Dr Catherine
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8-15 years

Joy, my best friend, shes 16, has been abused her hole life, even to this day she comes to my house at 1am saying "hay, can I stay the night?" while shes covered in buses &amp; scratch marks, she has little trust &amp; is like a frightened dog, she will happily lash out &amp; hurt me if theirs a problem instead of using words, she has ODD, ADHD, autism, OCD, Panic Attacks, and the list goes on. She has nerve damage through out her body &amp; she cant tell when she has to use the bathroom. She sleepwalks &amp; has fits of screaming &amp; panic while shes asleep, she will get out of bed &amp; wet to the point where the pull-ups leak or she accidentally tears one side in her sleep. Is there a way i can keep her in the bed &amp; make her stop tearing at the pull-ups? Is there a way to calm her bladder while she is at school? Is there anything I can put in place to stop myself from telling her off for wetting/messing? My step dad is at his snapping point about Joy's wetting/messing problem, the house smells of urine even if I shampoo the floors &amp; carpet with a spachle cleaner &amp; I have almost 100% of the windows in the house open in the day. Pleas I'm like the only family she has, with out me she will be homeless or dead... she cant survive out on Melbourne streets alone, she will just curl up &amp; die, &amp; that's my best friend, she didn't turn her back on me, even after I hurt her... im 19 now &amp; have relished that she needs a family.

Hi Kassandra – it is wonderful to know that Joy has such a special friend in you. Given Joy’s background and behaviour I would strongly recommend that you speak directly with a psychologist. Kids Helpline (http://www.kidshelp.com.au) 1800 55 1800 – is a great support service designed for children, teenagers and young adults up to the age of 25. They will be able to talk through the situation with you and can direct you to someone in your area who will be able to assist both you and Joy. Regards, Dr cathrine