Nooz Staff September 23, 2019

OP-ED: Owie, My Imposter Syndrome

Last week, the TA sighed when I raised my hand for help. That really stung, but I expect it will only haunt me for a few more years. Then, my best friend got an offer from her dream internship. It made me feel like shit. I’ll never accomplish my goals, but I don’t deserve to anyway, because I’m completely worthless and talentless—and a bad friend too! 

“Experts” say that imposter syndrome is all in the mind, but a classmate made a great point that I could never have thought of in a discussion section. The simplest answer: I’m a big dummy with bad thoughts! After that, I cried in the McGraw Hall bathroom.

Someone three rows back whispered “WTF” when I asked a question in class. That one was a big oof. When I got rejected from three separate pre-professional clubs, it cut to the very core of my being. Then I ate three chocolate croissants in one sitting. 

I only got into Cornell because of my good grades that I didn’t deserve and extracurricular involvement that totally sucked. Maybe in high school my slightly above average intellect would have impressed my peers, but now I feel like I’m annoying my “friends” when I have to ask questions about their genius-level dining table conversations.

The worst part of it all (other than the constant feelings of insecurity and self-consciousness) is my fear that the admissions office is going to figure out they made a mistake and rescind my acceptance. Once Cornell finds out, I’m screwed! Until then, I guess I’ll have to endure death by a thousand more successful students.

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