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  • Girlfriend wants to run away from home at age 18

    My girlfriend is 17 right now and will be 18 in November. She's planning on running away on her birthday due to overly controlling parents dictating her every action, including where she can get a job if her parents allow her to get a job. They won't even let her have a state issued photo ID card.

    Anyway, if she runs away at 18 but has no way to prove her age, can police force her home? And can her parents continue to withhold her identifying documents such as her birth certificate and social security card? If not, what are the options that she can take to get her stuff back? Would the police be able to help her out? She lives in Florida, by the way.

  • #2
    Hi there,
    Thanks for reaching out to NRS. We appreciate you looking out for your girlfriend, it sounds like she’s been going through a tough time.
    You mentioned that she’s thinking about running away. Running away is not something that she can be arrested for, so if she does runaway, the police will just likely return her home. Her parents are able to make a runaway report with the police and that report goes nationwide. Once she turns 18 and has been on the run the whole time, she won’t be in any trouble. As far as getting her ID documents from her parents, the police may help her do that. We offer to call out to police with youth, if she calls in, we can call and ask them together.
    Again, we appreciate you reaching out to us on her behalf. It seems like you’re a great support for her. Our safeline is open 24/ if she wants to call in herself and talk with us about her situation and her options.
    Be well, 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)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!
    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

    Comment


    • #3
      Does that mean that at age 18 that her parents cannot do anything to her to force her home if she chooses to runaway?

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi again,

        Yes that is correct, when she turns 18 she will be considered a legal adult.
        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!
        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

        Comment


        • #5
          Im 18 years old I want to run away but i cant live like this anymore as in i have thought about suicide and attempting it several times because i couldnt take the pain and the sadness anymore i dont know what else to do now. Now i am not allowed to go outside anymore

          Comment


          • ccsmod16
            ccsmod16 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello, thank you for reaching out to us here at NRS. We are here to help. It sounds like home is really stressful with not being able to go outside and feeling suicidal. We are here to listen and offer some support.

            First, we care about you and your safety. Feeling suicidal can be really scary and can make you feel really alone, but you are not! We care about you and want you to be safe. You are really strong for hanging in there so long and you deserve help. If you are ever in immediate danger of harming yourself, you can always call 911 and they will send a police officer or paramedic out to do a wellness check and get you any further support you may need at that time. You can also walk into an emergency room anytime and ask for help when feeling suicidal.
            Another option when those feelings are strong is reaching out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We know it can be a scary step to call or chat but you have already made the brave step of posting a forum here! You should be proud, it is a really difficult thing to ask for help and you have done it! The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255 d online via live chat at suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

            As far as leaving the home, we are not legal experts but in most states 18 is the legal age of majority (except Alabama (19) and Nebraska (21)). This means in most states you can leave home at 18 legally and choose where you would like to live. We can provide shelters and transitional living resources as well as helping brainstorm other options for living arrangements. If you would like to do that, please call us 24/7 at 1-800-786-2929 or live chat us on our website when it is open (currently open 4:30-11:30pm Central Time daily).

            You mentioned not being allowed to go outside. That sounds really stressful and confining. Again, we are not legal experts but as far as we know you cannot be kept inside against your will and not allowed to leave. You can call the police if you feel you are being kept inside and not allowed to leave freely. We can also provide you legal resources if you would like to call or chat with us. Child Help is another good resource. It is the national child abuse hotline and they can help you better define abuse or neglect, give you information on how to file an abuse report if necessary. You can reach them at 1-800-422-4453, childhelp.org.

            Thank you so much for reaching out today. It really does show a lot of strength and resilience from you. We are here 24/7 so please call or chat anytime if you would like to talk or get any more resources. Take care of yourself and be safe! We are here to listen and help!

            We hope this response was helpful! We’d love to hear from you about your experience using our crisis email/forum. Your feedback plays an important role in helping us improve our services to youth and families. Please click the link to fill out our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/we_care_what_you_think
            Last edited by ccsmod16; 03-16-2018, 10:30 AM.

        • #6
          I’ve been extremely depressed lately. I’m 16 years old. I hate living at home. I’ve been having suicidal thoughts. Nothing ever gets better I just want to leave home I can’t take it anymore. Could my parents file a missing persons report?

          Comment


          • ccsmod2
            ccsmod2 commented
            Editing a comment
            Thank you so much for reaching out to National Runaway Safeline. We want you to know that you are not alone and that we are here for you, to listen and to help as best as we can. We’re sorry to hear that you’re going through this, no one should have to feel that way, and you are very brave for reaching out and asking for help, it takes a lot of courage.
            First and foremost, we want to let you know that we are available if you feel comfortable to talk on the phone, we are a 24/7 hotline and toll-free. Please know that you are not alone and that you deserve to feel supported and loved. If you ever feel like you’re in immediate danger or hurting yourself, you can always call 9-1-1. Another resource that you may find helpful is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255. There’s also the option of therapy/or counseling, whether that be in school, or with your family. In a counseling/therapy setting, a therapist would advocate for you and it’s someone you can share your feelings with in a safe environment. Once again, if you ever want to talk about how you are feeling in a more confidential setting, please feel free to call us at 1-800-786-2929.
            So, with running away, since you are a minor, your parents have the right to file a runaway report. A runaway report means that if the police do find you they would return you home to your parents. Also something to keep in mind, that if you leave home and stay with a friend, they could get in trouble for harboring a runaway. And more importantly to answer your question, yes they can file a missing person’s report, there is no age limit or time frame on that.
            We want to let you know that you don’t deserve to be somewhere that is unsafe, where you feel this way. Thank you again for writing in. You sound like a really strong and resilient person, and we hope things work out. You are worthy, intelligent, and capable of great things. You can get through this. If you ever want to talk, please give us a call.

        • #7
          Hi My girlfriend is 19 and is going through abuse with her mom she is still in school and im 18 in school too can she run away to me we We are in Texas and We plan to get married so that I can take custody and protect her with my life

          Comment


          • ccsmod9
            ccsmod9 commented
            Editing a comment
            Since she is 19 she is more than likely considered a legal adult which means that she can move out if she wants to and she won’t be considered a runaway. As a legal adult, she have a right to make your own decisions about where you live. We can help her make a plan for how to deal with your situation and help you find resources to land on your feet. Having a plan for where you will live and how you will survive once you move out can be very helpful. Moving can be a huge step, and you don’t have to be alone. Some steps you can take towards independence might be to find employment if you don’t have an income, or to save up money for moving expenses. It can also be helpful to research rents in your area, find a roommate, or make a budget. Another thing you might want to consider is what kinds of things you depend on your parents for currently such as tuition expenses for school, or health insurance, and whether they would continue to provide those things after you leave. There may be social service agencies in your area that can help meet some of these needs, such as Transitional Living Programs, a kind of shelter where young adults can live and get services to help them transition to independent living. We are here to listen and help however we can.

        • #8
          Hey I’m 18 I would like to run away due to abuse and talked about in my mom my mom died wen I was 14 so I really don’t have any family or anything but I’m trying to get away

          Comment


          • #9
            Hello, thank you for reaching out to us during this difficult time. We are sorry to hear your mom died and you're being abused. Because you are 18 and therefore legally an adult, you can leave at any time. If you are looking for a place to go https://www.homelessshelterdirectory.org/ can locate a shelter in your area. Good luck and call us at any time at 1-800-RUNAWAY.
            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


            • #10
              Im 18, I’m really not sure what to do anymore I’m at the point where I’m gonna hurt myself or someone else I feel so alone and hopeless and My life is just really complicated I wouldn’t commit suicide bc my best friend died from hanging herself but I’m at the point where I need a way out of my life and I don’t really give a ******** what happens to me but I was thinking of staying at a homeless shelter but I have no money no car so I’m just done with everything

              Comment


              • ccsmod0
                ccsmod0 commented
                Editing a comment
                Hi there,

                Thank you for writing to us here at National Runaway Safeline (NRS). We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. It sounds like you’re quite overwhelmed by things at home right now. It sounds like you’re fearing that the situation may end in suicide if things don’t change. Your safety and well-being is important. If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255); www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org is also a great resource to reach out to in addition to our crisis services.

                Since you are 18 you are more than likely considered a legal adult which means that you can move out if you want to and you won’t be considered a runaway. As a legal adult, you have a right to make your own decisions about where you live. We can help you make a plan for how to deal with your situation and help you find resources to land on your feet. Having a plan for where you will live and how you will survive once you move out can be very helpful. Moving can be a huge step, and you don’t have to be alone. Some steps you can take towards independence might be to find employment if you don’t have an income, or to save up money for moving expenses. It can also be helpful to research rents in your area, find a roommate, or make a budget. Another thing you might want to consider is what kinds of things you depend on your parents for currently such as tuition expenses for school, or health insurance, and whether they would continue to provide those things after you leave. There may be social service agencies in your area that can help meet some of these needs, such as Transitional Living Programs, a kind of shelter where young adults can live and get services to help them transition to independent living. We are here to listen and help however we can.

                Often, having a safe space to share how you’re feeling may bring a variety of solutions previously not thought of. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. This may be an isolating and lonely time for you, but you are not alone in this. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you through this challenging time.

                If you would like to talk more in detail please call or chat soon. Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
                We hope to hear from you soon.

                Be safe and stay strong,
                NRS

                Please click the link below to fill out our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/we_care_what_you_think

            • #11
              Hi ,
              i m 17 and will turn 18 in November . my father has decided to get me married soon if I will not able to qualify my nursing exam . he has given me threat that if I elope then he will file a case against my boyfriend . I m helpless . I wanna know if I flew away in November after my birthday ,will there be any legal action taken or will I be forced to go back to my parents ? I live in India .

              Comment


              • ccsmod15
                ccsmod15 commented
                Editing a comment
                Thank you for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you are in a difficult situation, and we understand it takes courage to reach out for help. The National Runaway Safeline is located in the United States of America (USA). Our knowledge of helpful community based resources and our understanding of youth in crisis related laws is limited to the USA. If you are located in a country outside of the USA, you can use this link to find a youth helpline in or around your country: https://www.childhelplineinternation...pline-network/.

                We hope that by reaching out to a local resource, you are able to get the support you need from an organization that understands the laws and circumstances that affect youth in your country.
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