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Wanting to run away to family

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  • Wanting to run away to family

    I'm almost 16 years old and am planning to run away tomorrow via Greyhound bus. It's my last resort because trying to fix the problems at home don't work and it makes everything a lot worse. I have family in another state that I would feel safe living with. I do not want them to get in trouble for harboring a runaway or anything but my parents wont ever listen. My mother influences my dad and hits me and then screams at me about how I'm a pathetic child and yells at me for things I've never done. I've never done drugs, never skipped school, or anything. But I'm treated as if my Cs in school are the worst thing I've ever done. I would like to know some info on the harboring and what would happen to me if the police found me after being reported as a runaway. I'd also like info on being able to relocate to another state and live with family there.

  • #2
    Re: Wanting to run away to family

    Thank you for reaching out to us with your questions. It sounds like you are in a tough spot right now and have gotten to the point that you are thinking of running away. We are sorry to hear that you are going through such a difficult time and home but glad that you reached out to us at our bulletin. It sounds like you have a plan and you do have a safe place to stay but are concerned about any kind of legal consequences with leaving. While we are not lawyers here and cannot give any specific legal advice we are certainly available to discuss the situation and able to talk about some options and resources that may be helpful.

    You mentioned that some of the reasons you are thinking about leaving is because of the situation that is going on at home. It sounds like things with your mom and dad are not good and you mentioned that it has gotten to the point where they have been physically and emotionally abusive towards you. Have you ever spoken with anyone about what is going on at home? It you are being hurt or abused in any way you certainly have the right to let someone know. If you would like to discuss making a report you can always call Child Help at 1-800-422-4453.

    In most states the age of majority, when a youth is considered an adult, is 18. So the difficulty of the situation is that you are still considered a minor and your mom is still considered your parent/guardian which means she would have the right to make a runaway report if you left without permission. Do you think your mom would make a report if you left? As far as harboring a runaway/minor there is a possibility that the family that you’re with could have charges pressed if they are keeping you. Now in a lot of cases it is not always the police that would press those charges if would most likely be a youth’s guardian who may press charges against the people you are staying with. Now with that said in most cases running away is usually considered a status offense which means if the police were to pick you up they would most likely just return you home to your parent/guardian.

    Keep in mind that if you want more specific legal information we certainly have the resources to look up that information for you. If you would like to speak with someone more in depth about your situation it may be best to call us at our 24 hour hotline number 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929). We also have an online chat that is available through our website at from 4:30p to 11:30p CST if you feel more comfortable reaching out that way. All of our services are completely confidential and anonymous. Please feel free to reach out to us anytime if there is anything else we can assist with or if you would like to get specific resources in your area. Take care.
    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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