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    Guest started a topic Advice

    Advice

    Hi, am in desperate need of advice.
    I am 17 years old and I do not turn 18 until spring of 2018. My parents and I have never gotten along and recently there are disputes every day. They have slowly been giving up on me. They do not want me seeing or talking to my boyfriend and they are letting previous situations with this boy tear apart our family. I start school this and I am a very successful student in National honor society and multiple clubs. I am enrolled in the AICE program at school and plan on getting scholarship money from that. However they now decided they want to pack up and move to Maryland. They have not said anything to me about where I will go or if I have to go. If they do can I do anything about it? I would be able to finish at my highschool of 3 years nor get any scholarship money that I need because I am paying for college myself. Or if they tell me they are going to put me in the foster care system how will that work? Please provide me with assistance. Thank you

  • ccsmod10
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    Hey there!

    Thank you so much for contacting us! It sounds like you having a hard time at home. We want to commend you on keeping your head above water and continuing to maintain and excel with your priorities. It is wonderful that you are so focused on your future. Even though you are continuing to achieve academically, it sounds like your parents are failing to recognize the importance of continuing your success and how integral it is to stay at the school you’re at among all the other things they do that are hurtful. We are so sorry that you are in this position.

    Unfortunately, we are not legal experts so we can’t give you advice within that arena, but we can suggest some things that you can try if they are becoming very serious about the prospect of moving away.

    The first one would be to contact your school and get your principle and student counselor involved as well as a few of your teachers that can speak to your excellence. They all very likely care about you as a human being and want the best for you. In addition, they will want to keep you around due to your status as a National Merit Scholar. Having an NMS at a school is a huge boon for the school’s prospects. We suggest that you potentially get these people involved ahead of school. It will be important to have a team of people to support you in convincing your parents to let you stay. It will also be important to have a team of people around to support you if your parents let you stay while they leave.

    It might be good to start fishing around for a place to stay if your parents do end up leaving. Could you possibly stay with some friends? A relative? An alternative living arrangement? A host family? You could also be placed in a transitional living environment where you could stay in. Your school might also be useful in searching for resources in this regard. Depending on where you are located, you might still be legally considered a minor. It is important to note that you will need your parents’ permission to stay with any of these options if that is the case.

    In regards to your concern about your family placing you in the foster care system, they would have to give up their legal custody over you to the state. It is well within their rights. However, Child Protective Services will definitely become involved and it will be a process. CPS usually attempts to reunify the family rather than break them up except in cases of extreme abuse. Your parents could possibly be charged with neglect for attempting to do so, but since we are not legal experts we cannot say so for sure.

    Another option to consider is emancipation. The stipulations for emancipation differ from state to state. We are not legal experts so we can’t give you any specifics, but there are some common things that the courts tend to look for: evidence of negative circumstances between the legal guardian and their child, whether emancipation is in the minor’s best interest and whether the minor is responsible and able to provide for themselves: i.e. shelter, being able to financially support yourself, education and maturity/decision-making. You will likely need to have a job and a definite place to live. The fact that you are juggling advanced classes in school and multiple clubs along with being a National Merit Scholar will go a long way in terms of maturity and decision-making. There is one other thing to consider—cost. You will have to be able to pay for the legal costs whether you win or lose your case. We can provide you with legal resources that may be able to help you for free or at a reduced cost. They also may be able to provide you with more specified and expert advice in terms of how your state would handle your case as well as how viable it is.

    We think that you are remarkable and have a very, very bright future ahead of you. It is terrible that your parents may jeopardize that. Please call us anytime. We are here for you 24/7, 365 days a year. Our number is 1-800-RUNAWAY. We might be able to give you better suggestions if we know more about your specific situation.

    We wish you the best in the world!

    NRS

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