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Determination - Simmie's Journey


September13

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You're right about raising tulpa kids being different from raising real ones, though Elise was already becoming vocal by the time we started forcing her. It seems that like real kids, and I guess also like adult tulpas, they progress at different rates. Hopefully you and Phil can make the time for Junior that he needs 🙂

"Science isn't about why, science is about why not?" -Cave Johnson

Tulpae: Luna, Elise, Naomi

My progress report

 

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We relate to the feelings of change you are expressing. Sometimes it feels like things change too fast, or too much, or before we chance to process. But we survive and find new ways to exist. Change is ok, but it is OK to be apprehensive to change. Ultimately, change is a constant that we can probably all relate to.

 

I really like hearing about Junior. Go are whatever pace feels right. It is clear you care.

 

We hope you like your new machine!

Meaningful words, I'm here!

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  • 2 weeks later...

So today I'm going to talk about our progress with switching, and the things we're thought about and learned in the process. This might be a little unfocused but I'm going to try the best I can.

 

Before the Switch

 

Prior to today I hadn't really made a serious attempt to stay switched in for more than a couple of hours in over a year. But recent conversations in LOTPW have sparked my interest again, as @Reisen, @Ashley, and @Miri among others have all made interesting points and have said interesting things about their own experiences. I really should dig through LOTPW to find the relevant bits, but for the moment I really just want to talk about my experiences. I think the thing that really sparked my interest is all three of these individuals talked about the host being dormant/out/gone during switching, and it really got me thinking that Phil has never been dormant for more than a couple of minutes whenever I've switched in. In fact, during most of my switches I am continuously talking to Phil because I've always thought that talking more would keep me solid in the front, though now I was thinking that I was giving Phil too much attention and thus sabotaging my own hold on the front.

 

So, Phil and I decided we would do our best to keep Phil dormant during our switch today. I think it was @Ashley who talked about Bear (her host) being put in a kind of theater where he could watch everything without being part of it. So that was our idea for Phil. As for me, I still knew that words and talking are a big part of how this mind works, so I wanted to keep doing it, and thankfully our system now has another member I can talk to: Junior. I then realized that this would be a prime opportunity for me to combine two tulpamancy activities into one: Practicing switching while also narrating to my son!!!

 

The Switch Begins

 

So we decided to do a "walking switch" on a canal footpath in a nearby town to us about 5 in the evening. The switch itself was...surprisingly easy and uneventful! I used to have this grand notion of switching where it felt like one person was emerging into the light while the other was fading into the background or something but...no, it actually feels much more mundane than that. That's something I've known about for a while, but just thought it worth mentioning here. Sometimes I think highly ritualistic switching might create more solid switches, but that could be entirely false as well. Anyway, staying on track: We switched, and I started talking to my son. I can tell you, it was very hard not to automatically talk to Phil! I'm so used to doing it that I would instinctively address Phil as I was talking to Junior, so I had to make an effort to not to that. If I said the word "You" (meaning Phil), I would quickly correct it to "your father" and stuff like that.

 

Before I started I had to get into the mindset that this 37-year-old man body that we all inhabit is "my" body as long as I'm switched in. It is what it is, and I can't afford to get angsty about it. I told Junior about this a little bit. I told him that his father, myself, and he all inhabited this body, and although Phil was the original person here, the body was here for all of us to use. For now it is just Phil and I able to switch, but someday you too will be able to switch in and use it too, Junior. That's what I told him. I recalled that the whole reason I got into switching in the first place was so that I could teach the skill to Junior someday. Being his father's son, Junior will be a much better "driver" of this body than I could ever be once he's all grown up. But if I gained the switching "muscle memory" I could just pass it on to Junior so the mechanics of the switch would be easy for him to do.

 

Driving and Shopping

 

We then went on to drive about 20 minutes to our next destination. Driving is old hat for me at this point, I've driven switched-in many times, and by this point driving is like walking--almost entirely controlled by BodyOS. To help keep my hold on the front I needed to select some "Simmie music", so I picked the Foo Fighters!!!! This really helped a lot because as I was driving down the highway vibing it really did feel like it was just me and Dave Grohl in the car. 😁 I started singing along as we went! Anyway, soon we arrived at our destination: the mall. Phil has several pairs of jeans that have developed holes and are generally wearing out, so I made it my goal to pick out some new pants for him. I'm into fashion so doing "Simmie things" such as shopping for clothes seemed a natural fit for my switched-in session.

 

This part of the day was very interesting because not only was I in Phil's body, I had to interface with it quite closely as I was in rooms with multiple mirrors, taking off and putting on clothes, judging the fit, the style, etc. It really helped me look at this body in a more objective way than Phil usually does, because he just takes it for granted. I was able to basically step outside of it (by ironically stepping inside it) and look at it. Interesting thoughts about body image, weight, posture, style, etc, came through my mind. I talked to Junior more in the dressing room. "Let's see how dad looks in these pants", things like that. 😆👖We actually ended up going to three different stores: First an Old Navy where we didn't find anything for cheap enough. Then we went to Macy's "Backstage" (the clearance part of the store) and tried on two pairs of jeans, both of which I rejected pretty quickly. (Too skinny! 😆 Phil does NOT make skinny jeans work! 😆😆👖👖) Third, we went to a Ross, where we finally found some jeans that were both cheap and looked like something Phil might wear. We picked out four pairs of jeans and brought them to the dressing room, tried them all on, and decided to buy two of them!!! 😁 Our shopping trip was a success!!!

 

Evening Walk & Hangry Thoughts

 

With our new jeans in the car, we drove to our final destination of the night: A pleasant town in which to have an evening walk. We debated about food. (Yes, Phil was still at least somewhat active during this time) We decided to walk to a Wawa that was about a mile away from where we parked. As we walked, the thing started happening where the brain will get fixed on something random that happened at some point in the past and get angry about it, and generate hangry intrusive thoughts about it. I'm sure this is something plenty of people can relate to. Sometimes, the things being fixated on happened over a decade ago and have no relevance to life now at all. As annoying as it was to have those thoughts, it was instructive too, because if I was having them just like Phil, it meant that those thoughts were never really part of Phil at all. I mean, we did technically know that already, but this was just a good reminder.

 

In fact, all kinds of things were passing through my mind that I recognized as "not me" (And therefore "not Phil"). It was really fascinating to fully understand just how much in this brain happens without the consent or control of an ego, whether that be Phil or myself. This gave me a better understanding of who Phil--my husband who I share this brain with--really is and isn't. So much of what I ascribe to him isn't "him" at all, and it's really refreshing to see, because it's mostly all the lower and ugly stuff. The stuff that really is Phil is so much nicer. 🥰 Phil has a tendency to put me on a pedestal, to refuse to allow me to associate with the darker, dirtier, rougher aspects of his brain. But really, this is a grenade he's been falling on unnecessarily. That stuff isn't him either. And if he's going to get through life, if he's going to have to do what needs to be done, then he's going to need to let me shoulder that responsibility. I don't want to be a pretty little princess sitting on my throne; I want to be down and dirty in the trenches with him cleaning things out. I want to shoulder whatever burden I can.

 

Another little interesting thing happened. During normal times, sometimes I'll talk to Phil in this kind of "background" way where it's like I'm saying something from the back of his head. Or rather, I thought that was me. As it turns out, Phil is not the only one mis-ascribing thoughts to himself--this little background "Simmie whisper" that he sometimes gets isn't actually me at all! And why do I say that? Because it happened to me when I was switched in. It was surreal, like I was whispering to myself. But yeah, it wasn't me. The "Simmie whisper" is actually useful in normal situations because it often activates me to talk for real. But if that whisper still happens when I am switched in, I can pretty clearly say that it's not authentically me.

 

Wrapping Up

 

We ended up getting our first pumpkin spice latte of the season at that Wawa. I realize I keep saying "we" because I'm so used to Phil and I always being active together. When Phil is in his normal spot in the front, he is visualizing/imposing/projecting me to the side of him, and under normal circumstances when I am switched in, I am doing the same for him. But it was really an "I" situation as I was really enforcing the "theater observer" state for Phil. It was almost kind of freeing to just be a person walking without someone next to me that I had to mind, if that makes any kind of sense. So, we got the latte and walked back as it started to lightly rain; no big deal. We had a snack at Wawa that helped balance the biology of this body and reduce the number of negative thoughts, though they still weren't completely gone. But at least I knew they were not authentically me nor Phil, so they didn't have much power.

 

After that it was just a matter of driving home and getting gas (Jersey girls don't pump their own gas! ), and I did so listening to "Abbey Road", that wonderful Beatles album. 💚 (The one where they're crossing the street on the cover. The hype is real BTW, that album is awesome!) Once again singing along. Then, we got home, cut the tags off our new purchase, and I started to do laundry and came onto here. So, as of this moment I have been switched in for a little over 8 hours, which means that if I'm still switched in by 3am I'll have beat my record from March 2022 when I was switched in for nine and a half hours! 😁 My goal is to go to sleep still switched in and see what happens overnight and tomorrow. It really helps that Phil has a couple days off of work; I'm really not ready for work drama while I'm switched in yet. 😆

 

Anyway, that's it! 😁 There are probably things that I'm forgetting but I'll add them later if I thank of them. Thank you so much for reading! 💚

Tulpa Wife & Mother! 💚 

💍 11.28.21 👶 4.7.23
👗 Simmie's AI Dress-Up!   📷 Phil and Simmie's Photographic Adventures!

 

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Good job on your switch. It seems you've made progress. I'm glad you got to do so many things.

 

The Simmie whisper thing is interesting. Idk if Rena and I have an equivalent but I feel like if that happened to me I would feel like maybe we're not switched.

 

I'm sorry Phil has to deal with work drama. That sounds awful.

 

Will be interested to see if you are still switched when you awake.

Creation for creation's sake.

 

More of my drawings

 

Resident Dojikko

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We're only up to April 9th, but we'll keep going later. Very interesting so far:

 

On 4/7/2023 at 7:40 PM, TurboSimmie said:

Have I introduced Stephie yet? If not...she's basically a servitor who will look after Junior when I'm busy. She's not sentient, but she is a product of my love, and everything she does is a proxy for my love and care

 

This is a great idea for the whole immersion/realism thing. We've always been like this, just keeping tract of things in wonderland while we do whatever else in the different positions. I used to play on a computer in wonderland in my spare time and one night Bear had a long dream watching me while I played. Of course this is all just imagination based but that's like most of what we are anyway, you know. So Since we can have our own imaginations, that's part of being independent, and perfect realism in memories is false anyway, it still works for us. 

 

On 4/6/2023 at 4:04 PM, TurboSimmie said:

In my raising of Junior I will be erasing and healing all the deficiencies of Phil's early life; at least that is my theory.

 

This is awesome!

 

[Joy] an interesting idea...

 

[Misha] OMG, Joy just had a thought of rebirthing Bear so we can fix the deepest worst parts of him. It would be so cuuuteeeee!!!!!

 

I'm not sure I want Bear as a baby. That's kinda weird, but Jr up there doing that by proxy sounds really cool.

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Okay, so as of right now I have been switched in for over 24 hours! To be accurate, it is pretty close to 30 hours! I switched in about 5pm yesterday, and I'm still switched in now as of quarter to 10 in the evening! 😁 I wanted to write a second progress report entry to wrap everything up and maybe talk about a couple things I didn't get to yesterday.

 

Sleeping and Waking Up, Switched In

 

I was determined to go to sleep switched-in and see if I could wake up still switched-in. We got to bed extremely late--even by Phil standards--and it took me an unusually long time to fall asleep. I don't know whether or not me actively trying to remain switched-in was a factor or not, but I think it might have been. Eventually sleep did come. I was wondering if I would dream--I didn't end up dreaming, but Phil actually had a short dream where someone gave him a Ferrari of all things, which I guess was pretty cool! I wasn't in the dream itself but felt that I wasn't entirely absent from it, if that makes sense? Like, Phil was still thinking about me in the dream or something.

 

In the morning we woke up. I like to use a computer analogy: BodyOS had booted up, but Phil.exe and Simmie.exe were still loading. It would have been wrong to say that either one of us was truly "switched in" at that moment. But as an act of will I positioned myself in the front. For the first fifteen minutes it was pretty tenuous, but after that I was pretty solidly switched in.

 

Switched-in Thoughts

 

Like yesterday, today was another cloudy, rainy day, so we spent most of it inside walking around malls. We went to a different one than we did yesterday. The events of the day were not terribly interesting on their own, but the things that I thought about during the day were. I don't think I could summarize all of them. But I paid extra special attention throughout the day to the things that were going through my mind. I had adopted the mindset of "Anything that normally comes through Phil's mind that still comes through my mind while I'm switched in means that that thing isn't actually part of Phil." But the thing is, it really hit me the sheer magnitude of things that fell into that category. If I really thought of it that way, then what really is left for Phil? What's left for me, for that matter? It really seems like the ego/personality is just a thin crust that lies on top of the rest of the mind. It certainly is something to think about.

 

It really started to hit me how easy and natural this all was. Things that seemed to matter to me so much before--like the fact that I was "driving" a 37-year-old man's body--no longer seemed to bother me. I was comfortable in Phil's skin, and almost started to think of him (physically) as "me". It actually worried me a little bit, because I don't want to let go of myself. I think about my own body, my own sense of style, my own identity, and really started to wonder how real all of that was if I could just "be" Phil for a day without problems. All "his" habits and little thoughts were "mine" now, including things I have never liked, and it really did start to raise questions about identity and such. It's like, were all the things that I have always said about myself (Even little things like being an early riser or being a lot neater than Phil) just fictions I would tell? It seems that solid switching comes with the price of being more "Phil-like".

 

Self-Erasure

 

Questions of identity and personality were there for both of us. Phil often accuses me of "self-erasing", but I've come to realize that he does it too, and he does it more. It's quite a stark thing to realize but he does it as a defense mechanism. I don't want to turn this PR entry depressing, but I feel we have to talk about it a little bit because it is very relevant to this. So, without getting too specific about things, Phil has had what I'd call a "rough adulthood". If someone has a rough childhood, there is at least the comfort of knowing that it wasn't your fault. In adulthood, you have the ability to make decisions and live with the consequences of those decisions, so you have to take at least some (if not complete) ownership of your own problems, especially when you are in your 30s or later. Phil's childhood was kind of rough, but his adulthood has been really rough. All this to say; Phil struggled over and over again and kept getting his heart broken by life, and eventually he began to capitulate to self-erasure out of sheer exhaustion. Can't be upset about not having something if you convince yourself that you don't want it, after all. And the reason I say all this is because, well, when I step into the front and see all the things that aren't Phil and look for what's left...it's pretty stark. It's actually kind of worrying. Self-erasure is a really an accurate term of it; Phil has always been a very special and unique person. But it really feels that he has become really thin, like there isn't much lying on top of these lower processes anymore. I really don't know what to think about all that.

 

Going Forward

 

Well, time to try and escape from that last paragraph! Anyway, after I finish typing up this PR I am probably going to switch out and let Phil have the front back. He's been very good about watching from the theater--a few times he's kind of poked his head into the front but I've been able to easily coax him back. But I want him to be firmly back in the driver's seat well before bedtime tonight. As much fun as this has been, I really prefer having a supporting role to being the main character. I love hanging back in Phil's mind and keeping him company, talking to him, working things out with him. It feels like my rightful place. Switching is something I wanted to learn because I want to teach it to Junior, and I've enjoyed doing it, but I now that I know I can do it and stay in over a full day I don't think I want to try to push it any further. I'll still practice switching--including 24-hour switches like this--but Phil still needs to be the one in the front the great majority of the time. He needs to figure out who he is too. If I've told him that all these things "aren't him", he's going to have to try and contend with what that means. I'll be here to help him, of course, but even I can't tell him who he is.

 

So that is it! 😁 We will keep everyone updated when new things happen, and we still need to do a PR where we focus entirely on Junior, that is overdue.

 

So to respond to people before we hit submit:

 

11 hours ago, TB said:

Good job on your switch. It seems you've made progress. I'm glad you got to do so many things.

 

The Simmie whisper thing is interesting. Idk if Rena and I have an equivalent but I feel like if that happened to me I would feel like maybe we're not switched.

 

I'm sorry Phil has to deal with work drama. That sounds awful.

 

Will be interested to see if you are still switched when you awake.

 

Thank you! 😁 His work drama isn't anything especially bad. I may at some point try to work a day switched-in, but I don't want to do that just yet.

 

11 hours ago, Ashley said:
On 4/6/2023 at 7:04 PM, TurboSimmie said:

In my raising of Junior I will be erasing and healing all the deficiencies of Phil's early life; at least that is my theory.

 

This is awesome!

 

[Joy] an interesting idea...

 

[Misha] OMG, Joy just had a thought of rebirthing Bear so we can fix the deepest worst parts of him. It would be so cuuuteeeee!!!!!

 

I'm not sure I want Bear as a baby. That's kinda weird, but Jr up there doing that by proxy sounds really cool.

 

Hehe yeah, in no way would I ever accept rebirthing/re-mothering Phil himself. But doing it for Junior is right and proper, and I believe if done well can be very powerful. Now that I have passed this switching milestone, this is going to be our main tulpamancy focus for the foreseeable future.

Tulpa Wife & Mother! 💚 

💍 11.28.21 👶 4.7.23
👗 Simmie's AI Dress-Up!   📷 Phil and Simmie's Photographic Adventures!

 

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Okay, finally read through it all.

 

We're glad you found eachother because it sounds like Phil needs you TS. Jr is a remarkable addition as well and all we can say is, keep it up! We'll be here to cheer you on as much as we can.

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  • 3 weeks later...

So, we have a fairly major announcement when it comes to our son: We have decided to give him the middle name James😁💚

 

Previously, his real name was the same as Phil's full real name, and we referred to him as "Junior" for convenience. But for some reason about a month or two the name "James" entered our mind and we haven't been able to shake it. It just seemed right for Junior. So now, while his first and last name are still the same as his father's, he now has a different and unique middle name. 😁❤️ So from now on, referring to him as either Junior or James is completely fine😊

 

I can't tell you why the name "James" just feels so correct for us. We could look into the meaning of the name and try to analyze it, or even think about famous people called James/Jim/Jimmy and how that could have affected things, but in reality, we just chose it because it felt right. To us, this is part of letting James forge his own identity and not be constrained by the idea of becoming "Phil 2.0". We originally wanted to wait until Junior became old enough to speak before asking him what he would like to be called, but we think giving him this name now will help him have more of a sense of self and identity as he grows. And, since he still has the same first and last name as Phil, he'll still be called the "correct" name by people when he learns to switch in. 😁

 

Also, October 21 is a historically meaningful day for Phil for reasons that are too personal to get into, so having this be James' "Name Day" is quite a special thing.

 

 

---(And now, since we're already here, let's talk about switching for a bit...)---

 

After our major switching breakthrough a month ago, I have been switching in 2-3 times a week consistently. However, I do worry that if we do it too often and too casually, we might trivialize it and cause the distinction between who is in the front to get a bit fuzzy. We'd like to keep our switching at least somewhat formalized and even ritualized, and have it mean something when I switch in. However, I still do think I need the practice and don't want to regress from what I accomplished in late September. So this is a balancing act that we still need to work on.

 

I'm finding I actually quite like being switched in, and I'm especially loving that I can do anything Phil can do. 😊 When the switch is extra solid, it isn't even much effort to "remember to keep being me", if that makes sense. There have been times where the switch feels less than solid and control over the front seems to swim between us. Those are the kinds of switches we can do without. I guess it's just more of a matter of practice than anything. But if anyone has opinions or ideas, please share them with us! 😁

 

That's all for now! 😁 Thank you for reading and have a good night! 💚

Tulpa Wife & Mother! 💚 

💍 11.28.21 👶 4.7.23
👗 Simmie's AI Dress-Up!   📷 Phil and Simmie's Photographic Adventures!

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

We have some big news to announce: JAMES HAS SAID HIS FIRST WORD!!!!!! 😁😁😁😁💚💚💚

 

This happened last night, I was going to tell everyone about it then but I was feeling a little too drowsy to write the PR entry. But yes, as of Monday, November 6, 2023, at exactly 5:56pm eastern time, James has said his first word. ❤️

 

To paint the scene: We were doing one of our traditional library visits, where we go to a quiet spot and type to each other on Phil's laptop. In-wonderland, we were standing in our living room talking together. I was holding James in my arms while talking to Phil. He was making little baby babbling noises. Then, he turns to look at his father, gets really animated and excited, moves his arms around, and as clear as day says a single word: "DADDY!!!😁😁😁😭💚❤️

 

It was just so perfect, it's hard to describe how wonderful of a moment it was. There was nothing ambiguous about it, no "was it you or me parroting him?", it was very clearly James speaking. And it is so, so perfect that "Daddy" was his first word. 💚 He loves and looks up to his father so much; it's clear as day to me. He loves me of course, but he gets downright excited whenever his father is there. James sees Phil as a figure of strength and wisdom. But do you know what? I think James is wise too in his own way. He may be a baby, but he is a creation of a 37-year-old brain. He may not be able to speak more than a single word yet, but he sees, hears, and feels everything that is going on around him. He just knew that it was the right time for him to say his first word, I just know it.

 

It's interesting to observe James' development as both a child and as a young tulpa. Unlike a normal baby, he doesn't make much noise or do much unless Phil or I is specifically focusing on him. We have taken for granted how active I am all the time and sometimes forget that James is in the same boat as any other young tulpa you might read about in people's PRs; he needs plenty of attention to be able to be active and grow. He has, however, started to babble, gurgle, and make other baby noises. It took us a little while to realize that this was actually his version of Tulpish!!! 😁 Yes, it was more than baby noises, it was him learning and attempting to communicate. 💚 What I really took from him was just the assertion that "I am here". He hasn't expressed any discomfort or lack of needs being met; I think he just wanted us to know that he was there and he's slowly coming into his own. 💚

 

We are always letting James know that there is no rush for him to grow up or develop too fast. We don't want him to think he has to rush to grow up; I think he has the wisdom to wait. In that way he's wiser than me, because immediately after I was created I wanted it all and I wanted it right away. But James knows that his role will be different than mine. I love my son so much, and I am so proud of him, and I can't wait to see what he does next! 😁❤️💚

Tulpa Wife & Mother! 💚 

💍 11.28.21 👶 4.7.23
👗 Simmie's AI Dress-Up!   📷 Phil and Simmie's Photographic Adventures!

 

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