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  • Moving out a month before I'm 18

    Hi. I am 17 and going to be 18 in June. I want to move out with my boyfriend in May. I have had the police at my house numerous times. My step dad and i got into it one night when he found out that I was dating my manager and that he had gotten me a phone. I understand that he is 9 years older than me but he treats me so good. He doesn't yell at me or lay any hands on me. Everytime him and I have sex he always makes sure that I'm okay with that. Even during sex he makes sure that he isn't hurting me. But back to my step dad. The discomfort at home came from when I called the police on him for tpuching me and pouring water on my face when I was crying on the floor. The police didn't do anything about him abusing me. they pretty much just slapped him on the hand and told him not to do it again. Since then the police have been called 17 times. Every time nothing has happened. They keep telling me to suck it up and just forget about it until i'm 18. but i cant wait that long. My boyfriend told me that i could move out a month before i turn 18 and no one could do anything about it. Thoughts and Legal actions please? oh and i live in ohio if that helps

  • #2
    Re: Moving out a month before I'm 18

    Thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline. It sounds like you’ve been going through a really tough time, and we’re here to help you and support you in any way we can. We want you to know that no one deserves to be abused, and you should not have to go through that.

    That must be so hard to be having these conflicts and disagreements with your step dad. That sounds frustrating that nothing happens when you reach out to the police for help. If you haven’t already, you could consider reporting the abuse you’ve been experiencing. If you want more information about abuse reporting, you could consider calling Child Help USA at 1-800-422-4453. Also, if you’d like more information or if you’d like help making an abuse report, you can call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY (1-800-786-2929).

    We’re not legal experts here at NRS, but generally it is not illegal to run away from home. But your parents could file a runaway report, the police could get involved and bring you home, and the people you’re staying with could possibly get in legal trouble. Some police departments do not take runaway reports for 17 year olds. Each city and state can have different laws on running away. If you haven’t already, you could consider calling your local nonemergency police number to ask about their policies on running away. We also have a data base of legal resources that you could call to ask specific questions about laws.

    There are many resources that could help you get legal information, help you work through conflict with your family, or help you with anything else you may need. If you would like more information about resources or if you’d like to talk more about what’s been going on, you can call us or chat with us online.

    Again, thanks for contacting us. You’ve been going through a really hard time, but you’ve shown strength by reaching out for help. If you ever need anything in the future, please feel free to call us or chat with us online. We’re always here to listen and here to help.
    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)
    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi, Im 15 but Im currently in a relationship with someone that makes me very happy but my stepdad and mother don't approve of him so I have to keep our relationship a secret. My stepdad makes me extremely uncomfortable and I've told him numerous times that I don't like the way he talks to me. My mother never does anything to step up to him and lets him control everything in our lives. My boyfriend is about 3 years older than me (which is legal in Tennessee) so he already is getting a house. When i graduate high school I will only be 17 but I want to move in with him. About a month after I graduate I will turn 18 so I want to move in with him and he will be fully able to support me as he is going into the marines. I live in Tennessee and I'm not sure if I will be able to move in with him before I turn 18, is it possible for me to do that?

      Comment


      • ccsmod10
        ccsmod10 commented
        Editing a comment
        Hi there,

        Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to reach out to us here at the National Runaway Safeline. From your email to us here, we can see that you have very similar questions to a lot of our callers and you’re looking for some answers. Now we aren’t legal experts by any means so we can only give you a general idea of what might happen to those that leave home without permission.

        It can be a little tricky at the age of 17, but there are some cases in which a police officer won't take a runaway report for someone that is 17. This is not the case all the time of course, but it is something that we have heard of happening before. But something to keep in mind is that though a police officer doesn't take a report it doesn't make it legal for minors to leave home before turning 18; which is the legal age of majority in most states. Like stated above it might not be actively search for a 17 year old. The only way to know for sure of that would be to reach out to your local non-emergency police and asking them hypothetical questions about leaving home or the state as a 17 year old and what would could happen at that point.

        Now if your parents did file a runaway report, they can choose to press charges on your boyfriend for harboring a runaway. Harboring a runaway is when that party are not giving accurate information on a runaway’s whereabouts. That could lead to a number of different legal issues such as misdemeanor charges (fines or jail charges). From what we know it isn’t something that typically happens, but it is in place to detour individuals from helping runaway minors from not returning home or lying on a runaway’s behalf.

        We hope this response was helpful! We certainly want to help you. If you give us a call on our 24/7 hotline at 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929) we could help you find resources in your area and could potentially help you brainstorm a possible solution to the issues you are having. We would love to talk to you.

        Best, NRS

    • #4
      im 17 years old im 3 months from being 18 and im done being abuse by my drunk father and always being depressed, and abused by him and i have a place to stay at if i do move out but if i stay there any longer i dont think i can live much longer what do i do

      Comment


      • #5
        Hi there,

        First, we are sorry to hear you are being abused by your dad. That’s really tough and you don’t deserve that. Just so you know, you always have the option of filing an abuse report with your state’s Child Protective Services. We never tell anyone what to do, but that is your right. Let us know if you need more information on that.

        You ask what you should do. Well, a lot depends on what you feel is best for you, something only you can know for sure. If you decide to leave before 18, your dad could try to file a runaway report with the police. Running away isn’t a crime, but it is a status offense, which means you could be detained by police until they release you to your parents. Anyone you stay with, however, could be accused of harboring a runaway, which is a misdemeanor.

        That’s not to say you should or should not move out before 18. It’s possible your dad won’t try to file a report. Or that the police won’t take it as seriously because you are getting close to turning 18. So, we don’t exactly know what would happen. You could try calling the local police non-emergency number and ask them if they accept runaway reports for 17 year-olds. They may say they do, but it’s hard to say how seriously they will take the report because of your age. It’s kind of a grey area.

        One thing we would encourage you to do is to call us if you can. We are here 24/7 and are anonymous. Even if you just want to talk things through, that’s what we are here for. We also have a large database of resources like shelters, legal aid, and the like. Our number is 1-800-RUNAWAY.

        Please stay safe. You’re not alone. We are here for you!

        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)
        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

        Comment


        • #6
          Hi there, I’m currently 17 years old living in Chicago Illinois but I will be 18 in 2 months. I’ve been wanting to move out of my house since the age of 15. I’ve gone through a lot with my parents and I’m tired of always arguing with them I was wondering is there any way I can move out a month before my birthday?

          Comment


          • ccsmod15
            ccsmod15 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi there,

            Thank you for writing to us here at National Runaway Safeline (NRS). We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. It seems like you have dealt with a lot at home over the years, and as you approach 18, you are wanting to move out.

            While we are not experts on the law, we know that in Illinois, 18 is the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. Some police departments may be more lenient on youth that are 17, especially if they are about to turn 18, but this depends on the people working the case, so we cannot guarantee any one police response. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.

            We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice on this forum to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail please call or chat soon.

            Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
            If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.

            Be safe,
            NRS

        • #7
          I’m 17 years old and I have 1 month and 3 days before I turn 18. I live in the state of Louisiana and every website I’ve seen has said that it is legal for me to move out and live with my boyfriends family. I was wondering if the police would try to get me to come back if I was to run away. I’m still in school, and I only have a few months before graduating. I want to get out now. Is there any tips or anything that could be given to me to help me through this time?

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hey there,

            Thanks so much for reaching out and sharing a little bit about what’s been going on, we know that it takes a lot of courage. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but you are considered a minor in Louisiana until you turn 18. Generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parents (or whoever your legal guardian is) can file a runaway report, which is essentially a missing person report. Running away is a status offense; this means that it isn’t illegal, but it’s something you can’t do while still a minor. If a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned home. Since you are so close to turning 18 the police may let your stay where you are but that varies a lot from area to area. It may be beneficial to reach out to your local nonemergency police line (you can usually just dial 311) to verify local runaway policy.

            If you’d like to go over what’s going on in depth, or if you’d like to explore other options that you may have available to you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. You can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support you in any way we can.

            Stay safe,
            NRS

        • #8
          I am currently 17 and my birthday is a month away, I have been going through a lot with family issues and want to leave ASAP. The only thing is I don’t want to get in trouble with the states what do I do?

          Comment


          • ccsmod13
            ccsmod13 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi there,

            Thanks for reaching out to NRS. It sounds like you are very close to turning 18 and you are wondering if there would be any consequences for leaving home. Generally speaking if you leave home without permission before you turn 18 (the age of majority in most states), your parents can report you as a runaway. Running away is not illegal and you would not face any legal consequences for doing so, however; if your parents know where you are they can ask that police return you home. The exception to this is that some counties do not take runaway reports for someone so close to turning 18. If you live in an area where police do not pursue runaway reports for someone your age, police would not likely not intervene if you left home. You can call your local police department's non-emergency number to ask anonymously about their runaway protocol.

            If you would like to talk more in detail about your situation or about your next steps, please do not hesitate to reach out again by phone at 1-800-786-2929 or use our live chat services at www.1800runaway.org.

            Stay safe,
            NRS

        • #9
          I’m 17 and will be turning 18 in 2 months. I heard that some police departments don’t come after older “run aways” is that true. If so I will be planning to either leave tonight or tomorrow.

          Comment


          • ccsmod16
            ccsmod16 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi, Thank you for reaching out; we are glad that you did.

            You may consider calling the non-emergency number for you local police and ask them about their runaway protocol. Each jurisdiction in the US have their own protocol, so we can’t tell you definitively.

            You can also reach out to us at 1800-786-2929 (1-800-RUNAWAY) and we can help you place that call. You can also reach us with live chat via www.1800runaway.org to discuss this further.

            We hope to hear from you soon.
            NRS

        • #10
          Can I move out 3 months before I'm 18?

          Comment


          • ccsmod2
            ccsmod2 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello There,
            Thank you for reaching The National Runaway Safeline, we are here to help and here to listen. We are not legal experts but we do have some information on the laws. If you were to leave home at 17, you would still be considered a minor. So what that means is if your legal guardian does file a runaway report it is still a possibility that you could be brought back home. It is more likely the closer you are to being 18 that the police may not take a runaway report.
            We hope that this information will be helpful to you in your situation. If you have any other questions or would like to see what other options are out there, please give us a call. We are here 24/7 to listen and to provide support. We wish you the best of luck!
            NRS

        • #11
          Hi I’m 17 and will be 18 in a month.I live in Phoenix Arizona and my mother kicked me out of the house and I have nowhere to go do you have any resources for me just until I turn 18 and be out of there hair. My mother said she doesn’t care where I go as long as I’m not in her house or face.

          Comment


          • ccsmod13
            ccsmod13 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi there,

            Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us here at NRS. We want you to know that we are here as support to help you with figuring out your next steps in this difficult situation. Asking for help was really responsible and smart of you. We are sorry to hear things are so unstable at home. You deserve to live somewhere that makes you feel safe and supported.

            We can connect you with local youth shelters in your area and transitional living programs. These provide a stable place to live and support to help you work toward living independently. We can do a search in our database for resources in your area if you call our hotline or use our live chat services.

            We are available 24/7 to support you and connect you with resources. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email or bulletin for assistance. If you would like to talk more in detail and share more about how we can help specifically, please call or chat soon.

            Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).

            We hope to hear from you soon.
            NRS

        • #12
          4 months before turning 18 I want to move out. I have been through to much. I know my mom has done a lot for me and I've done a lot for her but she doesn't trust me even though I do everything she wants, but it's like I'm not perfect enough. She yells at me, once cut my hair with scissors forcefully, she always calls my biological father names and blames him for corrupting my mind apparently. She's slapped me the face, pushed me, calls me inappropriate names and makes inappropriate actions and comments toward me. I barely ever leave the house but when I do I get little time outside.

          Comment


          • ccsmod13
            ccsmod13 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hello,

            Thank you for taking the time to contact us at the National Runaway Safeline. We appreciate you sharing a bit about your situation and what has been making you feel like you need to leave. Leaving can be a big decision to make, but we want you to know that we are here to be a support for you as you take your next steps.

            Your mom has not been making home feel safe or welcoming for you, and that is not okay or fair to you. You deserve to be treated with respect and to feel supported. If you want to move out it would be helpful to have a plan. Considering certain factors and aspects for your plan might help you make your decisions about your next steps: where are you going to be living, what's your role in the house, are you going to be working/going to school, will you be paying your share of the bills/rent, a back-up plan in case your living arrangement does not work out and you need to leave. If you do not feel safe, you can call 911 for emergency services or make a report to child protective services. It would also be a good idea to reach out to any friends or family members that can offer any support or a place to stay. We are here to help you talk through this plan and provide any resources or information that may be helpful.

            We are available 24/7 to listen and help as much as possible. Please do not hesitate to reach out again by phone or chat if you would like to talk more in-depth about your situation and explore your options. You can contact us by phone at 1-800-786-2929 or use our live chat services at www.1800runaway.org.

        • #13
          hello, i have a question. i turn 18 in 48 days in june. am i able to leave sooner? or do i need consent of my parents in order to leave before i turn 18? i know that the laws are different in each state. i live in Nevada, so in the state of Nevada am i able to leave sooner? ive been going through alot of problems with my family since they found out that i plan on leavin. even tho i have a fews days left, they have caused me alot of stress and trouble. they have called the cops on me twice for no reason, and jus yesterday threatened to call them again on me because i wasnt willin to talk to them.. the cops have been no help to me, in fact i got threatened by one of them to get locked up cuz my mother said that i put my hands on her, which i didnt and have no reason to. ive been talked down on, threatened, & treated like crap.. they said that i destroyed our "family", that im the problem.. they wont let me leave the house cuz they think im going to runaway, so ive been locked in my house going on week three.. they have told me that they dont want me here and that they wanna kick me out, but wont let me leave.. i have a few bags packed up with just clothing and shoes, but they are tellin me that im not leaving with anything and that they are going to throw all my belongings in the dumpster.. are they allowed to do that? they already have my phone, but am i legally able to leave with my bags of clothing? am i legally able to leave sooner? if they consent in me leaving sooner then 18 am i allowed to legally leave? id wait out the next 48 days, but i cant take it here.. ive been so depressed and stressed out lately, i cant even remember the last time i had a goodnights sleep..

          Comment


          • ccsmod0
            ccsmod0 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hi there,
            Thank you for writing to us here at National Runaway Safeline (NRS). We understand it takes great courage to reach out, and we appreciate you sharing a little bit about what’s going on. It seems there is a lot that you are faced with right now and you’re feeling like leaving is one of your only options. It seems you want to know some information on runaway laws.
            While we are not experts on the law, 18 is generally the age that an individual may leave home without parent permission. If you are under 18 and leave home, your parent/guardian may file you as a runaway and you may be returned home. Also, those you stay with may run the risk of being charged with harboring a runaway. For more specifics on the law, the local non-emergency police or legal aid may better answer legal questions.
            The easiest way to leave home is with your parents' permission. We understand that might be challenging, however, maybe there’s another family member, relative, or a family friend who could help to communicate how you’re feeling to your parents. The second way is through Child Protective Services if safety is a concern. Lastly, you can also look into emancipation options. In most states you need to be at least 16 to be considered and demonstrate that you can support yourself financially and independently. Emancipation often can be a lengthy process and may even cost some money for court fees. We would be happy to look into legal resources if that’s something you are considering.
            We are here as support to help through this challenging time. We can best help by phone or chat as NRS is unable to respond more than twice by email to assist you. If you would like to talk more in detail please call or chat soon.
            Our contact information is 1-800-RUNAWAY (786-2929); www.1800runaway.org (click on the chat button).
            If you are at risk of any danger or feeling unsafe, we encourage you to reach out to 911 or seek emergency assistance immediately.
            Be safe,
            NRS

            Please click the link below to fill out our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/we_care_what_you_think

        • #14
          I wanna leave and move with my boyfriend I’ve been so depressed I’ve even been cutting again my parents don’t notice or care I’ll be 18 in September so will I get in trouble if I run away now and he drink a lot

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hey there,

            Thanks so much for reaching out and sharing a little bit about what’s been going on, we know that it takes a lot of courage. We know that stressors can be overwhelming at times and it sounds like you have turned to self-injury as a way to cope. It’s totally understandable that you would want to do something to give you a feeling of power and control when you may feel hopeless. To Write Love on Her Arms is an organization dedicated to supporting people who use this coping mechanism on their road to self-realization and recovery. You can check them out by going to https://twloha.com/. If you’d like some additional support, an organization that may be helpful is the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). You can contact them by calling 1-800-950-NAMI or you can text them by sending NAMI to 741741.

            We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parents can file a runaway report, which is essentially a missing person report. Running away is a status offense; this means that it isn’t illegal, but it’s something you can’t do while still a minor. If a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned home. Since you are so close to turning 18 the police may let you stay where you are but this policy varies greatly from location to location. You may want to call your local non-emergency police line by dialing 311 to verify local policy.

            If you’d like to go over what’s going on in depth, or if you’d like to explore other options that you may have available to you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. You can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support you in any way we can.

            Stay safe,
            NRS

            We'd love to hear from you about your experience using our crisis forum. Your feedback plays an important role in helping us improve our services to support youth and families. Please click the link below to fill out our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/we_care_what_you_think

        • #15
          I'm 17 right now and my birth is in 2 months and ill be 18 can I leave cause me and my girl friend is pregnant and I wont to get a job but my parents wont let me their try to hold me back and I just can take no more I need to start supporting my self and I know I can but they want let me do nothing

          Comment


          • ccsmod1
            ccsmod1 commented
            Editing a comment
            Hey there,

            Thanks so much for reaching out and sharing a little bit about what’s been going on, we know that it takes a lot of courage. It must be really hard to live in a home with so much tension. We aren’t legal experts here at NRS, but generally speaking, if you do opt to leave your home your parents can file a runaway report, which is essentially a missing person report. Running away is a status offense; this means that it isn’t illegal, but it’s something you can’t do while still a minor (until your 18th birthday in 2 months). If a runaway report is filed and you are located by the authorities you will most likely be returned home.

            It makes sense that you would want to start earning money and getting more independence when you are facing parenthood and it seems like your parents don't fully understand how important it is to you. It could be a good idea to work with a local family counselor or have a conversation mediated by a school counselor/social worker, trusted friend, or family member to help clear the air. If you'd like, you can also call us directly and we can conduct a conference call with your parents so you have a safe environment where you can express yourself.

            If you’d like to go over what’s going on in depth, or if you’d like to explore other options that you may have available to you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY. You can also chat us by clicking on the “CHAT” button on top of our homepage. We’re open 24/7 and here to listen and support you in any way we can.

            Stay safe,
            NRS

            We'd love to hear from you about your experience using our crisis forum. Your feedback plays an important role in helping us improve our services to support youth and families. Please click the link below to fill out our survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/we_care_what_you_think
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