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Almost Ready- 17 and leaving soon

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  • Almost Ready- 17 and leaving soon

    I'm a couple months away from being 18. I have an unbearable abusive home setting and I have been planning my leaving home for a while now. I will be running to Texas where I have a safe place to go where I'll be given a place to stay and the opportunity to finish my education once I'm of legal age. I'm not posting here to be told to find another way to deal or to talk to my parents so honestly please don't waste your time with the repeating what I say in your words and inconspicuous trying to talk me out of what I'm planning. Nor do I want to hear how whoever is giving me somewhere to go might be in trouble for the harboring thing, I'm aware of this. I just have a few questions. You seem like a nice organization and I'm really grateful for any help you can give me.
    1. The mckinney veto act, does it only help people under 18? Or can I use it to help me once I'm 18? And while on the subject of school, I can enroll in school and finish up high school without my parents permission/signatures when I'm 18, right? Finishing high school is very important to me; I would rather a diploma than a ged but if ged is the only option I'll have left that won't stop me from running, sorry. But I would like to ensure the best options for my education after I'm on the run if that's possible.
    2. How traceable are plane tickets? This will most likely be my get-away transportation and I do know ticketing and passenger information are absolutely kept track of I just am wondering how traceable. I know you don't know exactly, thats ok I would just like your estimate. What I'm meaning is how long do you think it would take for the police to find my trail. (And yes, my parents will definitly report me as a runaway.) And what action might be taken if this information is found in your opinion? I'd like to know the cause-effect of what will happen if I'm traced.
    3. How do I clear my runaway status offense once I turn 18? Is it as simple as going into a police station and showing my ID?
    4. Again, you might not know this but I'd appreciate any estimates. What is the protocol for obtaining a social security card and birth certificate once I'm 18? I will have neither, I have no clue where they are but these are crucially important documents which I'll need to be successful once I'm of age and on my own. There has to be a way to obtain them without either of them. I'd appreciate if you could tell me what the process is.
    5. This last question surrounds your hotline. Can I use to message system just to inform my parents of my safety? Or must there be big promises of wanting to come home to take advantage of this nice system. Also, can I only use generic or general messages in this system or could I leave things like the location of notes? If I call while on the run you will record and/or report my information/area/number/any other info you get? I saw on another thread that you are mandated reporters. This makes me uneasy to call. Do you report all of your caller information to the police? Are you recording and/or reporting my ip address right now? Sorry to be paranoid, but I am curius and would really like to know for my own caution.

    Thank you and sorry this inquery has turned out to be long and irksome. I look forward to your reply, it will be an incredible help. Hopefully it will give me some peace of mind to know some of these things, thank you again.

  • #2
    Re: Almost Ready- 17 and leaving soon

    Thank you for posting a bulletin. Wow, it sounds like you have done a lot of research, which can be helpful in knowing what your options are. We are not here to tell you what you should or should do. However, we can assist with exploring options with you.

    We are sorry to hear about the abuse that you have endured. No one deserves to be abused and everyone has the right to feel safe in their own home. Have you talked to anyone about the abuse you have been experiencing (friend, teacher, relative, counselor or someone you trust)? How do you feel about talking to Child Protective Services (CPS)? If you would like to make a report or want information about abuse, then they can assist with that. When you call CPS, what they usually do is take the information and determine what their next step will be. Sometimes callers will ask them what they will do next. The more information you can provide to CPS can help to build your case. Also anyone can make a report on your behalf that is aware of the abuse. You can contact Child Help USA at 1-800-4-A-CHILD (422-4453) or you can view their website: for more information. But if you feel like you’re in immediate danger, then it is best call 911.

    You pose a good question about the age limit regarding the McKinney-Vento Act. Unfortunately, don’t have the answer to that. However, if you go to the National Center for Homeless Education website:, it maybe able t better direct you for that information. Once you are on their website, you can click on “State/Local Resources,” then go to the map to click on the state of Texas. From there, it will direct you to the contact person in that state. It sounds like your education is important to you and hopefully the local contact person can provide some assistance as to the age limit.

    We are not able to comment about how “traceable” air tickets are, but that would be a good question for the airline carrier you are booking your ticket with. Also the police response depends on when your parents make the runaway report. From that point it would depend on the local police. Running away is considered a “status offense". It soulds like you are familiar with this term. This means that the police will take the report and put it in the data base. Police don’t usually do searches for runaways, but that could be something that your parent may do. However, if they pick you up and run your name; they will see that your status is a runaway. They mostly will return you back home, unless you disclose to the police that home is not safe. It sounds like home has been feeling safe for you. Status offenses are usually removed after you have been returned back home or if the police detain you or if your parents contact the police to let them know you have been found. If you would like more information regarding how the police handle runaways and status offense; you can contact your local police to provide the specifics.

    We are a 24/7 non-judging, anonymous and confidential crisis line. This means we do not record our calls, no caller ID or reporting to the police since we do not required that from our general callers. However if you would like to use our message relay, then we do need identifying information (such your name, DOB, and parents contact information). This message relay is a means to reopen up communication with you and your parents and can be used two times each. After that we would encourage a conference call. We also want to let you know that we are mandated reports, which means if you give us identifying information (like what we require for message relay); we have to report it to CPS. We want to let you know we do not have the answers for everything. We are here to help discuss options such as possible ways of obtaining your social security card and birth certificate, find local resources/referrals. Our number is 1-800RUNAWAY (786-2929). We look forward in hear from you if you would like to discuss in more detail about your situation. We wish you the best. Please be safe in the mean time!

    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
    [email protected] (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

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