I tell my students it's not difficult to identify with somebody like yourself somebody next door who looks like you. What's more difficult is to identify with someone you don't see who's very far away who's a different color who eats a different kind of food. When you begin to do that then literature is really performing its wonders.
So when I was 13 I basically left home and never returned and lived at home again. I would come home for a week at Christmas and two weeks in the summer only.