What to Expect When You Call Teen Line

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What to Expect When You Call Teen Line

Opening up to someone can be scary. At Teen Line, a lot of our callers are talking to someone about what they’re going through for the first time. Listeners are aware of that, and we try to make you as comfortable as possible talking to us, and hopefully this post will help do so even more.

At the beginning of a call, we’ll ask you a few quick questions, such as your name and age, both to get to know you and to get statistics that help us obtain funding. Also, Teen Line is for teenagers, so if you’re age isn’t appropriate for the line, we’ll refer you to another similar service. Then we’ll ask what you want to talk about, and we’ll listen.

Teen Line listeners won’t judge you. We won’t give you any orders to follow. We won’t say what you’re feeling is stupid or unreasonable – because it isn’t. Your feelings are valid and they matter. We’re here to listen to you and work with you to find a way to make you feel better.

When we’re helping you figure out next steps, we won’t give you advice or tell you exactly what to do. We’ll talk to you and see what would work best for you, and we’ll come up with something together. We might also give you some resources that could give you more information on what we spoke about or some resources that could provide you with more long-term help as well.

Talking about what you’re dealing with is often hard and a little daunting, but at Teen Line we do everything we can to make it as easy as possible for you. Our only goal is to help you in whatever way we can.

Also, talking to a Teen Line listener is different than talking to a friend or parent – we’ll give you the same comfort and empathy, but since we’re removed from the situation we have absolutely no biases or judgments and we’re completely on your side. Teen Line listeners are trained to help you as best we can, and we’re here because we want to be. We want to talk to you and help you, so if you’re thinking about calling I’d suggest you strongly consider it. No issue is too big or too small, and the difference just opening up to someone can make is amazing.

Sarah – 17 years old

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    • Hi Juliet,

      Since our teens are trained to speak with other teens, it’s best if you call Community Helpline who serves both adults and teens. Here is their info:

      877-541-2525
      hycinc.org
      7am-10pm (PST)

      Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

  • I was wondering if it’s possible for someone to call if they live from the east side of USA because of the time difference

    • Hi Michelle,

      Yes, you can still call Teen Line, but you will have to call us between 6pm-10pm PST (California time). This means that if you are in the Eastern Time Zone, you will need to call us between 9pm-1am your time.

      Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Jamie,

      Since our teens are only trained to speak to other teens, it’s best if you call Community Helpline who serves both adults and teens. Here is their info:

      877-541-2525
      hycinc.org
      7am-10pm (PST)

      Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Margaux,

      You can call us but it really depends on your phone plan if you have international calling. Since you are 8 hours ahead of our time, you would need to call us between 2am-6am (your time) which would be difficult for you. I would suggest you email us at the following link: https://teenlineonline.org/talk-now/ You should receive a response within a day or two.

      Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

  • Hi I’m under the age of 13 and is wondering if I can still call because I’m really having issues and I haven’t had anyone about it to talk to. No one knows about this and I just wanna go to my room and cry all day.

    • Hi Leslie,

      We assist teens ages 13-19, but you can still call if you are under 13.

      Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

    • HI Emma,

      We’re concerned that you’re having suicidal thoughts and are glad you reached out.
      Please call us at 310-855-4673 between 6-10 PM CA time or the 24/7 Suicide Prevention Line at 800-273-8255. There are people out there who want to help.
      We don’t have a way to reach Abby, but we hope you’ll reach out to us.

        • Hi Payton,

          Sorry to hear you’re having trouble. To contact our hotline via text, please text “TEEN” to 839863 during operating hours 6:00pm-9:00pm (California time). You should receive a message right after which means you are opted in. Then one of our teens will respond. Since we get hundreds of texts, we’re not always able to get to each one. If you don’t receive a response, I highly recommend calling our hotline at 800-852-8336 (toll-free) or 310-855-4673.

          We hope to hear from you. Take care,
          -Teen Line Staff

    • HI Rori,
      You can call our hotline when you need help. If it’s an ongoing issue, we may suggest you reach out to someone in real life so that you have more of a support system in place.
      We are generally confidential unless you are in danger from yourself or someone else.

    • Hi Emily,

      I’m sorry to hear this. Please give us a call as soon as you can. Our hotline is open everyday from 6pm-10pm (California time). Our teens are here to help you. Or you can text or email our hotline. The contact info can be found here: https://teenlineonline.org/talk-now/

      We hope to hear from you.

      ~Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Jennifer,

      Yes, you can still give us a call. Our teens are here to talk with you about anything that’s on your mind.

      Best,
      -Teen Line Staff

  • Sorry if this sounds stupid, but what if we have serious social anxiety and are horrified to call someone, but we can’t reach anyone via text message? (I live in the EST time zone so it’s a problem)

    • Hi Kate,

      I’m glad you reached out and it’s never stupid to have social anxiety issues. You’re not alone. You can email us if you don’t feel comfortable calling and can’t text. You can email our teens here: https://teenlineonline.org/talk-now/

      We hope to hear from you. Take care,
      Teen Line Staff

  • Hi Rebecca,
    It’s totally understandable to be nervous to call. It can be really hard to talk about what’s bothering you. Sometimes it can feel more comfortable to text or email than call. You might want to start that route and then decide if you are able to call in, as calling can sometimes help you feel more connected.
    Best of luck!

    • Hi Buddy,

      You can still call us if you are under 13. Please call, text, or email our hotline here. Our teens are here to help.

      -Teen Line Staff

  • I tried calling both numbers to talk to someone and every time I called nobody picked up at all and I really needed someone to talk to but instead I had never felt so alone. It was really hard for me because I was going through a really hard time and now it has gotten worse, and I want to call to talk to some one but I don’t think anyone wants to hear me because no one ever picks up.

    • Hi Lilly,

      We’re so glad you reached out and we’re sorry to hear that things are so hard for you. We want to talk to you so please don’t think no one wants to hear you. We have been receiving a high influx of calls, texts, and emails recently so I’m sorry if you were not able to get a hold of someone.

      Please try emailing, texting us or even calling again. Info can be found at http://www.teenlineonline.org/talk-now . Or there are other resources you can pursue as well like Youth crisis line: 800-843-5200 http://www.calyouth.org They provide crisis phone counseling, information, and referrals for all problems ages 12-24.

      You can also check out our message boards on our website where you can connect with other teens going through similar things. http://www.teenlineonline.org/boards

      Please try to reach out to us again, or you can try the other resources above. Hang in there. You’re not alone.

      Best,
      Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Gabriel,

      You will need to call us between 8pm-12am your time since you are two hours ahead of our time.

      Best,
      TL Staff

  • Hi Sara,

    If your parents were to find out you called us, you can let them know you wanted to get another teen’s perspective on something. Or you can talk to your parents beforehand about wanting to call us, and explain what we are and why we are here. You can also trying emailing us or joining our message board, or calling from a friend’s phone.

    Best,
    Teen Line Staff
    I

  • I’m upset and is anyone open to talk right know at this hour. I just have to talk to someone who understands right know .

    • Hi Kaleigh,

      Our hotline only operates in the evenings between 6pm-10pm (California time). Please try calling, texting, or emailing the hotline here. Or you can try speaking to other teens for support at our message boards here.

      -Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Taylor,

      Yes, we have both genders who answer our calls, texts, and emails during operating hours.

      -Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Anahi,

      Unfortunately, our teens are not available after hours. Please try texting us between 6pm-9pm (California time).

      Best,
      Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Keith,

      Thanks for your interest in volunteering! We don’t have any opportunities at this time for teens who live outside of the Los Angeles area. A lot of times teens want to help, but don’t live in the area. They are usually very active on our message boards helping other teens. This may be something you’re interested in doing: teenlineonline.org/boards

      Thanks again for reaching out!
      -Teen Line Staff

    • Hi Casey,
      Our teens are not trained to provide advice, but they will listen to your feelings, help you clarify your concerns, help you figure out some options available, and they can help you make positive decisions. Please contact our hotline during operating hours and they will be happy to help: http://www.teenlineonline.org/talk-now

      Best,
      Teen Line Staff

    • It can be very scary to call a hotline for the first time. Sometimes people find texting or emailing is a little less scary. Or posting on our message boards. Whatever you try, our teens are very good at making you feel comfortable and understand that it’s not easy.
      Best of luck!

          • Hi Ormaris,
            It’s hard to give tips as we don’t know your specific situation, but if you are being bullied, I would suggest telling an adult you trust. Or going to your school about it. Most schools have some sort of anti-bullying policy. Please call us at 310-855-4673 between 6pm-10pm CA time so we can talk further.

            Best,
            Teen Line Staff

        • Hi Ormaris,
          Depending on which state you live in, there may be a 2-3 hour difference. If you live in the east coast, you are 3 hours ahead of us, so you will need to call us around 9pm your time.

          Best,
          Teen Line Staff

  • All of my friends think I am weird. Nobody thinks that I will be successful in life. I really feel alone and unwanted. What do I do?

    • Hi Sally,

      Thanks so much for reaching out. That’s so hard to feel alone and unwanted. I encourage you to call our hotline at 310-855-4673 between 6PM -10 PM CA time so you can talk with one of our teens about what’s going on. Our message boards on our website are also a great resource for meeting new people who might not think you’re “weird.” Please reach out to these options.

      Best,
      Teen Line Staff

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