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  • My friend is in an abusive home

    My friend let's say "halie" is living with her abusive older sister after her parents have died. She and her younger sister live together with her. Her older sister "jerkface" has been emotionally abusive of halie for along time, she tells her things like she hopes halie dies and is hit by a bus. She has just recently gotten physically abusive and today halie came to school with a big bruise on her chest from having a door slammed on her purposely. Can she runaway and stay with me while we get her the help she needs without her sister being able to be brought back? And is running away a crime? And is it illegal to harbor a runaway? For background information my family runs a daycare we have a nice house we're middle class, and we can take care of her

  • #2
    re: My friend is in an abusive home

    Hi there,

    Thanks for reaching out today on behalf of your friend. It sounds like Halie is going through a lot with her sister. She doesn’t deserve to be treated that way at all. It sounds like a pretty overwhelming place to live. She deserves to be in a safe and supportive environment. She’s lucky to have such a good friend watching out for her and supporting her! It’s great that you decided to reach out, so let’s see how we can help you out.

    We aren’t legal experts here, but we are able to speak generally about your questions. If Halie is under 18 and leaves home without her sister’s (her legal guardian) permission, then her sister has the right to file a runaway report with the police. The police would probably look for her and bring her back home. The reason for that is because her sister is legally responsible for her until Halie turns 18 – so she gets to decide where she lives.

    It’s not illegal for Halie to be filed as a runaway, but she could be forced back home. Once she is returned home or once she turns 18 (whichever comes first) the runaway report goes away and doesn’t stay on her permanent record.

    Now, it is considered illegal for someone to harbor a runaway. If Halie is found at your house, your parents could be charged with that. The police don’t automatically charge people with that, it’s usually up to the runaway’s guardian to press charges of harboring a runaway. The consequences for that range from fines to jail time.

    Something that Halie always has the right to do is to file an abuse report with child protective services. That way she can get some support and child protective services can work to make her home a safe place. If she’s interested in that, she can call Child Help USA at 1-800-422-4453. She can ask that hotline some questions about making a report. You can also give them call if you have questions.

    We hope that this is a helpful start for you. If you’d like to talk more about this or have further questions, please feel free to call or chat with us through our hotline or website. You can call us 24 hours a day at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or chat with us through our website (www.1800runaway.org) from 4.30pm-11.30pm central time.

    We look forward to your call or chat.

    Best of luck to you,

    NRS
    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)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!
    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

    Comment


    • #3
      hi, my best friend Allie has an abusive mom, Allie is 19 but doesn't have the means to support herself. she is trapped at home all day. how do i tell and convince my parents to let her stay with me?

      Comment


      • ccsmod2
        ccsmod2 commented
        Editing a comment
        Thank you for reaching out to National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like your best friend is being abused at home, and you would like her to come stay with you. You seem like a very good friend, it is so great of you to seek help for Allie. We are very sorry to hear that your friend is being abused by her mother, she doesn’t deserve that. Talking to people that have been trained to work with survivors of abuse may help Allie feel better. She could call the National Domestic Violence Hotline (1-800-799-7233) if she would like to discuss the abuse and what options she has.

        In most states, 18 is the legal age of majority so Allie may be able to leave her parents home without their consent. To find out the legal age of majority for your state you can visit sexetc.org. We appreciate you contacting us here at National Runaway Safeline, feel free to call our 24 crisis hotline at (1-800-786-2929), you can also reach us via email, or live chat.

    • #4
      My girlfriends family is both emotionally and mentally abusive, but she is terrified to reach out for help as she got taken away from her father at around age 9 and she’s absolutely horrified of CPS. now, they’re leaving bruises and cuts, and it’s getting more obvious, and more people notice. how do i help her?

      Comment


      • ccsmod5
        ccsmod5 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hi,

        Thanks for reaching out to us – we are glad that your girlfriend has someone in her life like you who is looking out for her safety and well-being.

        Although you may be wary of your girlfriend’s reaction, one option is reporting the abuse to your local police (you can look up their number here: www.usacops.com) or to the National Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-422-4453). Our primary concern is making sure your girlfriend is in a safe environment and police intervention can be an effective way of removing her from an unsafe home. If you decide to report the abuse, it may be a good idea to document all incidents and injuries to strengthen your girlfriend’s case when an investigation is opened.

        Also, you should definitely continue to provide emotional support for your girlfriend and, if possible, empower her to change her situation through her own decisions. If your girlfriend would like to talk to someone with more insight into about her situation, you can provide her with our number 1-800-RUN-AWAY (786-2929). She can call in and talk to us about what’s going on and explore her options at any time. We are open 24/7. We wish you and your girlfriend the best of luck.

        Be safe,
        NRS

    • #5
      My best friend lives with her mom and today was one of the plenty days that she has laid a hand on her. There has been multiple incidents where she’s choked my friend, punched her, threw things at her. It’s getting out of hand. Today I got a call from her and it was weird because typically when she just wants to chat she’ll shoot me a text first, but I knew that since this was out of the blue, it was bad. She was talking to a cop when I picked up so she hung up and called back a few minutes later. Her mom had punched her multiple times in the face and told her to leave the house, so when she went to do so, her mom called the cops. The cop told my friend that as long as there weren’t any marks on her, her mom was allowed to hit her. Now I know that sounds bizarre but that is what I was told. She told the man that her mom would hit her when he left and he left anyway. The minute the cop left, her mom put her hands on her again, and this time my friend kicked her because she was trying to get her off of her. Her mom both verbally and physically abuses her and I don’t know what to do in order to help. I’m so scared for her safety and I just want her to be happy. She doesn’t have anyone to talk to in her home environment and I hate that for her. I just want her to be safe.

      Comment


      • #6
        Hi there,

        Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like your friend is really lucky to have someone like you that is looking out for her. We'd want her to know that we're sorry that the police didn't help her and that she does deserve to feel safe and happy in her home. You mentioned her experiencing emotional and physical abuse which may be reportable against her mom. That said, we can’t be 100% sure what the outcome will be if her local CPS decides to open a case based on what she shares. Sometimes CPS decides to remove minors from the home and other times they offer services such as family counseling or mediation instead. The only way to know the outcome might be to reach out to them directly and if you’re ready to do that we are here to help you two through that process. Reaching out to Child Help USA at (1-800-422-4453) or www.childhelp.org may help to get a better understanding of what may happen before and after a report is made. You or her could call in with us or you could turn to another family member, school counselor or trusted adult to help if you are nervous. Another thing to do would be to document the incidents and take pictures so that can all be on file.

        Other options, depending on how old she is, would be things like emancipation or if she is close to turning 18, possibly staying with someone else if your county doesn't file runaway reports for 17 year olds. Please don't hesitate to give us a call so we would be able to get more information and help you in the best way that we can.

        Best,

        NRS

        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)

        Tell us what you think about your experience!
        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

        Comment


        • #7
          My friend is being abused by her parent, her mom is emotionally and physically abusive. She can’t leave her house because she can’t support herself, she lives in Brazil and her mom won’t let her leave the house. I have no idea what to do but she needs to get out of there. She’s 20.

          Comment


          • #8
            Reply:My friend is being abused by her parent

            Hello,
            Thank you for taking the time to write to us here at the National Runaway Safeline.

            It sounds like you are in a difficult situation, and we understand it takes courage to reach out for help.
            The National Runaway Safeline is located in the United States of America (USA). Our knowledge of helpful community based resources and our understanding of youth in crisis related laws is limited to the USA.

            We are sorry to hear about your friend being abused beaten by their parents.
            They don’t deserve to be hit and abused, it is not their fault that they are doing this.

            Since your friend is located in a country outside of the USA, You might try looking online for services in their area.

            You are such a good friend for seeking help.
            We hope that by reaching out to a local resource, you are able to get the support you need from an organization that understands the laws and circumstances that affect youth in your friend’s country.

            Take care,
            NRS
            Last edited by ccsmod4; 07-10-2018, 01:26 AM.
            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)

            Tell us what you think about your experience!
            https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

            Comment


            • #9
              Hi,

              My best friend, is is 16, has an abusive father, he has a felony, is an alcoholic and a druggie. Her mom is an amazing woman, who won't leave her father. She also has a 10 year old brother. My friend and her brother have already been offered to live with me, but how do we approach that, with her mom being stable?

              Comment


              • #10
                Hi there,

                Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like your friend is in a really tough situation and we're glad they have someone like you looking out for them. One thing they can do or you two could do together would be to reach out to Child Help to report the abuse or get help on thinking through other options that they may have within their situation. They can be reached 24/7 at 1-800-422-4453 and can help your friend think through what things may be like before and after a report is made or about what their rights may be if they try to leave their home.

                It also sounds hard because her mom is involved and she may not want to hurt her. One thing we can do is set up a conference call between her and her mom to facilitate a safe conversation where she could express her feelings about wanting to live somewhere else or how she feels about the abuse. It could also be an option to have someone else she trusts there while she has that conversation, like a family member or adult she feels supported by. We can be reached at 1-800-786-2929 if you want to walk through these options or you can pass along our number to her so she can reach out to us directly.

                Good luck, and don't hesitate to give us a call.

                NRS
                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)

                Tell us what you think about your experience!
                https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                Comment


                • #11
                  hi

                  my friend G is 14 and trans and in an unaccepting home. his parents control every form of communication he has, including going through texts every night and tracking him through his phone. i don’t know if they’re physically abusive but they are definitely emotionally abusive. They are currently talking about sending him to conversion therapy. is there a legal way my friends and i (17 and 18 year olds) can help him runaway and hide him to keep him out of conversion therapy?

                  Comment


                  • ccsmod15
                    ccsmod15 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thank you for reaching out, it is obvious you care a lot about your friend and his well-being. No one deserves to be abused in any form.
                    Here are some contacts that you or your friend might want to consider reaching out to: Trans Lifeline (1-877-565-8860) and LGMT National Youth Talkline (1-800-246-7743). These are great resources if your friend wants to reach out and talk to others about what they are dealing with at home. If your friend wants to make an abuse report for anything that is going on at home they can call in to our hotline or speak with a mandated reporter (like a school guidance counselor or a teacher). We are not legal experts, but there might not be legal precedence for you to gain guardianship over your friend. If your friend’s parents make a runaway report you might be charged with harboring a runaway or some other related offense. Since running away is a status offence and not illegal, your friend would not be charged with anything, but he would be returned home.
                    We are so glad that you reached out. It really does take a lot to ask for help. You are a wonderful friend. If you or your friend would like to talk further about the situation, please don’t hesitate to call or chat with us. We are available 24/7 and we are here to listen and to help.

                • #12
                  Hi, my friend is 16, she and her brother who is 14, are being mentally and emotionally abused by her parents. Shes too scared to get help from authorities, and for her to leave the state if child protection services were to put her and her brother into the foster system. She doesn't want to leave her friends, me or her boyfriend behind, as we are the only support system she has. Her mental state is getting worse to the point she's considering suicide. I don't know what to do, I'm offering her to stay at my home and in supporting her as much as possible, but I'm genuinely concerned for her please help!

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Hi there,

                    Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. We're sorry to hear about what your friend and her brother are going through and would want them to know that they deserve to feel safe and happy in their home. We're glad that she has a support system and that there are people looking out for them. let her know that there are people that want to listen and support her, and if she is ever feeling depressed or suicidal, she can reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255.

                    It's understandable that she would be afraid of getting the authorities involved. Please let them know that they have the right to report or ask questions about what could happen if they report. That said, we can’t be 100% sure what the outcome will be if your local CPS decides to open a case based on what you share. Sometimes CPS decides to remove minors from the home and other times they offer services such as family counseling or mediation instead. The only way to know the outcome might be to reach out to them directly and if you’re ready to do that we are here to help you through that process. Reaching out to Child Help USA at (1-800-422-4453) or www.childhelp.org may help to get a better understanding of what may happen before and after a report is made. Often going into the foster system is not the first option that CPS would take. They try to put a youth with other family members first. If they have family that lives in the area, they could reach out to them and ask about whether they could stay with them or not if they reported.

                    Let us know how we can best help by calling us or encouraging them to call us at 1-800-786-2929.

                    NRS

                    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)

                    Tell us what you think about your experience!
                    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Okay
                      I'm 13 and my friend is 11
                      Her mom is verbally abusive and my friend is now afried
                      she's my online friend,
                      ​​ she's planning on running away to my house
                      I'm sacred and worried for her
                      Should I get her to call 911
                      she's scared of DPS
                      And I dunno what to do,
                      Should I have her record her mom yelling at her and verbally abusing her I dunno

                      ​​

                      Comment


                      • ccsmod9
                        ccsmod9 commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Thanks so much for reaching out to us here at National Runaway Safeline. We understand that you and your friend are going through a stressful time. Our hope is to help you by providing resources and tools to help you make the best decision for yourself. From what we can tell about your story while we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions. As far as the abuse goes you should encourage her to record and take photos of any bruises or mean words that he parent might saying or doing. If DPS has that information there is much more to work from and can help in a better way.
                        We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail please call or chat soon.
                        Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
                        If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.
                        Be safe,
                        NRS

                    • #15
                      My boyfriend's mother has been emotionally and when he was younger physically abusive to the point that he is telling me he's going to kill himself if he can't leave and cps and the cops have been there multiple times and nothing has come of it. I have no idea what to do because nothing I say is convincing him to not do this. What should I do?

                      Comment


                      • ccsmod10
                        ccsmod10 commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Thank you for reaching out to us and telling us about your boyfriend, it sounds like a difficult situation that both of you are going through. He is really lucky to have someone like you that cares about him. You mentioned his mother has been emotionally and physically abusive to him. No one deserves to be abused, and he should not have to go through that and we are sorry to hear that CPS and the police were unable to help. Even though CPS and the police were not helpful it does not mean that the abuse can not still be reported. If you want more information about abuse reporting or if you want to file a report, you could call Child Help at 1-800-422-4453.

                        You mention your boyfriend has thought of killing himself. You can always call the police right away if you feel he may be a harm to himself or others. If suicide is an option he is seriously considering, or just want to talk about, he can call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255. We are open to talking about suicide as well, and he can trust that we will be nonjudgmental, non-directive (meaning we won’t tell you what to do), and supportive in his decisions.

                        If your boyfriend is currently not getting mental health resources, it can be really helpful for him to speak to someone. As his mental health suffers, he has limited ability to handle the other stressors in his life. You can contact NAMI to connect you to mental health resources at 1-800-950-NAMI or NAMI.org. He could also talk to a school because they should have a counselor for him.

                        Running away is a big decision and could be necessary if he does not feel safe. If he does not feel safe and feels like he needs to get away Nationalsafeplace.org provides a safe location for him to meet a staff member who can take him to a designated place where he can discuss all options about how to stay safe. He can text 44357 the word “safe,” and his address to find a safe location in his area. Once he arrives he should let someone who works there know he needs help connecting with a staff member.

                        Again, thank you for contacting us. It sounds like you’ve been going through a really hard time helping your boyfriend. You’ve shown a lot of strength by working through these challenges and reaching out for help not only for yourself but for your boyfriend as well. If you ever need anything in the future, please feel free to call us at 1-800Runaway (786-2929) or chat with us online. We’re always here to listen and here to help.

                        Wish you the best
                        -NRS.
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