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Does abuse matter if it's in the past?

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  • Does abuse matter if it's in the past?

    I'm 16 years old and I was kind of physically abused in the past. It stopped about 4 years ago. When I got in trouble they would beat me with a belt and I was often left with bruises. Lately I have began to have nightmares about it and feel unsafe. They are worsening my anxiety and depression and causing me to self harm( my therapist know about this). I'm scared that they will cause me to become sucidal again. The reason I can't report is because I have sibling that would be put in the system but they were never touched. I feel unsafe is there a way I can leave without there permission

  • #2
    Hello and thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Safeline. You are very brave to share your story with us. We can offer you support to handle this situation.

    Our priority is always your safety. You mentioned that you have engaged in self harm. This has got to be really tough. In some cases, it can be helpful to talk through these thoughts with someone. The National Suicide Hotline is available 24/7, just like us, but they have trained counselors that are there to talk through anything that you are thinking or feeling. 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.

    It is unfortunate to hear that you have experienced physical abuse at your home and it has impacted your mental health. If you are continuing to experience physical abuse at your home, then you have the right to file an abuse report through Generally any report of abuse is investigated on a child by child basis, so if you are the only one experiencing abuse then your siblings would generally not be removed from the home as well if they are considered safe. If you are not comfortable filing a report, perhaps it would be beneficial to share with someone in your life. Another option would be to reach out to a trustworthy school counselor or teacher to talk about these issues going on at school and at home. School personnel are great resources and are often easy to talk to.

    It is important to recognize that you are a minor and you would need legal permission to leave your parents’ household. If you would like to discuss additional options for you and your sibling, feel free to reach out to us. You can call us at 1-800-RUNAWAY or chat with us via the chat feature on our website: Best of luck!
    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)


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