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  • my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

    Our 13 year old daughter ran away with someone she met on the internet because she doesn't like chores and she wants to live as an adult without boundaries. The guy she met said he was 15 and thankfully he was. We found her within 8 hours of her leaving, but now what?? we still have the same rules, homework, chores, supper as a family then downtime before bed. No changes will be made there. We have 2 other children as well. The new things for her is no phone, no internet. So we figure she will run again. I don't want to live in fear that she will leave. She is in control then, and then we are in for a real problem. Our biggest fear is whether we will find her next time?

  • #2
    Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

    Hello,

    Thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Switchboard and we appreciate you taking the time to contact us for suggestions about what to do if your child chose to leave home again. Although we are in no position to tell you what to do, we want you to know that you can also call us at 1800RUNAWAY 24 hours a day for some support on the issues and we can also provide you with resources local to your city. Since we are not sure where exactly you are from, we can elaborate to some degree on general laws for runaways in most states.

    Running away is not consider a crime in most states but your child, if you so choose to file a runaway report, gets a status offense of a runaway and this makes this child's info go into a computer database called the National Criminal Information Center (NCIC) once you log it with the police. We recommend that you file the report to keep yourself safe from getting charged with neglect and it also helps to verify your child as runaway if the police find her. Since there is no real way to keep a child from leaving, we often recommend that you try to talk to your child about what is really going on underneath the surface to get a real sense of how to approach the issue when your relationship becomes tense at home. It is well within your rights to try whatever method has proven to work in the past with trying to keep her grounded but we tend to feel that limited a child in this situation makes running away even more attractive. However, you know your child best and can attest to what is going to shape her decisions if you do not know for sure what has gotten her to this point.

    We can provide you with intervention to the crisis by telling you more in-depth over the phone or if you let us know more about your city. In some cities, there exists a program called MINS/ CHINS meaning minor in need of services or children in need of supervision. These programs can help with your situation if you were willing to contact your local juvenile justice agency or probation dept to get more insights into these methods of intervening in your child’s behavior. The other method can be shelters for time out or calling the local family courts for suggestions to get help. Have you considered counseling for your daughter or family therapy to get to the root of what is happening. We hope that you can call us for other suggestions and feel we can help more if we had more demographic info. Do you have other support and can you get ideas from friends or relatives? We want to hear from you and hope you call to get some things off your chest but for us to provide you with what is available to you in your state. Please stay strong and good luck.

    -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
    info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

    Tell us what you think about your experience!
    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

      This is a brief summary of my story:
      My daughter is 15 and she stole our van, ranaway to a 14 yr old boy she met on the internet. Her plan was to bring him back home and hide him in our shed until they could get things together and run off to Mexico. On the way back the vans transmission blew and the cops caught her. Thankfully!!
      We tried taking her to counceling with her choice pastor and she said she didn't belong to our family. She hated the chores and babysitting of her siblings. She wants to live her life her way her rules because she is able to take care of herself. She made a list of her demands and said she wanted emancipation.
      We changed the locks on the house. I quit my job to be stay at home mom. She never goes anywhere without me except school. I tried talking with her and spending just girl time together. No cell phone or internet as well for her. We told friends and family for support.
      She ran away from school the next Friday. She got a friend to cover for a sleepover and the parent involved had no idea until she got a text message saying I was looking for my daughter. We got her back and I notified the school to be on alert.
      She has stolen money from us and she has shoplifted at the mall. (possibly more??) Now this all happened in Dec. 08 She just left again on the 23rd. (Jan 09). She callled to say she is ok but that she is not coming home. The police hope we can catch her at school??
      I think that she has suffered a lot of deaths in her life. (7 total) Two she witnessed. I think her mentality is live life to the fullest and don't worry about consequences. She doesn't want to die before she gets the chance to live. I want to get her help!! I can't afford counceling and even if I could she wouldn't talk to them. (I payed $100.00 an hour for her to see a professional in our town and she lasted one session because she refused to talk!)
      I don't know what else to do. She has been entered into the juvinal system for driving without a license. Her intake interview is suppost to be this Wednesday.
      I have all the hurt feelings and emotions that you can understand. I have three other children who are confused and sad. I'm sharing my story because I want others to know they are not alone and maybe someone can help me too!!
      Thanks

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

        Hello,

        Thank you for contacting our bulletin boards and sharing your story with us. Sounds there has been so much going on with your family and it's good to hear that you are even so willing as to seek help from other families that might be going through similar situations.

        Not only have you been through a lot but you've also sought out different types of help. That definitely shows concern and love for your child. Out of everything you've done, you seem to be pretty in tune with the resources you have availbe to you and your family. Are there other agencies that you think might be able to offer something for you?

        Have you contacted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children? They serve as a very good resource for parents of missing children and can be reached at 1800.843.5678. Another agency that helps with parent empowerment and aid is Team HOPE. You can find some help at 1866.305.4673.

        What do you think you are going to do when she returns? Do you have a plan of action that might prevent her from running away? Or a plan that might help her see why she needs to be at home? Do oyu think she needs to be at home?

        If you have more questions and would liek to talk about options a little more, please call us at 1800.RUNAWAY 24hrs a day.

        Best of luck,
        -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
        info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
        1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

        Tell us what you think about your experience!
        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

          Originally posted by Anonymous
          This is a brief summary of my story:
          My daughter is 15 and she stole our van, ranaway to a 14 yr old boy she met on the internet. Her plan was to bring him back home and hide him in our shed until they could get things together and run off to Mexico. On the way back the vans transmission blew and the cops caught her. Thankfully!!
          We tried taking her to counceling with her choice pastor and she said she didn't belong to our family. She hated the chores and babysitting of her siblings. She wants to live her life her way her rules because she is able to take care of herself. She made a list of her demands and said she wanted emancipation.
          We changed the locks on the house. I quit my job to be stay at home mom. She never goes anywhere without me except school. I tried talking with her and spending just girl time together. No cell phone or internet as well for her. We told friends and family for support.
          She ran away from school the next Friday. She got a friend to cover for a sleepover and the parent involved had no idea until she got a text message saying I was looking for my daughter. We got her back and I notified the school to be on alert.
          She has stolen money from us and she has shoplifted at the mall. (possibly more??) Now this all happened in Dec. 08 She just left again on the 23rd. (Jan 09). She callled to say she is ok but that she is not coming home. The police hope we can catch her at school??
          I think that she has suffered a lot of deaths in her life. (7 total) Two she witnessed. I think her mentality is live life to the fullest and don't worry about consequences. She doesn't want to die before she gets the chance to live. I want to get her help!! I can't afford counceling and even if I could she wouldn't talk to them. (I payed $100.00 an hour for her to see a professional in our town and she lasted one session because she refused to talk!)
          I don't know what else to do. She has been entered into the juvinal system for driving without a license. Her intake interview is suppost to be this Wednesday.
          I have all the hurt feelings and emotions that you can understand. I have three other children who are confused and sad. I'm sharing my story because I want others to know they are not alone and maybe someone can help me too!!
          Thanks
          This could be my story!!!!! I am a Grandmother who is 72 years old. I have Custody of THREE of my Grandaughters - all teenagers. Ashley is 18 years old and is presently living with her Mom who is 7 months pregnant and has a history of premature labor, is living alone and Ashley is there to give her moral and emotional support. Ashley's Mom (my youngest daughter) only source of income is SS Disability of $900 a month and she currently lives in a small 4 room apt.

          The problem child is Alissa - 16 years old (will be 17 on 4/27/09) who constantly lies, and is the most deceitful person I've ever met. She is currently hanging with a trashy & criminal crowd, is sexually active with anyone that wants her (she is on birth control pills), and within the past month she has skipped school, stolen $100 out of my wallet, shoplifts at Walmart, and has not come home all day and night twice within the past week. I have filed a Domestic Report with our local police Dept., and reported her as a Missing Persons Report on 4/4/09 - she turned herself in at her Mom's house later that day. When the Police Officer tried talking to her and telling her she must come back to my house, she accussed he of Child Abuse !! (claims I called her names and threw a hanger at her - all lies). This worked as the Police Officer told her to remain at her Mom's house until CPS could resolve this matter.

          Her MOM does NOT want her as she can not support her financially or emotionally and does not have the room for her. Since Alissa has been at her house (the past 4 days), she has lied, insulted her own Mom, and did not come home last night or today. I have contacted a Probation Officer who has advised the critieria for PINS in NYS has changed and despite all of her actions, she does NOT meet the criteria for PINS. I have spoken with the Clerk of Family Court as to sign a Petitionj to Relinquish Custody - told that I could not do this. The PoliceDept has told me that since Alissa is 16, legally their hands are tied and they can not force her to come home.

          Every person I have spoken with have told me they can not help me. Even when I spoke with CPS today, they told me they had NOT ever received any Child Abuse Report on me.

          WHERE ELSE CAN I TURN - NO ONE IS HELPING ME>

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

            Hello,

            We appreciate your post on our page and truly hope that you can reach out to us at 1800RUNAWAY to speak to someone about other options. It sounds like you are going through a tremendous amount of difficult situations with all your grandchildren and we imagine this could be very stressful to you. We want to hear from you so that we can provide you support on the issues. Although we cannot tell you what to do, we want to offer you our ear and give you some options that you may not have considered already. It does not make a lot of sense as to why the 16 year old is acting out with few limited resources already available to her at her mother’s when she is not wanted there. It sounds like you are one of the few people she has but she has not shown much appreciation for that. However, we imagine it is hard to try to convince a young child to value such things when their attention is paid to something else. Can you set up mandatory rules for her in terms of drug test and visits to the doctor if she is able to offer you a full length of positive feedbacks?

            Are there incentives and consequences to doing this or setting up a family contract for her to see the good and bad she is risking? We imagine at 16, the world of a teenager is full of wanting to have fun and she may not be thinking of the long term consequences. It is not our intention to excuse her actions but often there is not a lot the police can do to control it. They may be right in that the events surrounding the child that cause her to not want to listen or follow rules, may alienate an officer responding to the situation, when their hands are tied and not able to enforce it.

            Runaways are not always thought of as a priority for the police because the most they have to do is take a report. It is also not our intention to excuse lack of follow through in that they cannot change things right away but there are other aspects to getting help elsewhere. We hope that you can understand that a child's ability to accept help has to be two way. You can offer and provide all the right sources but if they are not willing to act and see the benefit, it can be hard for everyone involved. Please let us know how we can help. We can be reached 24 hours a day at 1800RUNAWAY for you to speak with a liner here for support and referrals.

            The one thing we can tell you about CPS not receiving a report on you is probably because it was not founded that you have violated anyone or done anything wrong. Typically, reports can be made by anyone if they are concerned for the safety of the child but CPS source these things out and if they have did not come out to your house by now, if the report was done a while ago, or tried to contact you, it is likely they did not find the evidence or issues great enough to warrant an investigation. Could it have been that the youth was calling a bluff to drum up a scare? It sounds like the police you spoke with was able to help in some ways and that they got her to stay with mom once. We are sorry to hear that she did not qualify for PINS. Were you able to get a second opinion on the matter from elsewhere? A lot of what she is doing ought to make her a candidate for it but maybe the requirements have change indeed. What about counseling? Can you speak with people at her school for ideas? We hope some of what we spoke on made sense to you and can guide you a bit more as you continue to work things out at home for your sake and the child's. We are here for you always. She can call us as well for support. Please let us know how we can help. Good luck and stay strong.

            -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
            info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
            1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

            Tell us what you think about your experience!
            https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

            Comment


            • #7
              17 yr old daughter

              My 17 year old daughter has been on the run since 2 weeks ago. I live in CA. She is putting herself in alone of danger by hanging out with the wrong crowd and also putting family at risk. She got jumped two weeks ago because people don't want her close. It extremely difficult for police to look for her. Made the report then missing persons report to national Center. she has been in a treatment facility in Texas for 2 1/2 years. She came out with a diagnosis of PTSD and chronic depression, she has been suicidal in the past. It's been only 1 year since she came out of the residential placement and now doing the same as before. She lost a baby, is using drugs and even though she had an investigation opened with dcfs they are not giving other resources. She's not 18 yet but she wants to have it her way. I'm lost one more time. She needs to be required by law to take her meds because she hasn't taken them for a year. She says its her choice and I can't force her to. Dcfs told her it was optional, what type of help is that.

              Comment


              • #8
                re: 17 yr old daughter

                Hey there,

                Thank you for being able to reach out to us here at the National Runaway Safeline, it seems like you are going through a pretty tough time at this point in your life and we want you to know that we are here to listen and to help in the best way that we can. From what you shared, it seems like your daughter has gone through quite a bit and you have tried what you can as a parent.

                It seems like you have reached out to many resources and tried to see what you are able to do. There is a hotline that we would like to share with you that you can reach out to for support. The hotline is called Team HOPE (Help Offering Parents Empowerment), basically what this hotline focuses on is offering resources and support to parents of runaways and the agency is ran by parents of runaways. The number where they can be reached is: 1-800-305-4673. They are a 24/7 hotline and they would be able to provide you with resources that are in your area or give you some more general information about what you can do as a parent.

                We hope that we were able to provide some support and that we were able to provide you with a hotline that may be able to help you brainstorm some more ideas for you. We are here 24/7 and are always happy to be a listening ear. We wish you the best of luck and hope to hear from you soon.

                Stay strong,

                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
                info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                Tell us what you think about your experience!
                https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                Comment


                • #9
                  Excellent Resources for Caring Parents

                  Originally posted by ccsmod5 View Post
                  Hey there,

                  Thank you for being able to reach out to us here at the National Runaway Safeline, it seems like you are going through a pretty tough time at this point in your life and we want you to know that we are here to listen and to help in the best way that we can. From what you shared, it seems like your daughter has gone through quite a bit and you have tried what you can as a parent.

                  It seems like you have reached out to many resources and tried to see what you are able to do. There is a hotline that we would like to share with you that you can reach out to for support. The hotline is called Team HOPE (Help Offering Parents Empowerment), basically what this hotline focuses on is offering resources and support to parents of runaways and the agency is ran by parents of runaways. The number where they can be reached is: 1-800-305-4673. They are a 24/7 hotline and they would be able to provide you with resources that are in your area or give you some more general information about what you can do as a parent.

                  We hope that we were able to provide some support and that we were able to provide you with a hotline that may be able to help you brainstorm some more ideas for you. We are here 24/7 and are always happy to be a listening ear. We wish you the best of luck and hope to hear from you soon.

                  Stay strong,

                  NRS
                  THANK YOU SO MUCH for supplying excellent information and resources to so many very caring parents out there who are dealing with extremely challenging situations. I run a parent support program - it's my job. I get frustrated when I see sites or others that engage in parent-blaming when most of the parents I work with have done the very best they know how to help their children. It is very, VERY hard to be a parent, especially if a child has suffered any sort of trauma, has any mental health or substance abuse issues or is simply stronger willed. The internet and social media does not help either. And if the parent has suffered trauma, there are additional challenges.
                  Where is the manual for "fixing our children"??? There isn't one. Kudos to the parents who reach out for help, and to this site for offering resources and empathy to the parents looking for help.
                  Let's hope that there will be more and more funding available to start PROGRAMS THAT SUPPORT PARENTS OF TEENS. There are very few out there - but they work. Support groups, case management, and education can be very helpful.
                  Keep up the good work.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    RE: Excellent Resources for Caring Parents

                    Thanks so much for sharing! It is great to hear about other organizations supporting parents. We are here to listen and support parents and families of any youth in crisis. Being a parent is a huge challenge. Thank you for the work you do, and please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you know any parents who are in need of support or a listening ear.
                    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
                    info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                    1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                    Tell us what you think about your experience!
                    https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

                      Originally posted by ccsmod8 View Post
                      Hello,

                      Thank you for reaching out to the National Runaway Switchboard and we appreciate you taking the time to contact us for suggestions about what to do if your child chose to leave home again. Although we are in no position to tell you what to do, we want you to know that you can also call us at 1800RUNAWAY 24 hours a day for some support on the issues and we can also provide you with resources local to your city. Since we are not sure where exactly you are from, we can elaborate to some degree on general laws for runaways in most states.

                      Running away is not consider a crime in most states but your child, if you so choose to file a runaway report, gets a status offense of a runaway and this makes this child's info go into a computer database called the National Criminal Information Center (NCIC) once you log it with the police. We recommend that you file the report to keep yourself safe from getting charged with neglect and it also helps to verify your child as runaway if the police find her. Since there is no real way to keep a child from leaving, we often recommend that you try to talk to your child about what is really going on underneath the surface to get a real sense of how to approach the issue when your relationship becomes tense at home. It is well within your rights to try whatever method has proven to work in the past with trying to keep her grounded but we tend to feel that limited a child in this situation makes running away even more attractive. However, you know your child best and can attest to what is going to shape her decisions if you do not know for sure what has gotten her to this point.

                      We can provide you with intervention to the crisis by telling you more in-depth over the phone or if you let us know more about your city. In some cities, there exists a program called MINS/ CHINS meaning minor in need of services or children in need of supervision. These programs can help with your situation if you were willing to contact your local juvenile justice agency or probation dept to get more insights into these methods of intervening in your child’s behavior. The other method can be shelters for time out or calling the local family courts for suggestions to get help. Have you considered counseling for your daughter or family therapy to get to the root of what is happening. We hope that you can call us for other suggestions and feel we can help more if we had more demographic info. Do you have other support and can you get ideas from friends or relatives? We want to hear from you and hope you call to get some things off your chest but for us to provide you with what is available to you in your state. Please stay strong and good luck.

                      -NRS
                      ok thanks for the help.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: my 13 year old ran away, we found her, now what?

                        Hello again,

                        We are glad that you found some of this information useful. Please do reach out to us through our 24 hour hotline or through our online chat if you want to continue discussing your situation.

                        Best of luck,
                        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
                        info@1800runaway.org (Crisis Email)
                        1-800-RUNAWAY (24 Hour Hotline)

                        Tell us what you think about your experience!
                        https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YourOpinionMattersToUs

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          My 13 year old daughter ran away yesterday at 9am. I did file a missing child report with the police. I have asked her friends if they knew where she were, they all said no but I think one of them know for sure. My daughter ran away because I took her phone for doing everything and anything she wanted to do. I have been up all night and can't sleep. I am almost about to go to the hospital. I think I'm having a nervous break down. Help me please. I have stoped going to work. And if I don't work we won't hand no where to stay. I guess I need some one to talk to.
                          Last edited by ccsmod7; 12-23-2018, 04:34 PM.

                          Comment


                          • ccsmod7
                            ccsmod7 commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Thanks so much for reaching out. You are in one of the scariest situations a parent can be in, but it shows a lot of strength that even under this kind of stress, you are doing everything you can to help your daughter, including filing a runaway report with the police and contacting us at NRS.

                            Since you have already contacted the police, the National Center on Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) could be a really helpful resource. NCMEC has programs and services to assist law enforcement, families and professionals in finding a child who has run away or is missing. They can also help you ensure that local law enforcement enters your daughter’s name in the FBI’s National Crime Information Center Missing Person File. You can reach NCMEC 24/7 at 1-800-843-5678.

                            Child Find of America is another helpful resource that helps with investigation, prevention, mediation, and support to families with a missing child. You can call 24/7 at 1-800-426-5678. The number will connect you with an intake coordinate who will guide you through their process and connect you with appropriate resources.

                            Since it sounds like it would be helpful for you to talk to someone who understands what you’re feeling right now, a good number to call is Team H.O.P.E. They provide peer support to families of missing youth from a group of people who have had a child missing at some point. They know the pain, fear, frustration and loneliness that comes with having a child missing. You can reach Team HOPE at 1-866-305-4673.

                            Finally, you can reach out to us any time at 1-800- RUNAWAY (786-2929). We are here to talk, and help connect you with any additional resources and support you may need. We wish you the best of luck.
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