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Talking to Parents
Trouble with stepdad
Posted on: 06/20/2007
My stepdad is trying to turn my mom against me!! And he degrades me!!by calling me stupid and a dumb!@# and etc. i need advice on how to legally leave the home and area? Please HELP
The situation with your stepfather certainly sounds intolerable. The state of Texas where you live will have a variety of laws that are intended to help minors who are being victimized in this way. Because I am not familiar with the specific laws in Texas, I can only explain in a general way what might be available to you. In many states, your stepfather's behavior would be considered emotional abuse which you could report to Child Protective Services or to your school counselor. In most cases, CPS does not remove children from their home and place them in foster care, although that is a possibility. It is more likely that your stepfather would be monitored and he would be required to take parenting classes, therapy etc. In some states a person under 18 can file a paper in court asking to be an "Emancipated Minor" who can live independently. Usually you would have to prove that you can support yourself financially in order to qualify, which is tough to do at a time when you are still in high school. If you have a relative--grandmother, aunt etc who could offer you a home, that person could ask the court to be named as your guardian. This can happen voluntarily if your parent(s) agree to it, or involuntarily if it is proved in court that your mother and stepfather cannot provide a safe home for you. Sometimes families agree to an informal arrangement to have a child live with a relative even if that person is not the legal guardian.
As you can see there is no guaranteed way to leave home at your age. This does not mean that you should give up and just live with your stepfather's abuse. At a minimum, you should talk to a counselor at school so that adults outside your family know what is going on and can help you.