IamA former homeless youth who eventually put himself through college and is now pursuing a PhD! AMA!
I am submitting this one last time to try and answer any questions I can about my experience. However, it is challenging to document my homelessness as we did not stay in a shelter. Rather, we slept in our cars, and no documentation exists of these dwellings. In addition, this happened almost 10 years ago, so I couldn't have predicted one day needing proof of this experience. If you've asked me a question already, it can be found in the previous thread here. Otherwise, please ask away!
My short bio: Growing up, I had a turbulent childhood. My parents divorced when I was a young age, leaving my unprepared mother to raise me herself. She wasn't always able to provide and also constantly conflicted with landlords, so we experienced homelessness on multiple occasions when I was growing up. The first time we were homeless was when I was 9, and the last time was when I was 15. My memory is slightly foggy as to how long we were homeless each time, as it has been years since this occurred. From what I recall, the shortest time span was about 1 week, while the longest lasted a month. During this time, I still emphasized my schoolwork, often completing my homework by a car light, candle light, or by flashlight.
I dreamed of pursuing a college education, so I worked hard to do well in high school. I managed to graduate at the top of my class, and worked my way through a college degree. I now have a B.A. in Psychology, and have been working towards my Ph.D. in the same field for the last few years.
Now, life is extremely comfortable. But I'd like to share my story for others to know about my experiences with homelessness, the value of education, and what it means to persist through adversity. I welcome any questions that you may have for me!
My Proof: I have three pieces of proof.
First, here's a copy of the personal statement for when I applied to grad school. It discusses my experiences being homeless. (For all you applying to graduate programs, feel free to use my statement as a reference, but please submit an original document in your applications!)
Here's a photo of my diploma to show that I have graduated with my B.A.
Finally, here's a screenshot of the court case minutes in which the judge ruled to evict us from our house. This was the home before we were homeless the third time, and should suffice as proof. Otherwise, I cannot offer much else to prove my homelessness.
Feel free to ask for any other proof!