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18 and want to runaway - need to know my rights

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  • 18 and want to runaway - need to know my rights

    Hi, let me start things off by saying that I am 18, and I have been verbally and physically abused for a big part of my life by my parents. Lately things have started to get really bad. March 4th, I turned 18, and two days later I packed my clothes and left. I didn't take my car or phone or anything. I still went to school, and had several of my friends families tell me that I can stay with them. They've given me food to eat and a place to sleep. Today on March 11th, I came home to say hi to my baby sister, and my parents asked me to go inside the house and talk. I stated clearly that I wasn't going to stay, but they would not let me leave. They kept telling me that they would file me as a runaway and that whoever was helping me would be charged for harboring a runaway. I asked them to call a cop to our house, and I talked to the cop. He said since I'm in school I can't leave yet, but everywhere that I've researched it says that my parents have no right to tell me what to do since I'm 18. I live in Texas if that helps. Please help, I want to leave the house but I'm not sure if it is legal or not. I would assume since im 18 they can't control me, but I'm not sure.

  • #2
    RE: 18 and want to runaway - need to know my rights


    Thanks for reaching out today. We’re really sorry to hear about what’s been happening with your parents. That must have been very difficult for you. It sounds like this whole ordeal has been extremely stressful. It is great that you’ve had such supportive friends to help you through this time.

    Unfortunately we’re not legal experts here. You might ask a legal aid to know for sure, since what the police officer told you contradicts what you’ve researched. They might be able to clarify this part of the law that seems to be a grey area. You could also try asking a guidance counselor at your school about this too. However, it should be noted that your school’s employees are mandated reporters, which means if you let them know about the abuse happening at home, they are required to report this to CPS.

    If you wanted to call into our hotline at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929), we’d be happy to explore this issue further or even reach out to the police on your behalf to clarify your question. We also have a Live Chat on our website as well.

    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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