Ask Sam letter


To Sam

do i or dont i?

hi sam,
Ive wrote a few letters before, but well im unsure.
Things have been bad at home, with physical abuse, emotional abuse still going on, neglect which has been in the past! Social services have never helped! they have affected my life so much all for the bad! I know this isnt the case for everyone but they honestly didnt help me at all.
well now in december i turn 16! things at home have never really imporved much, they do sometimes but then loads of really bad things happen! Ive self harmed, struggeled with eating, had sleeping problems and more.
We still dont get on as a family! well i dont get on with them! and well ive spent 2 years researching all of this, looking at the law, what to do, how best to do it. whats happened in the past, done so much research ive probably spent days doing it!
I dont know what to do but it all points to me leaving home! Ive looked into housing by my local area, it may be hard to get but there are people from church who can help me if im desperate! id want to leave this time next year, so i dont mess up with GCSE year! and well i dont think my family will care will they?
I know im protective over my sister and dont want to leave her with all of this! but people keep saying i should look out for myself, ive spoke to childline, but they didnt really help much! and well i dont know what to do!!!!!
Next year do i leave at the age of 16, legally being able to leave and wont be forced home? or do i stay?
dont know if you can help at all, just need some advice! i also sufferr from flash backs from things which have happened! i struggle daily now cause of it, just need help please sam, not got anywhere else to turn for help!
Ask Sam


Hi there,

Thanks for your letter explaining how things are for you at home. First of all I want you to know that the abuse you are suffering at home, physical, emotional and neglect is wrong. It’s not okay for you to be treated in this way. There is more information about abuse and safety on the ChildLine website. 

From what you say, it seems like things have been tough and you have been struggling to cope for some time. It feels like you are undecided on whether to leave home or not in the future, when you reach age 16, and you would really like someone to give you advice and tell you what is the right or best thing for you to do. There's lots of practical advice on the Shelter website for young people about leaving home and the things you need to think about before you leave, they also have a free housing advice helpline on 0808 800 4444 .There is also some information on the ChildLine website about your rights at 16

My advice in this kind of situation would be to speak to an adult, such as a family member, teacher, or maybe someone at church that you trust to help you get the abuse stopped. It can be important to let someone outside the family know how you are being treated as they can often support you to get help you need to get this to stop.

You tell me that you have tried to get help, from social services – who you say didn’t help you at all and also by contacting ChildLine - who you said didn’t help you much. You also say that you have written a few letters to me and you are still unsure and worried about what to do. I am really concerned to hear that you are not getting the support that you need and I would like to encourage you to talk again to ChildLine and explain what help you need and ask them to support you. 

You can talk to them by phoning them free on 0800 1111, 1-2-1 chat or by sending them an email. When you talk to the counsellor this time, you might consider telling them you have called before and you felt it did not help, and tell them what you need to be different about this call or chat, so you can get the help you need. You can also get support from other young people through the ChildLine message boards, you might find some of the people here are in situations similar to yours.

Take care,


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