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Homeless and a Teen? How to Survive

Homeless and a Teen? How to Survive


No one becomes homeless if there’s a better option. Hi guys, I’m Stevie and I was a homeless teen. I’m a little ashamed that I’ve never talked about this before and I want to change that. I was homeless on and off from about age 16 to about age 22. I’m going to give you advice on how to survive homelessness but, just a disclaimer. That’s not gonna… My advice is not gonna work for everyone. I’m white and I was able-bodied as fuck as a teen and pretty neurotypical and I lived in a small town in the US. But this video is directed at past Stevie, teen Stevie. I just want to tell her some stuff that maybe would have helped her if she had heard it. And if it helps you too – great. First of all fuck all this positive thinking bullshit and fuck feeling sorry for yourself. You can’t afford to and you definitely can’t manifest yourself out of this shitty of a situation. You have to learn how to fight. If at all possible, stay in school. You are safe there because they will protect you. You can get food at school. You can get showers at school. You can prepare for the future by getting a degree. If you have the option to emancipate yourself, please do it. Emancipation is something a court gives you to declare legal independence from your family. It’s kind of difficult to do depending on your circumstances, and it costs money, so I couldn’t but I wish I would have. Holy shit. If you can’t emancipate yourself, immunization records, educational guardianship and proof of residence are all things you’re gonna need to be able to go to school and they can all be faked. Google that shit and print that shit out and sign it. The worst that can happen is they find out that you faked the signature and then they won’t let you to go to school which would have happened anyway if you didn’t have the papers. This should be fucking illegal but I was kicked out of a school for not having the right paperwork and not being able to produce papers to them So, I moved to a new town and faked the papers. Also, if you do not emancipate yourself, and you live in the U.S. you can not qualify for financial aid for college unless you turn 26, have a baby or get married. Or unless your biological parents give you their tax…their like IRS tax information and sign off on it. *Finger guns* So, if you have shitty parents, good luck. Fuck, I wish someone would have told me that if you cannot go to school, please find a hobby. Mine was people watching and practicing lying to strangers. This might help keep you out of trouble with drug dealers. Lots of hobbies are free. Find yours. I never begged for food or money for food. I would just walk into a grocery store, pretend like I was shopping, eat the food and then leave. I was also on Government-funded free lunches and breakfasts while I was at school so on school days, I was fed. When I was 20, I went to a lot of soup kitchens and churches that provide food Oh! Also, ask your friends to bring you granola bars and stuff from their parents’ kitchen because then you can keep it in your backpack. *heavy sigh* Finding somewhere to sleep. These are the questions that I recommend you ask yourself. Is it dry? Is there a clean water source nearby? Do you have at least two visible escape routes? Is it hidden but close enough to people so that if you do scream someone can hear you? Do you have something there that looks innocent but could be used as a weapon? Even if your answers to all of those questions aren’t yes for your desired sleeping spot just be aware that some of the answers aren’t yes. Sometimes I would stay at friends’ houses until their parents found out that I was homeless and then not let me be friends with them anymore Thanks mom and dads. They would usually call the cops. I slept in an old abandoned barn. I slept in abandoned houses. I slept in my gym locker room at school. I even once lived in a Mardi Gras float that was being stored in an empty field because it wasn’t parade season. Little Stevie, listen to me. If you finally find somewhere safe to stay and the person that gave it to you expects sex you do not have to give it to them. You do not owe it to them. But if you do have survival sex you are not a bad person. That person is taking advantage of you, not the other way around. If you get caught sleeping somewhere you shouldn’t be, lie. Tell them you’re meditating. Laws against sleeping in public are designed to arrest the homeless not to prosecute them, so just tell them you were just leaving blahblah Sorry, you didn’t know this was private property, whatever. Maybe look into youth shelters. Adult shelters will not accept kids, but maybe you could try using a fake ID. But youth shelters are sometimes worse than jails and they’re not very safe. That might not be true where you are so check the links in the description. Oh my god, I’m putting so many resources in the description but figure out your options, use Google. Call counselors or therapists or City Council people. Just call them anonymously and ask for resources. Use your skills and access information. Stay away from drugs and drug users and drug dealers if you can. This can be really difficult. Definitely don’t use drugs, smoke cigarettes, drink alcohol. Not only are these bad for your health and lead to addictions. I’m sure everyone has told you. But, they one, cloud your judgment and two, they’re expensive. You need to be sober and have a quick mind and healthy body to be able to survive. Find something you enjoy. Learn to play an instrument. Make a friend that works at a museum. Find a specific place, maybe a park, to go to when you do feel tempted to do things you know you shouldn’t be doing, that might not be particulary safe. Staying away from drugs is the thing that saved my life. Try not to commit any crimes. This will probably be impossible, so see it more as a guideline. You are not a bad person if you have to break the law to survive. But a potential employer might not see it that way if 20 years from now they’re checking your record and they don’t hire you because you had to steal bread to eat. Here’s what they don’t tell you. If you are under 18 and you commit a crime, your record is confidentially sealed. In some states, certain jobs will allow employers to uncover juvenile records but I’ve never had my juvenile record uncovered, and I’ve had like a full-on FBI background check, and I had a long-ass rap sheet including being arrested for a felony, but becoming a criminal could be a surefire way to ruin your life. Stay away from it if you can. You cannot afford to be idealistic. You will be stolen from. You will be taken advantage of. Accept it. Make peace with this horrible truth and then try to limit the situations that it might happen in. Be very submissive with police and lie to them. I don’t even have… I don’t even know how to give advice about this but You’ll probably run into police a lot. Befriend one of them. My cop friend’s name was Stretch and he was seven feet tall and so sweet. But when cops would try to arrest me, I would just tell them to call Stretch. I just be like he’s my friend, or he’s my uncle. He’s my uncle Stretch. I don’t even… They would almost always let me go and they never called him. Lying is a survival skill but it’s so different for everyone. I don’t even know how to teach you how to but I do have one tip. If you need to go into a building you’re not supposed to be in, pretend you’re on the phone. Even say something embarrassing. People will not know what to say or how to interrupt your phone call so they’ll just let you go, they’ll just let you walk by. Try to learn when to lie and when to tell the truth. Some people will want to help you and about half of those can and about half of those will. When you apply for a job, you have to try to not look homeless. What does homeless look like? Well. This is a whole other video. Luckily teenagers carrying backpacks is totally normal but you need an address to get a job. Do not get a P.O. box. Get a mailbox at like UPS or a kind of place… I forget what the one I got was. It looks like it could be an address. Instead of saying box number you can just say number and then it’ll just look like an apartment. If you are under 18, when you do have a home, even if you’re over 18, don’t get too comfortable. But especially if you’re under 18, since you can’t sign a lease people can kick you off for any reason. If you are a homeless teen, I really hope this video helps you. I’m sorry. Even though I’ve never met you, I care. And I’ve been through this and survived. It was the worst time in my life and things only got better from there. I hope that helps you feel less alone.

100 thoughts on “Homeless and a Teen? How to Survive”

  1. Wow, you really are awesome, brave and inspiring, I myself have given shelter to a couple of homeless girls, best feeling in the world to be able to help someone, you are amazing and very wise beyond your yrs. Much love from Arizona.

  2. Anyone in the UK between 16-22 that can provide ID can be given emergency housing and even permanent housing with Forem. Head to your local job centre at 18 and apply for universal credit if you’re not working.
    Also, the council is often willing to pay your rent, if you’re very low income and in need of a house. It’s worth going to the Job Centre or calling the council 💞 Stay safe 💞

  3. What’s up mad-dogg here auntie picture looking for friends in Florida I’ll be homeless wit you right now please if you notice my auntie leave a message

  4. Put newspaper/magazines in your shirt when it's cold. It cuts the wind and provides insulation. Also, you can try to find a place to sleep in 24 hour walmarts. Go at night when there aren't a lot of people and sleep behind the toilet paper or something else. Good luck out there, and remember that one day maybe it will be better. The world is a shit hole and homelessness is hell but we're all surviving. Keep holding on.

  5. It pisses me off so much when people don't respect the homeless. I always help out homeless people when I see them cause I know what it's like. So many ignorant people treat them like animals and say they got themselves into their situation. There isn't always something they could have fucking done to help themselves, and even if there was, why the hell have no compassion for other human beings? Just because they fucked up somehow and screwed themselves over (WHICH ISN'T ALWAYS THE CASE, A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE NO CHOICE) doesn't mean you shouldn't help them. If people could get out of their motherfucking self-centered, narcissistic minds for 2 goddamn seconds and help someone who needs it, maybe homelessness wouldn't be such an issue. Sorry for ranting but shit like that makes me mad.

  6. Eso me hace pensar que los gringos no son muy hospitalarios como aquí en México. Aquí la gente suele ayudar a otra si no tiene donde quedarse, un lugar donde dormir hasta que te dan una oportunidad de buscar un empleo para después aportar algo en la casa. Si no te aceptan es solo porque eres problemático y no te interesa trabajar. Mientras tanto, eres bienvenido si tienes cualidades que ayuden no solo en la casa, si no también a ti mismo.

    Lamento que hayas tenido que pasar por esa situacion, hubieses sido bienvenida en mi casa.

  7. I'm one of the lucky ones. I'm crashing on a cot on my friends room and soon my other friend is gonna help me call CPS and we hope his dads will adopt me but I can't get my hopes up.

  8. I'm literally crying this was so helpful. Being thrown out is my main fear due to my guardian and seeing a YouTuber talk about it and actually not be ashamed and be so helpful gives me so much hope.

  9. This is probably a good video to leave this comment: if anyone in or near Pennsylvania has a place I can stay at for a few days, I'd really really appreciate it 💕

  10. Join couch surf and lie about being homeless just tell folks your traveling and make sure you check profiles!

  11. Im homeless and i know that you can get money from sosial services and use it ramen is the cheapest thing you can eat

  12. I'm 33 and I'm about to be homeless in Humble Tx… Luckily I have a tent but no ride. Stuffs going to start sucking real soon.

  13. Life can really deal you a bad hand, however you never know how the games going to end until the last card is played. "Play to win"

  14. When i first moved to halifax n.s. canada i was homeless and it was the best thing i could ask for bc i learned the ins and outs of soup kitchens and even not being homeless i stíll wént there

  15. Baruch HaShem I m living in a country where people is so helpful. Here in my country, the government is paying rent and bills. We call those social apartments, and if you serv Israel Defence forces IDF you get a lot of chances for the scholarship at university. Synagogues are so good and helping, on Shabbats we open our doors to strangers. And my religious Orthodox Jewish community will never use someone, take advantage of innocent people. How evil someone must be to expect sex from an innocent young girl or boy in hard times. My home in Jerusalem is open and free to use for everyone. How Rabbi. Nachman said, "If you don't have love, you don't know HaShem – G-d; Where is no love there is no God"! I was educated by my parents to share everything with people. I help a stranger if she/he asks for help because my grandmother was saved in Poland during WW 2 by a total stranger, the good polish girl saved my grandmother from concentration camps and gas chambers. She taught me how important is to help others because in hard times for Jews in Europe she vas saved. Homles person is a good person, just having a hard time and our obligation is to help, and not ask for things in return! Just help and support

  16. Wow you are a beautiful woman. YouTube has brought to light what many want to keep hidden, homelessness has no permanent solution!

  17. Wow… This is… I don't even know what to call it.
    To think of the lack of stability and a place to put your head on must have been devastating.
    Some of the advice resonated with me because those are some of the things that I do while wild camping in my travels. To think that's not out of choice. Geezus, woman. You're strong, you're amazing.

  18. Good information. You're helping a lot of people. Actually they should teach survival skills in school…just in case people need them. And your video should be high on that list. Thank you.

  19. How did your parents get away with child neglect, and what about the school bus dropping you off at your house? (Unless you didn’t get the bus or the bus stop wasn’t at your house)

  20. I’m the opposite of homeless & I was just trying to find out teens can because homeless even though it’s child neglect.

  21. I used to work for a county commissioner. You can anonymously call your commissioner for resources! We helped connect people to resources all the time.

  22. Holy shit Stevie. I doubt you'll see this but just wanted you to know how it affected me….
    I first watched this 3 weeks ago (September 2019). I live in Manchester, England and am pleased to say that I have never been homeless. HOWEVER, as a result of this video I am now a volunteer worker for an organisation that helps homeless teens with food, clothing, beds etc, along with help & advice.
    More power to you Stevie xx

  23. What in the fuck is wrong with people? We have like a way too big house and growing up all we had to do was tell our parents 'hey this is my friend, they have been kicked out' and they were allowed to stay as long as they needed

  24. This breaks my heart. And it hurts me even more knowing that I am not even thankful for all the privileges I have. I am sorry 😢

  25. I just subscribed this channel. This video is so amazing!! It open my mind that i still lucky to be able to live in such a way. Thankyou stevie 💕

  26. Hi !

    I actually super shitty parents too! When I went to college at 19 I was able to apply for financial without being 26, pregnant or married! I applied to be an independent with my school, where I submitted an essay that explained my circumstances. It was relatively easy and saved me a lot of stress. My school also provided me with more financial aid than before – so for people who want to go to school, there are other ways to get financial aid and support your ways! Make sure to talk to financial services at schools because they are a valuable resource even if you dont end up attending their school!

  27. I got kicked out I'm 15 my girlfriend my parents New her as my friend they walked in on me kissing her and scramed at me I told run home I'll text you later my parents are abusive and I didnt want her getting hurt
    After my parents where like lesbians won't be accepted in this danm you should blah blah blah pack your shit and get out I called one of my friend over he helped me I usally don't cry he was my child hold friend he handnt seen me cry in years nobody did but my girlfriend so not even my parents I text her and said I'm gonna be couch jumping at friends for a couple nights she asked why and I said I'll explain I'm coming over hold on a couple minutes so we drove over there my friends 17 so has a driver's license and I told her her mom New abouts I thank god she's letting me stay at here house

  28. Just watched Weenie have been watching you for several years and somehow managed to miss this video on your channel. I am very glad you chose to put your experience in a short. Also great choice in teaming up with Keara Graves. Have a great day Weenie.

  29. Norwegian kids; there are too many systems in place for anyone to be homeless. There are rules saying that you must attend school. If your parents are shit and kick you out. Talk to the school asap. Be real and honest with them. Don’t Lie. If you meet a person Who dosent listen, go to the next. They care, and will do most of the work/heavy lifting for you.
    Dont Even think about trying to be homeless.

  30. You honestly turned out very well from a homeless teen at age 16 to now a pretty famous YouTube “Celeb” (in or books😉😋😂)

  31. Stevie giving advice:
    “if you get caught sleeping somewhere you shouldn’t be”
    “Lie”😑
    “Tell them your meditating”
    😂😂 I’ll remember that

  32. I'm not homeless, but things are pretty scary at home , but this made me realise how bad it is for some people. I'm grateful for still having a shelter and food. But this makes me want to help the homeless teens , but here in my country it's not quite common, unless the teens run away, no parent normally kicks them out, for whatever reason. But other bad things do happen, and I wish I could help. When I grow up, I wish I will be able to help people.

  33. I'm at risk of becoming homeless. I haven't said it on my channel yet though. I am running out of excuses to stay in my dad's apartment. Haven't paid rent to him since August. So wish me luck, I guess.

  34. I am pretty disappointed in many parents rn, for kicking out homeless kids instead of, I don't know, doing something to help them. My mom lowkey, unofficially adopted my brother's friend when she was 19 and she's is my sister in every way but blood.

  35. I'm really scared because their is a high chance that I will be outed and I'm scared that I will be kicked out. I'm only thirteen and my siblings love hours away and one all the way in Korea.

  36. The only reason I’m homeless is bc legally I can’t get a car or apartment without a parent co-signing. Can’t do that. It’s so dumb. I sometimes stay overnight in Nola (maybe once or twice a week) I straight up don’t sleep. Too dangerous. I have money tho bc I have a job which is good so at least I got that going for me

  37. I feel like the whole "not looking homeless" thing could depend on where you live too though. I am lucky enough to have never been homeless but, particularly in college, a lot of people that saw me on the street thought i was, people i knew told me i looked homeless, etc. One day i accidentally got on the wrong train to go to college, got off, new city, completely lost, and literally nobody helped me find a taxi rank because I "looked homeless" i looked like a lot of the homeless people in that city, so while I'm not speaking from the experience of being homeless, this might be something to look for too especially if you're in a new place or have to move around at all?

  38. The fact that her friends parents kicked her out for being homeless and called the cops is really upsetting… They realize that she was in need and obviously needed some help or something? Like if I have children in the future and they bring home a classmate who I found out was homeless I'd like basically adopt them and let them stay…

    The parents in that situation were so heartless it hurts me to hear that

  39. Just being a rape survivor i thought that i dont have anything, lose everything and been left alone. I thought that i have burdened by it, not realizing there are people out there who have a much bigger problems that i did.. this made me cry realizing that… God bless.

  40. I was homeless from 18 to about 21 or 22 (I’m 24 now) but it makes me feel guilty because it was more of a “privileged homelessness.” I was able to crash on couches the whole time..I lived in probably 4 different places during those 4 years. most of it was comfortable enough.. sometimes really comfortable, but it was still incredibly damaging to my health, as I was dealing with mental illnesses and then, a few years later, physical disability.. I had to “go for walks” or sit outside or in the car for hours because the people i was staying with were tired of me. I also had to hide a lot when my partner snuck me into his place.. this went on for a while until his mom found out. I knew I was a burden but I had nowhere to go. I remember I’d steal food from the kitchen in the middle of the night.. one night I made a puréed pumpkin sandwich…lol. Another apartment I stayed at I ran out of food and started crying and my sister’s partner gave me some bananas to eat for dinner. I actually didn’t know that I was homeless for the first year or 2 because I wasn’t on the street with a cardboard sign … then I came across an article written in the paper of the community college I currently attend that was all about college students and homelessness and how many young homeless people are couch hopping/living in shelters and that you are still homeless
    even if you do not fit a stereotypical narrative of homelessness. This felt validating for me and also somewhat shocking.. having to come out of that denial and desensitization. finally when I was facing a homeless shelter for real (a couple of years ago) I begged my dad to let me move back in even though I never thought I would have to live with his abuse again, but
    my mental and physical health were beyond bad and I needed help. I knew I would not heal in a shelter with my physical disability &
    mental illnesses. I was so sick. I have been here now for 2 years. I still don’t ever really feel like I have a safe, permanent place to livec, especially considering the fact he is the one who initially kicked me out. I always feel like I’m going to have to move again.

  41. I've been homeless on and off since I was 9sh (I'm about to turn 20), starting with staying at friends and strangers (yeah) houses. I lived in a camper with no electricty for a year. Now its my car.
    Pro tip: If you live in a car, Walmart lets RVs stay in their parking lots and you can sometimes park there to sleep. They have cameras, bathrooms, waterfountains. Yk.
    Libraries are great, as others have said. Theres also community centers with pools (so showers), truck stops, etc.

  42. I back packed across Canada once. Went into the cities and panhandled enough to make a hundred bucks, then got the fuck out of the city again and went somewhere scenic until I wanted more money. I also helped on farms for a day. I was out for half a year. Luckily I have jobs waiting for me anywhere I want them in my trade and can recover in a day any day. Advice for homeless teens, real advice? Stop being selfish and get back with your parents at all costs, and stop fucking your own shit up. It's not society it's you and the sooner you bite the bullet the better your long term projections.

  43. I ran away from home when i was 17 but the Man (10 years my senior) who encouraged me to do so and took me with him turned out to be a really bad person. I only lasted a couple months before mom and dad spent money they didn't really have to fly me back. Loved having to choose between getting away from an abusive asshole and going back to my loving but dysfunctional parents and the hell that was my hometown. I managed to patch things up with my parents and save up a few hundred dollars and left again about a year later, this time on my own and not being towed around by a creep. I can say that my brief stint being a homeless teen gave me a lot of life skills and confidence that I wouldn't have been able to get any other way. I'm thankful that my home life was something that was repairable and I am thankful that I ran away when I did so that I could know that I absolutely needed to get out of my hometown and that I could do it on my OWN without the help of a scummy dude.

  44. its so sad i felt the need to watch this going through being lgbT in a house abusive demanding people hirts and i'm soon to be homeless by the looks of things

  45. Have depression. Read this title as How to survive as a Hopeless teen and so I clicked to see, but I didn’t regret to see this

  46. In the US, you can appeal for college financial aid if you're an "independent" student (under 25 and no family support). Talk to you financial aid department a lot. If they don't hate you, you're not talking to them enough.

  47. It's so fucked that a parents first reaction to you being homeless was "my child can't be friends with her"
    like Are You Fucking Kidding Me
    what assholes

  48. If your a homeless woman-you will be OK-there are plenty of desperate simps that will take you in-If your a man you pretty much screwed because nobody cares about homeless men,that's why 75% of the homeless are men…

  49. Eh. When I could go back and talk to my teenage homeless self I'd say: police and paramedics are your friends. Take care of your hygiene, sound educated, look needy. Policemen and paramedics are mostly good people who want to be heroes. As a young pretty female you're the ideal candidate to use this. And policemen and paramedics have contact to a lot of homeless people and know all the options that are out there. That's why they are the people who can help you the most. I figured this out way too late, but when I did, life got so much easier. I broke into my school at night and got caught. Nobody pressed charges, I could sleep in the police station, they gave me pillows and blankets and two cops even got me breakfast

  50. I was homeless when for a year and half when I was 18&19 but hearing this tbh I was glad most of my friends had places of their own…

  51. hearing these stories just breaks my heart… I hope you all find somewhere safe to stay tonight and someone who can help you getting out of your situation. You are loved, one day everything is going to get better.

  52. U are such a beautiful woman— very inspiring! Everyone watching this video should Google UBI or #MATH or #Freedom Dividend….. Make sure to register Democrat if you want to vote Andrew Yang into presidency with us the Yang Gang……. Humanity 1st! Vision2020 🌈🇺🇸✌♥♥♥♥♥🎄

  53. that's so sad that you do not have facilities (you said youth places but i mean safe place when they help you and it's safe) where they take care of children and teens until they are 18 and help you. I am sad for american teens that are homeless. I can't even imagine that my friend would be homeless and don't have right to have a proper care.

  54. I don't know if anyone in Morocco is going to see this, but if you're a moroccan LGBT+ youth (or adult) who has been kicked out, or who struggles with homelessness (I know damn well that this kind of stuff happens every fucking day in this hellish country) PLEASE feel free to contact me, I don't live in Morocco anymore unfortunately, but I have lots of contacts with people or associations who want to help. I know queer people who would be happy to offer shelter to a homeless person and help them find a place to stay as well as associations who have rented out rooms to give queer homeless youth a safe place to stay. You are not alone.

  55. What is the deal with the survival sex. If you are purposely plotting to pay for services with sex, it is partly your fault ..We are too advance for this. Again, if you PURPOSELY PLOTTING to pay with sex for services it's partly your fault.

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