I’m 18 and I live with my brother and sister, but they’re very manipulative, controlling and physically abusive…

I’m 18 and I live with my brother and sister, but they’re very manipulative, controlling and physically abusive. I want to move out, and my friend is planning to get a house with her dad and brother. She has asked me to move in with them and at the time, I said yes, because it seemed a better option than staying with my brother and sister.

But now that I’ve met her dad and brother, they make me very uncomfortable. They are very sexist and very rude, and I’m now not so sure if I wish to live with them. Being around them mentally and emotionally exhausts me, and I am always on edge around them, and I don’t like that (Plus, her dad is a convicted rapist, but she and her family swears he’s innocent, but I DON’T KNOW).

My friend is excited about me living with her and the new house because she loves her family and she is currently in a bad living situation also. She has already started making plans for how we will decorate our room, but I’m not sure if I want to move in with them anymore.

But on the other hand, my only other option is living with my abusive family. Neither of these are options that I wish to take, and I’d love to live on my own, but I only make minimum wage so that’s impossible. So, my question is, how do I talk to my friend? She loves her family, but I don’t, and she really wants me to move in with her, but I don’t wish to be stuck living with them.

I was in a very similar situation to the one you’re currently in, except the manipulative and physically abusive individuals were my parents. And I know how tempting it is to see an exit and a way out and jump on it, but do you truly think that is the right decision? It’s usually better with the Devil you know, instead of the one you don’t, know what I mean?

If you were to take your friend’s offer and move in with her family, it sounds that you would be going out of the frying pan and into the fire. You said you would have to be on edge around her dad and brother but aren’t you on edge with your siblings now? From my point of view, it seems that you would be trading a really bad situation in for an even worse one. And even if her dad isn’t a convicted rapist, your friend says he’s ‘innocent’; he was accused of rape, and that is more than enough information to make you run for the hills. It is your choice but think long and hard about your decision.

And it’s okay if your friend feels betrayed! You have to put your safety, your needs, and your mental and emotional health above the needs of others. Never feel pressured to go along to get along just to make someone else happy. We usually do that to the detriment of our own happiness and well-being. When it comes to speaking with your friend, just tell her that the timing doesn’t seem right or that you’re thankful for the offer and all that she’s done, but the situation isn’t right for you. She might not respond well to the situation, but you have to do what is best for you.

And in regard to working a minimum wage job, do you work full-time or part-time? Are you in college or still in high school? The answers to these questions will help you figure out your next move and your plans. If you work full-time than you could definitely get a roommate and an apartment or even sublease a room in an apartment. If you’re in high school and work part-time, just continue school and working as many hours as you can. If you are going to college, after you graduate from high school, the money you saved will help you get a car, which will open you up to more job prospects and opportunities. I know this may not be what you want to hear, but when it comes to leaving an abusive situation, you have to make sure all of your ducks are in order before you leave, so that you won’t have to come back. I am rooting for you, and I believe you will make it out of your abusive situation, but it may take time.