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Child leaves home on 18th birthday, but has legal issues pending.

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  • Child leaves home on 18th birthday, but has legal issues pending.

    What as a parent are we supposed to do if a child on his 18th birthday decides to leave home to live with friends? He has twice had run-in's with the law, first bringing drugs into school for which he was expelled; then again a couple of months before his birthday, he was caught speeding and with illegal drugs again. His court hearing is pending, and we don't know where he left to. Do we the parents notify someone? Or just say farewell and bon voyage?

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    RE: Child leaves home on 18th birthday, but has legal issues pending.

    Thanks for reaching out. It sounds like you are in a difficult position. Since your son is 18 years old, he is considered a legal adult. This means that he can legally chose where to live. Unless he is on probation or parole which specifies that he has to live with you, he is not breaking any laws by living with friends. It sounds like you have been through a lot with him, and he has a couple of drug charges pending. Since he is a legal adult, it is his responsibility to appear in court, and if he does not he will face consequences. You can try to reach out to him and talk to him, but you don’t have much legal recourse to force him to come home. One resource that might be helpful to you is Families Anonymous, a national support group for families and loved ones of drug and alcohol users and addicts. Their national number is 1-800-736-9805. Sometimes it can help to talk to other parents who have been through similar issues with their kids. You can also call us any time you need to talk, or join us for live chat on our website. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you 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)

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