Titles and faking it

Last week with TM, the concept of feeling like a fraud my whole life came up. I was explaining that I know I have these accomplishments and education, but when I’m not in an intellectual space, I don’t connect to any of them. I can look at my resume and my degree and see my name, know I was there, understand that I knew this stuff at one time, but it all feels so removed.
A few sentences later, she called me by a title I never internalized; she called me a therapist. I visibly balked when she said this. I don’t identify with it at all. Yes, I have education towards it, and yes I was in that role at one time, but I only ever considered myself an intern or trainee. I never finished my schooling. I didn’t hold that job for more than a year… Yes, I had individual & group clients. Yes, I was the person they talked to about their “stuff”. Yes, we did “therapy” things, but I never felt like a therapist.

Therapists have their shit together. They don’t fall apart at the slightest trigger. They know how to handle stress. They are good about their self care. They stay working…

So no, I don’t consider myself a therapist. It’s something I’d like to get to some day, but most days I don’t consider myself a very good adult, forget the responsibility that goes along with the title of “therapist”… I hope I don’t ever come off as knowing more than I do. I don’t mean to.

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2 responses to “Titles and faking it

  • weareonebyruth

    My therapists told me that many therapist go into the field because they want to get their own head together. He explained to me that he had a therapist for himself since what he hears some days is pretty rough. You might want to consider the possibility that putting therapist on a pedestal of they have their head together may be a disservice to you and them. I don’t believe you come off knowing more that you do. Sometimes we know more than we realize. I hope this makes sense. Take care.

    • Samantha Jane

      I think *ethical* therapists will have their stuff together so as not to do a disservice to their clients by getting their own needs met at the expense of the client. I know most therapists will seek out therapy for themselves as needed, but the general hope is that they are “together” enough to not be overly effected by their clients, and to not bring their own issues into the room for the most part…
      But I get what you mean. I know therapists don’t lead a charmed life, and I’m well aware they are only human.
      I’m glad I don’t come off as having skills I don’t actually have. I hope I don’t give that impression in real life either…

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