Body triggers for switching alter

HUMONGOUS TRIGGER WARNING – torture, child sexual abuse

I’ve wanted to write about this for a long time. 

If you were abused by the same cult as me – or a similar one – this could be vital information for you.

I’m starting to be more co-conscious with alters that I have. One thing I’ve learned is that some of my alters can be triggered by pressing on different parts of my body. When an alter is triggered, she takes over the body and the one who was there before her looses consciousness during that amount of time. It’s also possible to trigger alters by saying their names, but that doesn’t always work. 

A cult-member could say ”Guinevere?” Sometimes Guinevere would appear, but sometimes Bianca would merely answer ”Guinevere? Who?” Then the cult-member would give Bianca a hard knock in the back, because that is the physical trigger for Guinevere. It almost never failed to bring her forth. Once Guinevere was in the body she would have to navigate the threats, commands and expectations of the cult. For example, she could be persuaded in going somewhere unsafe and when she got to that place, bad things happened to us! I’m sharing all I know of body triggers for switching alter, so that other survivors may stay safe:

Knock in the back.

It is a very hard knock. The hand which knocks is formed the way a hand would be when knocking on a door. The pressure point in the back is so high up that it’s impossible to knock yourself in the back sufficiently hard. This knock triggers the main night alter of the person controlled by the cult (in my case, the alter Guinevere). If you were born in the seventies or eighties, and you’re from the same cult, this trigger may have been used on you.

Finger pushing at waist, from the side

It is a hard (painful) push done with the index finger. Triggers one of the alters.

Finger pushing at heart chakra

Triggers yet another alter, and it is also done so it hurts!

One thing that’s interesting is that Lancelot (Eric), whom many of my alters feel very connected to, doesn’t have to touch us in a painful way in order to trigger us. My alters come forth to meet him simply because they want to see him. 


Now this information is for those who wonder how an alter/personality could be trained to appear given a physical trigger. If you are a survivor, reading this could be upsetting because these are memories of being tortured. You do not have to read this to be mindful of body triggers.

If you’re a healthcare worker, or other professional who work with survivors, then this information could help you understand why some survivors are affected by these kind of triggers. 


I’m in an empty room, crying on the hard concrete floor. I don’t know this man. My uncle just left me here with him. I’ve turned my back against the plastic bathtub filled with water and the other thing I am afraid of. The man keeps repeating the same thing over and over again:

”When I knock you in the back, you’re knocked out of the body.” 

I understand what he’s saying, but I don’t know how to do it. It seems impossible. He hits me hard in the back once again, and then he asks the dreaded question:

”What did you have for breakfast?”

I’ve already answered porridge and orange juice, and he wasn’t satisfied with that. So I’ve started lying, telling him any breakfast food that I can think of: cereals, a sandwich, egg and bacon, coffee, hot chocolate, fruits, yoghurt… 

”I didn’t have breakfast at all!” I come up with, hoping this time he will be content. 

”No,” he says. ”It’s the wrong answer and I will have to punish you. Choose your punishment”. I know by now that it doesn’t matter if I choose to be drowned in water, or have my knee scraped with that thing I am scared of. Because he will choose the punishment on a whim anyway. I’m most afraid of the electrical thing, because it buzzes and it scrapes the skin of my knees. (I’m wondering if it was an epilator, but the truth is I don’t know because I was around seven years old when this happened to me.)

Later on my knees are bleeding and I’ve swallowed so much water I feel weak and have a hard time breathing. The man says that if we continue to train like this I will die. He tells me I have to learn to leave the body, because all my other relatives know how to do it. I tell him I don’t care, I only want to live.

”Don’t you want to be like Eric?”, the man says. ”He learned this and you have to if you ever want to see him again. Think of how sad he’ll be if you die today, how sad everyone would be. Learn or die.” 

I tell the man to try again. Instead of walking towards the bathtub or the electric device, he comes toward me, unzipping his pants. NO! No, no, no, no! Suddenly I feel dizzy and the world blurs because my vision is out of focus.


The man has his penis out, but he doesn’t try to rape me. I don’t know where I am, but I know why Bianca disappeared. She is so scared of nudity. Ugh, I don’t want to be here.  Why does she always leave the bad situations to me? 

”I only want to talk to you”, he says. Sure. I back away from him. He surprises me by zipping up his pants and telling me to come sit on the floor next to him. I can’t see a way to escape this room, so I comply. The man explains that I have to learn to take over the body when I get a knock in the back. 

”I’m sorry if it hurts”, he says. ”We have to make the knock hard or it won’t work”. He demonstrates the knock and continues telling me that everyone has to learn this. He says there is no way around learning, and that those who didn’t learn died trying. 

”But you won’t die, will you?” he asks me. 

”I will live!” I answer. 

”Let Bianca into the body and we will continue,” he says. ”Remember to come when I knock!”

I close my eyes and think of Bianca. She is hurting so much. I’m nearly insensitive to physical pain but she’s not and she’s very scared. I call her name in my mind over and over and lie down on the floor to sleep.


I’m lying on a coarse floor and my body is hurting so much. I don’t want to be back in this nightmare. I want to go to sleep again and wake up at home. But the man won’t let me – he grabs my hair and forces me to stand up. We continue. At some point I become convinced that I really will die, this is it. I will get a knock in the back, and directly after that knock I will be killed. He will not let me out of the water to breathe this time. That is when the knock works.


I’m back in the concrete room again. I feel dizzy and it’s impossible to block out the pain in my body now. I can barely stand up. There is a man in the room who looks vaguely familiar.

”What did you have for breakfast?” the man asks.

”My grandfather”, I tell him. (Because my grandfather raped me orally in the morning and told me it was breakfast). 

”Congratulations!” says the man who tortured me. ”You have finally learned.”

The man phones my relatives, they come and pick me up and take me to my grandparents house. There I’m celebrated and congratulated by everyone. The day/normal alters of children present at the party think it is a belated birthday party. My mother, and Bianca, also believes it to be a celebration of my birthday. Eric, Lancelot’s day alter, tells me happy birthday and asks how I feel about starting school. But Lancelot just looks at me and cries when he appears. His mother, on the other hand, is in a good mood.

“You’re one of us now”, she says, “and we are so so proud of you.”


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