How many of you have felt like an imposter in your own life? When you’re out with friends? At work? In doing something you love? I understand this so well. One of the things that can come with BPD is Imposter Syndrome. It happens frequently. It’s happening now. I feel like an imposter writing a mental health blog even though I have lived experience and have something to say.
Comparing myself to other MH writers
This is SUCH a biggie. I look for mental health blogs, news articles and books that help and inspire me. I read them, I take them in and then I get this overwhelming sense of failure and jealousy that the article/book wasn’t written by me. It makes me doubt my capabilities as a writer and potential author. I followed so many inspiring people on social media but all I kept thinking was ‘they’re better than me’, ‘ they really are experts’ and ‘what I’m saying isn’t as valuable’. I was having real anxiety about it so had to unfollow everyone.
Comparing my experience of BPD to others
Getting diagnosed took a really long time and when I was told that I had BPD/EUPD, I went looking for information. All I found was info telling me that you had to have been abused as a child or that you had to have been hospitalised in order to have the condition. I felt like a fake because I’d had neither of those things happen to me. Whenever I hear someone else’s experience, I always think ‘Mine’s not that bad, what was I making a fuss about?’. I always feel like my story isn’t a good one. It’s not extreme enough. I feel like an imposter being diagnosed with BPD!
Comparing my social media presence
There are so many debates around whether social media can help, hinder or both. For me, it definitely hinders me and my self esteem. Just because there are so many people out there doing what I wish I was doing. The simple answer is that I need to work harder on my social media presence, post things of use and of interest and probably, stop comparing myself to others. I do envy those people who are writing for a living, creating change and engaging with so many people and their stories. I definitely feel like an imposter on social media and feel like I don’t fit into the ‘community’ that resides there.
Dealing with the imposter in me
Feeling like you don’t fit in and that you are out on a limb is really hard. I totally get the ’embrace your differences’ thing but I just can’t get to embracing it yet. Despite the mental health community being a supportive and educational space, it’s also a hard place to be when you have Imposter Syndrome. The constant reminder that your experiences aren’t almost as bad as other people’s. The ‘community’ feel really threatens me rather than inspires me. It’s awful to say as everyone is shouting from the same song sheet and doing amazing things to change the attitudes to mental health.
I feel like this blog is highlighting the Imposter Syndrome so please don’t take offence if you’re one of those awesome people changing attitudes. I’m just jealous of what you’re achieving.