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  • Running away to California

    I’m 16 and I live in Texas. I’m in a very abusive household (physical and mental), and it’s to where my mental health has taken a huge toll and I pretty much contemplate suicide daily.

    My boyfriend lives in California, and he’s insisted for months that he will take me out of my situation and I can move in with him and his family. He’s also 16 and I’m pretty sure I’m going to take this opportunity due to the severity of my situation.

    This being said, what are consequences of running away in Texas if I were to be found? I know that in Texas, running away is punishable, but what are the punishments that are able to be given?

  • #2
    Hello –

    Thank you for contacting us here at the National Runaway Safeline. We understand that it takes great courage to reach out. We are sorry to hear about the way you have been treated. It sounds horrible to receive rejection from someone that you care about. It sounds like the mistreatment at home is becoming difficult to deal with. It seems that you do not receive the support that you probably should at home.

    Having a place to stay to ensure that you are safe is very important. Running away is not illegal but since you are a minor, your guardians have the right to file a runaway report. With a runaway report, if the police find you they would return you home unless you express to them that you live in a unsafe environment. If you left home and decided to stay with a friend, they could get in trouble for harboring a runaway.

    A great resource for you could be the National Child Abuse Hotline. You can reach them at 1-800-422-4453. You can call them anonymously to learn about the abuse reporting process, or directly report abuse to this line. They are a good resource for talking through your options if there is verbal/mental abuse going on at your home. If an abuse report is filed and you were to be picked up by the police you would not be returned home. The most important thing is that you have a safe place to stay.

    We hope the information provided helps. Remember we are available 24/7 and can be toll-free reached at 1-800-786-2929. We are confidential, anonymous, and non-direct. We can also be reached via live chat between 4:30pm and 11:30pm CST.

    Best Wishes
    ~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)

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