I have issues with many things, but right now I’m worried that I have an ID issue. I think I am going through Moratorium, but since I’ve been in foreclosure for a while- I feel very weird. Not to mention that I have literally modeled my entire personality after an idea of what I think a specific celebrity is like. I am scared. I dropped out to play guitar, but now I’m questioning everything that’s “me”. My career choice, gender identity, mannerisms, the stories and jokes I tell, the way I dress, my sense of humor- everything. I think I know why I modeled my entire life and self after this person- because all my role models growing up kind of sucked, I had a crush on this celebrity, and I felt like I was doing nothing and I really didn’t have a drive to do anything anyway. So when I was about 11-12, I started acting like them, and instantly I couldn’t stop. Now it’s just who I am. I’ve questioned it before but it scared me too much to think about, so I forgot about it. And I’m afraid that I’m obsessed with them, or that I might try to hurt them for some reason, or maybe that there’s not really a real “me”, or that I’m still that overweight, gross, depressed, talentless and ignored kid I was in grade school. I don’t know how to label this, but I don’t have access to any kind of help, and I’ve been travelling for years so any answer you give me will be welcome…

A. The teenage years are difficult, much more so than many people realize. It’s rarely an easy transition. During this period of your life it’s normal to be asking the types of questions you are asking. It’s a time when you are attempting to become your own person and develop an identity separate from your family. According to Erikson, it often begins with identifying with a group or personality type. It’s not only normal but necessary.

Dropping out of school likely exacerbated the difficulties associated with the transitional period of adolescence. You might consider returning to school. It may be difficult to succeed with a limited education. In the United States, most people who don’t graduate high school earn significantly less money than people who graduate high school. Put simply, there are fewer opportunities to be successful when you drop out of school. Fewer opportunities leads to more stress. Ideally, you want to put yourself in the best position to be successful.

You said that you don’t have “any access … to help” and I’m wondering why? Maybe you don’t think you do but have you tried? I would highly recommend counseling. It would help you tremendously. It is the ideal solution to this problem. In the meantime, you might try utilizing online support groups, church-based counseling (which is often free), or reading self-help books. In person, counseling is the ideal and first-line treatment, but in its absence, the aforementioned ideas may be useful. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle