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16 in CA and wanting to run away to AK to be with aunt

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  • 16 in CA and wanting to run away to AK to be with aunt

    im 16 and my dad just passed away recently and i hate it here.i live with my step mom,2 step sisters, and step brother. my step brother is a pedophile and did things with me and i did them semi willingly and i just told my step sister and step not sure how or if my step mom as true custody of me but i want my aunt to be my legal guardian. i would like to know what would happen if i decided to fly up there and not tell them except my aunt would know. i would like to know if they would make me go back home or if i can stay with her and do all the legal issues out there. i have been wanting to move out of here for years but now that my dad is gone i have no reason to stay. my mother is alive but doesnt have any legal guardianship over me. i dont want to live on my own i would just like to get out of here and not be held down anymore. like i said i have nothing keeping me here. i would continue school and go to college i just dont want to go to jail or have my aunt get in trouble for annything.

  • #2
    RE: 16 in CA


    Thank you for reaching out to us for help. It sounds like you have gone through so much, and it is understandable why you would want to leave. It sounds like you recently lost your father, and you do not want to live with your step family any more. That must be so hard. You also mentioned a situation with your step brother. Things like that can leave someone very hurt and confused. Thank you for sharing your story. If you need anyone to talk to about this, you can always call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. The Rape Abuse Incest National Network, or RAINN Hotline, might also be a good resource for you. You can contact them at 1-800-656-4673.

    You said that you want to run away to live with your aunt in Alaska. This is a major step. We are glad that you contacted us for help. It seems like you are really smart to do research on the legal issues before you decide to leave. There are a couple things that you might want to know. Running away is not a crime: it is called a “status offence,” which means that if you are reported as a runaway, you might be taken into the custody by the police and returned home, but you will probably not be charged with a crime or go to jail just for running away. Crossing state lines does come with added risk. If your aunt hides you or tries to obstruct an investigation into your whereabouts, she could be guilty of “harboring a runaway,” which is illegal in many states. Those are a few possible outcomes, but it is impossible to say for sure what will happen. Every situation is different.

    You seem a little unclear about your custody situation. Since your mom does not have custody, it is likely that full custody of you transferred to your step-mom when your father passed away. If your aunt is willing to take full custody and parental rights for you, that might be possible with the help of a lawyer. Have you thought about asking your step-mom for permission to live with her, or having a conversation about her transferring custody to your aunt? We are not sure if this is something your step mom would be willing to do, but it might be worth a shot. Her cooperation could make this go a lot easier. If that is not something you think she would be willing to do, we can also talk to you about other options, including talking with a lawyer.

    If you want to talk to a counselor or therapist about what has been happening in your life, we can try to help you find one. It sounds like you are very upset and like you are going through an extremely difficult time. We are here to listen and support you in any way that we can. All of our services are completely anonymous and confidential. You can call 1-800-RUNAWAY 24/7, or contact us through our live chat service between 4:30pm and 11:30pm Central Time. We are looking forward to talking to you about your situation in greater detail and exploring options and resources for you!

    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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