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How can I help my friend?

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  • How can I help my friend?

    One of my good friends 'A' lives across the country from me. Im one of her internet friends and recently I've been seeing her post about the continuous abuse in her house hold. Previously, her father sexually abused her and her mother, an alcoholic, refused to protect her in any way and continued to allow the dad to come back to the house after A had begged her mom to make him stay away. Her mother constantly mentally abuses her by screaming at her and telling her its her fault and that shes a terrible child, cursing at her and blaming all the problems on her. A while ago I believe my friend went to social services and got to stay with her friend for a few months while her mom was evaluated, however her mom routinely told A to lie and lied herself about her condition. Eventually A, who still loves her home and doesnt want to be put into foster care or sent away, was sent back, where the abuse started up again. Now her grandfather and grandmother stay with her mom and recently the grandfather has sexually abused her by touching her when the grandmother leaves and watching her sleep. Shes scared to death and her mom still refuses to take any action or believe her. I have no idea what to do, because I live states away. I just want her to be happy and safe but shes too young to legally leave without her moms consent. Please tell me how I can help her or any information I can tell her to help her get out of that situation. Im so worried for her, shes been struggling for so long.

  • #2
    Thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. We’re sorry to hear all of the difficulties facing your friend. No one ever deserves abuse. Your friend certainly has a lot to deal with right now, so it’s good that she has you as a friend she can confide in.

    You mentioned that she has reported this to social services, but ultimately ended up back at home. Since it sounds like the situation has gotten worse, she might want to consider contacting them again. She could use the same number as before, or go through one of the following national resources that can help her deal with her case as well as provide her some emotional support. The fist number is called Child Help, which is that National Child Abuse Hotline. They can be reached at 1-800-422-4453. They can help her get out of her home to a safe place as well as help her find the support she needs. She could also visit www.childhelp.org to learn more.

    There is also a group called RAINN, which stands for Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network. She can call them at 1-800-656-4673 or find them online at www.rainn.org where she can chat with them. Similar to child help, they can help her navigate this situation and find the support she needs.

    Lastly, most states have a hotline specifically for reporting this kind of abuse. It can be scare to call them alone, so your friend could consider calling us at NRS to help her make the report. We can be called at 1-800-786-2929 or we can chat online at 1800runaway.org. We can stay on the line with her to support her while she talks to the state agency.

    Abuse is a difficult subject to deal with, but we want you and your friend to know that you are not alone. We hope that if you provide your friend with the information above that they are able to find help. If you or your friend have any questions, we are here to talk 24/7. We would encourage either of you to give us a call or chat with us if you need help navigating the situation. It often helps us provide better recommendation when we can speak directly with someone and hear more about the situation. Thank you again for reaching out on your friend’s behalf. We hope that things get better for her soon.

    Be Safe,
    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)

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