From Pluralpedia, the collaborative plurality dictionary
exposurist (n.)
Applies toheadmates

An exposurist is a system member who formed to help another member overcome their trauma through repeatedly exposing them to things that trigger them.

Their methods can range from actively putting in the effort to trigger, such as: repeatedly reminding the member of their trauma, gradually showing them more and more memories as they get used to them, mocking them for their trauma (in a mean-spirited way), or knowingly putting them in situations that will trigger them; to passive ways, like simply existing as a reminder of the trauma.

In the passive case, the exposurist can be an introject of the abuser, someone who is otherwise connected to a member's trauma, or an individual who is similar enough to some reminder of the trauma.

Exposurists are not abusive by default; the role does not make the person. If their methods are harmful, it could be out of a misguided attempt to help, but that is not a necessary "criteria" for the role.

History[edit | edit source]

An exposurist was previously alternatively called an exposure therapist. As of the year 2023, that suggestion has been pulled.

The term "therapist" was used loosely from the start: an exposurist's way of helping can be very questionable depending on the intent and methods used to go about it. Even if they come from a good place, they have the potential to hurt the traumatized person even further moreso than help them. Therefore, calling it "therapy" could be misleading and painting the wrong picture if the exposurist is wounding the individual.

More Context[edit | edit source]

The role in and of itself is not persecutory, and individuals with this role do not need to practice it in a way that hurts people. In fact, some may find that the methods used and the dynamic they share with the exposurist are quite healing and benefitial for their well-being.

Members with this role do not necessarily have to be a persecutor or have malicious intent. If they cause the exposed harm, however, and are aware of it, it could be because they see themselves as some sort of savior, or like the executor of a necessary evil. How they justify it to themselves, or not, is not a requirement of any kind.

In the case of a passive exposurist, just their presence alone can be triggering enough, so the person may not even have a say in whether or not they will affect the traumatized negatively.

This term is intended for individuals whose role is to hopefully help other headmates get over trauma by exposure, whether or not the brain agrees with it. Please use it carefully. An additional reminder to not ostracize persecutors.

Related Terms[edit | edit source]

Exposurists can be persecutors or malicitors, as well. They can also be inner therapists, or any kind of helpers. (Reminder that the term malicitor is to be used extremely carefully and is only for self-identification- it should not be used in a derogatory way, or even as a label that anyone but the potential malicitor themself uses.).

References[edit | edit source]