Malia Obama sparked controversy in her first post-White House year — but other first daughters had her back

2017 was a very transitional year for former first daughter Malia Obama.

On top of her move out of the White House and return to civilian life, the 19-year-old also started her first year at Harvard University.

SEE: Malia and Sasha Obama through the years: 

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Malia and Sasha Obama through the years
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Malia and Sasha Obama through the years

Illinois U.S. Senate candidate Democrat Barack Obama (2nd R), wife Michelle and their daughters Malia (R), 3, and Sasha (L), 6, spend time in their Chicago hotel room, November 2, 2004. Obama faces Republican candidate Alan Keys in the first Senate race with two African American candidates.

(REUTERS/John Gress)

Michelle Obama and her daughters Sasha and Malia (R) listen as her husband Democratic presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) speaks during a campaign stop in Oskaloosa, Iowa, July 4, 2007. REUTERS/Keith Bedford (UNITED STATES)
Sasha Obama walks from Jorge's Sombrero restaurant after a meal with her father U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) and her sister Malia and mother Michelle in Pueblo, Colorado November 1, 2008. REUTERS/Jason Reed (UNITED STATES) US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION CAMPAIGN 2008 (USA)

Democratic presidential candidate U.S. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) is cheered by supporters after winning the Democratic Iowa caucuses in Des Moines, Iowa January 3, 2008. Obama is seen with his wife Michelle and daughters Malia (L) and Sasha.

(REUTERS/Jim Young/UNITED STATES)

'U.S. first lady Michelle Obama laughs while her daughter Malia reads a book to patients at the Children's National Medical Center in Washington. Also is Obama's other daughter Sasha.

(Photo by Brooks Kraft LLC/Corbis via Getty Images)

U..S President Barack Obama's daughters Malia and Sasha Obama watch the inaugural parade from their father's reviewing stand in Washington January 20, 2009. Barack Obama became the first black U.S. president on Tuesday and declared it is time to set aside petty differences and embark on a new era of responsibility to repair the country and its image abroad.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/UNITED STATES)

Sasha Obama, the youngest daughter of U.S. President Barack Obama, smiles as she looks at her sister Malia as they wait to collect takeout lunch at Nancy's restaurant in Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard, August 26, 2009.

(REUTERS/Jason Reed/UNITED STATES POLITICS)

U.S. President Barack Obama's daughters Malia (L) and Sasha play with the first family's dog Bo as they wait for Obama's return to Washington after a day trip to Ohio and Pennsylvania, where he participated in economic rallies, September 15, 2009.

(REUTERS/Mike Theiler)

President Barack Obama speaks onstage as Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama and Malia Obama look on during TNT's 'Christmas in Washington 2010' at the National Building Museum on December 12, 2010 in Washington, DC.

(Theo Wargo via Getty Images)

Malia Obama and Sasha Obama attend the first White House Dance Series with their mother, First Lady Michelle Obama, in the East Room of the White House September 7, 2010 in Washington, DC. The dance event was a tribute to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Artistic Director Judith Jamison, a famous modern dancer, choreographer and muse to Alvin Ailey.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

U.S. President Barack Obama enjoys a "shaved ice" with his daughter Malia at Island Snow Hawaii while on vacation in Kailua January1, 2010.

(REUTERS/Hugh Gentry)

U.S. President Barack Obama walks with his daughter, Sasha, as they look at the White-Handed Gibbon at the Honolulu Zoo in Hawaii January 3, 2010.

(REUTERS/Larry Downing)

President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, and their daughters, Sasha and Malia, sit for a family portrait in the Oval Office, Dec. 11, 2011.

(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

This official White House photograph is being made available only for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photograph. The photograph may not be manipulated in any way and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products, promotions that in any way suggests approval or endorsement of the President, the First Family, or the White House.

(Photo by Pete Souza/White House/Handout/Corbis via Getty Images)

11/23/12- The White House- Washington, DC

First Lady Michelle Obama, first daughters Malia and Sasha and first dog Bo receive the 2012 Christmas Tree.

(Photo by ImageCatcher News Service/Corbis via Getty Images)

11/21/12- The White House- Washington, DC

President Barack Obama and his daughters Malia and Sasha.

(Photo by ImageCatcher News Service/Corbis via Getty Images)

U.S. President Barack Obama celebrates with first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (R) and Sasha at their election night victory rally in Chicago, November 7, 2012.

(REUTERS/Jason Reed)

Sasha (L) and Malia Obama, daughters of US President Barack Obama, take a photo of themselves during the Presidential Inaugural Parade on January 21, 2013 in Washington, DC.

(JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images)

US President Barack Obama speaks to a cashier as he pays for books with daughter Malia at the Politics and Prose bookstore in Washington on November 30, 2013 as part of Small Business Saturday.

(NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President Barack Obama walks from Marine One with his daughter Sasha as they return to the White House in Washington January 5, 2014. Obama and his daughters were returning from a two week holiday vacation.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Malia Obama and Sasha Obama speak onstage at TNT Christmas in Washington 2014 at the National Building Museum on December 14, 2014 in Washington, DC.

(Photo by Theo Wargo/WireImage)

U.S. President Barack Obama's daughters Sasha (L) and Malia listen to their father during the pardoning of the National Thanksgiving Turkey "Cheese" at the White House in Washington November 26, 2014.

(REUTERS/Gary Cameron)

Sasha Obama, daughter of U.S. President Barack Obama, participates in the turkey pardoning ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House November 25, 2015 in Washington, DC. In a tradition dating back to 1947, the president pardons a turkey, sparing the tom -- and his alternate -- from becoming a Thanksgiving Day feast. This year, Americans were asked to choose which of two turkeys would be pardoned and to cast their votes on Twitter.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Malia Obama (R) and Sasha Obama after arrival at Malpensa Airport in Milan, on June 17, 2015.

(Photo by Andrea Spinelli/Corbis via Getty Images)

Malia Obama, daughter of U.S. President Barack Obama, participates in the turkey pardoning ceremony in the Rose Garden at the White House November 25, 2015 in Washington, DC. In a tradition dating back to 1947, the president pardons a turkey, sparing the tom -- and his alternate -- from becoming a Thanksgiving Day feast. This year, Americans were asked to choose which of two turkeys would be pardoned and to cast their votes on Twitter.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Malia and Sasha Obama attend the national Christmas tree lighting ceremony on the Ellipse south of the White House December 3, 2015 in Washington, DC. The lighting of the tree is an annual tradition attended by the president and the first family.

(Photo by Olivier Douliery- Pool/Getty Images)

US President Barack Obama and daughter Malia make their way to board Air Force One before departing from Los Angeles International Airport in Los Angeles on April 8, 2016. Obama is heading to San Francisco to take part in a Democratic National Committee roundtable discussion and to attend a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee fundraiser.

(MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President Barack Obama and U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (L) and Sasha (R) walk to Air Force One as they depart from Roswell, New Mexico, U.S., June 17, 2016.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

U.S. President Barack Obama and his daughter Malia walk from Marine One to board Air Force One upon their departure from O'Hare Airport in Chicago April 7, 2016. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
U.S. President Barack Obama and First lady Michelle Obama's youngest daughter Sasha (C) picks up her food at the Z-burger chain during the "I'm with Hillary" promotion in Washington, U.S., October 28, 2016. Customers using the password received a free hamburger today. REUTERS/Gary Cameron
Sasha (L) and Malia Obama, the daughters of U.S. President Barack Obama and U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama walk to Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S., June 17, 2016. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Malia Obama attends the 2016 Budweiser Made in America Festival at Benjamin Franklin Parkway on September 4, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

(Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Anheuser-Busch)

HAVANA, CUBA - MARCH 22: (L-R) Malia Obama, Sasha Obama, U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama react to the first run scored during an exhibition game between the Cuban national baseball team and Major League Baseball's Tampa Bay Devil Rays at the Estado Latinoamericano March 22, 2016 in Havana, Cuba. This is the first time a sitting president has visited Cuba in 88 years.

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Malia Obama (L) and Princess Lalla Meryem of Morocco attend an Iftar dinner at the royal palace in Marrakech, June 28, 2016. REUTERS/Youssef Boudlal

Sasha Obama, daughter of U.S. President Barack Obama, attends her first State Dinner in honor of the Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau at the White House in Washington March 10, 2016.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Malia Obama attends a State Dinner at the White House March 10, 2016 in Washington, D.C. Hosted by President and First Lady Obama, the dinner is in honor of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and First Lady Sophie Gregoire Trudeau of Canada.

(Photo by Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images)

U.S. President Barack Obama, U.S. first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia (R) and Sasha (L) board Air Force One at Cape Cod Coast Guard Air Station in Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts, U.S., August 21, 2016.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

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But Malia's first year following her father's presidency has been far from smooth.

The college freshman has had to deal with the world scrutinizing her every move and calling her out for doing things a regular teenager would have no problem getting away with.

Malia's woes seemingly began when the former first daughter attended Lollapalooza with her friends and made headlines after she was secretly recorded dancing her heart out — as most teens do at music festivals — on Aug. 5. A dazed-looking Malia was also videotaped being carted out of the same festival by security on the same date.

The drama continued for Malia even after she moved into her Harvard University dorm.

On Aug. 27, the freshman made headlines after she snapped at an elderly woman who harassed her outside of a Harvard Square eatery in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The former first daughter was approached by the eager woman, who was asking for a photograph for her granddaughter. After Malia politely declined, the persistent grandmother stood outside the restaurant waiting for the 19-year-old to leave.

When the teen finally came out of the salad joint, she had a few words for the snap-happy grandma: "Are you gonna take it in my face like an animal in a cage?"

Malia made headlines twice again in Nov. 2017, once when she was secretly filmed smooching a fellow student believed to be her boyfriend during a Harvard-Yale football pregame and again when she was caught on camera blowing smoke rings.

Many of these secretly-filmed moments led social media users to cry out in support of Malia, some even demanding that she find some new friends who won't constantly leak her personal life to the press.

Among Malia's most notable and vocal supporters have been former first daughter Chelsea Clinton and current first daughter Ivanka Trump, who took to social media in November to slam media outlets and ask for privacy for the new college student.

"Malia Obama should be allowed the same privacy as her school aged peers," Trump in response to the negative press Malia received in November. "She is a young adult and private citizen, and should be OFF limits."

"Malia Obama’s private life, as a young woman, a college student, a private citizen, should not be your clickbait," Clinton chimed in. "Be better."

In 2016, even Meghan McCain — the daughter of Barack Obama's 2008 presidential rival John McCain — notably spoke out in defense of Malia after photos emerged of her smoking at Lollapalooza.

Politics aside, it seems like everyone can agree that Malia Obama — as well as all children of politicians — deserves to live out her lives with the privacy afforded to the rest of us.

Here's to a better, press-free 2018 for Malia.

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