Underrepresented demographics. Qualified minorities weren’t allowed opportunities to succeed and that’s what affirmative action was created to solve. You can’t just get into college because you’re a woman/poc/minority. You have to reach a minimum threshold to at least qualify.
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your claim of affirmative action is baseless. It has been statistically shown that the only group who has widely benefited from affirmative action is white women. And despite that, even in areas where there is no margin of difference in accolades, accomplishments, or abilities, minorities are still overlooked by the powers that be for their advancement in their fields of study.
In the black community, it is widely taught to us all that we have to work and be 10 times better only to be regarded as equal to our white counterparts, even though in most cases we far exceed expectations.
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this is closest to how I feel, and what I experienced as a child. One moment I was held on a pedestal, and the next I was being told that getting a B wasn’t good enough. It was a SUPER confusing message. This, paired with all the other stuff I went through (parents’ divorce, two foster homes, my mom’s abusive alcoholic boyfriend, limited contact with my father, being hit on by my mom’s subsequent boyfriends, etc…) made for me to feel continually as though I wasn’t good enough. So even when I got good grades or whatever, I felt worthless.
Theres also a “survivors guilt” side to imposter syndrome that isnt necessarily related to anything traumatic, but the success of being where they are while others they think should have, arent. Which goes along to them comparing themselves. In all honesty i think it stems from bad parenting, not reassuring your child in their choices, always saying “why cant you be like that kid”, putting down the choices they do make even though that simple choice could have been a cliffhanger for them. So if youre from a broken home or poverty or just out of place where you grew up (a minority in your own right, not just race) you will probably struggle with self worth.