Full credits to Cryptocrew for writing this page.
Disclaimer: this page is not here to be used as self-diagnosis, self-identification, or promotion to begin a system. This page is simply to be seen as informational. Whether or not one self-diagnoses, self-identifies, and/or creates a system is up to them.
Warning: This page contains discussion of integration, dormancy, trauma (abuse, harassment, assault, miscarriage, stillbirth, suicide, death), and exclusionism. Please proceed with caution. Systems, Collectives, and/or Plurals are those who experience being more than one entity in one physical body . Systems are under the neurodivergent umbrella, and are not inherently LGBT+, but being plural can impact sexuality, romantic orientation, attraction, identities, and/or gender (such as with systemfluid). Systems can also commonly intersect with LGBT+ experiences. The experiences may overlap to the point of one's queer identities being a large part of headmates, such as within queergenic systems.
Those in a system are called system members, headmates, or alters; though, it is important to be aware that 'alter' is medical terminology and may be considered desapizing by some. It is always a positive idea to ask what a system is comfortable with when it comes to terminology, no matter where the terminology stemmed from.
There are multiple different types of systems and ways which individuals might be a system. The term system is open to anyone who experiences being more than one entity in one physical body and has been that way for years .
The opposite of systems are Singlets/Singletons/Monominds. They are considered to be "typical" in society.
- 1 Origins
- 2 Medical Terms
- 3 Non-Medical Systemhood
- 4 Incomplete-Plurality
- 5 UTB System
- 6 System Information
- 7 Pluran Information
- 8 Headspace
- 9 System-Travel
- 10 Fronting
- 11 Plural Terminology
- 12 Alter Egos vs. Systems
- 13 Discrimination
- 14 Exclusionists
- 15 Symbols and Flags
- 16 Resources
- 17 References
Origins or Formations are processes that formed systems/members/headspace locations. Although these terms are usually used to refer to how a system came into existence, they are also sometimes used on individual headmates (and sometimes even locations in the headspace.) For example, one may say that a layer in their headspace is neurogenic and/or that a headmate in their system is agenic.
An Adaptive System is a system that formed in response to trauma or other adversity (neurodivergence, disabilities, stress, etc.) A common trait of such systems is viewing their plurality as adapting, healing, and overcoming obstacles as a team.
Many traumagenic systems prefer to use this term so that their trauma isn't consistently pushed back into their face. Subsets to the adaptive umbrella include the following:
- Lonegenic: a system that formed due to/in order to cope with loneliness, isolation, and/or neglect.
- Isolgenic/Socinagenic: a system that formed due to isolation and/or social neglect.
- Solumgenic: a system that formed due to loneliness.
- Neurogenic: a system that formed due to/in order to cope with neurodivergence.
- Addictogenic: a system that formed due to addictive disorders.
- Adjustogenic: a system that formed due to adjustment disorders.
- Attractogenic: a system that formed due to attractional disorders.
- Autigenic: a system that formed due to autism or autistic traits.
- BPD System/Bordergenic: a system that formed due to borderline personality disorder.
- Ceregenic: a system that formed due to brain injury/in order to cope with brain injury.
- Cognigenic: a system that formed due to cognitive disorders.
- Consugenic: a system that formed due to eating disorders.
- Commugenic: a system that formed due to communication disorders.
- Convergenic: a system that formed due to conversion disorder.
- Deligenic: a system that formed due to delusions.
- Depressigenic: a system that formed due to depressive disorders.
- Develogenic: a system that formed due to developmental disorders.
- Disrugenic: a system that formed due to disorders that disrupt focus, concentration, and/or emotions.
- Dissociagenic: a system that formed due to dissociation.
- Drawalgenic: a system that formed due to substance withdrawal.
- Epilegenic: a system that formed due to epilepsy.
- Factitiogenic: a system that formed due to factitious disorder, body integrity dysphoria, and/or manchausen syndrome by proxy.
- Fluctugenic: a system that formed due to disorders that cause mood-swings.
- Fixigenic: a system that formed due to hyperfixation.
- Intellegenic: a system that formed due to intellectual disabilities.
- Learnigenic: a system that formed due to learning disorders.
- Lusiogenic: a system that formed due to disorders that cause delusions and/or hallucinations.
- Moodgenic: a system that formed due to mood disorders.
- Neurotraumagenic: a system originating from trauma caused in part or in whole, or made worse by, by a neurodiversity.
- Obsecogenic: a system that formed due to obsessive-compulsive disorders.
- Paragenic: a system that formed due to maladaptive daydreaming disorder or other alike neurodivergencies. A Paracontinuum is someone who is stuck between plurality and maladaptive daydreaming disorder.
- Postpartugenic: a system that formed due to postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety, postpartum psychosis, and/or postpartum OCD.
- Procegenic: a system that formed due to auditory processing disorder, sensory processing disorder, or both.
- Psychatraumagenic/Psychiatraumagenic: a system originating from trauma caused, in part or in whole, or made worse by mental illness.
- Psychetraumagenic/Ipsetraumagenic: a system originating from trauma caused, in part or in whole, or made worse by mental illness or neurodiversity.
- Psygenic: a system that formed from psychosis or psychotic-related disorders.
- Pulsigenic: a system that formed due to impulsive or compulsive disorders.
- Somatigenic: a system that formed due to somatic symptom disorder.
- Somnigenic: a system that formed due to sleeping disorders.
- Syndrogenic: a system that formed due to psychological syndromes.
- Synegenic: a system that formed due to synesthesia.
- Thougenic: a system that formed due to thought disorders.
- Xiegenic: a system that formed due to anxiety disorders.
- Outertraumagenic: a system that formed due to someone else's trauma affecting the core/already existing headmates. This could be due to getting secondary trauma from it, due to being stressed/worried for the individual affected, due to the desire to protect/help that individual, etc.
- Stressgenic: a system that formed due to stress/in order to cope with stress.
- Traumagenic: a system that formed due to/in order to cope with trauma. This could be any form of trauma. Traumagenic systems are more common to form under the age of nine, however this is not the case for all traumagenic systems.
- Alphagenic: a system that formed due to Type A trauma.
- Betagenic: a system that formed due to Type B trauma.
- Exotraumagenic: a system that formed due to exotrauma.
- Extraumagenic: a system that formed due to trauma, but is unsure/does not know what that trauma was.
- Intratraumagenic: a system (typically a subsystem, sidesystem, or similar) that formed due to intratrauma,
- Peiragenic: a system that formed due to trauma, specifically caused by a suicide-attempt.
- Phytogenic: a system that formed due to abuse.
A Created System is a system that was purposefully formed. The creation is typically spiritual/metaphysical in nature, however it can also be psychologically forming beings in order to assist or protect oneself. Created systems are not typically made for fun, and those that are made for fun are typically by folks that are unaware/uneducated on the difficulties that can come with plurality. A created headmate is known as a Thoughtform, and the process of creation is known as Thoughtforming.
A Willogenic System is a system that was created purposefully/willed into existence, and has no connection to Tulpamancy. This term is specifically to separate from Tulpamancy in a respectful way, as the Tulpamancy community has very specific practices and culture.
Subsets to these two umbrellas include the following:
- Araisagenic/Imagenic: a system that formed through escapism and speaking to folks who were not there until they became real.
- Archogenic: a system that was created by an artisian or crafted in a similar manner.
- Catharigenic/Catarigenic: a system that was unintentionally created/created naturally.
- Daemogenic: a system that was formed through daemonism/is made of daemons.
- Kiagenic: a system/headspace/layer/member/etc that formed out of chaos/pre-existing or primordial potential energy for existence, brought or manifested into existence or awareness via gentle nudging of unconscious processes. This term is also used to describe a non-intentionally created system.
- Maliciogenic: a system (usually a subsystem) that was created with malicious intent. Oftentimes these are made by persecutors, however that is not always the case.
- O-System: a system made up of original-characters (OCs) created by other headmates. Headmates in these systems are known as Omates.
- Parogenic: a system that was created through thought-based or metaphysical means, usually deliberately.
- Primagenic: a system shaped around an original universe created by other headmates through writing, art, or other creative mediums.
- Tulpagenic: a system that was formed through Tulpamancy. Tulpamancy is commonly seen as a practice exclusive for Buddhists, and because of this, some claim it should only be used by Buddhists; however, historically, its use has been by non-Buddhists as well, as seen in this article. This term is not under the willogenic umbrella.
An Endogenic System is a system that formed due to reasons outside of trauma.This includes any system that formed outside of trauma (though some endogenic systems have traumagenic origins/mixed origins as well.)
This includes spirigenic/metagenic systems, created systems, and some forms of multigenic systems. Other subsets to the endogenic umbrella include the following:
- Aethergenic: a system that cannot be explained through psychological means.
- Cosmogenic: a system that formed due to cosmos or celestial forces to which Earth is.
- Kiagenic: a system that formed out of chaos/pre-existing or primordial potential energy for existence, brought or manifested into existence or awareness via gentle nudging of unconscious processes.
- Acquiregenic: a system that formed due to an acquired biological characteristic. This may include some forms of neurogenic and physiogenic in some cases.
- Chaogenic: a system with chaotic origins or so many different origins that it seems chaotic.
- Gendiegenic: a system that formed due to gender (in some way, shape, or form.) This could be from gender dysphoria, from genders manifesting into headmates, etc.
- Inheritgenic: when someone believes that they inherited plurality from a relative.
- Magiangenic: a system that formed due to magic, either real magic of fictional magic.
- Melogenic: a system that formed/was pulled into existence through a song or melody.
- Voidgenic: a system that came from a void or is unexplainable.
A Kin System (or kincontinuum) is a term used to describe someone who has systemhood and kintypes overlapping or intertwined. This includes (but is not limited to):
- A system that forms headmates based on their kintypes. These are usually considered introjects, as they represent the beings the individual is kin to.
- Someone who is trapped between being otherkin and plural, such as having kintypes that have their own autonomy, but only when shifted.
- A median system that consists entirely of different parts of an individuals kintypes as their own autonomous beings.
A kin system can be of any origin, and the system may have headmates that are not kin-related as well.
System-Kin is a term under this umbrella. Its when an individual forms a system, due to the fact that their kintypes are in a system in whatever connectus they are from. Because they are kin to a system, their mind forms a system in response, based upon who they are kin to.
A Mixed Origin, Multigenic, or Polygenic System is a term used to describe when a collective has multiple origins. Subsets to the multigenic umbrella include the following:
- Algenic: a system that technically fits all origins available to them, but only some are big enough/important enough to the system to be identified with.
- Compogenic: a term for a system member with multiple/mixed origins, but the origins are either unclear or the member does not wish to disclose them.
- Fleirgenic: a system that has mixed origins but doesn’t discern most or all of their origins due to finding it unimportant or due to fearing it would cause internal hierarchy.
- Horizigenic: a system that tries to collect terms to describe their origins, but their origins seem to blend together and/or wear out at some point.
- Isoscegenic: a system that mainly has one origin but has a few headmates that differ in origin.
- Mavrigenic: a system that seems to "consume" origins, sucking them in like a blackhole.
- Origin-Flux: when newer headmates have different origins than the original origin that formed the system.
- Pangenic: a system that fits all origins available to them (not including closed-off spiritual/religious practices that the body is not included under.)
- Supragenic: a system that existed previously for natural reasons, but due to trauma, its function/origins have changed.
An Othergenic System is a system that is neither endogenic or traumagenic in nature (and is also not a combination of the two.) Subsets to the othergenic umbrella include the following:
- Agenic/Nihilumgenic: a system that has no origins/do not identify with any origins.
- Spontaneous System/Spontagenic: a system that seemingly appeared out of nowhere, with no definite cause.
- Xeno-Origin/Xenogenic: a system that can't be contained by human understandings of plurality, and instead uses terminology relating to animals, plants, and things to describe originhood.
A Spirigenic System is a system that has spiritual or religious origins/were created though spiritual means. A Metagenic System is a system that has spiritual or metaphysical origins, not necessarily tied to any religions or practices.
Both the spirigenic and metagenic umbrella hold similar subsets, which include the following:
- Psychegenic: a system that is plural/became plural due to multiple souls being in the same body.
- Possesive System: when an individual consents to a spirit (or spirits) possessing them in the long-term, and thus becomes a system.
- Seelegenic: when a system formed due the splitting of the core/current headmate’s soul(s); the soul being split caused each individual piece to form an individual being to hold it. A Seeleplex is a seelegenic system with at least one sidesystem that has the same soul-splitting mechanics as the main system. A similar term to seelegenic is Amegenic, in which most or all of a system shares a soul, however in this case it is not due to the soul being split.
- Soulbond System: a system that formed through soulbonding.
An Unknown System is a system that is unsure of their origins/has unknown origins. A Quoigenic System is a system that does not wish to share their origins, do not find their origins relevant, or thinks it is the wrong question to ask; this may be due to them being unaware or unsure of their origins, however that is not always the case.
Both the quoigenic and unknown umbrella hold similar subsets, which include the following:
- Cryptogenic: a system that does not know their origins.
- Pertegenic: a system that does not know their actual origin due to memory loss/alteration.
- Praesigenic: a system that does not wish to share their origins to someone or anyone.
These are origin terms that could be endogenic, traumagenic, and/or othergenic in nature, depending on the situation.
- Biogenic: a system that formed from biological/genetic causes.
- Chimeragenic: a system that formed due to biological chimerism.
- Congenic: a system with complicated origins.
- Cryogenic: a system that came out of nowhere, came from the cold, has frozen (gone dormant) before and is now thawing, and/or multiple of the above.
- Esogenic: a term to describe either an origin (or mix of origins) that only the system/headmates understand, a system that can describe their origin but has no title for it yet, and/or a system that has multiple origins but does not know every type they have.
- Iatrogenic: a system that formed due to being convinced they were a system and/or due to internal family systems therapy. If it is specifically related to internal family systems therapy than they may call themselves IFSgenic.
- Innate System: a system that was created at birth and/or formed from traits one had since birth.
- Intragenic: a system that formed through continuous mimicry of real or fictitious individuals. This could be neurogenic if its related to neurodivergence/disorders and/or traumagenic if its related to ways to cope with trauma, however it is not exclusive to these experiences.
- Kaksbased: a system that was born with two individuals within the same body, but did not see it as a system until they gained more members.
- Psuedogenic: a system that fomed due to lying about being plural until they actually became plural. The system should acknowledge what they did was wrong, but cannot deny that they are now a system. These lies may have been traumatic.
- Pariogenic: a system that is made up mostly (or entirely) of walk-ins and/or soulbonds.
- Protogenic: a system that has been around since birth/as long as they remember or cannot remember how they formed.
- Psychologenic: a system with psychological origins. This includes psychological-based adaptive systems as well as any endogenic or othergenic system that is psychological in nature.
DID, OSDD, and USDD/UDD are three terms often used to describe traumagenic systems, however they are not exclusively traumagenic, and some endogenic systems may be diagnosed with these as well.
DID is short for dissociative identity disorder, and is a medical way of being plural for those who experience amnesia (typically between switches). This means that any system, regardless of whether or not they have traumatic origins, can have DID, as the only characterized trait is that they must experience amnesia.
OSDD is short for otherwise specified dissociative identity disorder, and is a medical way of being plural which includes those who don't have amnesia (1b) or systems that do not switch/are not entirely separate. (1a). This means that any system, regardless of origin, can be diagnosed in this way, as median systems and systems that don't experience amnesia can be both traumagenic and endogenic. OSDD-2, OSDD-3, and OSDD-4 are not typically associated with plurality, however they can be in some cases (such as with neurogenic systems).
USDD/UDD is short for unspecified dissociative disorder, and is a medical way of being plural that describes an individual who doesn't match the criteria for DID or OSDD, while still presenting dissociative systems. USDD is also used to describe dissociative disorders that do not fit DPDR, Fugue State, DID, or OSDD, meaning USDD can be associated with singlets as well, and is not inherently plural in nature.
MPD or "Multiple Personality Disorder" is an outdated term to describe systems. This term is disliked amongst the community, for reasons that include (but are not limited to):
- It implies all systems are disordered.
- The term "personality" implies headmates are simply behaviors or ways of thinking.
- It was used in a manner that implied all headmates were different sides of one individual, which is usually not true.
This term, although mainly outdated, is occasionally used in media. This should not be promoted, and if one notices its use, it should be called out and corrected immediately.
Despite it being mostly disliked, some systems choose to use the terminology for themselves, and that should be respected.
Non-Medical Systemhood, while not understood or studied very well, is very much a real occurrence. The science behind these systems is not well explored, as scientists, psychologists, and doctors have taken more focus on traumagenic and medical systems. This lack of study is also due to overmedication non-traumagenic systems tend to face when they speak of their systemhood to medical professionals.
There is no proof that only trauma causes plurality and there is no proof that all systems must be disordered to be real. Claiming that a system must be based around disorders and trauma is an act of ignoring the amount of research yet to be done on non-traumagenic systems. In fact, there are still many aspects of traumagenic and medical systems that are not fully understood, making this view against non-medical systemhood illogical.
If one is to exclude the possibility of non-medical systemhood and non-traumagenic systemhood, not only are they shutting out the experiences of many plural groups, but they are also encouraging separation within the community, which could lead to further isolation of systems.
This view also excludes non-traumagenic systems that have diagnosed DID, OSDD, and/or UDD.
It is also important to note that a theory amongst some psychologists to explain non-traumagenic systems is that everyone is born with separate parts of the mind. The theory goes that, usually, when the body turns nine-years-old, these parts merge into one, thus causing one to be a singlet. However, there is exceptions to this merge, and some minds never merge into one, regardless of whether or not trauma was involved, thus non-medical plurality can be possible if this merge is delayed or never happened. They say that if one has enough grasp on their thoughts and mind, that their mind can form separate beings.
A few pages diving more into the topic of non-medical systemhood are listed below. It is suggested to read them if one is feeling confused on how non-medical systems function.
Incomplete-plurality is a term to describe an individual who does not entirely fit the role of singlet or plural, or is stuck between the two. The subsets of this is listed below.
Demi-plural refers to a stage of being between plurality and being a singlet. This usually entails occasionally having multiple individuals, only for them to disappear or integrate, making one single again. This is typically experienced by median systems, however it is not exclusive to them.
A Plural-Singlet or PS is a term used to describe someone who experiences multiple identities, while not exactly being a system. The individual experiencing this has such rapid mood changes that it feels as though they are switching to an entirely different individual. This is different than having an alter ego, as alter egos and personalities are behaviors, while the experiences of a PS is usually uncontrolled.
This can also apply to those who are alterhuman, and feel like their kinshifted versions are separate enough to be considered different individuals, while still being a part of them.
This may be described as being 'not separate enough to be plural, but not defined enough to be singlet.' It may be described similarly to a median system, but with less differences, less symptoms, and more combined control to where it feels too 'together' to be median.
This may be connected to one's neurodivergence or trauma, however this is not always the case.
A UTB System or Used-To-Be System is a term used to describe someone who is now a singlet, however they used to be a system. This includes systems that went completely dormant, completely fused, or completely integrated.
Some may imagine headmates they used to have, or have traces of headmates they used to have left behind. These are known as Daromates.
Empty Systems is a term used to describe someone who used to be a system but, due to integration, walk-ins leaving, or similar events, the headspace is now empty, for all except one. Despite this, they have the possibility of being plural again, if one gains new headmates (intentionally or unintentionally). Some empty systems may use the term Backroomtien to describe that their headmates seem to have 'no-clipped' out of the system.
An Abysstien system is an empty system that fluctuates between having more than one member, but always inevitably goes back to having one.
Empty systems often experience daromates.
- Astro: a system with an infinite or nearly infinite amount of members. A PolyAstro system is the same thing, except it applies to multiple areas of the system (sidesystems, subsystems, etc.)
- Diapathic: a system with only two members. a Binary System is the same thing, except it also includes fragments outside of the two full headmates.
- Fluitien: system without a consistent number count and/or a frequently changing number count.
- Inflatiofractal: a system that generally expands rapidly or may constantly expand without limit. This expansion can be either steady or come primarily or exclusively in “bursts”
- Ignitien: a system that is without a stable member count.
- Polyfaceted/Polymedian: a system with a large amount of median members, typically over 100.
- Polyfractal: a system with 10,000+ members, typically with several modifiers (ie: sidesystems, subsystems, gateways, layers, clusters, etc.)
- Polyfragmented: a system with a large number of fragments, typically 100+. This is also used to refer to large systems in general.
- Polyinfitus: a system with 500+ members that is constantly growing but sees little to no change in frequent fronters.
- Polyinfinitum: a system with 500+ members that is constantly growing.
- Polymultiple: a system with a large amount of partitionary members, typically over 100.
- Polynull: a (typically large) system with an undisclosed amount of members.
- Polyplural: an umbrella term for polyfragmented, polymedian, and polymultiple systems.
- Quoinumeren: a system with an unknown amount of numbers.
Systems Within Systems
- Hemisystem: a group of members, sidesystems, or subsystems that are connected to each other and/or dicsconnected to other parts of the main system. A Lavhachruk is a loose grouping of hemisystems.
- Sidesystem: a system that is ‘to the side’ (metaphorically or literally) of the main system in the headspace.
- Bridged Sidesystem/Linked Sidesystem: two or more sidesystems that are parallel and have bridges or something similar between them, where headmates can travel back and forth between sidesystems.
- Cloud Sidesystem/Orbital Sidesystem: a sidesystem that can float around and connect/disconnect from any other sidesystems.
- Sisasystem: an umbrella term for systems that are smaller in size than other systems or live in a smaller headspace than other systems the shared mind has. This includes sidesystems, subsystems, hemisystems, sparsystems, etc. A Sisasystem Cluster is a loosely defined and organized grouping of sisasystems (often times sisasystems of the same type that voluntarily clustered) that are informal, formalized, or historical in nature.
- Sparsystem: a system that is too big to be a subsystem but too small to be a sidesystem.
- Subsystem: a system that is within a system; a headmate that has a system. This may also refer to a smaller system in a large system. A Subsplit/Separated Subsystem is a subsystem that does not share an innerworld body, a Semi-Separated Subsystem is a susystem that voluntarily shared an innerworld body, while a Container Subsystem is a subsystem that does share an innerworld body.
- Charliko Subsystem: a ringed subsystem where the ring overlaps with the core identities kintypes.
- Chiron Subsystem: a ringed subsystem where there are two or more rotating rings of differences, which causes every front to be different.
- Flicker Subsystem: when a headmate flickers back and forth between having a subsystem and not having a subsystem.
- Haumea Subsystem: a ringed subsystem where the ring overlaps with the core identities genders.
- Ringed Subsystem: a subsystem with a core identity and a "ring" of differences applied to the core identity.
- Stacked Subsystem: a subsystem within a subsystem.
- -Based: when an origin term is a modifier rather than the origin itself. For example, a traumabased system would be a system that was modified and heavily molded by trauma, but did not originate from trauma.
- Ähmane system: a system where most or all headmates are agehazy or agevarying.
- Amnesiac System: a system that has limited (or no) memory sharing. The opposite of this is known as a Blurian System.
- Aquatien: a system that is stagnant, but continues to grow.
- Bombogenic/Pyro: when the member count explodes rapidly and/or a system where headmates fuse only for their fused forms to be fragmented again.
- Centumplex: a system with 100+ sidesystems and one subsystem, 100+ subsystems and one side system, or 100 sidesystems and 100+ subsystems.
- Cyclogenic: a system that periodically collapses into fragments, which are shuffled and reformed into a new system.
- Dreagenic: a system that is affected by (sleeping) dreams/dreaming in some way.
- Fusiotien: a system where all or nearly all headmates are the result of previous headmates fusing.
- Gateway System: a system that functions like an earthly location, in which headmates can come and go as they please. These systems typically have entries (gateways, doorways, bridges, etc) that headmates come and go from in the headspace, however this is not always the case.
- Identityshifter: a system in which a single consciousness shifts between identities, and said identities only exist distinctly when fronting, and disappear back into the shared consciousness until fronting again. They cannot have thoughts outside of the shared consciousness.
- Introject Heavy: a system with a high number of introjects.
- Factive Heavy: a system with a high number of factives.
- Fictive Heavy: a system with a high number of fictives.
- Infinitumplex: a system whose subsystems/sidesystems are hard to count/keep track of either due to constantly changing between 1,000+ members and/or due to the constant rapid growth of the system.
- Kindred System: a system that is partitionary, but all headmates behave similarly, despite having different identities.
- Kyrotien: a system that has frozen (gone dormant) before and is now ‘thawing.’
- Masked/Covert System: a system that hides their plurality publicly.
- Metaregnum/Metaregna: a loose grouping of sidesystems that is formalized, informal, and/or historical in nature. It is less of a discrete solid than a mesosystem/hemisystem/lone sidesystem, and is often formed voluntarily.
- Moneotien: a system where one member fronts almost all the time, other members only fronting to act as advisors when the usual fronter is unavailable. A Polietien is the same thing, except applying to multiple headmates fronting almost all the time.
- Multiplex: a system with ten+ sidesystems and one subsystem, ten+ subsystems and one side system, or ten+ sidesystems and ten+ subsystems.
- Oistien: a system that divides members up and fuses them back together, or a system that is constantly dividing members up.
- Oribitien: a system that orbits around something or someone.
- Orbit System: a system that has a central body in which systems revolve in cycles, has a set time for each headmate to front, and/or a system when headmates only front after every other headmate has fronted/had a turn.
- Paracosmic: a system where headmates can leave and live in paracosm bubbles and can fluctuate between being a para and being a headmate.
- Parallel System: a system where the headmates are mostly or all the same individual, just in different timelines/possibilities, or a term used to describe two systems existing in one body (such as two sidesystems.)
- Phytogenic: a system that constantly divides up and refuses headmates or just constantly divides headmates in general.
- Polyplex: a system that is made up of sidesystems and doesn’t have a main system. A Centre System is the system that is “main” in the polyplex (closest to the front, most active, largest, etc.) A Sideplex is a polyplex or group within a system that is seen as separate, larger, higher ranking, and has more communication/memory sharing, and a Hemiplex is the same thing but ranked about existing sideplexes. A Sparplex is a polyplex group within a system that is seen as less separate, lower ranking, and smaller. A Subplex is a polyplex that is larger/higher-ranking than a hemisystem.
- Quinplex: a system with 50+ sidesystems and one subsystem, 50+ subsystems and one side system, or 50+ sidesystems and 50+ subsystems.
- Tasisystem: when systems/polyplexes are connected to one another in some way and can travel between one another. This may be between systems/polyplexes in the shared body, or outside of the shared body.
- Temptien: a system that has headmates directly connected to the environment/weather around them.
- Antegenic: a system that formed before the current system.
- Bloom: a period of time where the system experiences drastic growth in the number of headmates.
- Duosystem: the other body to a system shared between multiple headspaces; one system in two bodies. This could also apply to a systems soulmate.
- System Collapse: a system that loses most or all of its headmates in a short period of time (this could be through fading, dormancy, walking-out, etc.)
- System Reset: the resetting of a system. This could be a system collapse and system rebuild or it could be a system being reorganized.
- System Stagnant: when an entire system gets quieter and it becomes difficult for anyone to take front, sort of like the entire system is dissociated.
- Median/Midcontinuum: when headmates in the system are less distinct from one another, share an identity, and/or are connected in some way. It is considered the inbetween of singlethood and multiplicity. A headmate in a median system is known as a Facet/Medianmate while a fragment in a median system is known as a Segment. A Blanket Self is the shared identity of most (or all) facets in a median system.
- Diversian: a median system that falls closer to the multiple side of the singlet-multiple spectrum.
- Mesosian: a median system that falls in the middle (or close to the middle) of the singlet-multiple spectrum.
- Oribital: a median system that has a core.
- Parasian: a median system that falls closer to the singlet side of the singlet-multiple spectrum.
- Webbed: a median system that has no core.
- Mixed System/Mediple/Hybrid System: a system that is mixed between being median and multiple.
- Floating Facet: a median fragment that attaches themselves to partitionary headmates and create small temporary median subsystems before moving on attaching to someone else.
- Mixedflux: a system that fluctuates between median and multiple, and/or a system where all or most headmates have a constant unsteady/fluid identity and constantly blur/fuse, unfuse/unblur, etc.
- Multiple/Partitionary: when headmates in a system are distinct from one another.
- Fluidmate: a headmate that is fluid between being a fragment, demi-fragment, and full.
- Fragment: a headmate that does not have a full sense of identity, autonomy, and/or sapience. A Demi-Fragment is a fragment that has more completion than other fragments do.
- Full: a headmate that has a complete/full identity.
This is not a complete list of descriptions, and is rather a list of commonly experienced (or commonly used) ones in systems. For more descriptors, one may look through Pluralpedia's "Terms" category.
- Adoptive: a headmate that came from an entirely different system altogether. They disappear from/walk-out of the system that originally had them and enter a new system either permanently or temporarily.
- Core: a headmate that is directly connected to the pre-plural self, or is the individual that was there pre-plurality. Not all systems have a core, as some cores may fragment/split, or as some systems have never had a pre-plural period of time.
- Demi-Member: a headmate that is not a full system member. This could be a temporary walk-in, a parabond that visits sometimes but prefers the paracosm, individuals in the outspace who feel as though they are part of the system (despite being in the outspace), etc.
- Dopplurganger: a headmate that appears similarly to another member, but does not share an identity or source.
- Double: a headmate that is a copy of another headmate in appearance, identity, etc. They may be entirely the same, or have slight differences (such as choosing different names, pronouns, styles, etc.) But they are still largely the same in most/all aspects.
- Ecliptives: members of a system who came from one original individual, who then split, or "shattered", into parts.
- Entomate: headmate that are not introjects (though they still may be alterhuman in some way.)
- Eresian/Prolesian: a headmate that is the child of one or more systems/headmates.
- Exoject: headmates that experience exomemories.
- Intrasinglet: a headmate that does not have a subsystem; a headmate that is a singlet in the innerworld.
- Introject/Introtive/Tive: a headmate that came from something/represents something in appearance, identity, and/or personality. They do not have to match their source and can be completely differed from it. Headmates can be permenantly an introject, lose the introject aspect of their identity overtime, and/or fluctuate between being an introject and an entomate. The following are subsets to this umbrella (however more terms for introjects can be found here):
- Aesthetive: a headmate that is based on/represents an aesthetic, typically a personified version of such.
- Altive: an introject of an alternate universe/AU version of something, whether real or fictional.
- Amitive: an introject of a headmate from someone else's system. This is typically classified as a factive subset.
- Autoject/Mostive: an introject of something a headmate made (such as a headmate's OC.)
- Celetive: a headmate that is based on a holiday in some way, typically a personified version of such.
- Factive: a headmate that is based on/represents a non-fictitious source (such as a friend, abuser, historical figure, celebrity, etc.)
- Faitive/F*cktive/Fxctive: a headmate that has both the traits of a fictive and a factive.
- Fictive: a headmate that is based on/represents a fictitious source (such as an OC, movie character, video game character, etc.)
- Fusitive: a headmate that is based on/represents a previous blend/blur that happened in the system.
- Imaginitive/Imaginiject: an introject that is based on/represents an image (artwork, photography, etc.) Pictives are Picrew versions of this.
- Intrutive: a headmate that is based on/represents intrusive thoughts/an intrusive thought.
- Locatroject: a headmate that is based on/represents a location (fictional or factual.) This could be a personified version or they may be a version of the location itself.
- Musicative: a headmate that is based on/represents a song, music, melody, band, or similar.
- Myctive: a headmate that is based on/represents a mythological/religious being. A Spiritive is the same thing, but for spiritual/religious beings.
- Nightroject: a headmate that is based on/represents a nightmare/a being from a nightmare.
- Skintroject: a headmate that is based on/represents a skin of a character (such as a Minecraft skin.)
- Somtive: a headmate that is based on/represents a dream/a being from a dream.
- Previvmate: a headmate that knew at least one other system member in a past life.
- Walk-In: a headmate that originates from elsewhere (whether that be in the headspace or outside of the headspace) and metaphorically or literally “walked into” the system. An Active Walk-In is a headmate that can go back and forth between the headspace and where they originated from.
Systems sometimes have headmates that hold roles. While this does not apply to all systems, many (and likely most) systems have headmates that have specific roles assigned to them by either other headmates, subconscious drive, or something with strong powers.
This is not a complete list of roles, and is rather a list of common roles. For more roles, one may look through Pluralpedia's "Terms" and "System Roles" categories.
- Archivist: a headmate that knows a lot about the system, both in and out of the headspace. They may also store and organize information, possibly using constructs such as folders and files in the headspace.
- Assidumate: a headmate that handles daily life tasks other members cannot do (homework, jobs, self-care, organization, etc.)
- Bionaut: a headmate that handles external life due to being disconnected from the body’s/other headmates’ past trauma. A Caesian is the same thing, except they don’t have to be frequent fronters.
- Companion: Those in a system who formed to keep other headmates company. They could have formed as a innerworld sibling, friend, babysitter, parent, lover, etc.
- Core: Someone in a system who is the original lone-owner of the body, around before the headmates formed. Not everyone has a core, and one may have a core that has split into multiple separate individuals.
- Caretaker/Caregiver: a headmate that care for other member of the system. They may care for specific groups (ie: only caring for littles.)
- Emotional Processor: a headmate that manages emotions, absorbs emotions, and/or spread emotions across the system.
- Gatekeeper: those in a system who controls switching/fronting, controls access of certain areas within the headspace, controls access to memories, can do multiple of these things, or does all of these things. In a gateway system, they may be in control of who is allowed in and out.
- Host: headmate(s) that fronts a lot (usually daily) and is the "main face" of the system. One may have multiple hosts (and they may be known as Co-Hosts.)
- Persecutor: a headmate that purposefully harms others, either those in the system or outside of the system. They typically do so due to trauma.
- Protector: a headmate that has the role to protect others, either those in the system or outside of the system. They may not be aware that they have this role and may be pushed to front in situations without understanding why or wishing to be there.
- Polyrole: a headmate with multiple roles.
- Trauma Holder: a headmate that holds trauma, often to keep it safe and away from the knowledge of other headmates.
The Headspace, Inner world/Innerworld, or Wonderland is a term used to describe a world which exists within a system's mind. The pretense of a headspace or inner world is not exclusive to systems, and may also be experienced by singlets.
This can be a visualization tool the mind forms in order to ease communication and switches amongst headmates. This is often described similar to 'a dream space' in which a world forms to appear as a city, town, house, landscape, or other location. In this space, headmates can see one another's inner appearances and most times can interact.
Often times when one is finished fronting, they spend their time within the inner world, while another system member fronts; however this is not always the case, as one's inner world may not yet be discovered or properly formed, and a headmate may just 'black out' when they are finished fronting. Similarly, not all systems have a headspace.
It is also important to note that time, space, and functions of headspaces may not align with Earth's sense of time, space, and functions.
Some general headspace terminology incudes the following:
- NPCs: characters or creatures that are not headmates, but rather visualization to add more life or reality to this inner space. For example, there may be pets, animals, or characters that headmates can interact with. NPCs sometimes have the possibility of becoming headmates after a period of time.
- Sentients: beings that are not headmates, but have more personality, life, and backstory than NPCs. They may be confused for headmates and fragments, however they are incapable of fronting, and do not share/hold any of the memories the rest of the system does. They usually act as family figures or friends to headmates. For example, a fictive may end up with a sentient of the romantic partner of their source, as the mind may see them as unfit or incomplete without their source's lover.
Some world-building/functioning headspace terminology includes the following:
- Alarach/Suniomin/Suni: a stand alone layer/metalayer/cosmos that is not part of any single-unit or common-canon groups with other alarachs, though they may be grouped with layers clusters.
- Chronal: a cluster of headmates/layers that consist of alternate versions of the same individuals, just in different timelines, existing as discrete seperate entities/locations. A Chronal Cosmos is a chronal applied to layers/alarachs/metalayers/layer clusters/etc. A Chronolayer refers to a chronal applied to layers or a separated innerworld. Polychronal refers to a chronal headspace (a headspace with different timelines of itself.)
- Excernio: a part of a headspace that is separate for the rest. It may be hard to discern why it is separate.
- Exolayer: a section of a headspace that is perceived as being not of this universe. It may be seen as an entirely different reality/realm that the subconscious has connections to. It is perceived as being unattached to the physical brain.
- Fluidspace: a headspace that is always changing in appearance/locations available.
- Fronting Room: a place in the innerworld that is dedicated to fronting. For many systems it appears as a control room of some kind, however this is not always the case.
- Influenspace: a headspace that is easily influenced by ideas and outside sources.
- Layer: an division of space within the headspace that is more significant than a simple area. Often times, different headmates (and sisasystems/systems) live within different layers. Layers tend to function differently from one another, however this is not a requirement.
- Median Layer: a layer (metalayer, cosmos, or alarach) where all inhabitants are medians.
- Mediple Layer: a layer (metalayer, cosmos, or alarach) where all inhabitants are mediple.
- Metalayer: a series of worlds or otherwise separate spaces that reside within the innerworld, where travel between them is easy. These worlds/spaces are often connected physically in some way, such as by having bridges.
- Reality Gateway: a gateway in a system to another reality, either an alternative version of the meatspace, an alternate version of the headspace, and/or an alternate version of a layer/section of the headspace.
Terminology for the pluran viewing/interacting of the headspace:
- Avisum: a headspace that is hard to envision by the inhabitants.
- Corpvisum: a headspace that is just as easy to interact with as the meatspace.
- Narravisum: a headspace that is interacted with by inhabitants as story rather than seeing it.
- Nebuvisum: a headspace that is seen through fog. Other headmates in the system may blurry/foggy visionally.
- Oculovisum: a headspace that needs to be visualized internally before being seeable by headmates.
- Sanavisum: a headspace that can only be navigated through sensory-related tactics (such as echolocation)
- Somvisum: a headspace that is mainly or only seen through daydreams.
- Trivisum: a headspace that is seen in third person by headmates.
- Twivisum: a headspace that is seen in second person (or anything else other than first or third.)
Death is a topic debated on amongst the community. While situations such as fading, permanent dormancy, integration, and walk-outs can be classified as death (depending on the system/headmates, as well as the situation) the act of an innerworld body dying is unproven, though some claim to have headmates who have passed away in such a way.
Some innerworlds may allow death, but have those who died 'respawn' in a certain location or at a certain time. This is not classified as true headmate death, as the headmate always comes back.
More information on this topic can be found here. A system member leaving before the body itself has passed is sometimes known as Ego Death, however ego death is also used by singlets to describe a "complete loss of subjective self-identity."
One may be of any species, including objects or concepts, within the innerworld. This is because the mind will often develop non-humans to face different aspects of the body's life. For example, a traumagenic system may form a dog headmate, as the mind may perceive the dog as comforting, helpful, and protective.
A nonhuman headmate may call themselves an Extranthrope or Objectmate (if they are an object.) If they are a pet within the system, they are known as a Syspet.
One may be of any race in the innerworld, regardless of the shared body's race. This does not mean, however, that they can use slurs for that race. Unless both the innerworld body and the shared body are of the same race, racial slurs and racial-exclusive identities should not be used.
If one has a separate race from the shared body, they may call themselves Disparethnic, Parethnic, or Exoethnic. More information on this topic can be found here. This should not be used as a way to speak over those with a POC/ethnic outerworld body.
One may be of any sex in the innerworld, including sexes that are not tangible in reality. Systems have coined terminology to describe these experiences and body types, which includes the following:
- Aivotsex: when one has a non-human sex, due to being non-human.
- Cambiosex: when one has changing sex traits.
- Miscesex: when one has a mix of a penis and a vagina, or has ambiguous genitallia, in the innerworld.
- Neisex: when one doesn't have a sex, due to it being impossible for their innerworld form (such as being a ghost with no tangible sex traits).
- Swapsex: when one's sex swapped in the innerworld.
- Tómtsex: when one has missing or partial sex traits in the innerworld.
In some systems, sex change is possible within the headspace. For example, there may be a hospital in the headspace, and an individual may be able to start horomones for their innerworld body. Terminology to describe such includes the following:
- Innsex: when one has changed their sex in the innerworld.
Other sex-based terminology for systems include:
- Opposisex: when a headmate has a a different sex than their double.
- Samostasex: when one's innerworld sex differs from the shared body's sex.
One may be of any age within the innerworld. This includes having an elderly headmate, a headmate who is a baby, a headmate who is an age-slider (changes ages), or even a headmate who is ageless or thousands of years old. The age of the shared body is not the same as the ages of headmates, however it can be, in some cases.
Some age terms for systems include:
- Adult/Big: a headmate that is an adult, typically 18+.
- Age Advancing: a headmate that gets older, either following outspace time or inspace time.
- Age Constant: a headmate that stays the same age, no matter what.
- Age Forger: when a headmate grows up mentally, but not physically. For example, a headmate that has the appearance of a three year old, but the mentality of a ten year old.
- Age Progression: when a headmate becomes/acts older than their typical age. This is considered the opposite of age-regression.
- Age Sliding: a headmate that slides between ages. This could happen occasionally or often.
- Age Varying: a blanket term for age sliders, age progressors, and age regressors.
- Alder: a headmate that gets older, but does not share the body's birthday, and has a separate birthday.
- Claudia: a little with the mentality of an adult. A Littlex is a claudia that is also a trauma holder to adult-themed trauma (drugs, sex, etc.)
- Little: a headmate that is a child, typically under the age of 12.
- Lost Adult: when a headmate grows up physically, but not mentally. For example, a headmate that has the appearance of an elderly man, but the mentality of a four year old.
- Systeen/Middle: a headmate that is a teenager, typically 13-17.
- Växer system: a system where headmates grow each year along with the body, regardless of whether or not they are the same age as the body.
One may be of any culture/religion within the innerworld. For example, while the host may be a Christian, a protector may be Muslim. This is because every headmate has different experiences, thoughts, and can even have different opinions and political views. This does not, however, allow a headmate to participate in a closed religion that the shared body cannot participate in (ie: a religious practice exclusive to a specific race.)
Some headmates may be gods, deities, or similar within the innerworld, and may or may not be worshipped by other headmates. They may also be introjects of religious beings that are worshipped on Earth.
Singlet Headspaces are terms to describe the headspaces experienced by singlets. While not all singlets experience headspaces, some do, and how these function are usually quite fundamentally different than how systems headspaces function. One example of how this can occur is through maladaptive daydreaming disorder, as some with this disorder form a headspace to slip into.
Singlet headspaces are usually less accessible than system headspaces, and are typically only accessible through escapism, dissociation, daydreaming, dreaming, and metaphysical practices.
System-Travel is a term used to describe when a headmate can travel outside of their system/headspace/mind. Ultersystem Travel is a term used to describe traveling to any reality outside of their headspace (be it metaphysical, spiritual, etc) while System-Hopping is when this travel is to another system (such as hopping to a romantic partner-system’s headspace.)
System-travel (especially system-hopping) is often shamed and scoffed at amongst members of the plural community (especially exclusionists and sysmeds) however the act itself is metaphysical in nature and holds similarities to astral projection and out of body experiences (OBEs).
Although OBEs aren’t well understood, scientists acknowledge OBEs as real (for example, Jane Aspell, a cognitive researcher at Anglia Ruskin University in England, made several statements regarding OBEs; “The more I work with astral traveling, the more I am fascinated by how it confirms that our consciousness and soul are not bound by the physical. We've often seen the human body as the central aspect of being, but it's what the human body is home to, that it contains this beautiful spiritual aspect of ourselves and the way projection affirms this.")
Similarly, astral projection has had studies that suggest it is rooted in reality. One 2014 case study out of the University of Ottawa's School of Psychology in which a woman who said she could astral project was put under a fMRI machine. The patient was physically stationary for an hour but guided in and out of astral projections in which she was prompted to move her nonphysical body in different ways. Researchers monitored the activity in different regions of her brain throughout the exercise and found that they did show activity that correlated with motion during the times she claimed to be astral projecting. "The existence of such a case and its presentation raises the possibility that this phenomenon may have a significant incidence," the study reads.
System-travel should not be mocked or ridiculed, as it can cause systems to feel as though their experiences (and sometimes trauma) is not worthy enough and/or is shameful.
Some terms related to system-travel include the following:
Fronting is the act of taking over the shared body or taking control of the shared body. when more than one headmate fronts, this is known as Co-fronting, and the control between them may be split in some way.
There is the possibility of being unable to front unless something is happening to the shared body, being unable to front at will, or being unable to front at all.
When a headmate is fronting, innerworld traits may 'bleed over' to the shared body's abilities and traits. Some examples are listed below.
- The body may pick up a British accent when a British headmate is fronting.
- The body may cut off vision when a blind or hard-of-sight headmate is fronting.
- The body may cut off hearing when a Deaf or hard-of-hearing headmate is fronting.
- The body may cut off speech when a mute or semi-mute headmate is fronting.
- Motor control may be difficult for disabled headmates or headmates that do not have a human body in the innerworld.
This is because the brain controls the body, and the brain typically recognizes each headmates abilities separately. This may also mean one headmate can have a disorder another headmate doesn't, regardless of if the body/brain itself has said disorder.
When fronting, they may also experience Exolimbs, which are limbs that aren't on the shared body, but are on their innerworld body. For example, a demon headmate may feel as though they have horns when fronting, and may feel as though their horns are being touched if someone touches their head, even though the horns aren't actually there.
The body may also experience Exopain, which is pain that the innerworld body is experiencing. For example, if a headmate broke a bone in the innerworld, when fronting, the body may also feel like it has a broken bone, even though it doesn't. Exopain can also be experienced by otherkin individuals and individuals with certain disorders and/or disabilities.
Some terms related to fronting include the following:
- Autopilot: when no one is fronting, and the body does things on its own, typically using the subconscious as a guide. For example, the body may do chores or homework.
- Blending/Blurring/Soup: when two or more headmates blur together in terms of identity (and possibly innerworld bodies.) Blending is typically temporary, and happens when fronting or when co-conning. Crouton Fishing is the act of trying to pull a coherent headmate out of a blend.
- Calling: when a system’s brain or front unconsciously desires fronters with specific characteristics (gender, sexuality, hyperfixation, special interests, etc.) This can be weak or overpowering, and generally cannot be consciously controlled.
- Co-Conning: when two or more headmates are conscious, but not fronting.
- Cytien/Cyctien: when a system’s fronting activity goes through a cycle based on new members forming/being discovered.
- Foggy: when there are too many members attempting to front, but not any loss of identity/blending.
- Forced Fronting: when a headmate takes control of the front against the will of the other headmates.
- Front Rotation: when frequent fronters changes a lot.
- Front Preferences: when the front prefers specific kind of headmates to front. It may drag members it prefers to the front and reject members it does not prefer.
- Front Salad: when too many headmates are fronting and things are confusing/muddled, but none of the headmates are blurred.
- Front Sealed: when the headmates fronting are incapable of communicating with those in the rest of systems.
- Frontstuck: when a headmate is stuck in the front/stuck fronting.
- Front Trigger: a trigger (positive or negative) that causes a headmate to front. A Peek Trigger is a trigger that causes one to peek out the front/peek and see whats going on the innerworld.
- Front Yeety: when the front seems to reject everyone, ‘yeeting’ headmates around as it pleases.
- Kinegenic: when the front changes so often that multiple headmates end up fronting in one day, not all at the same time.
- Maining: a term specifically for headmates involved in a shared integration, in which they each take main control over the innerworld body they share. For example, if three individuals had a shared integration, they would take turns having 'most control' over the innerworld body, which would be maining. Those with shared integration have to main the innerworld body in order to participate in fronting in the outterworld body, meaning, in a way, they have to front twice.
- Switch/Switching: the act of changing who is fronting. A Covert Switch is a switch that is hard to detect/well-hidden. Switch Management refers to how headmates manage switches/how switches occur; Managed Switching is when switching is controlled/managed, Reactive Switching is when most switches are reactive/triggered, and Voluntary Switching is when most switches are voluntary/controlled.
Note: this section does not include all terminology used in the plural community; just the common ones. For more terminology, explore the Pluralpedia.
- Amnesic Barriers: (usually metaphorical, but sometimes literal) barriers that stop other headmates from remembering what happened when another member was fronting or remembering trauma that happened to another headmate.
- Bleedover/Bleedthrough/Recollection: when emotions, memories, experiences, etc ‘leak over’ to other members of the system. For example, if one headmate is depressed, their depression might bleedover on the other headmates. Emotional Sharing is the same thing, except its specific to emotions. Symnesia/Memory Sharing is the act of sharing memories between two or more headmates.
- Cluster: a group of headmates that are separate/arbitrary, but is connected to one another through similarities of some kind. This connection is usually voluntary, but it isn’t always. A Narrative Cluster is a cluster that is connected by a “plot” or “story” whom all have roles that pertain to it. They do not have to be on the same layer/area of the system to be in this cluster.
- Exomemories: memories of things that happened in a past life, past experience, and/or before their time in systemhood. Exotrauma is the same thing, but specifically applying to trauma. Singlets can experience these as well if they are alterhuman.
- Fading: when a headmate starts feeling less present and may eventually disappear from the system entirely. This can be traumatic and is often viewed as the death of a headmate.
- Fusion/Integration: when two or more headmates combine/merge. This could be purposeful or accidental. There are multiple types of integration; Full Integration (in which the involved headmate’s identities combine into one), Shared Integration (in which the involved headmates share the same innerworld body, but have separate consciousness, only sharing pieces of each other’s thoughts/mind) and Final fusion (in which every headmate integrates into one, thus becoming a UTB system or incompletely-plural).
- Intratrauma: trauma that occurred within the innerworld.
- Singletsona: a personality/individual put forward by the system to appear as though they are a singet.
- Split: the process of new headmates forming due to external stress/trauma, usually by taking an existing headmate and splitting them into pieces.
- Syscurious: a term to describe someone who might be a system, but they are unsure. This could be because of little to no access to the headspace, or other reasons such as your fragments have not fully formed. It is also possible to be syscurious if one thinks they have a system, but they are the only one who really fronts.
Alter Egos vs. Systems
Many individuals claim that having system members is "just having an alter ego" or "just having other personalities" and that everyone does this. This, however, is not the case, as alter egos and personalities are behaviors one individual takes up.
Systems are not a single individual pretending to be multiple individuals. Instead, they are multiple individuals, who are often forced to pretend they are a single individual due to stigma, hate, and/or protection.
Those in systems are not usually in control over their headmates (unless every headmate is connected, like in some median systems) while individuals with alter egos and other personalities are in control of those, and can change them if they try hard enough.
Headmates cannot be changed or faked, because they are not personalities. They can, however, be willed into existence, but after that they usually have full control over themselves and their behaviors. Headmates can only develop from circumstances within the body's life, and then change based on their own personal growth, due to the fact that they are, indeed, individuals.
Similarly, it should be noted that headmates can have alter egos, as alter egos are behaviors, and every headmate can pick up different behaviors.
Systems often time have to deal with much stigma around their existence and how one handles their existence. Some issues that many systems have to deal with are listed below. Discrimination against a system is known as Pluralphobia or Plurphobia.
- Horror movies, TV shows, and fictional crime-based media demonizing system members, such as Hide and Seek and Split.
- Refusal to enter events (such as Church) due to being a system.
- Being put through exorcisms and/or prayer due to individuals believing headmates are 'demonic.'
- Bullying for being a system.
- Being called 'imaginary' or 'a disorder.'
- Being called 'personalities' or 'alter egos.'
- Being told they are 'one individual' and that they need to 'become one individual' again.
- Accusations of faking.
- Mistreatment of headmates by friends or family, especially littles who are in older bodies.
- Claims that headmates are 'not real individuals.'
- Being pressured into integration or dormancy.
- Being pressured to behave more like a singlet, or to pretend they are a singlet.
There are many more discriminatory issues systems must deal with, however these are few of the notable ones.
Like within the LGBTQ+ community, system exclusionists exist. These exclusionists are often known as Sysmeds, Sysmedicalists, Syskeepers, and Plurscum. One may hear them also being referred to as "traumascum," though this term has victim-blaming connotations, because it implies they are at fault and are "scum" for their trauma. These exclusionists typically try to gatekeep, fakeclaim, or look down on non-traumagenic or non-medical systems. This is often because they do not believe non-medical systems are valid, despite the scientists and psychologists who acknowledge them.
They claim the lack of research done on endogenic systems makes them invalid, which contradicts the fact that there are many system-experiences that are not fully understood even in medical-systems and traumagenic systems.
While some exclusionists may not mean harm, gatekeeping who can and cannot be a system often leads to issues, such as:
- Traumagenic systems who are fakeclaimed due to 'not having strong enough trauma.' causing a system to further suffer, as they feel their trauma is invalid.
- Neurogenic systems who are told by sysmeds systems that their experiences cannot form a system, which is ableist and invalidating.
- Endogenic systems who are told by sysmeds that they are fake/imaginary, which continues the cycle of misinformation that systems receive from singlets.
- Religious and spiritual systems often receive hate, which is discriminatory to one's spiritual practices.
Some exclusionists, however, do not intentionally try and invalidate other systems. Instead, they may believe that the communities for systems should be separate, such as traumagenic and endogenic systems being separated, as different system origins have vastly different experiences.
While they may not mean harm and just wish for communities to grow separately, they are unintentionally contradicting the fact that every system has vastly different experiences, regardless of their origins, and separating them based on said experiences would cause more of an isolation, instead of the movement for acceptance and community that systems seek.
Some (but not all) radical sysmeds even go as far as to invalidate a system for having introjects, fictives, and factives as they claim they are 'unrealistic.' This further separates the community, even pushing away traumagenic and medical systems with tives.
Symbols and Flags
The interlocking circles where created by Tracee of ouregaiya and/or Iris of Astraea in October 2011 and was spread through Email and Livejournal. 
The ampersand was adopted by the community, and some systems prefer to be referred to as you& or similarly use ampersands in reference to themselves.
The treblesand was created anonymously and for the use of anyone under the plural umbrella. 
The plural spiral was created by Tumblr user Extranth. It is made to represent octopus limbs, and how they each have minds of their own, while also resembling the sun, because stars have multiple layers within them that work together to function throughout their lifetime. 
- Healthy Multiplicity
- Dissociative Initiative (DID/OSDD)
- Endogenic Hub (Endogenic Systems)
- Soul Whispers (Soulbonds)
- The Pluralpedia
- System sources