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Emancipation, custody change, and other things

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  • Emancipation, custody change, and other things

    I find myself always coming back to this site, reading peoples stories in hopes of not only educating myself but finding the motivation to deal with my own problems. But alas I still am in this horrible situation and I still have so many things I am unsure of. Now I am aware that laws vary from state to state and I shouldn't expect that anyone here is a legal expert but maybe someone can help clarify some things for me. I am 15, I'd like to get emancipated as soon as possible. Both my parents were emancipated and through what I know from there experiences I have some idea of what that entails, but how difficult is it to get emancipated and what steps would I need to take to allow that to happen? Secondly, if emancipation would for whatever reason not be a suitable option what about a custody change to another relative? I understand I must have parental approval on that but again, what steps lead up to that? Another big thing I've been worried about is the validity of my "abuse". For years I was in denial of my abuse thinking it was simply discipline. At this age I am now entirely certain what I am going through is abuse but legally where do they draw the line from discipline and abuse and would they consider what I'm going through legitimate, and who decides that? I am scared of both my mother and my father. I cannot openly express my sexuality because they are very homophobic and constantly remind me how "disgusting" the lgbt community is. When I was younger the abuse was much more physical, hard slaps on the back of my head, being belted with leather belts that left cuts, bruises, welts, and much emotional trauma. My younger brother experienced this as well. The verbal and emotional abuse is what has left both me and my brother most damaged though. The constant yelling and screaming is unbearable and the easy irritability of my parents always leave me and him targets for verbal punishment even if we have done nothing wrong. We are put down, discouraged, insulted, and cussed at almost daily. The emotional toll it had taken on us is evident in our worsening depression and anxiety. My youngest brother doesnt (and never has) experienced any form of abuse. If I was to leave how would this affect both my abused sibling and my youngest brother since he has not been affected directly? I'm also worried about how I would handle this legally because the abuse is less physical now, how can I prove what I'm going through? I don't want to live in fear in a house I feel so unwanted in anymore. I am getting less sleep than ever, I am constantly skipping on meals because if I eat when I am nervous I throw up, and its getting much harder to balance school as well as emotional stress on a day to day basis. My grades are a direct reflection of that. Can anyone help me?

  • #2
    RE: Emancipation, custody change, and other things

    Hi there,

    Thank you for contacting us here through our online forum. And thank you for sharing some of your story with us. It takes great strength and courage to reach out for help especially since you mentioned you are fearful of your parents. We are very sorry you have endured abuse for quite some time. The abuse has caused you pain in various ways, and you did not deserve to be harmed. Your safety and well-being is very important. We can talk further about abuse reporting with you as well as make a report if you were interested. Child Help USA 1-800-422-4453 is an information and referral line where they may help you understand your situation as well as help you understand how to make a report too. You also may find some helpful information on abuse and abuse reporting through the website If ever you feel you are in immediate danger, please know that you have the right to call police for emergency help.

    You ask very important questions that we would like to explore more with you. Every situation is unique and different, so it is difficult to say how everything may affect your siblings as everyone responds to situations in their own way. It sounds like you care a lot about their well-being and worry about how they may be affected by you leaving.

    Talking about your situation seems like it will be helpful for you to work through your thoughts, feelings, and concerns as well as brainstorm some possible options and solutions as we are a solution-focused crisis line. We would be happy to provide some legal resources that may better help you understand the emancipation process and application procedures as well as some of your other concerns regarding the law since we are not experts on legal situations.

    We do hope that you reach out soon so that we may help. We are best able to help by phone 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) or through live chat via our website

    Be safe and take good care.


    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!


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