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Have You Ever Been One Of The "Hidden" Homeless?

Sleeping on friends' sofas, sleeping in cars, and living in squats are invisible versions of homelessness that are often ignored. We want to hear your stories.

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Recent research for this UK homelessness charity found that the majority of homeless people sleep on friends' floors and sofas, rather than outdoors.

Kevin Frayer / Getty Images / Twitter: @cocoscanteen

People often think that homelessness = sleeping rough, but it can also apply to people who stay with friends or acquaintances, bed down in squats, sleep in their cars, or bunk down in temporary accommodation like B&Bs and hostels.

It's called "hidden homelessness", because it mostly takes place off the streets and out of sight, but that doesn't mean it isn't stressful, hard, and scary.

Anastasiarasstrigina / Getty Images / Twitter: @broIita / BuzzFeed

People with no fixed address are vulnerable to abuse and harassment, as well as the stress that goes hand-in-hand with constantly trying to find somewhere to stay, juggling offers of accommodation, and sleeping in cold, noisy, or unsuitable places.

If you've been in this situation, you probably don't talk about it much, due to the stigma involved.

Tomwang112 / Getty Images / Twitter: @hollieacton / BuzzFeed

There's a lot of stigma around homelessness, and a lot of negative myths that homeless people are addicts, are dangerous, or somehow bring their homelessness upon themselves by being "lazy", when in fact it could happen to anyone.

And perhaps you even managed to work while you were homeless, though it's a hard thing to do.

I was on stage supporting a big star, but I was #homeless and thinking 'I don't know where I'm staying tonight' https://t.co/Zs0bG2H2g4

London-based singer Levelle first became homeless when he was 15. He was thrown out of his mum's house and ended up sofa-surfing with friends. He slept on buses, and "lived out of a bag" while writing songs and recording his music.

Whatever your experiences with hidden homelessness are, we would like to hear about them. Tell your story in the comment section below, and you could be featured in an upcoming BuzzFeed Community post.

NB: If you'd like us to keep your submission anonymous, just let us know. You can also create a new BuzzFeed Community account and post anonymously using that.

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