My old man took off when I was 16. Went out for milk on Thanksgiving evening and didn't bother coming home... moved in with his mistress instead. (Almost 20 years ago now) So, needless to say, I was an angry young man.
I'd been told my whole life how slow, weak, stupid, and worthless I was. With the old man gone, and all the tales of what a great man he was proven to be a lie, I began to see that the lack of self worth instilled in me might be based on lies as well. I had a shitty little plastic/concrete York set, and shiny chrome home gym thingee with about 120 lbs of plates, both dusty from lack of use. When the old man split, I was about 145 lbs at 6'3"... so damned skinny I could suck in my gut, and you could count my ribs all the way up the the collarbone. Sickly looking.
I started coming home from school early so I'd have alone time, and I'd lift until I'd puke. Then sometimes lift some more. We didn't have much in the way of food around the house since we were dead broke, but in spite of starving my ass off, I still managed to pack on 15-20 lbs of muscle over the next couple months.
So my uncle pulls my mother aside one day, and has a concerned talk with her -- worried that I was on steroids! Man, imagine how they would've flipped out I'd had enough to eat, too! People who don't know jack about training have some odd ideas about gains.