Glen, Party of One-Third

Clayton by Sherrie Hogan //

Glenn, party of one-third by Emily Beck //

On a hot July afternoon in 2009 I sat in a mall food court with my friend Glenn. He is not very tall, standing only five foot nine inches. His hair is cut short and nicely trimmed. On his face are thin rimmed glasses. Glenn has been telling jokes and making me laugh. He has a talent for accents and some have even dubbed him the master impressionist. One of his voices I had started calling Lenny. This voice is of a person who has Down syndrome. I have never found this voice offensive, just funny. 
During our food court conversation I said, let’s play truth or dare. I told Glenn that on the way back home I was daring him to get on the Trax train and say, out loud, in front of everybody, his “Woohoo! I like chocolate milk!” This phrase can get me to shoot milk out my nose. 
I took my tray to the trash can and began leaving when I heard my name. I stopped because it wasn’t said right. I turned around and found my friend now walking with a limp and dragging one leg and calling me, “Emly.” He was leaving out the "I" in my name. He spoke with his jaw to one side and his tongue was hanging out. I asked him, 
“Glenn, what are you doing? Wait until we get on the train.” 
My friend had changed. I thought he was taking on the dare a little early and asked him again to stop and wait. I walked farther away from him and he began chasing me outside the food court and into the outdoor mall saying, 
“Emly wait! You have a wait for me. Don leave me.” 
Now I was scared and running away from him. Others were staring at me, giving me evil eyes like I was mistreating a handicapped person. I wanted to scream, “He is not handicapped or disabled. I don’t know who this is!” After about a good ten minutes Glenn came back to his usual self and I asked him why he acted like that. He just laughed. I found out a couple years later that his accent I had named Lenny, was named Timmy. Glenn had an MPD. 
Multiple Personality Disorder, now changed to Dissociative Identity Disorder, is a mental illness where one person has a mind with two or more “others.” One of which is the actual person and the others are other identities created by the main self to help deal with or cope with a certain situation, mostly some form of child abuse. Studies have shown that in most cases a person with this disorder usually has more than one “other” identity. On that July afternoon I had only met Timmy. 
Fast forward to a Sunday at Glenn and his new wife’s, new apartment in September of this year and he is telling me that he has two personalities. His very thick British accent was also an “other.” It didn’t surprise me. I had had multiple conversations with Glenn talking like a Brit from England; because I too can do a pretty good British accent and we talk like that most of the time we are together. I thought it was just Glenn doing a good impersonation.
“Nope.” Glenn told me. “It was Charlie.” 
By himself Glenn is a funny, smart, God loving guy. He likes a good beer, loves a good party and is always ready to help a friend if they need it.  In March of this year Glenn celebrated his birthday at Buffalo Wild Wings. He showed up wearing a faded, red, where’s Waldo T-shirt, with white plaid shorts and green suspenders. On his face were white, over-sized glasses in the shape of two beers with the base of the bottles cut out for the eyes. These you would find in a comedy/Halloween store. He wore what looked like golf shoes on his feet. Guests at the party looked at his fiancĂ©e and asked, “What happened to him?” To which she would reply, 
“I let him dress himself.” 
For those who don’t know Glenn’s story they might think he is dressed this way due to a pre-party hangover. 
Glenn sees me and his eyes go wide. His jaw goes to one side, his tongue comes out and he waves one hand really fast. Timmy has said hello. I realize that the first half of Glenn’s outfit is Timmy’s doing. The where’s Waldo T-shirt is a favorite of Timmy’s. It’s like a joke, “Ha-He. Where’s Timmy?” Since Glenn has told me about Timmy I can now recognize when Timmy comes out. I have only had few conversations with Timmy where Glenn doesn't know what happened to the time. These are called blackouts. 
When Glenn told me about Charlie I hadn’t had any blackout conversations with him. That’s why I always assumed it was just Glenn but Glenn knows about it. He was just there “watching,” as he calls it. The more I talk to Glenn the more I learned about Timmy and Charlie. Glenn was a victim of child sexual abuse and this is the cause of his having multiple identities. He has used these two friends, as he calls them, to help cope. He knows something happened in third grade but Timmy holds the memory of it and has only told me. Charlie also knows about it and both believe that it is not a good time for Glenn to know right now. I agree and because Glenn doesn’t remember the whole memory, only bits and pieces, I will not be sharing it here.   
In my talking to Glenn I asked him about Charlie. Glenn had told me when he told me about Timmy that he was bi-sexual. And when I found out about Charlie I asked him if Charlie was gay. He said yes. Up to this point I had not had a blackout conversation with Charlie but two weekends ago, at his wife’s birthday party, I got my chance. 
I witnessed Glenn come behind his wife’s step dad and go up behind him in a very gay action. They both laughed and Glenn went outside. I followed him out there and immediately started to talk like a Brit. 
“I saw that you know.” Glenn’s face went blank. He smiled and responded in a thick accent that my old roommate from North Wales said was better than hers. 
“Oh, you did?” 
“Yes I did.” He laughs and replies.
“Well you can’t let Timmy have all the fun now can you? And Michael’s great. He’s such a good bloke.” 
“He didn’t mind you doing that?” 
“No. I can do that wif ‘im. He’s such a good sport about it.” 
We talked for a few more minutes. He introduces himself to his sister in-law as Charlie. She was gathering her kids to go home and didn’t pay attention to it. Charlie got upset about it. 
“You see that? Nobody sees me. They don’t give a rat’s bottom about me. All they see is Glenn.” Glenn’s face goes blank again, he jumps a couple of times and I know Charlie has returned the body to Glenn. He asks me how he got outside and I tell him I was having a conversation with Charlie. “What?!” He had had a blackout and I had my first full conversation with Charlie. 
Glenn used to believe that Timmy was just an imaginary friend he never grew out of. It wasn’t until he told me about the outdoor mall incident, that it wasn’t him, that I told him he had an MPD. Having studied MPD’s in high school and through personal research I was able to identify Glenn’s imaginary friend as more than that. With this knowledge, Glenn was now able to identify Charlie as also an MPD. I asked Glenn if there were any more others up there in his mind and he assured me that there wasn’t. There was just Glenn and two more or Glenn, party of one-third.