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14 years old in Florida, I need to get out of here.

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  • 14 years old in Florida, I need to get out of here.

    My dad for so long has been the greatest parent ever, he would never hit me our yell at me for the longest time, and he saved me from my mother (who had many mental issues and was abusive) but recently things have changed, I think it may be because he is under a lot more stress now than he was before but idk.
    He will yell at me for the smallest things, hit and punch stuff and growl at me, he does this in such a way and so loudly and filled with anger that I believe he may lose it one day and kill me it started to get bad when I was 12 but it became so much worse when I turned 14 , at least once a week he does this and I can't do it anymore.
    Today he screamed at me and I got so scared that I told him that he needed to calm down, this only made him more angry because he screamed even louder and slammed his door super hard and told me I will do whatever he says, I can't live like this, I won't live like this.
    My question is, what are the laws here in Florida? I don't have anywhere to go and I don't plan on coming back (though I know the police will probably find me). What can I expect if I go through with this? Both legally and experience wise?

  • #2
    Thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline. We recognize it’s not easy to reach out and share your story, but you’re absolutely doing the right thing by asking for help. First off, what’s going on at home is not okay – you deserve to feel safe and comfortable at home, not subjected to your dad’s anger issues. The way you’re showing compassion toward your dad in recognizing his commitment to you and attempting to deescalate the dangerous moments is truly commendable. However, it makes sense that you’re considering leaving. Before really getting into your question, we must note that we’re not legal experts and are more apt to speak in generalizations about what we understand youths often experience. In Florida, the age of majority (legal adulthood) is 18, therefore, leaving home any time before then will mean you would be considered a runaway. Running away is not illegal- It is a status offense. This means that you’re not supposed to do it because of your age, like smoking cigarettes. When a legal guardian issues a runaway report, your local police will become involved. At this point, if you have any interaction with the police, you can expect to be returned home. Of course, all situations are different and this information may not apply to your position specifically.
    Experience-wise, running away can mean many different things. Leaving home at a young age may temporarily give you space away from the uncomfortable and potentially dangerous situation you’re currently in, but it may invite more and different uncomfortable and dangerous situations that you’re not used to. Runaway youths are often confronted with unexpected and seriously dangerous situations. Without a steady place to stay like the home of a family member of close friend, you may find it very difficult living on the streets or finding availabilities in emergency shelters. For these reasons, having a sound and detailed plan for leaving will be very important. Taking care of yourself financially will be highly important as will ensuring your own physical safety and emotional well-being. Figuring out how you might interact with your family or other loved ones while you’re away can be important too, in case you find yourself in an uncomfortable position. No matter what you decide to do, we will be here to support you in any way we can. If you’d like to talk about your many options please do not hesitate to reach out at 1-800-RUNAWAY. We wish you all and only the best of luck.
    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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