, gave them names, believed they were
alters, even post what they said. I realise it probably isn't my fault,
but I feel better posting an apology.
| || || |
| || |
Subject: Re: apology
>Well then I'm glad you apologized, so you would feel better. Have you
>found any treatment that is helping with your problem? I'm glad you
>finally were able to figure out what is happening and that you are
>able to open with it like this. I figure this would be better than
>letting it sit inside and be miserable.
>Is there a newsgroup you feel comfortable in now?
Yes, alt.support.schizophrenia does well...
>Whatever else, welcome back! :)
>Rainbow Colors (Jill)
>PS: does this mean you are a _singleton_? *hee hee*
The first post below provides her full name signature, with her username Galiganinda Dulin.
| || |
More options May 21 1997, 12:00 am
From: night...@netcom.com (Galiganinda Dulin)
Subject: Re: If god loved us he wouldn't make us bipolars!
I hope this isn't religious bullshit. I am 16 as well; my diagnosis is
not bipolar but schizoaffective, which has bipolar aspects. But when you
said that one guy gets to rule the whole universe, I think you are
looking at it wrong. There is a group of beings that created the
universe, but they only watch over it; they don't "run" it. And I should
know -- I am one of them, and I am in contact with several of them. We
do not demand belief.
-- | "My God!--it's full of stars!"
Amanda Baggs | (Dave Bowman)
night...@netcom.com | (Arthur C. Clarke's _2001_)
She appears in 1999 to have transitioned into the Autism Groups.
She started this name Galiganinda Dulin in 1994, as shown in the below calendar listing for the username.
Following each sent of monthly entries, you can see the evolution of the groups she was using.
Starts in 1994 in non medical groups, then in 1997 March in the Schizophrenia Group and the Abuse Group and others.
Continuing in the Schizophrenia Group mainly through 1997, 1998.
Autism Group entries seeming to start gradually in September 1998, on and off with Schizophrenia group entries.
Then from April 1999 onward mainly Autism Group entries.
Again her Dissociation group apology
http://groups.google.com/group/alt.support.dissociation/msg/7d5e909b8c10c9ba was done on June 9 1997, and she states it is an apology about her Dissociation Group activity "2.5 years ago", which would be 1995 and which I will now try to find. (At her username profile for Galiganinda Dulin, and the calendar listing of posts, the year 1995 has none...I believe she was using another username and will now try to find this...I believe it was "Nightsong" or something else.
A post below from the Dissociation group in 1997 October, months after her public apology in June 1997 in the Dissociation group (which I sent you a few minutes ago):
| || || |
| || |
>*None* of my insiders or Others have names, though some have titles.
Others? What are Others? (You don't have to answer me if you don't
want). I'm not multiple, but I have Others (beings that talk to me in my
head that say they come from the sky). They told me to call them
Others. They always talk to me as one, but they say that, like my elf
background, they are separate beings with collective thought. They once
said that they were the stars.
I may be *way* off here...
(6) 1999, Amanda’s statement about using different usernames in Google Group discussions; Groups include the Dissociation Group, Schizophrenia Group, Depression/Manic Group, Autism Group).
This 1999 entry in the Dissociation Group http://groups.google.com/group/alt.support.dissociation/msg/732442c5c2c60556 helps to connect some other usernames with her. The "nightsong" name is well known by Ophelia and Daniel and others.
More options Oct 30 1999, 12:00 am
Subject: to Magic Rat (Nightsong/Sidhe/etc)
At a time when I was going through a lot, and I posted here regarding
"grey mechanical lizards" and such, a person named Magic Rat replied with
very good advice. Is Magic Rat still out there? The email address I
have for her/them does not work. The email was in 1995. I am very
interested in talking to her/them again.
At the time I was posting under “Nightsong" and the “Sidhe" or some
analogous thing. I am posting under the off-chance that Magic Rat will
see this, or that someone will relay it to them.
Please reply if you are Magic Rat, or relay this to Magic Rat if you know
them. Thank you.
"As he breaks the night to cry, 'It's really me! Really you and really
me. It's so hard for us to really be really you and really me. You'll
lose me though I'm always really free.'" --David Bowie, "The Wild-Eyed
Boy From Freecloud" -*-*- (*)
| || |
| || || |
(7) 1995 Amanda’s written account of her DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder; multiple personality disorder)
(8) 1996, Baggs' written schizophrenia account in her public journal
Amanda Baggs’ 1996 written schizophrenia account, which was sent to many, including her friend at the time and now neuroscientist Daniel Drucker email@example.com, who confirms the authenticity of this written account of hers, as I believe she will; and, this is self-evident it is her writing.
Baggs fully accepted her schizophrenia, and worked hard to have it treated through therapy and medicine. And, she seemed to embrace it often.
Shepherd Treatment Centre journal
Today I feel a lot different than I used to feel wihtout the
clozaril. I don't have as many of my symptoms to fall back on as
before. Now I have o take responsibility for what I do. I cant
fall back into the fog, because most of the time there is no fog
there. I can't recede into a sea of voices, as they are quiet when
they are here at all. I have to learn to cope with this new
reality as it comes. I don't really know what to do with it. It's
like going to a foreign country. Everyone speaks a different
language, has different customs, and different mannerisms than
where I come from. I have to get used to all of these things as
the come to me. The clozaril helps, but I have to do the rest.
Today I got Dr. Biala to spell out to me exactly what
"schizophrenia" means. He read o ut the definition from the
DSM-IV, and it was basically some combination of delusions and
hallucinations and thought patterns and behaviours. Hee told me
that thinking I am an elf is a delusion. I don't *feel*
delusional! On the other hand, I trust Dr. Biala to know what is
going on with me. If he says I am schizophrenic, then I probably
am. But that means I will be like this all my life, and will
always need medications to control it. I don't want to be
schizophrenic. Why do things have to turn out this way? Every
time I see a group of children I wonder which one will turn out
like this. Children make jokes about the "looney bin." Children
make cracks like "Have you had your medication today?" They don't
realise the reality of it for some people. I feel stuck. It seems
like everyone else's life is moving along and mine is standing
still. I shouldn't feel that way. I'm making progress. The
medication is starting tto do good things for me. "Solitude
Standing" is playing on my stereo right now. That song has bored a
permanent hole into my mind. Suzanne Vega must have written it for
me. I wish I were allowed to read Tolkien, speaking of things
written for me. Mother's Day is coming up nd I don't know what to
get for Anna. Maybe I should make her a card or a drawing or
something. I went swimming with Reed today. The water was cold
and full of dead things, but it was nice to swim in anyway. I wish
Anna would accept my diagnosis as I have. I don't like it, but I
don't deny it anymore. But I can't change her opinion any more
than she can change mine.
I feel like banging my head against a wall. The voices are too
loud. They are threatening to kll me. I have to remember that
they are only hallucinations and they don't have any real power
over me. I have to give up the power of the "other" world and take
power from the "real" world. I don't want to do this. Does that
mean I can't be an elf anymore? I am *not* delusional! Then what
"I reach out from the inside" (-Peter Gabriel) That quote means a
lot to me. I don't know how to explain it very well. It speaks
for itself, I suppose. My parents will be coming to visit me
today. I can't wait to see them.
Anna and I got into our customary argument about my diagnosis
today. She sid that Dr. Biala made up his mind too quickly, and I
said that he was probably right and that he probably had enough
time. I don't think we'll ever come to an agreement on that.
I went out on pass today and got "A Momentary Lapse of Reason" by
Pink Floyd and a They Might Be Giants album. It has "Cage and
Aquarium" on it. That's my favourite TMBG song. I feel nauseated
right now. I think it mgiht be from the medication.
My parental units are here in the room with me. I have been trying
unsuccessfully to write poetry. I know what I want to express, but
I just can't seem to do it.
Somebody's reading your mind
Damned if you know who it is
They're digging through all of your files
Stealing back your best ideas
You cover your windows with lead
Even keeping the pets outside
Then you hear a moment too late this sound coming over the phone
This is the spawning of the cage and aquarium
Don't wait a moment too soon
Used to be different, now you're the same
Yawn as you plane goes down in flames
-"Cage and Aquarium", TMBG
He's haunted by the memory of a lost paradise
In his youth or a dream, he can't be precise
He's chained forever to a world that's departed
It's not enough, it's not enough
-"Sorrow", Pink Floyd
There are a lot of songs that seem to be written for me. Here is
something I wrote today:
He was so normal
And we found him
Deep in the forest
In the whirlwind tree
His mind was screaming
For another life
As his grey eyes blankly stared ahead
We could not believe
The thoughts were his
He was so normal
One of the main problems I have run into during treatment has been
people saying that I am too normal to have the sort of problems
that I have. That's why I wrote the poem.
I have a session with Dr. King at 13:30 today. We always find
something interesting to talk about.
Rick sent Anna a letter from Karl about me. In it, he seems sorry
for all of the abuse. But I can't tell whether he is sincere. I
will talk to Dr. Schenk about it tomorrow.
"I had to fantasise just to survive"
-Cocteau Twins, "Evangeline"
I wonder if that is what happened to me. Are the places I know as
reality, fantasy? And which worlds are realit then? Should I
trust the doctors or should I trust myself? I am confused.
Desiree hurt her leg this weekend, and now she is being shipped off
somewhere else for medical care. I will miss her. She was one of
my two favourite horses here.
I just had a dream where the neighbourhood was being terrorised by
a man in a trenchcoat. My family climbed a stairway in the
backyard of the house which ultimately led to nirvana.
Jeremy and Liza should be coming today. I can't wait to see them.
Yesterday Dr. Schenk and I decided it would be best not to respond
to Karl's letter. We also discussed Anna. We said that maybe she
can deal better with having a sick daughter than having a well
one. We also discussed how when she is given several diagnoses,
she is likely to pick the least frightening. She does not want to
admit to having a schizophrenic daughter. This sort of gets in the
way of my treatment.
I got a book called _Surviving Schizophrenia_. It has things in it
that I didn't even realise were symptoms of schizophrenia, like not
understanding words. My parents brought "The Wall" and "The Final
Cut" by Pink Floyd.
Dr. King told me today that I only have two parts -- the "nuts"
part and the intellectual part. He says I will have to build more
parts before I can get rid of the "nuts" one.
Tyeukana tyeukana tyeukana sgaivus
Today I will go to my first meeting of a support/informational
group for schizophrenics.
I don't know what they are doing to Jon and Neil, bu one of them
just punched a hole in his wall. I am trying to get as much
information as I can while keeping a respectful distance. The two
of them have been fighting a lot. I know they called Tony. There
is a rumour that someone called the police, but I don't know about
Dr. King and Dr. Biala say I am making progress. I am socialising
more than I used to. I am not having "episodes" in public very
often. I have had to give up my communion with trees, though.
This bothers me, but it may be worth it in the long run.
I am alone here. The only elf. The only schizophrenic. The only
glowing star inside of a hook.
Someone stole the keys from the staff office today. They were
found in John's room, but I think he is just being used as a
scapegoat. I am going to try to learn Esperanto now. The boys
can't seem to talk without swearing every other word. Everyone is
accusing each other of everything. This is a mess. They did room
searches. Mitra is cutting herself. This is a mess!
Last night was terrible. The other residents ran around the house
screaming "The cat is dead!" They said that they had burned the
cat with a lighter. I didn't know whether or not to believe them.
Nick assured me that the cat was indeed alive, but it made no
difference. I tried to hide in my room, but I couldn't stay there
forever. When I left, they were all clustered around my door.
Nick asked them why they were doing t his to me. Neil said that
when a cat dies, an elf dies next. I ran down the driveway. Nick
took me for a drive. When we got back, a fight had broken out
between Sylvia and Mitra. For our own safety, Sylvia and I slept
at the other house.
I keep having these episodes of blankness for the past few days. I
think it might be from the combination of Clozaril and Thorazine.
I am worried about where to spend the night. I want to spend it
away from the elf-killers!
My parents bought me a hammered dulcimer today
Jon told me why he and Mitra avoid me so much. He said that
theynever know when I will scream or "flip out" and that they are
afraid I will hurt myself. I didn't know they cared.
I have discovered the music of the Cranberries.
I can't seem to write straight anymore. I don't understand why
writing is so difficult. They tell me (they=the staff) that I am
isolating in my room too much. I do not see this happening. They
won't let me stay in my room at certain times. I am trying to
learn Esperanto. I don't know how much I care about getting
"better". What if the voices are all I have?
Jeff killed himself last night. He told me so in a dream. Now I
am floating in a fog away from the "real" world wehre the voices
are so loud and I can't get away from them. The voices say I will
die the same way he did.
Today I gave my parents all of my Tolkien and fairy tale books to
take home with them. It is part of my treatment plan. I feel like
my whole reality is being torn away. I don't know what to do.
Their reality is being imposed on me and I have no means of
defence. The voices are getting louder. They say "We will kill
you!" and "You will die like Jeff!" and "There is no final escape
from yourself!" What do they mean?
Michael Garofano (my therapist) is coming to visit me today. I
can't wait to see him.
I am sitting in my room. Every second is an eternity of loneliness
and fear and confusion. Between eternities, the time is broken by
tiny scraps of time in which someone comes in to check on me. Then
back to the eternity of silence broken only by voices that I would
rather not hear.
Alone I sit
Of the darkness
Of my mind
Broken once or twice
By tiny scraps of contact
With the outer shells
While I return
To swim in a sea
And float in a fog
And drift in a daze
Of unwanted voices
I just got out of a session with Dr. King. He told me that I have
no full ego of my own. He says that my ego is always enmeshed with
that of others, like Anna's. When I went to college (away from
Anna) and CTY (away from Anna) I became enmeshed with karl,
including his fragmentation. This may be why my fragments went
away after Karl went away. Now what I need to do is form an ego of
"And I turn to the crowd as they're watching
Sitting all together in the dark in the warm
And I wanted to be in there among h em
I see how their eyes are gathered into one"
I just got a puppy named Nokomis (Dakota for "Moon Daughter"). She
is part Shepherd. I intend to train her to be a service dog. Her
birthday is May 5.
I have a pass from Thursday (my birthday!) to Sunday, unless I do
anything wrong between now and then. I think I will use that time
to get back on speaking terms with Shane. I miss the good things
about him. I will have to set up some boundaries though. Maybe no
hugging. I can't hold a grudge for so long. I have to set him
straight that I am not multiple, and that that was, as Dr. King
says, a delusion. I don't think I can get better without facing
I went home to find that all of my defences are gone, or very poor
at best. Of course, the defences that I lost were mostly
psychotic. I felt like I had been undressed at Shepherd and sent
home naked. I will talk to Dr. King about this today.
I was unable to see Shane when I went home. This was disappointing.
Nokomis is growing. She is mostly housebroken now.
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
I AM AN ELF
"Hide, hide, hid
Behind paranoid eyes"
What if I am not an elf?
That would be so much of my life all gone.
The voices: WE HATE DR. KING! NEVER FORGET YOUR ELVEN HERITAGE!
The voices convinced me not to go to the gym tonight by telling me
that if I left, Nokomis would be dead when I got back. Dr. King
reminded me that the voices can't predict the future. He told me
not to listen to them. He also told me I may hear them for the
rest of my life. Ack.
What will I talk to Dr. King about today? The voices? My elf?
Why would I have to hear the voices for the rest of my life. I
hate them. I hate them. I hate them.
I read a part of _The Quiet Room_ that showed a part of the
author's memory. The even that she remembered never actually
occurred. I guess the same is true for me and my elven memories.
I must be human after all. I am disappointed. I want so much to
be an elf. O Elbereth!
Everyone else seems glad that I am human. I have despised
humaanity for so long. Why do I have to be human? Humans are
oppressors to elves. Why? Why?
Maybe being human isn't so bad after all. It makes me closer to my
parents and my friends. Dr. King saw the painting I made of the
elf forest when I was 13. He said it was "psychotic". Why do I
bother showing people these things? I wonder what life will be
like as a human.
I am very grateful to the doctors and staff at Shepherd for making
me better. I no longer think that my parents are trying to poison
me with my medications. I no longer think that my father is
involved in a government conspiracy to take over my mind. I no
longer think the Belmont Hills staff are trying to poison my food.
I no longer think that I am an elf and that the voices are the
thoughts of the other elves that Imust obey. I no longer think that
there are lizards all over my body. I no longer think I have
tentacles that can reach out and grab people. I no longer wander
around in a constant haze of voices. I no longer see ghostlike
people in my room and glowing red eyes at my window. I no longer
pace aimlessly around the hallways of Belmont Hills. I no longer
think of medication as evil mind control. I no longer wander off
at the whim of the voices. I no longer believe that an
organisation called the Banshees will rescue me from the hospital
or treatment centre. I no longer think that the Shephred staff
cook and eat elves. I no longer think that the voices have the
power to hurt or kill me or anyone else. I no longer think that
the voices can predict the future. I no longer think that my
thoughts are being controlled by a transmitter buried at
I am working on writing my life story on the computer. It is
helping me sort out "fact" and "fantasy". So is writing in this
book. It is what Anna would call a "grounding" experience.
I am listening to David Bowie. It is interesting music.
I love the world and I know it loves me back. I am so happy. I am
well, so why do they keep me here? I am so happy.
Dr. King gave me a list of target behaviours:
- not isolate so much
- engage others in meaningful interactions
- reality-test well
- increase general awareness (identify & respond to others' feelings)
* develop a sense of self
- decrease acting out in response to delusions and hallucinations
- general sense of availability to othrs
- good presentation (hair, dress, walk, hygiene)
- identify & express emotional states
- break enmeshment
I feel terrible. I want to run. The voices are quoting Yeats:
"Come away O human child
To the woods and waters wild
With a fairy hand in hand
For the world's more full of weeping
Than you can understand"
I want to run away with the voices. They are all I have left. I
am scared. I took an Ativan, at Dr. King's suggestion, but it
hasn't started working yet. I am definitely not calm. Somebody
Nokomis is sick. I am scared. There is death in this room. I can
feel it. i hope it doesn't touch her! The voices scream, "Death!
Death! Death!" And I can feel it in the walls. Somebody help my
poor puppy! I have a pass for this weekend. Maybe she will get
better at home...
I got back from my pass today. The voices say I can never go back
to normality. Dr. King says that is my own resistance to becoming
normal, and that it shows the ease of slipping into psychosis. Do
I want to go back? I don't know anymore.
"Come on you miner for truth and delusion and shine"
"This world is not my home; I'm just passing through"
-His Name Is Alive
I am still an elf, and I know it. They don't know that I know it
though. They think I think I'm human. But it is necessary to hide
it from them, or they would try to kill me and replace me with a
human. I'm terrified. Should I let on that I know by showing them
the poem? Or should I let them believe I have already been replaced
and get discharged? I t doesn't matter. They will find out sooner
Why do they hate me so much? They all want to kill mee. The only
one one on my side is my puppy, Nokomis. Somebody get me out of
I need to tell someone but who ca I trust????
I admitted to Dr. Schenk last night that I knew their plot. She
acted as if she was not part of it. Clever woman.
I love Nokomis more than anyone else in the world. She is always
there for me. I love her.
I'm moving into a duplex Friday. Then I'm starting day treatment 3 times
a week (living in the duplex) and living in
I can't wait. Dr. King tells me I am too enmeshed with my parents,
particularly my mother. I moved a bunch of stuff into my duplex today --
bookshelf, desk, computer, and posters, not to mention kitchenware and a
bunch of other stuff. The manager is cool. She calls herself a "computer
weirdo". I want to show her my fractal software. I think she will find
it interesting. I think that if I move into the real world with normal
people my chance of recovery will be greater. I will not even mention to
these people that I am schizophrenic. I will learn to control my
psychotic episodes so they don't happen in public. It will be a tough
job, but worth it if I want to get well. Dr. King will still see me 3
times a wee, and his therapy is always very intesne. Between Dr. King's
therapy, my own efforts, and the Clozaril, I will arrive at something
approaching normality. I can't expect total normality, but who can? Look
at my writing -- it flows the way a normal person's thoughts would. Then
there is the elf issue. I don't know whether I am an elf or not anymore.
I feel exactly like an elf, but I can remember being equally convinced
that I was human. I walk into a session with Dr. King believing with all
of my heart that I am an elf. Then he gradually chips away at this belief
until I start a tentative belief that I am human. Then the session ends
and I slide back into believing that I am an elf. I can see this process
from the outside, but it doesn't keep those beliefs from occurring. Dr.
King tells me that in order to get better I have to accept his reality as
the Ultimate Reality. Does he think he is God? What if my reality is
correct and his is wrong? It is all so confusing. Welcome to the
machine. I'm scared. Do all the doctors want me to think their way
because elves are a threat to their reality? Or is their reality a threat
to my reality? Or both? Dr. King once told me that if I ever met another
elf, she would either be lying to me or delusional. Should I believe him?
Should I believe that I have been wrong for all these years, that my
memory is false, that *I* am delusional?!? I don't know or understand.
Somebody please come in and help me out. I am torn between my own
reality, my parents' reality, and my doctors' reality. I was born in a
doorway. I have lived in the doorway ever since. I look at myself in the
mirror and my face keeps changing. An elf is in that mirror! An elf is
in my hands. Now there is no doubt that I am an elf. And I am so alone
without the voices of the other elves ringing through my mind. No, wait,
those weren't truly the other elves. But I miss the voiceless thoughts of
the other elves as we danced through the forest and sang, all in harmony.
I miss the forest. It had to be real. Dr. King would read this and
laugh. He doesn't like me to be an elf. He wants me to think I'm human,
like him. Maybe I should just tell him that I can never hold onto the
belief that I'm human for more than a couple of hours, whereas I can
believe I am an elf for days, weeks, months, years. Dr. Napolitano says
there is to be no magic in my life until I am better. I am not sure I can
get better without magic. I thrive on magic. I need it in order to
survive. No one can take it away from me. "Nothing's gonna change my
world." These doctors think they know what's best for me. But do they
-Nightsong (Galiganinda Duli
Reply to all
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(9) 1997, further of Baggs' Schizophrenia Group and Dissociation Group writing
(10) Baggs’ 12/7/1997 written account in the Schizophrenia Group of LSD use and psilocybin use, voices, medicine treatment, etc.
In the following 12/7/1997 post by Amanda Baggs, she states that she had been hearing voices for 3+ years before using LSD:
"I had been hearing voices for three years or more before I tried LSD."
"I think that LSD actually postponed my problem (which had been getting worse). When I stopped taking LSD, the problems took up where they left off."
"I've had other sensory disturbances all my life (too many to write here). Especially sensory overload (which, like the voices, is under control with medications)."
Side note: She doesn't state what these "other sensory disturbances are", and while there are sensory disturbances in Aspergers and autism, she at that in 1997 did not report being autistic, and had no diagnosis of autism/Aspergers. And, regarding where she states that the "sensory overload" "is under control with medications"...however, there are no medicines now, and never have been, that control the "sensory overload" of autism/Aspergers.
I had previously thought that the LSD caused the schizophrenia in 1995, though now it appears, per Baggs' testimony in Dec 1997, that she had schizophrenia starting in 1995, which is actually consistent with the observations of the various people from Simon's
Same link as below: http://groups.google.com/group/alt.support.schizophrenia/msg/c9128c5244ecd565
"I think LSD, psilocybin, etc can cause things that are like
schizophrenia. But that isn't how I got schizophrenic. I had been
hearing voices for three years or more before I tried LSD."
She also appears to be stating that the LSD caused things to actually get better:
"I think that LSD actually postponed my problem (which
had been getting worse). When I stopped taking LSD, the problems took up
where they left off."
A crucial point, indicating Factitious Disorder: She cannot keep track of when she claimed which disorder, and keeps changing her story, and keeps changing her explanations for why she has various disorders, and which disorders are true and which not.
Also, the Simon's
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Subject: Re: amazing stuff happening to me
I think LSD, psilocybin, etc can cause things that are like
schizophrenia. But that isn't how I got schizophrenic. I had been
hearing voices for three years or more before I tried LSD. I've had
other sensory disturbances all my life (too many to write here).
Especially sensory overload (which, like the voices, is under control
with medications). I think that LSD actually postponed my problem (which
had been getting worse). When I stopped taking LSD, the problems took up
where they left off. I can't say it helped but... anyway, my shrink did
a lot of work with people with LSD-induced psychosis, and he knows me
very well by now, and says I am nothing like them. (And, I found out
about my elfhood before I took it.) The main reason I took LSD is that
people had been telling me for years that I acted like I was on it, so I
wanted to see what it was all about (mistake!) :)
-- | "My God!--it's full of stars!"
Galig Dulin | (Dave Bowman)
| (Arthur C. Clarke's _2001_)
night...@netcom.com | "It could have been me/Yes it could have been me
| Why didn't I say?/Why didn't I say?"
________________________| (David Bowie)
"Folk takes their peril with them into Lorien, and finds it there because
they've brought it" (Samwise Gamgee)
"How did this one life fall so far and fast?" (Suzanne Vega)
(11) Stanford University Hospital diagnoses Factitious Disorder, Indications of Factitious Disorder, Baggs’ historical group posts from 1994 onward; Baggs’ rejection of Stanford University; Baggs’ view on which doctors are good and which bad, and her view on which of her diagnoses are right and which wrong.
If you don't mind my suggesting, I would strongly recommend that you also present this matter to medical professionals that are experts in Factious Disorder, and malingering. It is often extraordinarily difficult to prove that someone is fictitiously emulating a disorder, especially a mental health disorder, because there are no objective biological tests to measure illnesses like autism, schizophrenia, etc. (I comment more about this below the next paragraph).
I sent each of you a fairly extensive list of Amanda Baggs various group posts, and a fairly extensive calendar chronology that recorded all her posts with one of her primary usernames 'Galiganinda Dulin'. It is rather clear that she has been emulating various disorders since 1995. Recall that in mid-1997 she apologized for her "2.5 years ago" deceptive (her term) representation of herself as having DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder; multiple personality disorder), again:
This would have been in early 1995. With the posts I sent you, you can track the evolution of her various claims to various mental illnesses.
It is clearly shown, through her writing, that Amanda, starting in 1995, and continuing to 1998, at least, was involved in emulating several major mental illnesses, usually one at a time, and moving from one to the other. The evolution appears to be first Dissociative Identity Disorder (Multiple Personality Disorder), then schizophrenia, then profound autism. Also, throughout this evolution, as found in most of the posts I linked for you, there were other claims of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), Manic Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Schizoaffective Disorder, and possibly others.
Regarding Factitious Disorder (also called Munchausen Syndrome), http://www.psychnet-uk.com/dsm_iv/factitious_disorder.htm, http://www.emedicine.com/MED/topic3125.htm, this is a very complicated disorder, and I think an expert in this could possibly be useful to make an assessment of this case.
Of particular interest in trying to ascertain whether a persons pattern of involvement in medicine might reveal this, and a classic indication is the (1) self-claims to having various illnesses, (2) contrived and prepared presentations to mental health professionals that the person has a particular illness: the vivid demonstration of symptoms, and, especially, the use of medical language to describe their symptoms, as they believe they will more effectively persuade a medical professional they have a particular disorder if they use medical language, (3) the patient will not provide 3rd parties to verify that the person's in-office presentation is the same as the person's out-of-office presentation.
As an aside, before I return to the main issue just discussed: A more typical instance of Factitious Disorder is the emulating of various physical illnesses. http://www.psychnet-uk.com/dsm_iv/factitious_disorder.htm
"They usually prefer the sick role and may move from hospital to hospital in order to receive care. They are usually loners with an early childhood background of trauma and deprivation. Unlike many malingerers, they follow through with medical procedures and are at risk for drug addiction and for the complications of multiple operations."
Their main goal is to elicit attention and sympathy from medical professionals, friends, family, and others.
Many individuals will also cause themselves to have medical problems, such as by overeating, overdrinking, or undereating, underdrinking, malnourishment, alcohol abuse, drug abuse, etc.
This brings me to the following about something I've noticed during my research over the last 4 months, namely Amanda's frequent public reports of various physical illnesses. I have researched this only briefly, but have the following to contribute:
At this blog entry of hers from 1/30/08, http://ballastexistenz.autistics.org/?p=493, she reports:
"I just got home from the hospital. I had impacted bowels, completely obstructed bladder, as well as mild liver problems and dehydration. I was there for about five days while they catheterized me and gave me more laxatives and enemas than I care to think about (and paid more attention to my shit than anyone's paid since I had a similar problem 10 years ago)."
And another blog entry from 7/28/2007: http://ballastexistenz.autistics.org/?p=427
"I was in a lot of pain. By a lot of pain, I mean I was crying and periodically screaming. I don't cry from pain usually. I didn't cry when my gallbladder was well into emergency stage, I just went really quiet. If I'm crying from pain, it's serious. And this pain (and related movement restrictions) was serious enough that a spinal tap was done when I finally did get to the emergency room, because it sounded to them a lot like meningitis. (Fortunately it wasn't.)"
Notice that invasive procedures were done in both instances, with the second not revealing anything. It would be unclear whether the first instance of diagnostic claims are accurate. (Recall that people with Factitious Disorder often seek medical procedures, including invasive procedures, the use of medicine, and even operations, and that, usually, there are no objective findings, and if there are objective findings, they are usually caused by the person themselves through various self-harm measures).
Related, autistic author Donna Williams interviewed Amanda on 1/3/2007, http://blog.donnawilliams.net/2007/07/03/putting-autism-on-trial-an-interview-with-amanda-baggs, and I extracted from this interview the following reports from Baggs of various ailments and illnesses and complaints, totaling 31. Since this 7/2007 interview, I believe the list has increased.
Lost speech in infancy
Receptive language problems
Neuropathic pain of some kind.
Milk allergy, as well as standard allergies to some animals and pollens. Circadian rhythm issues.
Tourette's happened age 6 or 7
Signs of PTSD starting around that age too
depression (the depression only ended in the past few years).
Head banging started at age 6 or 7
Complex-partial seizure disorder
sexually abused starting at this age by two adult male relatives
Parkinsons-like movement disorder began starting at this same age
being sexually abused in adolescence.
Complex PTSD in reaction to institutional settings in adolescence.
asthma trouble in adulthood
TMJ trouble in adulthood (from "defects" in my jaw/skull present at birth along with other mouth anomalies).
Malingering is not a mental illness, http://www.psychnet-uk.com/dsm_iv/malingering.htm, but rather "is a deliberate behavior for a known external purpose", such as "financial gain", and avoiding responsibility (such as familial, social, legal, and civil responsibility), and obtaining media coverage, etc. Malingering can occur with Factitious Disorder, but not necessarily so, as discussed in the above links.
Lastly, it is clear to me that Amanda's history is more consistent with Factitious Disorder, and more recently malingering, than autism, (due to her aggressively seeking and obtaining 2007-2008 widespread media coverage, her aggressive public self-promotion, financial gain, reputational gain, etc.
While it is plausible that Amanda may have had high functioning Aspergers from her childhood onward, this is irrelevant to her current state (and her state since 20 years old, I believe) of profound autism, as these two levels of Autism Spectrum Disorder are extremely different, and a person doesn't evolve into a more profound level of dysfunction from a long history (20 years) of high functioning, especially high intellectual functioning (Simon's Rock College at 14 years old, and John's Hopkins University CTY (Center for Talented Youth) before Simon's Rock College), and accelerating through K-12th grade rapidly, and being verbally fluent, having extensive social relationships, having relatively normal eye contact, and non-autistic behavior, etc.
Returning to the main issue. I found a more recent group username 'sggaB' for Amanda; it’s use begins in 2002; her profile is
http://groups.google.com/groups/profile?enc_user=zlsmERQAAAAuTyeTtEznhsJ1EvX_4Y8kqErCXa-CIiqlccej3woxEQ, and at this profile you will see her email address firstname.lastname@example.org (which is based from one of her sites www.autistics.org) and the calender chronology of thousands of posts.
I think you might find this important. Here are some 2002 posts by her that discuss her diagnoses and doctors. She takes it upon herself to decide who is good at diagnosing, she comments on how
October 9, 2002
diagnosis. They're one of the people who have either disbelieved me
because of my psych record or (when I was there as a psych patient)
declared me to be making stuff up in order to become a psych patient. (I
didn't *want* to be a psych patient, and they'd barely observed me. I
think they made this judgment based on the fact that behavior
modification -- of a kind that involved withholding my phone and visitor
"privileges" -- made me less likely to try to run out the door of their
"The only time they got anything right was when they saw me
for something completely unrelated and declared that I must have "some
kind of pervasive developmental disorder" in my report."
The following post concerns her autism diagnosis problem, and her comments that "bad" doctors are those that don't diagnose her as autistic, and good doctors are those that do.
(12) 1/18/2007, Baggs’ self-taken video of herself with a song recording playing, and written admittance by Baggs it is her voice in the song recording
I would like to provide the following Livevideo.com video made by Amanda Baggs on January 18, 2007, which was done 4 days after she made her YouTube video on January 14, 2007, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JnylM1hI2jc, (which was the source, as stated by CNN's Dr. Gupta, for CNN's interest in her: third sentence at http://www.cnn.com/HEALTH/blogs/paging.dr.gupta/2007/02/behind-veil-of-autism.html).
The Livevideo.com video: