Self-pitying. Oh, poor me--I can't get ahead because I'm too far behind the starting line.
The reason she is poor is that she, and probably her single mother, made bad decision after bad decision after bad decision. They don't make the bad decisions because they are poor--that is an excuse.
I understand where she's coming from. I came from the same place. There's a lot of rage, a lot of learned helplessness because yes, the game is rigged. It's rigged by the very self-righteous do-gooders who claim to want to help the poor.
But instead of helping, they make every fucking thing harder. Minimum wage hikes makes jobs disappear. The Affordable Care Act makes jobs disappear. Watering down education makes jobs disappear, because employers know that those with only a high school diploma aren't capable of doing more than pushing a broom...which isn't worth minimum wage.
The real reasons that the individual who wrote the essay makes poor decisions isn't that she doesn't know any better (which she fully admits). Nor is it solely an inability to see the consequences of choices in front of her (which, yes, it kinda is, partially).
No, that individual makes poor choices because she can. Nobody is making sure that she, personally, feels the consequences of her actions. Staying in the San Francisco area is a choice. She made that choice. That choice is what leads to her staying below the bottom rung of society. She had a baby, and kept the baby. In that area, where she couldn't afford to live by herself in the first place. And...instead of making sure that choice had consequences, and showing her a better option (i.e., flyover country, where minimum wage is a livable wage), she was given a better living by the sugar daddy government.
Her choices are what creates her environment. Her environment does not create the choices. It may explain them, but it certainly does not create them.
I am a living example of what can be done by choosing wisely, and working your ass off.
28 minutes ago