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17 Year Old Son Left House

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  • #16
    My son is 17 (won’t be 18 for 7 months) and refuses to stay home. He came home drunk/high from school 2 days in a row so we grounded him. He said he’s almost 18 and as long as he’s doing well in school it shouldn’t matter what he does. He leaves and I never know when he’s coming home. He’s never gone for more than a day or two but I’m worried the whole time. We packed up his room and said he won’t get any extras until he comes home and stays home. I know that locking him out is illegal but I’m not sure what to do at this point. I have 3 younger children watching this and seeing that my 17 year old just comes and goes as he pleases. Living with family isn’t an option. I’m not 100% sure where he goes. He’s been in trouble with the law and I simply don’t know what to do.


    • ccsmod3
      ccsmod3 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for reaching out to us. It sounds like you are going through a difficult time. It must be hard feeling like you have no control of what happens to your son. It sounds like you are doing the best you can to make sure he has some consequences for his actions but it isn’t working. There is a program in most states called Mins (Minors in need of Supervision) were you could ask for the court to intervene because he is out of control. It typically is for children under 18 so you have a short time to intervene. You could call us at 1800-Runaway and give us your city and state to see the protocol in your state to do the Mins program. It can be hard having a teen who is not listening around your other children at risk of them mimicking that same behavior. It may be a good idea to talk with everyone in the household to give an understanding of your expectations. You could also try counseling, maybe something is going on and that is why he is acting out. If you want some referrals for counseling services you can contact SAMHSA at 1800-662-HELP. If you want to talk to us about any more options you are considering feel free to reach out again. Best of luck with everything!

  • #17
    I have a 20 year old brother who smokes electronic cigarettes. We have been talking to him for almost two years now but all he does is lie. My parents are so worried about him and whenever he goes out they start freaking out because they know that he is mostly out smoking something. He was out the other night and my mom called him and said come home we need to talk to you. He yelled at my mom and said he is with his friends, whom we don’t know, and he would come home whenever he’s done. My dad gets on the phone and said get home right now we want to talk to you. He came home angry. He went upstairs and my dad went too. My dad talked to him about one of his relatives who had got into drugs and what happened to him later. He didn’t say much but then he told my mother that it’s his life and it’s his choices. He also told my mom that we have ruined his life by not respecting his choices. After that night he stopped eating and he locked himself in his room. He didn’t eat anything for two days until my mom started crying and said I can’t stand this situation anymore, and if you’re part of this family, you should act like one and if you’re not, then go out. I know she didn’t mean that but my brother packed and left the house. He has nowhere to go and he’s into drugs. We are so worried about him especially with this Covid 19 situation. He doesn’t pick up his phone.
    What should we do?


    • ccsmod16
      ccsmod16 commented
      Editing a comment
      Thank you for reaching out to us; we are glad that you did. It sounds like you and your family are all in a tough situation. It sounds like everyone is upset, and working from a place of caring. It sounds like talking to him doesn’t work and we hope that there will come a day when someone can listen to him.

      It’s entirely possible that something happened to him that he hasn’t been able to address - maybe he doesn’t know how- and the drugs is a way to self-medicate emotional or physical pain. For the moment, showing an openness to listen without judgement may allow him the confidence to get back in touch.
      And for you alone, or anyone else who might join you, finding a nar-anon meeting for family and friends of addicts will provide expert support for you and your family. to find a meeting or to learn more.

      This is a very difficult time for you, your family and your brother. If he can contact us we can look for shelter for him and listen to him about anything he may want to talk about.

      And that listening and support is open to you and your family as well. The best way for us to help you is to have a conversation with you either through our phone hotline or via live chat. You can reach us at 1800-RUNAWAY or chat at We are here 24/7 and all of our services are confidential.


  • #18
    I’m 17. My mother is crazy. My parents are divorced and I spend a majority of my time with my dad, but I still have to see my mom. She is not abusive but most of our conversations end in yelling and screaming and her telling me I’ve ruined her life. Is it legal for me to not give her visitation rights?


    • ccsmod1
      ccsmod1 commented
      Editing a comment
      Hey there,

      Thanks so much for reaching out and sharing a little bit about what has been going on, we know that it takes a lot of courage. It sounds like your relationship with your mom is very stressed and like it's causing you a lot of anxiety and turmoil. We aren't legal experts here at NRS, so unfortunately we cannot say what you can and cannot do in terms of changing a visitation agreement. You may want to reach out to a legal aid group for assistance in exploring this possibility. You can find a legal aid group near you by going to

      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 family 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,

      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:
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