A class straddler (in German the closest equivalent would be a "class traveler") is a person who is leaving behind their class, their social culture of origin, social milieu or whichever term works best for you. This usually refers to working and poverty class children, people who grew up in a farming family or anything similar along those lines.
Straddler in this context means the state of "straddling" two class identities, the one they come from and the one they're heading towards.
These people embark on their very own journey when after high school they go to college or university, start a business or attend any educational training for a job that is considered higher ranking. Something that no one in their family may have done before them. Sometimes the journey can also start simply by changing their circle of friends as they grow up.
Moving from the country to a bigger city, getting involved in artist circles, a political scene or subculture - or even the queer coming out - all these can be landmarks on the class journey. You will notice best yourself, whether you consider yourself a class straddler/traveler and whether my services resonate with you.
classism sensitive therapy & coaching
The list of topics I can think of related to class straddlers and classism is long, and it grows every day. And maybe you feel the same way.
Perhaps you've been thinking about exploring this aspect of your biography in depth for quite a while. Maybe you just discovered the extent and impact of your class journey, and now you're having various thoughts, feelings, questions or just the desire to tell your story.
My specialized service here is meant to provide room for all of it. Here are some examples for what we could talk about:
the invisible side of your CV
traveling without a compass and with little provisions
rising up the social ladder and its very personal costs
shame, pride and guilt - mixed feelings towards your social class of origin
the experience of classist bullying and discrimination
"Where do I belong?" - living in or rather between two worlds
the relationship to work & money and the probable trauma of existential worries
cross-class relationships and friendships as well as the relationship with your family of origin
and finally: the connection and intersection of classism with other experiences of disadvantage and discrimination
class straddlers & impostor syndrome: a special Coaching service
A person who feels - quite wrongly - as an impostor is someone who thinks that they are "faking it". They regard their own successes as pure coincidence and not as their own merit.
The feeling prevails that they're actually only pretending to be someone in particular: an engineer, for example. Or a teacher. An executive. A scientist or a shopkeeper. A political activist, a care manager, a writer. Since that can't actually be true, can it? And the diploma on the wall isn't real either, is it?
Quite a few class straddlers might be familiar with this line of thinking. Here's a small list of topics and issues that can come up when dealing with an impostor syndrome:
the worry of being "exposed" through somehow inappropriate behavior, mistakes in spoken or written language, or when being caught with an "educational gap"
chronic fear of failure or success or both
lack of confidence in oneself
perfectionism, procrastinating and overworking out of fear of making mistakes or not being good enough
not believing in your own competencies
belittling your accomplishments or having the feeling of them being somehow unreal
not stepping into your own light for the fear of standing out ("So you think you're better than us?")
living with strict critical voices in your head
If you're curious, we can also work on this topic.