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Im 16 and hate living at home if i run away can the police force me to go back?

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  • Runaway at 15

    I am I foster care and my grandma died and I don't want to be in foster care this year I turn 16 but I was thinking about running away with my boyfriend he said he would help I tried once before but was found how can I keep under the radar and not get caught

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    • Re: Runaway at 15

      Hi there!

      Thanks for reaching out to us. Firstly, our condolences about your loss. It sounds like you’re in a really tough situation. While we aren’t an agency that helps youth run away, we can certainly talk this over. Our priority at the National Runaway Safeline is to ensure that youth are safe wherever that may be. If you are serious about running away, it might be a good idea to start planning where to stay and what you might want to do in case anything bad happens. If you would like, we would be glad to live chat with you whenever you think you would need it so that you can figure out a plan for yourself in case anything like this were to happen. We can talk to you about how to maintain in school, where you might access healthcare, and many other things.

      Again, thank you so much for reaching out to us. It is very brave of you to reach out and see what your options are. If you need anything else, we would be glad to listen and help!
      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)
      https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

      Comment


      • Hello I am 16 years old and i want to run away. If i live in the state of ohio and i run away can my parents call the cops on me and can i be put in Juvy?

        Comment


        • ccsmod1
          ccsmod1 commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks for reaching out to us. Running away is a status offense, meaning that the actual act of leaving home isn't a crime and you would probably not go to juvenile detention for a first offense.  However, if you have a lot of status offenses, such as for running away, skipping school, or any other arrests, it is possible that you could be placed into a program for juvenile delinquency diversion. Another thing to think about is that anyone who you stay with while reported as a runaway could be charged with a criminal offense for harboring a runaway. Your home situation seem to be very difficult. We want to make sure that you are in a safe place if you do decide to leave your home. You may want to consider making a plan for how you would survive and how you would meet your basic needs if you did run away. If you reach out to us via phone we can discuss some options for you. Our number is 1-800-RUNAWAY. We are here to listen and help in any way that we can. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.

      • I am 16 too. And I have abusive parents. its too deep. officially they are parents but in reality, they are foster. this is UK. They abuse me mentally and threaten my future. like make me study something which I dont like or will succeed. I want to leave. I dont have friends or anything. Where can I go? I cant contact any leegal authorities because my parents will surely either way revenge on me. My parents do illegal stuff but they are not anything bad like drug or anything but they do it to survive. We are poor. They hate me. Use me. Im alright with everything they do but the thing I cant accept is they never let me be free for one day. They never let me study. they dont know english and they are torturing me for everything. I want to leave this house. I am suffering from: HIV, Depression, anxiety, (getting diagnosed with ADD), sever influenza and few minor ones. my parents only know about HIV though. I dont know where to go. I cannot contact police because if I do, my parents won't accept me then or will just send me back to India and play with me there. Either way my life is ruined. I think getting away is better. I need some advice on whether if there is any home for homeless or any similar place where I can go to. please dont bull******** like contact them, talk to them or anything. theres no way.

        Comment


        • I am currently 15, yes i know that's young, but i've been forced to grow up much faster due to my living conditions. My father abused me since i was a child, and now my parents are separated. But he is in court fighting for us, and it seems as if he's going to get atleast half custody, which is something i cannot handle. my mother is a a strong christian, while i believe everyone needs to love everyone regardless. but she force feeds me bible verses and church and youthgroup and I really cant handle it anymore. She also will not let me get a job, so I have no way to support myself. Since I am 15, I know there is not alot that i can do, let alone without a job. Besides running away (since I clearly have nothing to support myself) what are the other options? In my state it says I can't be emmancipated until age 16, but by then my mother is planning on moving to california.

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            We are glad you reached out to us. You do not deserve to be abused and it sounds like you do not want your dad to get half custody of you. It can be difficult to reach out for help and it takes a lot of strength to think about all of your options and ask for help. If you are ever in immediate danger you can always call 9-1-1. If you would like to contact additional child abuse help services Child Help (1-800-422-4453) is a good resource.

            It sounds like you are tired of going to church and youth group and want to get a job but your mom won’t let you. If you haven’t tried talking to your mom you could try asking her why she doesn’t want you to get a job and explain the reasons why you want one. If you have a difficult time talking with your mom we offer conference calls where we moderate a conversation between you and your mom to help make the conversation as productive as possible.

            Even though you want to get a job to support yourself, there may volunteer options you could consider at your church or school to keep you out of the house and busy. If there is a case worker assigned to your custody case or a school social worker you could consider reaching out to them for additional support and resources. In addition to online we are available by phone 24/7 (1-800-786-2929) and are always hear to listen and help.

            You do not deserve to be abused and it sounds like you have taken a lot of proactive steps to improve your situation. Do not hesitate to give us a call.

        • I want to leave home but I'm only 14 I hate my living situation what would happen if I ran away? I live in every is there any laws I need to know?

          Comment


          • ccsmod9
            ccsmod9 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello,

            Thank you for contacting the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you have been going through a lot lately, especially because of what has been happening at home.
            It is unfortunate that you hate your living situation right now. You deserve to be in a safe and comfortable home environment, and the fact that you are thinking about running away shows that something is going wrong. It sounds like you are very unhappy and are looking for a way out.

            If you feel comfortable, may consider speaking with your school counselor about what has been going on at home that is making you feel like running away. School counselors offer their services for free to students, and can be a great resource for many people.

            If you are ever in danger, it is important to call 911 right away. Your safety is our number one priority, and we want to make sure that you get the help that you need. No matter how bad things are at home, please know that you do not deserve to be mistreated or abused.

            It can be very difficult to reach out for support, and we commend you for your courage in reaching out to us. If you would like to further discuss your situation with us, you can give us a call at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929). We are available 24/7 and are here to listen and help in any way we can.

            Thank you,

            NRS

        • I have a friend who is currently 16 and will turn 17 in a few months who wants to run away. Their grandparents are super super strict to the point where they have cameras in the hallways. I am 18 and will be 19 in a few months and I live with my dad. Will we get into any legal issues if we take my friend in? If there is a way to do it without getting in truble with the law of Michigan, please help. It is an unsafe environment for my friend and I really want to help them. Cheers.

          Comment


          • ccsmod2
            ccsmod2 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi,

            You seem pretty concerned for your friend being at home with their grandparents. We are not legal experts here so we can't really say whether or not there is a legal way to have your friend stay with you and not get into trouble. In most states, youth need consent from their guardian in order to legally live with another person. That is most likely to be a long process, IF the guardian does agree to it. What we do know is that if your friend decides to leave, their grandparents can file a runaway report for them. That means that your dad could possibly be charged with harboring a runaway. Your friend might want to consider other ways to cope with what is happening, there aren't a lot of resources that we know of that will say that it is okay for a youth to run away from home and live with someone else. However, if your friend is in danger then it may be a good idea to reach out to police or someone who can help right away. You might be able to offer support and talk with them about options or things they can do to stay safe at home. Child Help is also a good resource to see if there are any strategies for youth to stay safe in a potentially abusive home. That website is www.childhelp.org and also the phone number is 1-800-422-4463.

            Take care,
            NRS

        • Hi I'm 12 about to be 13 I want to run away and live with my grandparents they are the only place I remember to get to.They live in Kentucky and I live in ohio the reason is is that my dad always yells at me about something all because of his childhood he needs to stop comparing his to mine because it's making me hate him and he forces me to play sports I don't want to do and if I say no he says ok but then the next day honey hurry up get your shoes on u got softball practice. Plz tell me if I am doing the right thing because with him here I don't feel welcomed but at my grandparents house I do

          Comment


          • ccsmod15
            ccsmod15 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi there,
            Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. We’re here to help.
            You mentioned that you are considering running away to your grandparents’ home because you are having some problems with your dad. You said that he yells at you and makes you do things you don’t want to such as playing sports. We are sorry to hear this is going on. You deserve to be in an environment where you feel happy, supported, and understood.
            One thing to consider is that if you run away from home, your dad can file you as a runaway. This means that if you come in contact with the police, they can try to bring you back home, or they may bring you to a youth shelter or try to initiate a mediation between you and your dad. Running away is not illegal; it is considered a status offense so this means that charges would not be brought against you. Alternatively, if your dad is in agreement with the idea for you to live with your grandparents, this can be done if he gives legal permission to transfer guardianship of you to them.
            Regardless of the decision you make, you shouldn’t have to deal with this alone. You may consider reaching out to someone to seek help with what is going on at home. This might be someone like a teacher, counselor at school, friend, or family member.
            Please don’t hesitate to contact us at 1-800-RUNAWAY or via our live chat at 1800runaway.org so that we can provide more direct support and explore additional options with you to help you with your situation at home. We are here 24/7 to give you support.

        • I'm trans FTM. My parents are from south america.I want to tell them i'm trans.If they don't i'll leave,Depending on how they react i either go to a safe place or go to the police.I think of telling a guidance counselor but i don't like the idea of talking to my guide lance counselor about its kind of on comfortable. I know my parents will most likely disown me or kick me out but uh i was wonder what you think i should do or go. I'm in a tough place keep in mind i'm only 12 and i'm truing 13 in July.

          Comment


          • ccsmod10
            ccsmod10 commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. You made a great first step to finding the help that you may need. It sounds like you are going through a lot and the people around you are not being supportive. You deserve to be treated with respect, to experience acceptance and to feel safe. The GLBT National Hotline at 1-888-843-4564 is another option to gain great support from those that are familiar with the issues and experiences of those that are also a part of the LGBTQ community. Since you said that you’re not fully comfortable talking to your guidance counselor. You can access their website link bellow to utilize all the other possibly useful resources they have to offer: http://www.glbthotline.org/
            You mentioned that you were considering the options that may be best for you. By all means, if you do fear for your safety either now or in the future, do not hesitate to take the necessary steps to regain your safety. You also mentioned that your parents may kick you out. Technically, you are their legal responsibility until you turn 18. They could face neglect charges if they don’t allow you to live at home after you tell them about being transgendered.
            If you can give us a call at 1-800-RUNAWAY we can try to find some youth shelters that may be in your city and state by utilizing our database of resources. We can also try to call out to shelters with you or on your behalf to advocate for you.
            Stay Strong,
            NRS

        • If my parents tell me they dont want me and there tired of meand i want to leave, yet tgey threaten yo call police is it ojay if i go live with my boyfriend im 16 turnung 17.

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello,

            Thanks for your post. It was really brave of you to reach out for help. We are sorry to hear the situation with your parents. It sounds like it would be very hurtful to hear your parents say they are tired of you and want you to leave. Since you are 16, it is illegal for your parents to kick you out of the house. It sounds like they have said they want you to leave, and also they threaten to call the police if you do. That is very confusing to hear mixed messages like that from your parents, and it is understandable that you would want to move in with your boyfriend where you have support. We are not legal experts but we can give you some general info about runaway laws. However, if you do run away to your boyfriend's house, you should know that your parents have a right to call police and report you as a runaway. The police may then search for you and force you to return home. Your boyfriend or his family could be charged with harboring a runaway for taking you in. If you would like to explore more about your situation, please don't hesitate to give us a call. We are happy to talk through all your options and help you come up with a plan to deal with your situation and stay safe. We are confidential and available 24/7 to take your call. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.

        • Please help me as soon as possible

          My name is Nico and I am genderfluid. I'm 16, and I am going to run away from home in 3 days. I don't have more than $50, but I have a friend who is willing to loan me some money and let me stay with her and her family for a few days. After I stay there for a few days to go off the radar a bit I plan to go to a local youth homeless shelter. I'm worried that the shelter could be fined when my parents file me as a runaway, because I don't want to cause any misfortune or be returned by them to my parents or the police. If I get returned to my parents I know that they'll be very angry and I'll be completely isolated and restricted by them, as well as they might be angry enough to hit me instead of the wall this time, so if I do get caught and I'm in a police car being driven back to my parents, if I tell the officer that I don't feel safe going back home will I be taken back anyway? Also, if I manage to successfully run away and not be caught by the police and then turn 18, will I be able to be charged with any offences? Or will I be considered a free adult and not ever have to return to my parents?

          I'm so afraid and worried, but I know that running away is the only way I'll be able to continue living at this point.

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello Nico,
            Thanks so much for reaching out to us for help. We are here to listen and support you in any way that we can. It was very brave of you to ask for help. You don’t deserve to be abused in any way, and you deserve to have your gender identity and expression respected. It is understandable that you would think about leaving home. It sounds like you are thinking about suicide, and you feel running away is an alternative to suicide. Our top priority is always your safety. Your life has worth and there are so many resources and options here for you other than taking your life. If you feel that you need to run away to be safe, we are not here to tell you what to do or stand in your way. We are here to answer your questions and help you make a plan to deal with your situation and feel safe. One resource that may be very helpful to you right now is the Trevor Project, a suicide hotline for LGBTQ+ youth. Their number is 1-866-488-7386 or go to thetrevorproject.org for help and support any time.
            It sounds like you have started to work on a plan for running away. Having a plan for how you will survive and where you can stay can be really important. You mentioned staying with a friend for a few days, then relying on shelters for somewhere to stay after that. Unfortunately, youth homeless shelters are all required by law to notify your legal guardian that you are there at some point. They do not hide runaways from their parents and most programs have a goal of family reunification if it is safe. A youth shelter is a great resource if you have nowhere else to go, however it is not somewhere you can live no questions asked and be hidden from your parents. You can always let staff at a shelter know that you are being abused and feel unsafe returning home, and they can assist you in filing an abuse report and going over options. If you do run away from home, your parents can call the police and report you as a runaway. The police may search for you, find you and force you to go back home. You can always let them know that you feel unsafe at home, however we cannot say for sure whether they would take your statement. If you feel unsafe at home and believe you are in danger, you have a right to make an abuse report with CPS or to call 911 if you are in an emergency. Running away is not a criminal offense, so you won’t have any charges or anything on your record after you turn 18 unless you do any other criminal activities which may result in charges. In any case, whether you get away with running away until you turn 18 or you get caught, once you are 18 you never have to return to your parents or even have to talk to them again if you don’t want to. We can help you make a plan to stay safe, or explore options other than running away for you to survive the next few years until you turn 18, such as pursuing legal emancipation. We are here to help however we can and provide any resources that might be helpful. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call or chat. We are looking forward to hearing from you soon, and wish you the best of luck.

        • I am 16 years old and living at my mom and step-dadshe house with four younger siblings. My dad and step mom are rude to me, insult me, and don't help me pay for anything. My mom and step-dad are very mean, not understanding, way to hard on me, and are very manipulative. I've had a tough year this last year but I honestly can't do this anymore. Ivery wanted to be out of this situation since I was about 11 or 12 and I justill can't wait any longer. I'm done. My boyfriend is leaving the state for work and has a place I am able to stay if I go. And I am able to work obviously since I'm 16. If I leave the state and go elsewhere about 1800 miles, will the police find me? I'm looking to start my life now, I am gonna finish school no questons asked. But I need out of this situation. What would typically happen if I were to go?

          Comment


          • ccsmod7
            ccsmod7 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello there, thanks for reaching out.

            Sorry to hear that you have been having so much trouble at home for so long. That sounds pretty emotionally exhausting to endure that that hurtful, manipulative behavior. You deserve to live in a place where you are respected and cherished.

            Seems like you are interested in knowing what could happen if you go with your boyfriend and start a life in a new state. We are not legal experts, but we can speak generally about what could happen. So if you leave home without permission before you are 18, your parents can file a runaway report for you with the local police. Once that report is filed, you would be entered national police database as a runaway. So if you encounter police and they run your name, they can see you are a runaway. Your parents can also give the police addresses of where they think you are at. Running away is typically a status offense or something you can’t do due to your age, rather than being illegal. So it is not something that would stay on your permanent record. If you are found by police, they would return you home. You mentioned going 1,800 miles away. It is possible for you to be detained until your parents can pick you up if it is too far for police to return you home. If your boyfriend is 18 or older, he is the one who could get into legal trouble. He could be at risk for being charged with harboring a runaway or kidnapping. Also, you mentioned getting a job where you go, so just to make you aware, you being a runaway could show up on a background check if your parents file that runaway report.

            We strongly encourage you to call or chat us if you would like to talk more about your situation. We can provide support and help brainstorm your options.

            Best of luck,

            NRS

        • hi i am 16 and unfortunetly my dad and mom have been divorced for 9 years and i just cant take going from house to house every week so if i runaway will they force me back to my parents house or can i make a deal with dhs or the court in living with another relative of my choice or can they have a custody hearing i have tried many times at commiting suicide and this will be my first time running away i just want to know if when i want to try and patch my relationship with one of my parents will any of these options be available to me?

          Comment


          • ccsmod15
            ccsmod15 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello,
            Thanks for reaching out to us. We are so sorry to hear that things have been difficult since your parents divorced. It sounds like you’re considering running away and you’ve got some questions about how that might change who has custody of you. You’re asking some really important questions and, although we are not legal experts, we will do our best to share information that might help you decide your next steps.

            First of all, we are so sorry to hear that the situation at home has gotten to the point that you’ve attempted to commit suicide. We want you to know that there are resources available to you when you feel that you might want to hurt yourself. Resources like the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, available via phone at 1.800.273.8255, as well as online at www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org . Know that there are organizations available to listen and support you. In your message, you ask some great questions about what might happen custody-wise if you run away from home. Unfortunately, because we’re not legal experts and the laws can vary from state to state, it would be tough for us to say with certainty what might happen regarding your custody if you did decide to leave. Generally speaking, if you do run away and your legal guardian files a runaway report, typically your local police department would either return you to your legal guardian or ask your legal guardian to pick you up. Anything beyond returning you home, like changing the terms of your custody arrangement, would need to be done through your local DHS office. This would likely require you to speak with someone familiar with the laws in your state, like a lawyer in your area, so that they can tell you what needs to happen in order for your relative to get a custody hearing. It may help you to speak with the relative that you’re interested in speaking with, and perhaps both of you can approach your parents to discuss an alternative living arrangement before involving the courts. If you’d prefer to speak with a lawyer, your local legal aid office may be able to provide free or at low cost.

            If you’d like more information, or if you just need someone to talk to, know that we are here for you. You can reach us 24/7 by phone at 1.800.RUNAWAY (786.2929) as well as via chat on our website every day from 4:30pm – 11:30pm CST. We won’t tell you what to do, but we will do our best to help you stay as safe as possible regardless of what you decide to do. We wish you the very best of luck. Stay safe!

            -NRS

        • My mom figured out that I hate her, but for neglectful and verbally abusive reasons. I'm 14 and I live in Kentucky, and I want to stay with my 16 year old boyfriend in his sister's trailer on the county line. Would they find me? I just want a place to stay for 4 years.

          Comment


          • ccsmod15
            ccsmod15 commented
            Editing a comment
            We’re so sorry that you have to deal with that situation. It makes sense that you’d want to get away from neglect and verbal abuse.

            This is a big step, so here are some things to consider.

            Your safety is most important, so if you do go stay there, consider if you have people you can call for support, let’s say if that situation changes, or if you encounter any issues, or just need to vent about something. We are not legal experts, but speaking in general, you still have a right to attend school even without your guardian.

            It’s never illegal to run away. In general, if a youth runs away, and their parents report them missing, the police look for the youth, and if they find them, return them to their guardians.

            Guardians do not always report their children missing. If your guardian does not, there would be no reason to search for you.

            Also, sometimes, youth do live in alternative housing with their guardian’s permission. This may not apply to your situation, but it might be worth considering if your parent would be open to that.

            Lastly, since you mentioned verbal abuse and neglect, you could also explore reporting to CPS. You can call Child Help anonymously and talk through your situation to see how it might play out without committing to anything. Their number is 1-800-422-4453.

            You can always give us a call if you’d like to talk through this more. Thank you for reaching out to us.

        • i am 14 years old and i don't like my school because i get bullied by a lot they always making fun of me and like to play around with my feelings the adults in the school don'y do nothing about it. At home its the same I hate my life but if i ran away can they make me go back home? or can I get in trouble for running away?

          Comment


          • ccsmod15
            ccsmod15 commented
            Editing a comment
            First of all thank you so much for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline! It sounds like you have been going through a really tough time at home and at school but it’s great that you are trying to find some options for yourself. You mention that you are being bullied at home and at school. This can be really difficult and frustrating to deal with. If you are facing constant bullying and need somewhere to turn feel free to visit https://www.stopbullying.gov/get-help-now/index.html or http://www.pacer.org/bullying/ . These are great resources to turn to if you need any support, and if you are ever having any thoughts of suicide or harming yourself do not hesitate to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. It is important to find an ally or trusted adult to talk to when you feel like that such as a parent, teacher, counselor, aunt/uncle, coach, etc.

            You mention that you want to leave home because you are being bullied. This is a big decision to make and it is important that you have an idea of where you would be going and whether or not that place would be safe for you. If you did decide to run away and your legal guardians are not okay with that they can file a runaway report. When a runaway report is filed every police department does something a little differently. Sometimes they may actively search for you, sometimes the people you are staying with could be charged with harboring a runaway, and sometimes the police may investigate the situation fully before returning you home. This is a lot to consider if you are thinking about running away. If you want to know more you can contact the police and ask them hypothetically how they handle a runaway report. We are available for support or additional resources when you need it, so feel free to call us at anytime at 1-800-RUNAWAY as we are available 24/7. We wish you good luck with everything.
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