Imposter Syndrome

I don’t usually go to Psychology Today for feminist content (they’re all but obsessed with sexist evolutionary psychology), but I was intrigued by this post on something called “imposter syndrome”:

According to [Susan] Pinker, many highly accomplished women suffer from the feeling that they are imposters and they do not belong where they are and they don’t deserve what they have accomplished through their own talent and hard work…The stories of professional women Pinker interviews vividly illustrate a widespread phenomenon first documented by Pauline Rose Clance and Suzanne Imes in their 1978 study of 150 highly successful professional women in various fields. “Despite accolades, rank, and salary, these women felt like phonies. They didn’t believe in their own accomplishments; they felt they were scamming everyone about their skills.”

It turns out this is a widely-known concept, though not an official part of the DSMIV. The blogger mistakenly notes that “imposter syndrome” is only something that afflicts women, when in fact it was also documented widely in working class kids first entering elite colleges in the 40s and 50s, and today among kids who are pipe lined into elite schools from low income neighborhoods (programs like Prep for Prep).
I was sitting across the table from a highly successful friend of mine in the restaurant business the other day and she expressed this exact sentiment–being asked to speak in a capacity she couldn’t believe she was qualified for–and I quipped back, “Welcome to my world. I feel that way all the time.”
The more I thought about my response, however, the more I realized I had some reflecting to do. It’s one thing to be intimidated by new situations, to do the ol’ fake it till you make it trick, but it’s another to truly not feel like one belongs or deserves certain kinds of opportunities or accolades. Where’s the line? How do you know? In what ways is this gendered? In what ways is it “raced” or “classed”?

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82 Comments

  1. DeafBrownTrash
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think this is gendered. I think this is a bullshit concept. Hey, maybe there’s another word for it– HUMILITY.
    My play was recently produced for a 3 week run in London. It was really cool but weird. Sometimes I thought, “what did I do to deserve such an amazing opportunity?” and other times I thought, “hell yeah. I worked hard for this.”
    I’m not sure if that would be considered Imposter Syndrome, though.

  2. Kimberly
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    I understand it’s also common in academia.
    Just a gut response, but I’d bet that the syndrome itself isn’t any kind of x-ed (gendered, raced, classed, etc), but that the patterns of people experiencing it are dependent on the field we look at.

  3. Silva
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

    This magazine has offended me as a woman at least a couple of times.

  4. lovelyliz
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    I actually read this column – [I order the magazine] and I think this applies to most people who strive for perfection, not just women.
    However, I can definitely see this applied to MOSTLY women as we have the dual-role expectation thrust upon us. Hm. Something to think about.

  5. thequeue.myopenid.com
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

    I’ve seen this a lot in academically talented teenage girls who are convinced that they are not smart, even when all the evidence shows otherwise.
    I definitely think it’s real, if not easily explainable or quantifiable.

  6. ElleStar
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Exactly. I don’t think I’ve met a graduate student who hasn’t confided that they feel like they’re the biggest fraud and don’t really belong in grad school because they’re not smart enough.
    Also, when we start teaching, it’s a whole different level. You stand there incredulous that students are writing down what you say just because you said it. You know in your heart that you’re lecturing what is true and currently known in the subject, but the fact they seem to trust you enough that they’re actually going to try to commit it to memory is unbelievable at times.

  7. Steveo
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    First a question. Why is evolutionary psychology sexist? (This is not snide….I know nothing about evolutionary psychology, nor “Psychology Today”)
    Second, “Imposter Syndrome” is a universal feeling I think. I can personally say that I feel like an imposter in my current position as a graduate student. And talking to many other graduate students (successful and some who have moved on up the ladder of academia) that these feelings they always have. The feeling of being “found out as a fraud” as one friend put it.

  8. fwavebex
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    This is definitely a common trend in the academic world, but I’ve seen it among women before too.
    When I was in my 2nd year, a friend and I (we were both execs on our Women’s Studies Student Association at uOttawa) were invited to the Governor General’s roundtable discussing on empowering the women and girls of the future. We were part of the 20-30 token youth sprinkled amongst the highly successful female lawyers, CEOs, philantrhopics and journalists, among other professions. And one of the things I remember a CEO at our table telling us was to “fake it ’til you make it”; or pretend you are fully confident and capable in your position until you believe it too.
    I think everyone feels this at some points in their lives or careers. But it may be more pronounced in groups with internalized socially-cnstructed barriers to overcome.

  9. 2552
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    It’s not really ev psych itself, mainly just Satoshi Kanazawa (the author of the article) giving it a bad name, as covered before on Feministing (first link on that page). There’s also a rebuttal to that article by a different evolutionary psychologist.

  10. YellowMellow
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

    While I agree with a lot of the other posters here that this kind of thing is universal-a feeling we’ve all had at one time or another-I can’t help but think that it’s directly relevant to my own experiences with classism. Having grown up poor and at low-income schools where teachers were so busy dealing with “troublemakers” or kids with really serious issues, I found that doing well in school really just meant following the rules and shutting up. Fast forward several years, and I find myself on a scholarship at an elite private university. The entire time I was at this school (literally, the entire time) I felt like I didn’t belong there, even though I did okay academically. My classmates came overwhelmingly from middle and upper class homes, from private high schools and intact families. Most had been taught the importance of analytical thinking and forming opinions, and seemed to have little trouble speaking up in class or even arguing with professors (this kind of thing is strongly valued at this college, especially within my major – Gender Studies). Of course I had my own opinions about things, but never learned to trust them or even voice them in classes. The feeling that I didn’t belong at that school and among those people was really formative of my experience there, unfortunately, and I do think it was directly related to class issues in my case.
    I would imagine people in other marginalized groups experience the same kinds of feelings when operating within systems (be they smaller like a team or club, or larger like a school, workplace, or city) dominated by those who don’t acknowledge or value their background. In some ways this “Imposter Syndrome” seems to be an astute observation of how it feels to be struggling against, or different from, those around you.

  11. 2552
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

    *by “that article” I meant the one on the “What We Missed” page I linked.

  12. VickyinSeattle
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    I think there’s a huge difference between humility and the “impostor syndrome.”
    I’ve met too many smart young women who expressed fear that, one day, the world was going to discover their “ruse” and realize they’ve been professional frauds their entire careers. I’ve also met minorities and working-class students who felt that they somehow “didn’t deserve” to an Ivy League school and got in “by mistake”–only to realize that they were keeping up, if not excelling, just fine.
    It’s the flip side of what many young, white men from well-off families feel: entitlement. Sociologist Michael Kimmel has documented how a lot of middle- and upper-class white young men feel entitled to the great college, the great job, etc. without having to actually work hard for it. Then, when things don’t fall in their lap, they become resentful.
    Of course, not all young men are that way. I think it’s natural for anyone entering an unfamiliar testing ground to feel intimidated. I’ve heard a lot of my male friends say, “Fake it till you make it.” They put on this bravado when, in fact, they’re just as insecure as the rest of us.
    Likewise, there are plenty of arrogant, smarmy women and minorities. However, given the widespread racial, gender and class stereotypes that continue to permeate our society, I believe that minorities are more vulnerable to the “impostor syndrome.”
    Just look at various sociological tests in which, say, African-Americans were subtly reminded of their race before taking a math exam–and they performed much more poorly than those who were not so reminded. Somewhat amusingly, Asian women who were reminded of their gender performed badly, but those who were reminded of their ethnicity did well. Stereotypes work in subtle ways, and a lifetime of exposure to them does have a deep impact.
    (Apologies for the long missive.)

  13. WickedAnnabella
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Here’s a pretty good article on the flaws of evolutionary psychology.

  14. VickyinSeattle
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think evolutionary psychology is intrinsically sexist, but they’ve put forward a lot of theories that excuse sexism if not outright misogyny.
    The most common is the claim that men are naturally promiscuous because they want to spread their seed while women are naturally monogamous because they care only about childrearing and ensuring a male partner’s support. History has shown numerous variations in human sexual behavior, and generally, it’s only been wealthy, powerful men who had access to many women. In Western culture, there only came to be much more extra-marital sexual activity with the advent of birth control, which negates the argument that men are trying to sire children everywhere.
    A few years back, two evolutionary psychologists (Thornhill and Palmer) made the claim that men view rape as a natural alternative to consensual sex because their prime objective (again) is to spread their seed. They also explained that a husband would naturally discard a wife who was raped because she could no longer be assured of her sexual fidelity. Then, they argued that young men need to be talk to suppress their urge to commit rape–which I imagine most men would find appalling and insulting.
    Fortunately, the “rape is natural” theory has been debunked by others.

  15. TD
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Of course, not all young men are that way. I think it’s natural for anyone entering an unfamiliar testing ground to feel intimidated. I’ve heard a lot of my male friends say, “Fake it till you make it.” They put on this bravado when, in fact, they’re just as insecure as the rest of us.
    I’d say this is vastly more common then Kimmel’s default view of men=bad.
    I’d also point to the fact that men have a bit less difficulty with this concept since most guys have to practice this when they’re first dating in order to muster up courage to approach someone.

  16. Steveo
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the links. The first article was quite bad, however I do wish that the second article had more a point by point rebuttal rather than just an anecdotal story. I still feel most of Satoshi Kanazawa’s fallacies were left unaddressed.

  17. Steveo
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    I should say, I wish she had the personal story as well as a point by point rebuttal. I did enjoy her response a lot.

  18. Steveo
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for your reply, and like most people’s attempts at coming up with evolutionary reason’s for things, they are very shallow and only look at the most obvious (of many) forces on behavior.
    I don’t know how anyone could think “rape is natural” makes any sense at all. And your right, that is quite appalling.

  19. Steveo
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the link. Its pretty long so I won’t get a chance to look at it until later.

  20. dawn_of_the_bread
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this comment. I agree 100%.
    My tutor at university told me that highly successful people often feel like they don’t deserve their success, or that they got it by luck. Self-doubt can be crippling, but for me it is a great motivator.

  21. ticker
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

    I am pretty sure Gloria Steinem wrote about this many years ago–how she, and many successful women, despite their achievements, worry that it could all be taken away from them. I’ll try to find it.
    This is also directly related to the ways in which women’s and men’s negotiating skills differ, which has been much discussed.

  22. EndersGames
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    “I don’t usually go to Psychology Today for feminist content (they’re all but obsessed with sexist evolutionary psychology)”
    Speaking as both an evolutionary psychologist and a feminist, I definitely say evolutionary psychology and feminism are not opposites. They are largely compatible. There are quite a number of evolutionary psychologists whose research has been informed by a general feminist conciousness. Some versions of ev psych that get taught in humanities/sociology classes portray sexism and some research has ignored the powerful role of social norms, but a great deal of research doesn’t fall in this category.
    People like me are drawn to ev psych because we are interested in WHY humans became so reliant on culture and on language and what evolved systems in the brain facilitate these processes. Further, we are drawn to the nuanced view of gender that is made possible by evolutionary psychology. In particular, it enables you to examine how evolutionary factors, proximate biological factors (e.g., hormones), and social factors interact to shape the experiences of women.
    One article I use frequently in my classes is “The evolutionary origins of patriarchy” by Barbara Smuts, which examines the factors that lead to an initial inequality in power relations between men and women. It’s one of the articles my women’s studies students find particularly interesting.
    The anti-ev psych rhetoric is pretty heavy on this site.
    Some example summaries:
    Sarah Hrdy
    - Books like “The woman who never evolved” and “Mother Nature”
    - Example article: http://www.naturalhistorymag.com/features/09270/meet-the-alloparents
    Marlene Zuk – Sexual Selections: What we can and can’t learn about sex from animals.

  23. EndersGames
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    I think this is absolutely true. Particularly in academia because:
    1) You are surrounded by people who are either smarter than you, better writers, better at stats, better at research design, more creative, or know more than you.
    2) The process of science is very adversarial – a good colleague is constantly telling you what is wrong or problematic with your ideas, research question, research design, storyline, etc. Your ideas, which begin to feel like part of you, get ripped apart on a weekly basis.

  24. Auriane
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, no kidding.
    I was a rather white-trashy kid who ended up with grants and scholarships to undergrad and grad school at two top-flight universities, and throughout my education, I felt not so much like an imposter — most everyone knew who and what I was right off the bat, and I didn’t suffer from a lack of confidence academically (just socially) — but more like an alien, as if I had to strap on a translator and a space suit just to go and talk to people. I often felt like I had to be on my guard, and the times I lied about my background I felt dirtier than ever.
    5 years have passed since I graduated from my Master’s program, and I’m a lot more well-adjusted now that I’ve been working professionally for some time, but it took a while to reconcile where I came from with and where I ended up, especially since my family is still very much on the outside of that life.
    That said, I’m thrilled with the choices I made, and am happy I didn’t remain in a bad situation at home, and it was enough to overcome all of my feelings of alien-ness and not belonging.

  25. EndersGames
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    That’s more the popular press summary of parental investment theory than what evolutionary psychologists actually think about sex differences in sexual preferences.
    The general pattern is that the sex who gives birth to the offspring will be choosier about who they mate with because they bear substantially more obligatory costs as a result of mating. For example, among seahorses, the males carry the eggs to term, and express greater choosiness regarding who they will mate with than females do. The sex that does not have these costs has an added incentive to seek multiple partners, because potentially they can produce many offspring with few costs.
    People read that and mistakenly think that means males = promiscuous, females = monogamous. These are RELATIVE DIFFERENCES. You would expect that, on average, male mammals would be more open to short-term mating than females. But there are many advantages to short-term mating for females (e.g., genetic diversity in offspring; selecting mate with advantageous traits that will be passed on to offspring).
    According to evolutionary psychologists, there are dozens of factors BESIDES RELATIVE OBLIGATORY COSTS OF SEX that influence mating behaviors, including:
    A) Social norms
    B) Fragility of offspring (species with very fragile offspring tend to have more investing males, because abandonment of the offspring greatly increases infant mortality)
    C) Hormone levels during fetal stage and puberty
    D) Current hormone levels
    E) Timing of puberty
    And so on.
    The extreme representation of parental investment theory that gets told in the popular press serves as a nice tale for a populace desiring to hear a scientific story that matches their preconceived notions of gender. But evolutionary psychologists push a far more nuanced examination of the factors that shape sexuality across the sexes and within each sex.

  26. EndersGames
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I wasn’t really impressed by Begley’s critique of ev psych. It presents a pretty muddled picture of ev psych, and tries to portray behavioral ecology and evolutionary psychology as opposites, which is not accurate.
    Here are a couple responses specifically to that article by ev psychologists:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-sloan-wilson/evolutionary-psychology-a_b_220545.html
    http://www.cognitionandculture.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=471:evolutionary-psychology-under-attack&catid=29:dan&Itemid=34
    More generally a critique of folks who seem to confuse evolutionary psychology with genetic determinism or moral prescription:
    http://www.human-nature.com/nibbs/02/apd.html

  27. Gopher
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

    Congrats!

  28. Gopher
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

    Right cuz only guys ask women out. It could never be the other way around or anything.

  29. Gopher
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    and sometimes ones gender culture can encourage it. For ex. when girls undermine their own achievements and down play them to make another person feel better or to not seem so full of oneself. Similar to the “I’m so fat” phenomena and another girl/woman says “youre not fat, look at me.”

  30. TD
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    It is by no means the standard and women are not under the expectation to do so if they ever wish to go out with someone. By and large women have the option of asking any man out, but do not have the requirement to do so if they wish to go out on a date.
    But I’m sure that since I’m a man you’ll find ample reason to scream at me.

  31. spiral.of.life
    Posted November 13, 2009 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

    This is something I see at my college a decent amount. We’re a new school, kind of experimental, but a lot of us got into MIT or Ivies and turned them down to try this place out.
    I got into the Columbia honors program, MIT, Brown, and scads of other schools (only waitlisted by UPenn), and I certainly feel like an imposter where I am. I always thought that my friends were so far beyond me. I was great in public school, but I felt like I must have gotten here because of the “in public school” part– I wasn’t great on an absolute scale. It’s led to a good deal of depression and more. Unfortunately, this happens to a lot of people in these circles.
    I think some of it may be related to the fact that once I got into MIT, everyone told me it was “because I was a girl.” So many of my kickass engineering ladies got this same treatment. We were constantly fed this idea that we *were* imposters. It must be true, then, right? Even when you realize that it’s not on an intellectual level, it’s impossible to break the mindset completely. I’m about to graduate, and feel like I have no skills to show for my four years, yet I got a perfect intern review and an unofficial job offer from my last job. Something isn’t connecting here, and it’s terrible that it’s so damn common.
    So, yes. This happens.

  32. Brittany
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:05 am | Permalink

    I’m a young female author of the fantasy genre, and I feel the same way. In fact, there’s times that I feel weak and helpless just for being a woman. I’m also chubby, so whenever there’s times that I feel good about myself, a man points or says something or ridicules me and my self-esteem plummets. I’ve been told all my life by my father and men that I’ve met that men have done so much more, have higher IQs, and are better athletically, and I wouldn’t ever amount to anything. There’s times that I WANT to be a male, just to feel like I’m not weak or a phony. When I read websites like Manhood101 or other misogynist articles, I can’t help but listen to it and feel like I’m useless for being a woman. I want to be one of those strong, intelligent women that I see around so often/speak to, but I feel like I’ll never be happy being a female because I’m always knocked down a few pegs by men. I guess I just need to harden up a little and not let peoples’ comments get to me, but if I had a penny for every time I was called a feminazi or bitch or whore or recieve comments along the lines of “get back in the kitchen”…
    It’s the worst feeling when someone insults me personally, but I’m thin-skinned.

  33. Brittany
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    I’d like to stay more along the subject of the article and say that I fear that I’m a phony as well, and that my writing isn’t as good as a male counterpart’s…I generally think submissively around men sometimes because of my low self-esteem. “He’s smarter than I am…why am I here at a young authors meeting? I’m sure they’re all better than me.”
    It was the same feeling when I was in school, like I was a phony for excelling.

  34. Naama
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    You seem like a good writer to me.

  35. Brittany
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    “But I’m sure that since I’m a man you’ll find ample reason to scream at me.”
    Wow.

  36. Brittany
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    Thank you! Feministing and the wonderful women and pro-feminist men here have definitely boosted my self-esteem and sense of pride about being a woman. However, I still can’t help but feel like a fake sometimes, and I thought that I was alone in that feeling!

  37. 2552
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:55 am | Permalink

    “But I’m sure that since I’m a man you’ll find ample reason to scream at me. ”
    The fact is, feminists are not man-haters, just as people who fight for black civil rights do not hate white people, and people who fight for gay civil rights do not hate straight people. They are all wrongly accused of that though, it happens to any group fighting for equality.

  38. VickyinSeattle
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 2:06 am | Permalink

    I think Kimmel paints a more compassionate and nuanced picture of young men’s dilemma than men = bad. He emphasizes that the sense of entitlement comes with confusion, insecurity, and most significantly, a lack of adult mentors who offer guidance and set boundaries. He also points out that women don’t have to “prove” their “womanhood,” whereas men have to prove their manhood. This is because patriarchal societies still define manhood as the antithesis of whatever is considered female, and therefore inferior.
    You’re right about our culture’s young men being conditioned to “fake it till you make it” on the dating scene in a way that young women aren’t required to. Men are still expected to make the first move, so they have to work up the courage more often than women do.
    When a man asks a woman out, it’s standard practice. When a woman asks a man out, he’s flattered even if he turns her down, and she comes out looking like a cool person either way. (Not that the rejection hurts any less! :-)

  39. VickyinSeattle
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 2:16 am | Permalink

    Thanks for your clarification. You’re right that mainstream culture muddles the argument you laid out to simplistic, all-encompassing formulas. It drives me crazy when I hear male commentators assert things like, “In cavemen days, the men were the hunter-gatherers.” *Palm to forehead.*
    Having said that, my problem with evolutionary psychology is that theorists like Thornhill and Palmer promote an end-all, be-all message that condemns all humanity to very specific behavior without any consideration of cultural variations and changes in technology and social mores over time.

  40. j7sue2
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    There have been a lot of comments on recent transgender related posts that boil down to neat transphobia : “transsexual women are not really women” This is somewhat the same – the feeling that you’re not good enough to be what you really are. I am not a fake anything, I’m really me.

  41. Charybdis
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Why do people like you even bother coming here?

  42. Charybdis
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    I went through a phase of feeling like an imposter and it derailed my career. Where did it come from? Being treated like less than dirt by male colleagues. I was the only woman in the office and had specifically requested training (in broadcast production, namely shoot planning and editing) as a *condition* of employment. My boss reneged. I didn’t have it in writing. No one stepped up to help. The cameraman I was stuck with treated me like something under his shoes and my boss, the asshole, told me to “just do my job”. Would have loved to, IF HE HAD KEPT HIS WORD AND SHOWED ME HOW TO DO IT. I gave up another job I loved for this creepazoid, who proceeded to creep me out the day before I started by cornering me alone in my car and telling me what he’d heard about my sex life, in addition to all the other crap. So yeah, imposter “syndrome” can certainly be inspired by outside influences.

  43. bradley
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Except we weren’t talking about feminists here — we were talking about gopher.

  44. GREGORYABUTLER10031
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

    Most of the time, men ask women out in our society. There are women who have never asked a man out on a date in their entire lives, but still frequently go out on dates – but men who never ask women on dates are, more likely than not, going to spend the rest of their lives without getting a date.
    Of course there are individual exceptions, but they are exceptions to the rule.

  45. Lexicon
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

    There are a lot of stereotypes about men and women that I have personally found to be false, and this is one of them. I made money as a model until I quit for ideological reasons, so it isn’t due to not fitting into a beauty standard. My friends have had the same experience.
    Regardless, I fail to see how navigating the world of dating would have a significant correlation on whether or not you feel you deserve your professional success… there are a million and one examples that contradict this, so I’m not going to even start.

  46. Athenia
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Are you sure he automatically feels flattered and that the woman is looked at as “cool”?
    Lots of assumptions goin’ on there.

  47. daytrippinariel
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    “It is by no means the standard and women are not under the expectation to do so if they ever wish to go out with someone. By and large women have the option of asking any man out, but do not have the requirement to do so if they wish to go out on a date. ”
    Women ask men out all of the time. I’ve asked men out. I’ve asked out more men than have ever asked me out. It’s not a requirement for you to ask a girl out to on a date if you get asked out. This is a very dated assumption. And, further, regardless of your gender you have to work up confidence to talk to the people you are attract to so that someone will even be interested in asking you out.
    I’m not sure why some men think that women just stand around and get asked out. This has never been my experience or any of my friend’s experiences.

  48. daytrippinariel
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    I really think this is a generational difference.

  49. TD
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    Regardless, I fail to see how navigating the world of dating would have a significant correlation on whether or not you feel you deserve your professional success… there are a million and one examples that contradict this, so I’m not going to even start.
    Its not about whether or not you feel like you deserve it, it is about your relative confidence with faking those feelings and suppressing your own self doubt.

  50. TD
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

    Because Gopher does not represent the majority of individuals on this site. And while she will and does scream at anything which fails to completely condemn men, I do not feel she is indicative of the larger movement.

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