Ache has been home for closer to two weeks and is heading off tomorrow to visit his girlfriend and one friend abroad for couple weeks and then will be back for a week before heading his new city. Him being here has given me an opportunity to observe his current behaviour and have few more meaningful conversations with him. There are some good, some worrying and some plain weird stuff going on. The Good He is actually functioning quite well. he is doing things he probably should be doing and he has even been encouragingly social. He has been around laying on sofa and playing video games, sleeping late, listening music and doing nothing, but he has also been hanging out with friends, watching some extremely bad reality tv show at home while live chatting about it in two different whatsapp-groups with two different set of friends (the way these kids watch tv nowadays...), clubbing, going to a concert of the band one of his friends is connected with, went to a game of other sport than his own with others, played tennis with Joy and golf with his dad and is currently at gold course with a friend. And he has seen few extended family members, had lunch with his godmother, spent a couple days helping father in law with firewood, helped a bit with some spring repairs with our boat and helped with some chores at our cabin to prepare it to summer. So actually rather active and social couple f weeks. He has also started to make plans for summer weekends with friends and so on. So superficially he is doing all the right and expected things. The way he juggles all that, and for example how complex his travel plan to meet a girlfriend and friend actually are, just making those kind of plans and being able to execute them suggests that there is nothing wrong in his functioning. The Worrisome He is definitely still self-harming and doing it regularly. Or I do not know if I should call it self-harming considering he is very careful not to actually harm/cause damage or even long standing marks. It is more self-hurt. He hurts himself in ways that cause a lot of pain, but do not mark nor cause any long or middle term damage. He is very secretive about it, but knowing what he has done in the past makes it easy to spot the marks. It is obviously not attention seeking nor can it really be playing with suicidal ideas, because methods he uses can not cause serious damage to one's body, just lots of pain. The Freaky Everyone has different roles in life. And we are in different moods from time to time. Person's pattern of speech, behaviour, how we carry ourselves and so on can differ a lot between those roles. For example our professional role may be very different from who we are at home and then again very different from who we are with old friends. That is normal and common. But Ache is seriously testing the lines of normality in this. I think I wrote already two years ago here how Ache seemed to have three different persons in him; enthusiastic young on heart kid, rather thoughtful and insightful young man and sullen teenager. At the time it seemed normal and I was expecting those to integrate to one in time. Instead there seems to be even more personas and they seem to be more different with each others. And 'persona' really is the best way I can come up to describe it. It goes way beyond the role or mood and I never really know which one I'm getting at, but how he talks, his mannerism, non-verbal language, attitude, everything changes between these personas. It feels almost like there would be several different people living inside his skin. There is 'the jock', a person very much expected from him, then there still is that 'enthusiastic kid', who can get lost to all kinds of bizarre and cool things. Then there is this disillusioned, caustic and callous guy, who doesn't seem to care much about anything and other, sensitive, almost fragile guy who can get very emotional over many things. And the sullen, passive-aggressive one. Then there is this totally another guy who helps his grandpa and takes a dig for a long walk and seems to be stable and grounded. And so on. I'm not talking about any multi-personal disorder of the movies and tv shows, he certainly is aware of what happens or what has been talked with these different personas. And while he does lost time at times and his memory can be very wonky and partial about the times he has been very anxious or upset and both of these are dissociative symptoms, neither of those things seem to have anything to do with these personas. When he has lost time, he seems to appear to others as absent-minded or 'being on autopilot' and apparently he is lost to some inner worlds of his during those times. And when he is upset he either behaves upset or withdraws or bolts and later on has difficult time to come up with any kind of coherent memory or timeline of what he did. But these personas are something I see with him all the time now. It is totally unpredictable which kind of Ache I see any given time he comes to my view. It is very difficult to explain, but it really feels like they would be different people all together. I'm not sure if it is just that he tries to play some role so hard that it becomes a obvious caricature or fake, and changes the roles he plays or is he actually really messed up and should I freak out. And even if those are roles he is playing, what is it, he is trying to hide behind them?