This is an excerpt from a NY Times article on runaway teenagers:
Teenagers living on their own ... told of a harrowing existence that in many cases involved sleeping in abandoned buildings, couch-surfing among friends and relatives or camping on riverbanks and in parks after fleeing or being kicked out by families in financial crisis.
The runaways spend much of their time avoiding the authorities because they assume the officials are trying to send them home.
So, despite the fact that their lives are miserable, they put a lot of effort into avoiding being sent back to their parents. The question we should be asking is this:
Is the situation of living with their parents objectively worse than being homeless, or is their fear of returning home irrational?
If the former is true, it means that some percentage of American parents are giving their kids a life that is worse than living on the streets.