From here, it looks to me like Rachel Dolezal, the white Washington woman who calls herself black, has some problems. She seems to have been making up falsehoods about herself and her life for years, and passing them off as the truth.
The need to present herself through a series of falsehoods may well come from genuine and powerful urges. Reportedly, she is the adoptive sister of black siblings, added to the family by her white parents, and that probably has something to do with why she wants to be seen as black. I’ve read and heard variously today that she claims to have suffered abuse as a child – some of it involving a “baboon whip” acquired by her parents in South Africa (who never went to South Africa until after she was grown up and married) – and that she has filed police complaints about racist “hate crimes” committed against her, and told people that an unrelated black man was her father.
Apparently, she has also claimed that one of her adopted (black) siblings is actually her son. According to the Washington Post (link above), she gained custody of him after her allegations of abuse in the family. Her career of living under false pretenses has reportedly caused most of her family to no longer speak to her.
I feel sorry for Dolezal. I wouldn’t wish on anyone what seems to be going on inside her head. But it’s been more interesting to observe the reaction to her by modern American society.