No announcement yet.

17 Year Old Friend Being Abused

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • 17 Year Old Friend Being Abused

    Hi! This might be an odd topic but I don’t known what else to do. I am a legal adult (20) and my friend is 17 he turns 18 this December (in 6 months). He lives at home with his single mother and she is EXTREMELY emotionally, mentally, and physically abusive. I have witnessed it for myself, he isn’t just saying it. At this point... he needs to leave home for his own safety. Emancipation isn’t an option because he doesn’t currently have a job nor the ability to house himself. He is considering running away but I don’t want him or myself to get into any trouble. His mother doesn’t know me and she doesn’t know where I live but nonetheless I still don’t want either of us to get into trouble. This isn’t a romantic thing, I’m a lesbian lol, but I’m DEEPLY concerned for this child. If things dont change soon I genuinely worry for his life. Anything will help thank you.

  • #2
    It sounds like you’re a really good source of support for your friend. It’s great that you are reaching out for info, and it makes sense that you’d want to make sure that no one would get in trouble.

    We’re not legal experts. But, our understanding is that it’s never illegal to run away. It’s what’s called a status offense. If your friend runs, his mom can file a runaway report. If she does that, the police’s job is to return the youth to their guardian. There is no crime associated with running away, except something called harboring a runaway. But our understanding is that this is only in cases where a youth is being hidden, or people who have the youth are not cooperating with the police. It doesn’t come up in cases where someone is trying to provide the youth with a safe place to stay.

    Also, even if a runaway report is filed, police handle different cases in different ways. They may pursue certain cases less aggressively, for example, if youth is close to age 18. You can call the local police department’s non-emergency line anonymously, talk about a case similar to your friend’s, and ask how they may handle it.

    Some youth run in situations like this, and the guardians don’t file a runaway report. Runaways have a right to go to school according to the McKinney Vento act. Also, if a guardian approves of youth living elsewhere, they can. So, consider if that applies to this case at all.

    Since you’ve described an abusive home, also be aware that him reporting these issues to CPS is an option. Guardians are supposed to lose guardianship if they are abusive. If you both would like to explore this option without committing to anything, you can call Child Help anonymously. They are mandated reporters, so if you give your name, and report abuse, they have to act on that. But you can call anonymously, describe the situation, and they can talk through options with you. Their number: 1-800-422-4453.

    Also, it’s awesome that you are part of your friends support network. If he does come live with you, though, be sure to take care of yourself as well. You might think through if you’re comfortable having someone else live in your home, think if you both setting some ground rules would be helpful, and having some sort of fall back plan in case things don’t work out when he stays.

    We hope some of these ideas are helpful. Thanks for reaching out.
    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!


    Previously entered content was automatically saved. Restore or Discard.
    Insert: Thumbnail Small Medium Large Fullsize Remove  
    or Allowed Filetypes: jpg, jpeg, png, gif, webp