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  • Left out

    My name is Jen and I'm 17 years old. I've always tought albout runing away ever since my parents spilt up when I was 7 and i went to live with my father, but something always made me stay. The faces of my younger siblings. I am the oldest of now 4 children. My two brothers are now 16 and 14 and they are the joys of my father's eyes. They have always got whatever they wanted and never had a bad day. And my little sister will be 9 next month. She is the same way, but then she's the baby of the famliy so its not all that bad. As for me at 17 i share a bed with my sister in a small two bedroom apartment and try my hardest to take care of my siblings. There were many times when I have become "mom" to my sister. But now that she older she can take care of herself more. I don't go out much and I don't have my petmit to drive because I wasnt alouded to. The only time I see my freinds is in school and at football games. I have been on my school's cheerleading team for the pass two years so I speand as little time home as I can. I have also joined dozens od clubs for the same reason.

    Each time i get yelled or hit at by my father I find myself asking why I stay. And I know that if I go life for my siblings will become hell on Earth for them. My father has never hit them and I don't want him to start, but its getting harder and harder to stay. I don't go looking for help from my friends because I don't want them to know about my hell that is my home. To them I have what looks like a prefect life, which is what I want them to think. I see myself as to strong of a preson to go to them. Or the people in general who know my father. I've tryed that before and it only backfired back into my face.

    Please if anyone can tell me what I should do. Ever it is may help. And Thanks

  • #2
    Re: Left out


    Thank you for contacting the National Runaway Switchboard and we appreciate you taking the time to reach out to us to discuss your feelings about how your father has been treating you lately. Going through your parents splitting up and now dealing with your dad being violent towards you must weigh heavily on you so we hear you on the fact that you have thought about leaving for some time and also recognize your desire to protect your younger siblings. You certainly do not deserve your father's disrespect or his need to take out his frustrations on you. It seems that he has preferential treatment for the boys and has double standards in regards to the girls. It sounds like you are also having a hard time with having no privacy and being the age you are you do deserve to have a place to feel comfortable. You sound like a very mature person in that you are in charge of so much at home. However, it sounds like you are living an adult life with not enough time to do the things that makes you happy. Is there someone else you can think of that could take over for you to get some more free time away from home? Do you feel comfortable talking to your father to get a baby sitter for your young sister? Can your brothers help out more? What is the likelihood you could set up a meeting with your family to talk about some of these things? Are there ever a moment for quality time at your house that enables things to be less stressful for everyone so that you could have the opportunity to voice your feelings without upsetting anyone?

    You certainly do not deserve to feel like "mom" instead of just a sister. After all, it makes it easier with life just to be able to be yourself and enjoy just being a 17 year old. Is it possible that your father has forgotten your role as only a daughter? Is there a way to earn incentives for doing so much at home for the family? You do deserve to feel happy and get some time away from it all. However, it sounds like you are also involved in a lot at school. Do you think it helps to balance so much with all that is going on at home? It shows that you know how to avoid home and can navigate around your father by staying distracted.

    The most important thing to think about is that it is not alright for your father to beat up on you like that. Have you considered talking to someone about this? As crisis intervention workers, we are also mandated reporters so if you had any intentions of remaining safe or figuring ways to get help, we can provide services to you or file a report with you also. We hear you that you are concerned for your siblings getting into the way of being hit if you left but you certainly do not have to put up with it even if this means wanting to sacrifice yourself. Talking to friends can help but if you felt like it easier to speak to adults we are here 24 hours a day at 1800runaway and when you call we are all trained to take your conversation in whatever direction you like. It sounds like you need someone you can trust and we are confidential and non-judgmental here. We hope you take this time to think about what we noted and we look forward to hearing from you even if it means just having someone to vent to or offer some suggestions. Good luck.

    Please remember you can reach us directly by calling our 24 hour hotline, 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through our Live Chat.

    National Runaway Safeline
    [email protected] (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

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