You make a really good point about none of us having first hand knowledge of Talia Jane’s life.
If she were 17 when she wrote about wanting to die every single day of her life, I could see your point about curfews or overbearing parents. But she was twenty-three or twenty-four when she left home.
My words “there’s a good chance…” meant that I don’t know for sure. But there’s a much higher probability that the factors I mentioned were the source of her desperation to escape as a semi-conscious adult, rather than the whining of a rebellious teenager.
In your own words, “Sara had somehow conveniently overlooked the whole bit where talia jane basically laid out her entitlement for the world to see with…”
Maybe you feel you came back to a place of reason and balance, but your writing sounded like it was packed with emotion and judgement and that you were back on the side of the haters. If you weren’t, I apologize for misreading you.
To quote you again, “But publicly whining about being unlucky will rarely elicit anything but disdain from those who have lived life not relying on luck, charity or showing up as a strategy.” The italicized part seems to reveal your own basic world view.
But if you read about the Commons as mentioned in the Constitution, and financed by all taxpayers, you wouldn’t cling to the illusion that your strategy doesn’t rely on a huge amount of luck. Just being born in this country is like winning the lottery. Being born white is like getting the powerball to boot.
And the societal help (I won’t call it charity since we are all chipping in something with our taxes) we receive is enormous. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to WE THE PEOPLE for financing public education, communication, energy and transportation infrastructure, food and drug inspectors, fire and police protection, disease control, environmental defenders, financial safeguards, national defense and tons of other things that we take for granted.
I stand by my observation that we only focus on things within our awareness. Everyone agrees that Talia made quite a few poor choices. But where you see entitlement and laziness, I see a clueless young woman who had no practical experience in the world. Where you want to give her a mother’s tough love, I want to know if she even has a functioning mother. Where you see a whining teenager who doesn’t like curfew, I see the possible effects of the epidemic of child abuse:
Based on the reports we have, it’s conservatively believed that in today’s society 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys WILL BE sexually molested before they are 18 years old — which means 1 in 5 of America’s youth, or fully 20% to 25% of the population !!
I think the Talia Jane flame wars and the entire “millennial entitlement” trope divide us as a country and keep our attention away from the fundamental changes that have killed the American Dream for so many people born after 1970.
She may have been an imperfect spokeswoman, but Talia’s letter has opened up a conversation that has stirred up the emotions of thousands of people.