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Almost 17. Dad is moving out of grandparents and I want to remain living with them.

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  • Almost 17. Dad is moving out of grandparents and I want to remain living with them.

    Hi! I currently live in Missouri and I’ll be 17 on Sept 1. I have been living in my grandparents house with my grandparents and parents since 2016. My parents separated in 2020, and my dad and I still live with my grandparents. He is going to move in with his girlfriend soon and I want to remain living with my grandparents. They have been my sole providers for years and I consider them my real parents. My dad has been neglectful for years. A few examples include: not taking me to the doctor (I haven’t been since 2015), not buying me groceries, knows nothing about my schooling, spending most days and nights with his girlfriend (sometimes I do not see him for three days + at a time), etc. My mom lives in Florida, but her and I have a good relationship and I know that she would encourage me living with my grandparents instead of my dad. I was just wondering what legal action I could take to remain living with my grandparents, preferably something that won’t be a big court case. Lastly, I know in Missouri they consider 17 years olds adults or charge them as adults, so would I even legally have to move in with him?

  • #2
    Hey there, and thanks for reaching out to us here at NRS. We know that it can take a lot of courage to reach out for support, and we're glad you took that step.

    It sounds like you're having a tough time right now, and we're sorry to hear that. Unfortunately, because the age of majority in your state is 18, you're not legally considered an adult until then. So even though the law might try you as an adult if you get into a legal issue, that does not mean you're considered an adult in other areas. That said, there's no great way to work around your current issue to stay with your grandparents unless you have consent to do so from your dad, or you become emancipated. Because it sounds like you've lived with your grandparents for some time, and they've been responsible for you to some extent, it might make sense for you to try and stay with them with your dad's consent. Maybe your grandparent's would be willing to help you have that conversation with your dad?

    If you'd like to chat in more detail about your situation or continue to explore some of your options with support, please feel free to reach out to us directly by calling 1-800-RUNAWAY, or by chatting with us live at We're available 24/7 and are always happy to listen, and to help.

    Take care.

    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
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