Elizabeth Ammons grew up as the youngest member in a family of eight children in a household governed by survival of the strongest. Against the greatest of odds, she managed to survive a childhood filled with memories of incest, rape and torture. Yet her survival carried a price and that price was the shattering of her soul.
By the time Elizabeth was born, her family had become a distorted and wicked caricature of the perfect American families depicted on television in the early 50�s. Neglected and abused from birth, she was forced at a very early age to protect herself from the evil that surrounded her. At the age of three the first of thirty-two alter personalities was formed. Stone Child was a catatonic, unfeeling toddler who could endure almost anything, even the violent, savage rape by her father, while being held down by her older sister.
Elizabeth�s ability to insulate herself from an unbearable existence served her well as a child, it enabled her survival, but it created havoc in her life as an adult. She began to experience longer and longer periods of lost time, sometimes hours, sometimes days, sometimes months, when she was unaware of her surroundings or her actions. Life became even more chaotic for Elizabeth following a thwarted suicide attempt on her fortieth birthday. It was while hospitalized she was diagnosed with Multiple Personality Disorder and began therapy.
After being told by a psychiatrist and several therapists she was not the birth person, but simply another personality, Elizabeth set out to prove otherwise by forcing the alters to give up their secrets.
Essentially Elizabeth had created an alter to cope with each aspect of her life. Among the thirty-two, there were the children, Molly and Rachel, who scribbled on walls and loved lollipops; Carl, the mechanic, who also handled bathroom duties; Jennifer, the cold, efficient businesswoman; Sarah, the religious fanatic; Ginny, the 18-year-old who loved to have sex for teddy bears; and Cuemaster, who delegated the duties and maintained control. The memories of the traumatic events, which caused these alters and others to be created, had been left with them, not Elizabeth.
Through eight months of intensive therapy, Elizabeth reclaimed those memories, uncovering secrets kept hidden for years in the dark recesses of her mind. Shortly after being diagnosed with MPD in 1990, Elizabeth formed a support group for survivors of incest and child abuse. The name, Daisys In Recovery, was taken from her childhood spelling for daisies. Daisys gained non-profit status in 1992 and implemented an outreach jail program called Victims No More in 1995.
Although Elizabeth�s story is a grim chronicle of a child�s shattered soul, it is more importantly, the successful triumph of the human spirit. It is a portrait of a woman who embodies the true meaning of forgiveness. Her story has become an inspiration to many who have endured abuse and is one of hope and encouragement for all in the face of despair.
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May 11, 2001
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