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    I will be 18 here in less than a week. I have thought long and hard on moving out of my emotional and physically abusive household the day I turn 18 but these past few weeks have been rather difficult. I have talked to many people, some for example is my school guidance counselor and my biological father (who I do not live with) and every one who I have talked with has agreed that moving out would be the best for my mental stability. I have a solid place to stay until I can get on my feet myself. And I will have a reliable way to and from school and work. I’m just uncertain how to go about actually leaving. Some people I’ve spoken to has just told me to pack my stuff and just say bye that day. And others have said to explain to my mother why I chose to leave, but if I do that I know she will guilt me into trying to stay saying she needs me here. Which the only logical reason she wants to keep me home is so I can cater to her and my Brothers every waking need, and if i don’t there is literal hell to pay. My mother has been down with her foot recently due to surgery and she uses that to her advantage. She has been cleared from doctors saying she is able to do things around the house as long as she stays in the wheelchair/ crutches and keeps little pressure on the foot. Which she is perfectly capable of doing so, my younger brother is extremely lazy and basically a “spoon feed” kind of child. Everything has to go his way or a hypothetical ww3 starts. And my mother condones his actions. He is allowed to use any slander towards me he pleases and is allowed to shove me down stairs and to hit and throw things at me. No means of discipline whatsoever with him. I just need out of the house as soon as I can, the mental and yet somewhat physical abuse has taken a huge toll on me. It has caused my anxiety and depression to spiral back out of control after years of trying to contain it. How do I go about leaving home? What am I legally allowed to take with me? Is there any legal documents I’m allowed to take? How would I go about health insurance? I’ve read that I can piggyback off of my mother’s legally untill I’m 26, am I allowed to take the insurance information with me when I leave? Sorry for the lengthy explanation, i just need some input I suppose.

  • #2
    Hello there –

    Thanks for reaching out to us here on our public forum and sharing your story with us. Hopefully by helping you though your difficult time that there are others that are looking for help can get the answers that they need. It certainly sounds like you have been having such a different and stressful time living at home with your mother and brother. No one deserves to be treated like that at all, especially to the point where their mental health is so severe that they need to leave. Seems like you have reached out to a few people in your life that you trust and they are telling you to runaway. Now only you can make that choice for yourself and no one else because you know your own situation the best.

    It can be a little tricky at the age of 17, but there are some cases in which a police officer won't take a runaway report for someone that is 17. Especially if there are a little closer to turning 18 years old, along with having already graduated high school. This is not the case all the time of course, but it is something that we have heard of happening before. But something to keep in mind is that though a police officer doesn't take a report it doesn't make it legal for minors to leave home before turning 18; which is the legal age of majority in most states. Considering that you have only one week until you turn 18 years old, the police might not waste resources returning you back home.

    Now you do have the right to take personal legal documents and anything that you might have bought on your own and/or pay for. So if you have access to those items and documents you can probably take those with you. As far as your insurance benefits, you are correct in that you can be under your mother’s until you are 26 years old but it’s not a right. So if you do leave home and open enrollment comes around, she can choose to not have you on there and just your little brother. So you might be able to access your mother’s health care until that happens and after you would be then responsible for finding your own health insurance either through an employer or university.

    Hope this helps!
    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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