Who is Elpha for?

Hello, I joined this website a few days ago to connect with other women but I feel so out of place and underrepresented here. I hate to be a Debbie Downer but that's how I feel.

I see questions about topics like stock options, creating startups/businesses, negonating exit packages/bonuses and how to network while in graduate school and I feel defeated. Y'all have graduate school money? I see a lot of people with startups, organizations and non-profits based around helping low income women but not many actual low income women posting and interacting with others on this website. At least, very few that I've seen in the 2 or 3 days since I started reading as much as I could. Maybe there are a lot of lurkers like me. In that regard, I say "Hi, I see you because I am you".

I don't know if it's just imposter syndrome or something else. I've been trying to find groups of likeminded women looking for career advice, networking advice and mentorship both in person and online. It stings that a lot of them are almost focused exclusively on women in the the tech space (I'm not in tech) that goes hand in hand with natually favor those with higher/graduate education or are otherwise dominated with advice/suggestions that is mainly useful to those who dramatically outearn me.

I don't have any direction for this post, just ranting and observation on my end.

Sometimes when it seems like there isn't room for you, you have to MAKE room.I've also sometimes felt that Elpha isn't "for" me. I never worked "in tech" but ended up reluctantly starting a company. Elpha doesn't make any money off of me because I can't afford to hire anyone in the U.S. at the moment, and I'm certainly not in the market for a job myself.But guess what? Pretty much nothing I've ever encountered is "for" me. I don't let that stop me from making random posts ranging from asking for tactical tips about managing calendar reminders to trying to figure out whether a networking dinner invite is a trap that could result in sexual harassment. Personally, I've found the most value on Elpha from anonymous posting & dialogue, as well as from the 1-on-1 matching (I'm not sure if they are still doing this).You've already starting "making room" for yourself by writing this post. I didn't see a specific question, apart from the fact that you are looking for mentorship in your industry. IMO, the word "mentorship" is incredibly awkward, and formal mentorship arrangements (or assignments) never work. Anyone I've ever considered a "mentor," I didn't really figure it out until a few years after they were already mentoring me that I should consider them a mentor.Ask more specific questions about your real situation! Share what you mean when you say "low income," and what you are striving for. Ask about the thing that you believe is holding you back the most. What's the worst that could happen? If you don't think the advice here is relevant, just ignore it.
I find your perspective to be enlightening. I've been forced to 'make room and space' for the entirety of my life from the early days of elementary school to now (the beginning of my professional career) and I'm burnt out and feel exhausted. I wish I can walk into a room with people who 'get it' as I've never had that experience before. I guess I have to start a group myself for that to ever happen. How to start that, I have no zero idea. I'm sure I can find good resources on how on Elpha. "Take what's useful and throw the rest back into the sea for someone else" is what my mom said growing up and it's worked for her all of these years so I know I should keep giving that a try.
Appreciate your honesty in your post! The way I view elpha is a community of women of various backgrounds and perspectives which is helpful to bounce questions off of or just discuss various issues/topics. Even if not everyone is from your background or doesn’t get you, there can still at times be value in seeing different perspectives I think. No one is really exactly the same, everyone is unique in there own way.
Thank you for sharing your perspectives! To me Elpha is a space of collaboration for women, initially connected by their professional bonds (most members are women in various professions, but we also have a number of women who have taken a career break and are getting back into the workforce). That said more and more Elpha is becoming a place where women come to discuss shared experiences as women (could be from wage gap, navigating painful breakups/divorces, to raising children with disabilities, among many other topics under the sun). At this point, we've had a wide range of topics that have been discussed and I can share some threads with you, if you are interested! So with that, I would agree with a comment shared below that no one is the same and everyone here come for different reasons.On your point being in tech: It can really mean a whole bunch of things (working at a tech company in a non tech role eg. sales person, working at a corporation doing an IT function e.g systems administration, being a teacher and using tech to convey knowledge to students). One could also argue we are all somehow in tech since it's so pervasive, in all areas of our lives. You said you are looking for career advice and mentorship, what are you most interested in and looking for? I think without an ask, it will be really hard to know how to support you. As the adage goes: a closed mouth doesn't get fed. So writing the post is a really great start, and now I will follow up by asking, how can Elpha and Elpha members help? Lastly, I do have to comment on "graduate school money" because I'm that target demographic. I am in grad school and I most definitely DO NOT have grad school money. I chose to go to grad school because I wanted to invest in myself, and you know what I may never see the returns on that investment. But that's on me to do all I can to control my destiny, the truth is there will always be a lot of external parameters not working in my favour, but does that mean I should focus on them? No, I will always chose to focus on what I can control. All of this to say, I don't think it is fair to assume things about people simply because we just don't know why they made the choices they've made.
I can see that. Besides bits of candid honesty, it can be very "Silicon Valley Entrepeneurship" while overlooking smaller areas or different demographics whose biggest issue is "How will I shelter myself next week" and not "VC meeting, how do I play nice with a man?"
Hi! thank you for your post. First I'd like to encourage you by saying, you are not your income level. You add value to this platform by sharing your thoughts and experiences like you just did. What else can you share from your career for others who may be lurking and not ready to post? What career, networking, mentorship advice are you looking for?
Thank you for sharing this. I don't think I've ever heard this sentiment put as succinctly before and I almost want to frame "you are not your income level." ✨ This is so validating and also a really great reminder.