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Need some time away

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  • ccsmod3
    Hi there,

    Thanks for reaching out to National Runaway Safeline and sharing a little bit about what is going. It takes a lot of courage to reach out and especially in a time where you have a really tough and complex situation at home with parents are needing a little break. It can be good to have a little break and sounds like you have some safe places to go for a couple days.

    It can be difficult to know how to talk to your parents and express your feelings about how you are feeling. We would encourage you to reach out to a trusted adult, teacher, relative, and friend that you can talk to and potentially help you mediate a conversation with your parents about your current situation. At NRS, we do offer a service call conference calling, where you can call into our hotline and then we would reach out to your guardian and help advocate for you, help you express the needs of to your parents.

    We are legal experts, but we also have general knowledge about running away. In most states, running away isn’t illegal, but what is called a status offense. You can’t get arrested for it but it will mostly likely go on your record until you are 18. The police will only know if you have runaway if your parents/guardians file a police report. We can’t say for sure how the police will respond, but we hear a lot that police will take potential places you might be and will actively search for you. If they come across you, they may return you home to your parents since you are a minor, but you are in a grey area since you are so close to 18. Sometimes we hear that if you are staying with someone who is safe, and have reason to be there then they may not make you go back. One thing we encourage youth at 17 is to reach out to your local non-emergency line number and ask to speak to someone who knows runaway laws and ask how they might respond. It is good to be aware that there is something called harboring, which is a person who knows you are a runaway and are not actively trying to return you or finding shelter for you, your guardians/or police can press charges against the people who are housing you, with something that is called harboring. We can also look into transition living placements or you can also go to for more information on how to find your nearest safe place.

    Also another way you can seek help is reaching out to a friend, teacher, or counselor at school that can help you look for resources. Your mental health is important. You can also look at SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) at (call them directly at 1-877-726-4727) or NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness 1-800-950-NAMI to help you find the support that you need. If you do ever feel in direct danger, to yourself, or some else makes you feel that way, please call out to 911
    Please do not hesitate to call or chat if you have questions, need legal resources, or need to talk. We can explore your situation, go over all your options, and come up with a plan and resources to deal with your situation over the phone 1-800-RUNAWAY or on live chat through our website. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.


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  • Guest
    Guest started a topic Need some time away

    Need some time away

    I have been depressed for some time. It started about 3 years ago but it comes and goes. I’m 17 years old and I don’t have a really good relationship with my parents. I feel like I live in a very unhealthy household , everyone is miserable but try to act like everything’s fine. I’m living in a lie. I feel like I’m going insane and I hate where I’m at in life. I live in Virginia but I was thinking about “running away” to New York for a few days just to cleanse . I have a lot of family up there so I’ll be staying with them . And I was planning on leaving a note behind so my parents know where i’ll be and when i’ll Be back. How much trouble do you think I’ll get for doing this? Am I really running away if I’ll keep in contact with them and let them know where I am? I just need some time away from the negativity this house brings. I feel like I’m at a very low point in my life and the best way to fix it would be leaving for a few days . Help me make the right decision
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