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Home and family

Are you worried about your family and things at home?

Most families have problems at some time. This can include serious illness, a death, money problems, family members not getting on or finding it difficult to talk about problems.

All this can affect you in different ways, so before you decide to leave home or make a wrong decision, it may be worth talking things over with someone.

Whatever the problem, there are organisations with friendly advice workers who will listen and not judge you. They have already advised many young people and will help you talk through your problems in confidence. 

There is help and advice available at Platform. At Lift there are dedicated youth workers that are on hand for advice or simply to have a chat, including the Progress Team for young people. For further information see related links section.

Organisations that can help:

  • GOV.UK - information and advice and benefits, parenting, money and more

See also the services and related information below.

Family life

If you are helping to look after someone in your family who is ill, has a disability or other health problems, you are a carer.

Many young people are looking after parents or brothers and sisters. Parents may come to rely on them to help with shopping, cooking, cleaning and providing nursing or personal care.

It can be difficult to do all this and go to school, keep up with homework and spend time with friends. You can feel very alone and be scared that the family will be split up or taken into care.

But you need to take care of yourself too. If you can talk to a teacher at school or college, or your doctor, that's great but if not there are support services available, as well as young carers’ groups offering support and the chance to talk to other people in the same situation.

Organisations that can help:

  • Childline - advice and support
  • The Mix - lots of advice and support for under 25s
  • GOV.UK - information and advice and benefits, parenting, money and more
  • Relate - help for children and young people

See the services and related information below.

Teenage Pregnancy

Think you may be pregnant?

Get a free pregnancy test as soon as you can, through your GP or young people’s contraceptive service or one of these centres.  You can also buy a pregnancy test kit from a chemist’s or supermarket.

Know you are pregnant?

You can get confidential halp and advice from your GP, or a doctor at a contraceptive service to make sure you are in good health. If you don't want them to, they won't tell your parents or carers.

They will help you think about the choices you have - there are more choices open to you if you ask for help early.

Talking to friends and family can help but make sure you get help and advice from experts before making any decisions.

Teenage parent?

If you have decided to have your baby and to look after it yourself, or with the help of your family, there are local organisations, with friendly advice workers and medical staff, who can give you advice and practical support, and who will not judge you.

Organisations that can help:

See the services and related information below.

Difficult relationships

Relationships with family and friends are important but sometimes they can be difficult and make you unhappy.

  • Do you always feel that you are arguing with your parents or carers?
  • Do you have difficulty getting along with your family?
  • Have you lost someone you love, through separation or death?
  • Have you been treated badly or abused, is someone hitting you, or saying cruel things to hurt you, or blaming you unfairly for things that have happened in your family?

Many young people do but if it is getting you down you may need to talk to someone about it. Very often these people have had similar experiences to you, or have helped other young people going through a difficult time in their lives. They will understand how you feel and will get you help and support if you want it.

See the services and related information below.

Orgamisations that can help:

Leaving home and homelessness

If you are not getting on with your family or carers, or if there are reasons why you no longer feel safe at home, you may want to leave.

Leaving home with nowhere to go is risky. You could find yourself homeless, so think carefully whether there are other ways to solve your problems.

  • Could you stay with friends or other relatives for a while?
  • If you have left after a row, is there a chance that things could be sorted out at home once everyone has calmed down?
  • Try talking to a friend or contact an organisation who can give you confidential advice without judging you.

If you decide to leave home, or if you have to leave in a hurry because of violence or abuse, try to get some help and advice on finding somewhere to stay to avoid sleeping rough. There are local and national organisations that can find you temporary accommodation at any time of the day or night.

If someone in your family, or a friend, has left home and is missing, there are organisations that support people who have run away and those who are looking for them.

Orgamisations that can help:

Watching the video below may offer some help or advice. See also the services and related information below.