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I think people making decisions like this is probably way more common in why people struggle to get ahead than the random person-caring-for-disabled-parent scenario.

I agree. There are a whole lot of scenarios that can really affect someone's current situation & future chances.

Some that I can think of:

1. young people who hit 18 and get kicked out of the house.
2. Getting pregnant young. In addition to the stress from that event, it may make more financial sense to stay living near (or with) family to help take care of kids.
3. Cultural expectations. e.g., stay living at home until you marry.
4. Getting married young - will affect flexibility to move to find jobs.
5. Family expectations that you stay living at home to help with child care.
6. Family expectations that once you finish HS you get married, buy a house & have kids right away.

There are a whole lot of conditions that are going into the compromise between being able to move to find job opportunities or staying where the pickings are slim. Some are what we'd consider "respectable" (like caring for a family member and some are not (like the pot habit).
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