I’ve run away: what should I do?

I’ve run away: what should I do?

If you’ve left your home, you must think about your safety and also about getting in touch with your loved ones, who are probably very worried. Here are some tips to help you.

Does a problem seem hopeless to you? Are you thinking of leaving?

Maybe you can confide in a friend or relative who will know what to do? We can also help you because the Missing Children foundation exists first of all to help minors. You can contact us 24/7 on 116 000. If you want to remain anonymous, call us on a hidden number.

It's free and confidential.

How can I stay out of danger?

How can I stay out of danger?

  • If I am travelling, I keep in touch with a relative from a distance.
  • I keep in mind that I may be more vulnerable today.
  • I keep an eye on the food and drinks that are offered to me.
  • I don't let myself be lulled by pointless chatter; I stay alert and I observe what's going on around me.
  • I evaluate my choices alone and allow myself to change my mind at any time.
  • I agree on a code in my text messages so that my friends or family can be sure that it is really me.

Keeping in contact?

Keeping in contact?

You may be feeling rebellious, you may disagree, you may be hurt or you may be in more serious trouble...

How can people know whether you're okay?

If none of the people around you seem safe enough to help you, we are here... Call us because we can't just sit back and convince ourselves that everything is fine with you.

If we find out that you are no longer keeping on touch, we will have to act. We will try to contact you directly. If necessary, we will publish a report about your disappearance on social media.

Advice from a globetrotter

When hitchhiking, I probably got into over a thousand vehicles. I had four problems: one at 12, two at 14, one at 16, and nothing since!

I think I’ve said: "Thank you, goodbye" and let about 20% of the drivers go ahead without me. On the other hand, 98% of the cars drove off without me if the driver and passenger were male and I was alone.

In case of a problem, you must attract attention by any means. Honk the horn, gesticulate when you cross paths with someone.

I think that real criminals are quite rare and that most people are kind and well-meaning.

However, experience has shown me that men tend to fantasise about hitchhikers, even within a very healthy context.

It seemed important to me to share my experiences with you.

Hitchhiking

So here's how I encourage drivers to cultivate their good intentions.

When hitchhiking, I choose my clothes accordingly. For me, being sexy is synonymous with trouble.

I have already programmed the local police emergency number on a speed dial on my phone.

I don't put my bag in the trunk, I keep it handy

FEAR: if my brain keeps playing a disaster movie over and over, I change my plans and don't hitchhike. I’ve always thought that if I focused on an attack, I would be attacked.

When a driver stops, I don't give him time to wonder where I'm going. I'm the one who asks my question first: "Where are you going?" At that point, I focus on the other person's face to try to detect if he or she is allright. A caring person looks me in the eye, knows their destination, doesn't need to think. If they ask me the same question, it's a bad sign. I thank them and I leave. Any hesitant or evasive answer such as "I’ll go wherever you want" is a very clear signal of danger.

I make sure I’m in no hurry, as haste has already led me to ignore my rules of caution.

When I am alone, I get into a vehicle with one or two people or with a couple with children.

If I feel apprehensive or afraid, I allow myself to change my mind at any time.

I take control of the silences. I ask questions about the driver's life, their family and the purpose of their trip but remain discreet about mine. I have time on the way to take a sincere interest in this person, I listen to what they have in common while reassessing the situation from time to time.

For my part, I share memories and anecdotes, but I don't give any specific information about myself (except that someone is waiting for me somewhere).

I remain alert and observant; I take calculated risks.

I ask to be dropped off in a well-lit, inhabited location, where it is easy to stop, such as a gas station or in the centre of a village.

I’m afraid of going home

This is definitely the time to talk with us to see what could change.
Call us on 116 000.
We can take certain steps with you and for you.