@Hels on Twitter:

My take is: all 30 Under 30 lists should include disclosure of parental assets

Aditi Juneja (one of the 30 in a rebuttal):

Of course, the truth is that none of us are entirely self-made. Most of us receive government support, for one thing. When asked, 71 percent of Americans say that they are part of a household that has used one of the six most commonly known government benefits — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, welfare, or unemployment benefits.

What a fantastic deflection. They should go into politics. 

The point was not what public roads did you drive on. Hels’ point was that if your parents are in the top 1% of earners, put you in private school, paid for your law degree and allowed you to stay home or get a loan to get started, this is a disclosure that allows us to understand the hardships you went through allowing you to arrive where you are today. 

Me, I’m 32 now and my mom was a postal worker, my dad a construction worker, they didn’t own a business, they didn’t have grants, assistance programs (the basic definition as such, not IRS tax breaks for the poor) and they didn’t have wealthy family members leave any money to them at all. I think my dad received $5,000 when his grandmother died and he used it to start a martial arts school that closed 4 years later. We lived in rental houses until I turned 18 and moved out and I changed schools every year until 9th grade when I stayed in the school I graduated at but I still didn’t make any friends. My parents loved me, gave a lot for me but I only got a yearbook one year because $35 was just difficult to come up with, I saved and rented a tux for prom and only went one year and I barely graduated high school and we had no money to send me to college. My dad quit his job and took out a loan to go to police academy at around age 40. He tore his achilles tendon 1 week before the program ended and couldn’t finish. I can’t describe the sadness that still brings me. We were living on tuna and ramen in a small 400 Square foot rental and he was unemployed and couldn’t walk. He still managed to put food on the table for me and my 2 sisters. My first car, a ’92 Toyota Camry (in 2004) was given to me by my grandmother with 200K miles and I gave it to my friend barely running when I sold everything I owned and moved to San Francisco with one suitcase and $5,000 saved up which lasted me exactly 3 months with SF rent and living prices. I bought a return ticket and hoped I could make it work and din’t have to use that return ticket home as a goodbye SF ticket.

I got a job a day before my flight left to go back to Florida. I’m debt free (minus my mortgage), had no family down payment help on that and I currently work 4 different jobs because I love work and I love challenging myself and while I don’t have a college degree, 2 of my jobs require one. 

From 2001 when I started blogging to now, I feel entirely as if I did everything myself in relation to my career. I do appreciate my mom skimping and saving so we could have AOL access at the house. My $80 bill one month in 1997 almost had our lights being turned off because we had a very tight household budget…but my parents have never lent me money ever. Everything I have was entirely on me. 

From birth to 18, my parents made me but I am still entirely self made without any financial assistance beyond clothes on my back and their love…I did drive on public roads and go to public school but we paid taxes, every dime.

If someone on the 30 under 30 has the same upbringing as me, I’d love to meet them and work with them. That’s truly an accomplishment. To be honest, there are a lot of under 30 year olds doing amazing things, I work with some of them and have had a pleasure of meeting them at events and conferences. They’re not on the list linked but they’re out there and many of them are truly self made with the college loan debt thrown in for good measure.