Does anyone remember what happened to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. years after slavery was illegal and Frederick Douglass walked the earth? I would say he took full responsibility for his life - but he got killed for it. He and Mr. Douglass were extraordinary men. Most people cannot live such lives. Were the Jews and others killed in the Holocaust failures? These seem to be extreme examples, but not all things that happen to you are within your control. Events such a those described above lurk just below the surface of almost any society. And they lurk in ours big time. Hatred, distrust, discrimination are the stuff of eveveryday life, even if you feel you have not experienced them. It is not a binary world - with either genocide and slavery or complete harmony. There is a flux in between.
There is a difference between making excuses and not trying or, on the other hand, working hard and smart your whole life and seeing little reward. This happens to many people in this world. You do not realize how fortunate you are, even if you are working hard.
If you think you have done it alone, without family, school, and other society support, you are wrong. But it is a young, successful person's perspective. It is based on your experience. But your experience is not the only experience. You are in the elite of this world, whether you know it or not. Some of your success is due to luck, or fate, or providence or God or whatever you choose to call it.
I would be interested in the perspective of a person with superficial knowledge of social history after 20 or 30 more years of living and learning something beyond IT.