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In Texas, will I get arrested for running away?

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  • In Texas, will I get arrested for running away?

    I’m a teenager, and I am part of the LGBTQ+ community, and I’m not religious or believe in god. I honestly might be trans, but the thing is my parents are against all of that. They are homophobic, transphobic, and heavily believe in god. They enforce gender rules on me and plan my future for me. They already make me feel like I’m just a disappointment, and I get suicidal thoughts around them. I’ve been thinking about running away, and a friend is offering a place to stay. Will I get arrested if I run away and to my friends house? Will their parents get arrested for housing me?

  • #2
    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 your parents are not supportive. You deserve to be treated with respect, to experience acceptance and to feel safe.

    We want you to know that you are strong for having gone through so much already. You’re bravery and resilience is so admirable. You are so strong for having gone through so much without having the acceptance that you do deserve for just being you. Remember that you are not alone. If you ever want to talk more about what you are experiencing or get additional support we are here 24/7 at 1800-RUNAWAY or our live chat service. The LGBT National Hotline at 1888-843-4564 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. 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 feeling suicidal thoughts around them; which is significant. If you haven't already, you might make a safety plan for when you are feeling that way, so planning out which supports you will contact, and planning out how to remove yourself from the situation or do things that help you relax or bring you joy. You might also reach out to the Trevor Project, a hotline focused on LGBTQ suicide prevention, at: 1-866-488-7386 or www.thetrevorproject.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. This may mean calling the authorities or possibly reporting the things you may be experiencing. Other options to think about may be other family members, friends, or a trusted adults that would be able to provide you with support or a safe place to stay. It is great that you thinking ahead. Should you feel like leaving home is best, it may be a good idea to think about how you will provide necessities for yourself such as food, clothing, showers, healthcare and other basic needs. You may want to also consider how your parent’s will react to you leaving without permission. We are not legal experts here, but typically as a minor (under the age of 1 you need permission from your parents to leave home. It is not illegal to runaway, but it would mean that your parents could file a runaway report with the police. This is usually done in an effort to try to return you home as the police are required to do so. You generally would not be arrested, rather returned home. There is something called harboring a runaway; which is a misdemeanor charge that your parents can attempt to press on the legal adult who knowingly houses you as a runaway. So if you are found at your friend's, their parents could be at risk of being charged.

    If you can give us a call at 1-800-RUNAWAY or reach out through Live Chat we can try to find some youth shelters that may be near 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. We can also talk through your situation or help brainstorm your options.

    We wish you the best,

    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

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