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I am 15 going on 16 and I need to leave.

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  • I am 15 going on 16 and I need to leave.

    I am 15 years old, and I will be turning 16 in a few months. This is a quick overview of my immediate problem. I have had mental issues for a very long time. I have had problems with it since I was 13 and I have just started to get help for my problems. I have major anxiety issues, depression, and PTSD because when I was younger I was abused. When I was 3 and my sister was 8 we were placed with our grandparents because our step dad was abusive. They became our legal guardians, and up until 13 or so everything was sort of fine. However, at that point, I was just beginning to realize that I wasn't who they wanted me to be. It wasn't until I was 14 that I started realizing that I have mental issues. My grandparents have a tendency to constantly complain about things, especially other peoples actions that they don't agree with, and especially my sister's actions (she hated it here too and moved out when she could). They are often complaining about me and how I'm obviously fine and I don't need to be in therapy (they're wrong). We don't know much about each other because we do not communicate. They watch a very famous news channel and it seems to influence them to some degree because they don't argue, they just tell me I'm wrong and to shut up and they yell at me a lot. That's very bad because my PTSD is triggered by being yelling and I panic. It's not so bad now, but I still can't think straight when I am yelled at. They never say anything, but they often imply that my sexuality (I am pansexual) is wrong and they aren't nice about it. They pretend that I'm normal and imply to my family and friends who don't know that I'm straight. I am also genderfluid (primarily agender) and they often are disapproving when I am not feminine. If I ever have friends over or if they have friends over they like to be more strict than usual and "flex their muscles" to show they have power over me. That's why I don't have friends over anymore (that is also because I have mostly shut myself off from the world). They used to hit me but since I got older and started being affected less by my PTSD in those situations they don't hit me anymore because I don't tolerate it. I don't hit back but since they are old they can't run after me when I move out of the way. They only try when I can't move away like if I'm in a car or something, but they do threaten me often if I say something they don't like. They don't hit me any more though, or at least they haven't in a long time. Things aren't nearly as bad now as they were, my therapy is helping a lot so I can ignore the way they treat me but I can't continue to grow emotionally and heal mentally if I'm in this environment. What should I do? How can I leave? If I wait till I'm 16 can I leave? I don't think I can live here much longer.

  • #2
    re: I am 15 going on 16 and I need to leave.

    Hey there,

    Thank you so very much for reaching out to us at the National Runaway Safeline. We cannot even begin to imagine the types of emotions you are going through and the way you are feeling. It can be very painful to feel as if others do not understand you, nor would like to take the time to, and may be more hurtful and intense when it’s happening at home.

    From what you’ve mentioned, it sounds as if you’ve dealt with a lot of emotional and psychological distress on various levels and are at a point in your life during which you’d like to take the next steps to understand how you can change your living situation to help rather than impair your present emotional and mental status.

    You are very strong for facing the types of things you have struggled with in your life and it also sounds as though you are lacking the love, support, and understanding from those around you in regards to your own identity and personal development. Running away can be an option for coping for the lack of these at home, as well as other things as well.

    We aren’t legal experts, but we can speak in general terms of what could happen if you were to run away. If you were to run away from home (leave home without consent), your grandparents have the right to make a run away report with the police. If you are found by the police or other legal authority figures, you would be returned home. There is no major consequence for you besides this. If the people you were staying with are over the age of 18 (or legally considered adults) they could be charged with harboring a runaway. The consequences for this could vary from a fine to jail time depending on how charges are pressed, the nature of the situation, etc.

    Knowing how you can leave home with consent for periods at a time may be helpful. It’s often seen that youth who move in with other family members may have a better shot at leaving home with ease than leaving home without consent. Either way, it can be helpful to understand your options.

    It sounds as if the source of your discontentment and lack of peace at home is stemming from the emotional neglect and lack of understanding of your own unqiue personal journey and development. If you’re not receiving these things at home, it may be useful to understand those around you who may be able to show these things. These people could include friends and other people in your school or community. They can also include other family members such as siblings who understand your situation.

    It also sounds like counselors and therapy are something that you would find beneficial. If you would like help accessing these types of resources we would be happy to do so through our chat or hotline with more specific information regarding what you’re looking for and where you are located. Taking advantage of your school counselors could also be useful in the meantime if you aren’t getting these things.

    We hope that some of this has helped you today. We’re sorry that you’re struggling with so much and it’s important you know your options in knowing how to cope with and handle the things going on in your life and at home right now.

    If you would like more information on shelters, counseling services, or would just like to talk, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1(800)RUNAWAY (786-2929). We’re always here, 24/7.

    Thank you and we hope you take care,

    The National Runaway Safeline.
    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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