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battle between selfless and selfish

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  • battle between selfless and selfish

    i'll get straight to the point: i'm 14 and want to runaway from home because my dad is in a relationship with a woman that i cannot stand. their relationship (to me) is incredibly unhealthy and affects me and the woman's kids drastically. they've broken up three times, and her family has moved into our home twice, and moved out each time because of a break up. when my father is around this woman he turns into someone else completely, and i can't live with it anymore. i have a solid relationship with my dad, but lately i've found the true colors of what he really is and how he really acts, and i'm old enough to realize when he's trying to be sneaky and put something over my head. i would have no other housing option, as my mother is unstable, my grandparents are not fit anymore to take care of me for more than a day, and my aunts/uncles either already have kids or have a life of their own and have no time for a child. my only option is to runaway, because i've talked to my dad about absolutely everything and he's claimed to get me a psychologist so a solution can be revealed, but he's yet to do that, and i believe he never will. i'm in a struggle of forcing my dad to break up with a woman i know he loves, or to leave him and his life; selfish or selfless. i need some advice, please.

  • #2

    Hi there,

    First of all it seems like you are going through a very difficult situation and we are very glad you felt comfortable reaching out to us. It is really unfortunate that your father’s relationship is putting so much stress on you, and it sounds like you are in a difficult place when it comes to finding somewhere else to stay.

    Since you mentioned running away, but did not mention a plan, we can mention some things that might help you stay safe if you decide to run away. Some things to consider are how you might get food, how you might stay in school, how you might find a way to support yourself, and where you might stay. It might be worth finding out how you can receive benefits from your local food pantry. Also, you could see if a local church has a food distribution program. Many times you are eligible to receive benefits like these that churches provide without having to be a member or even of that religion. There are ways to stay in school when you are a runaway; the McKinney-Vento Act secures the right to education for runaway youth, so you might be interested in looking up the representative for your state.

    As far as finding a place to stay, there are many options. First, it might be beneficial that you know a little bit about the legal aspects of running away. We are not legal experts, but we can tell you some general information. Running away is not illegal, but it is a status offense. If your father were to file a runaway report on your behalf, and the police found you, then they would bring you back home. You would not be arrested for running away, but you would be liable for any crimes you committed while you were a runaway. You might find that a friend’s family would be willing to take you in. Anyone who housed you could be held criminally responsible for harboring a runaway, which is a legal offense, if the police found you and there was a runaway report filed. That might be something to consider. You also might be able to find space in an emergency youth shelter or a transitional living program, both of which secure eligible youth places to stay the night, as well as basic services like food and water. If you found space, the shelter would most likely have to either get parental consent to house you, or at least notify your father. You could also talk to your father about allowing you to stay with someone else, in which case it is probably less likely for the police to get involved, because your father knows where you are and gave you permission to be there.

    If you would like help having this conversation with your dad, or finding any of the resources that we discussed, then you can feel free to call us 24/7 at 1-800-RUNAWAY, or use our chat messaging service.

    Again, thank you so much for reaching out! We wish you the best of luck in figuring out this situation.

    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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