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I am 15 and contemplating running away for 48 hours.

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  • I am 15 and contemplating running away for 48 hours.

    I am planning on running away because of an unsafe home environment, mentally and physically. I currently live with my mom and would like to live with my dad. Not for the usual reasons like she won’t give me what I want or allow me to do as I please. But rather, for reasons like she emotionally abuses my older sister and i by telling us how it’s our fault that our relationship is bad and how all of the problems in our house are our fault because “our dad has brainwashed us”. When that is absolutely not the case. I feel physically unsafe in that house because our grandparents live in our basement and my grandfather has threatened my life 2 times. During the first occasion, I had argued with my grandmother about something silly like television and after she went down to bed, he grabbed me by the underside of my arms, lifted me and slammed me against the edge of the counter then continued to get extremely close to my face and tell me that if I am ever disrespectful to my grandmother again he will beat me to death. And that he does not care that my mother and stepdad are upstairs, he’ll do it anyways. He did this same thing again, except without actually touching me. After the first occurrence, I went to bed scared out of my mind. The next morning, I told my mother what happened and she, looking mildly frightened, told me that she will talk to him. I believed her because she was my mom. Obviously what she said or didn’t say, hadn’t worked because he did it again. My dad tried to go to court and take full custody but my mom lied, manipulated, and cried her way through the case to win. She blames my dad for all of the problems that she has with us and I can’t find any consolation or guidance at that house. I plan on running away for 48 hours so that I am considered a missing person and then after 48 hours, turning myself in at the local police station and making the listen to what I have to say. If you have any other solutions you please let me know because I cannot live in that home anymore.

  • #2
    Hey there. Thanks for reaching out to us here at NRS. We know that it can take a lot of courage to reach out for support, and we're glad you took that step. It sounds like things at home have been pretty tough for you lately, and we're sorry to hear that. You deserve to feel safe at home.

    Based on the way that you described your grandfather treating you, it might be a good idea to reach out to Child Protective Services and file an abuse report. Their job is to ensure that you're safe in your home, and if you're not, to decide what steps should be taken in order to make sure that you are. If this is something that you're interested in doing, you can file a report on your own, by contacting us here at NRS for support, or by telling a safe person of the abuse (like a teacher, school counselor, therapist, etc.). Each person that I've listed is considered a Mandated Reporter and has a legal obligation to contact CPS when there are any suspicions or indications of abuse. We understand that moving forward in this process can be intimidating and scary, but want you to know that your safety IS important. These are folks who will prioritize that. If you have any questions about filing a report, what it entails, or would like to learn more about child abuse in general, Childhelp is another great resource to utilize. They're a child abuse hotline and you can reach out to them by texting or calling 1-800-422-4453, or by chatting with them live at www.childhelp.org.

    Running away in itself is a bit complex. The notion that you can't report someone missing until after 48 hours has passed is inaccurate, and even more so when minors are involved. A missing persons report (or a runaway report) can be filed with the police immediately, which may change your timeline some. Still, it's important for you to know that if you go directly to the police, they are also mandated reporters and will have an obligation to contact CPS on your behalf. Beyond that, CPS is the entity that will make the overall decisions regarding your safety with those abuse allegations, not the police. All that said, making contact with the police is not a bad idea, but it is more of a stepping stone in making that initial contact with CPS. It might also help you to feel safer while that's all going on, and you may be able to discuss filing charges against your grandpa for how he's treated you. Ultimately how you decide to approach next steps is up to you, just know that it doesn't HAVE to mean you're running away and putting yourself in a vulnerable position to meet that 48 hour window.

    If you'd like to chat in more detail or continue to explore some additional options with us, please feel free to reach out directly by calling 1-800-RUNAWAY, or by chatting with us live at www.1800runway.org. We're available 24/7 and are always happy to listen, and to help.

    Take care.

    NRS
    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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