8 June, 9pm, Channel 4
STAR RATING 2/5
This programme examined the life of Pamela Edwards who has been
diagnosed as having dissociative identity disorder (DID), write
Steve Tilney and John Smith.
It showed that Pamela has five separate internal characters, each
of which has their own personality.
While one had hoped the producers would attempt to show Pamela in a
positive light we were sadly disappointed. We felt Pamela was
depicted in a series of well-edited clips as disturbed and, at
times, frightening. The programme also highlighted the huge
financial implication of supporting Pamela with a large team of
trained staff who are essential if Pamela is to be supported
effectively in the community.
It is our fear that this programme may only serve to feed the
misconceptions and prejudices already embedded in certain sections
of the public, and exacerbate the problems faced by people who
suffer mental health problems and lead positive and productive
lives in the community.
It was not until halfway through that Pamela’s condition was
explained in a constructive way, but this was short-lived and once
more we were subjected to an edited version of Pamela’s life. The
hour-long show gave an insight into the world of DID and how it
cannot only affect the sufferer but also those around them. Sadly
for Pamela, the programme concentrated on the negative side of her
Steve Tilney and John Smith are members of the Metropolitan
Police vulnerable adults team