There have been many, much-needed discussions swirling around lately about what, exactly, people mean by privilege – and despite all of the talk, many people are still a little iffy on what it is and what it isn’t.
If you’re wanting more education on the topic, these 16 people are sharing some smaller things that most people think isn’t privilege, but that they believe definitely is.
16. And having someone care about it.
One of the worst parts of chronic illness is knowing that this is how things are always going to be, that it only gets worse from here.
15. No childhood worries.
The ability to actually be a kid when young. It’s heartbreaking how many children have to grow up / are hardened before they even hit puberty.
14. Simple security.
Feeling safe in your own home. Not worrying about rats, mice, roaches, bed bugs, bricks being thrown through windows, violence outside, break ins.
I had bed bugs once. It was awful. Yeah they don’t do any physical harm unless you’re allergic but they have a massive effect on you mentally. You never feel like you’re not being eaten in your sleep. I can’t see the bedroom the same way anymore. I can’t relax in my own bed.
13. A short list.
Running water 24/7 and most of 365 days.
Stable electricity – the kind that doesn’t shoot lightbulbs out of their sockets.
Sane traffic patterns.
Mostly clean fresh air.
Stocked shelves in the supermarket.
12. Full stop.
It’s going to be crazy one day.
11. Solid support structure.
To have people around who can and will help.
This has impacted me in so many ways.
I didn’t qualify for enough in student loans/government assistance because it was just assumed my parents were giving me hundreds a month in assistance, so that imaginary amount was deducted from my benefits.
10. A certain kind of childhood.
Having a house, or having parents who love & support you, or a ‘childhood home’ to visit.
I had this until I lost my mom to cancer a couple of years ago. I’m in my 20’s. Dad remarried and moved to a different house.
I still can’t believe how perfect it all was before the cancer.
Also Dad’s new wife is the worst so it’s hard to be around even him at this point
9. Simple as that.
Being able to just quit a job you don’t like.
8. Not pinching every penny.
The ability to buy a drink or snack outside on the spur of the moment, without thinking about how it would impact your ability to pay for utilities/rent/groceries/essentials.
7. It’s rarer than you might think.
Having two good parents.
Adding to that — a stable and safe home life. Now that I’m an adult, I realized how lucky I was to have parents who were good and loving but also prioritized a safe, stable, calm home environment. They actually thought about creating a warm safe environment, and I didn’t know that was a thing you had to consciously do until I got to adulthood.
They never fought in front of us, rarely lost their tempers with us, stuck to a routine and structure to where there were always hot meals, clean clothes, a clean home — and they let us have our own space to just relax and decompress. I noticed in my teen years that certain friends always wanted to come to my house to hang out which I thought was weird because my house was kinda boring — but now looking back I can see that they liked the safe calm atmosphere at my house and wanted to some come relax. My parents consciously chose to make our home a safe retreat from the world and I’m so grateful.
I’ve met so many people over the years who never had the ability to relax at home (ranging from just really active schedules where they were shuffled from activity to activity and rest and relaxation wasn’t prioritized, to people who had really turbulent abusive homes) and now as adults they have a really hard time relaxing or cultivating a recharging atmosphere at home.
I literally had to lay out some steps for my friend of things you can do to make your home more comfortable and relaxing because they just… didn’t know how to do it.
6. Especially in this day and age.
Uninterrupted power supply.
Whenever there is a major thunderstorm in my area, I always think “please don’t let the power go out.”
Losing power any time sucks but especially now when it’s 90+ degrees F or 32+ degrees Celsius and 80% humidity.
5. Libraries are for everyone.
I think a lot of people who have access to a public library don’t appreciate how much of a privilege that is.
That’s why I always loved volunteering at my library and encouraging those to come to our programs because without the programs we put on a lot of those kids wouldn’t have a lot of things to do during their summers.
4. That runs reliably.
Having a vehicle.
3. Being able to go with the flow.
Spontaneity in your daily plans. If you’re a wheelchair user that’s virtually impossible.
So few places have accessible restrooms, some public transport needs contact 24 hours in advance in order to accommodate you, the list goes on.
I envy people who can just go with the flow.
2. We take this for granted.
Having access to water and a sewage system.
Also the abundance of food in western super markets is quite frankly insane.
Every day I try and spend a moment to reflect on how lucky I am.
Clean drinking water. From the tap. In the house.
1. Just a door.
I don’t mean digital privacy, I mean a room with solid walls and a door that closes.
Lots of people don’t have that.
All of these are so good to know, don’t you think?
What’s something else that you see as a sign of privilege? Drop it in the comments for discussion!