Can my parents stop me from moving out?
I am 18 years old and I want to leave home. My parents do not allow me to leave and they threaten me with a lawsuit, they threaten to take my ID, my passport, that they will cancel my health insurance and all payments. I just want to get away from home, and I have a place to go. I literally do not need anything from them, no money or support, literally nothing, I just want to leave. May I leave? What are my rights? If I leave, can they sue me or a man I plan to move in with? Can they do something against us in a legal sense?
The desire and need for greater independence and separation from parents is a natural part of growing up and is understandable at your age. Since you have turned 18, you are of legal age in the eyes of the law with all the rights and obligations that it carries. Therefore, if you want to move out, your parents cannot stop you. On the other hand, leaving parents is a big thing in the life of every young person as well as that person’s parents. When making such decisions, it is important to think carefully about all the responsibilities that independent living brings and whether we can respond to them. At the same time, we should take into account that the demands that life puts before us are not only of a financial and material nature. It is good to have the help and support of people who are important to us – friends, partners, but also parents. From your question I read how the reaction of your parents upsets you which I can certainly understand. Still, it seems to me that such reaction is the result of great concern for you. You did not mention whether you finished school, are you employed, did they meet the person you are planning to move in with? Maybe the answers to these, and I believe many other questions, would ease the situation for them. I believe that your relationship with parents is important to you as well, and I would advise you to talk openly. This means that both parties express their wishes, needs, and concerns, but also listen to others. Open conversation shows maturity, often eases tense life situations and strengthens the relationship between people. If you think that you need support in this, we would be glad if you would contact our counselling centre if you are from Zagreb. If you are from another part of Croatia, we can communicate in another way or I can recommend you an expert who is closer to where you live.