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17 running away with 14 year old

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  • 17 running away with 14 year old

    I would like to know the implications of this. We are both from rather abusive households that taught us to be rather self sufficient while growing up. I am just terrified that running away with a minor (I.E. 14 year old) would be a criminal offense. I do not want to be prosecuted for this as it would ruin my future. I want to live in a comfortable house while studying law, but our circumstances require us to do such a thing. We are not blood related, but we’ve looked after each other for 4 years now and I’m concerned about the future of our mental stability. Would you please give us advice as to how to advance in this situation? Thanks so much!

  • #2
    Thanks for reaching out to us. We are so sorry to hear that you and your friend have had to look out for one another as a result of living in abusive households. We want you both to know that it is NEVER ok for anyone to be abusive towards you, and you deserve to live in a safe space. Both you and your friend have the right to report the abuse to your local child abuse hotline. If you do not know how to reach them, agencies like Child Help, available at 1.800.422.4453 can help you identify the agency nearest you. If you have questions, or just want to talk to someone about your situation, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’re here for both of you.

    It sounds like both of you are considering leaving your respective homes, and you have some concerns about the legality of taking that step. Although we are not legal experts, from what we understand, if you and/or your friend are considered minors in your state, your respective legal guardians have the right to file runaway reports with your local police departments. What local police do after taking the report is up to them: Some may look for you, others may not. If they find you, they may return you to your respective legal guardians, or have your guardians pick you up. Anyone that houses a minor can potentially be charged with harboring a runaway or aiding and abetting a minor, but we can’t be sure how that would work if both the 17 year old and the 14 year old are considered minors in your state. Unfortunately, we can’t say with certainty whether reporting the abuse would change whether either of you go back home or not, but it is up to both of you, independently, to decide what your next steps are.

    One option to find out more about what would transpire if you and your friend run away together is to reach out to your local police department at their non-emergency number and ask. You don’t have to share identifying information to ask questions, and if you have concerns about reaching out to them, you are welcome to reach out to us and we can help you conference call with them. Another option might be to reach out to someone at your local legal aid agency. If you need help finding the contact information for either of these, or if you just need someone to talk to, please feel free to reach out to us. We won’t tell you what to do, but we will do our best to help you stay safe regardless of what you decide. You can reach us 24/7 at 1.800.RUNAWAY (786.2929) or every day via chat. We’re here to listen, here to help. Stay safe!

    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!


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