My 14-year-old has started sleeping in her cupboard – I dont know what to do

A mum has asked for help after revealing that her 14-year-old daughter has begun sleeping in her cupboard as she 'doesn't feel safe in her bed'.

The parent took to social question-and-answer website Quora to ask for advice on the sensitive situation.

She wrote: "My 14-year-old daughter has been sleeping in her (relatively small but just big enough to fit a person) cupboard, because she says that she doesn't feel safe in her bed. What should I do?"

Luckily for the mum, people were quick to share suggestions, with many saying she needed to talk to her daughter immediately and get her some counselling.

One wrote: "A serious indicator you need to talk with her to investigate why this is occurring and it could be anything. A parent or parents need to communicate with their kid(s) to know how they can help and protect their kids better. If she can't explain in words then have her draw it out with crayons."

While another recommended: "If it were my daughter I would make an appointment immediately with her medical doctor. I would encourage her and tell her it’s a safe space and that she can tell the doctor if she isn’t comfortable telling me.

"I think whatever is going on with her besides her informing you she was sleeping in the cupboard and doesn’t feel safe in her bed is that she’s afraid to tell you whatever else it is.

"Sometimes children don’t feel comfortable expressing certain things to their parents but they will tell a stranger."

Meanwhile a third added: "It seems that your daughter is struggling with feeling safe for whatever reason. It could be an emotional or physical pain or both.

"Closed, small spaces could be a source of comfort and safety. It is up to you as mother to help your daughter in her fear.

"Get to the root of the fear and comfort her. Maybe sleep in her bed with her until she feels safe then transition to her sleeping alone again slowly.

"If the reason for the fear is caused by another person in your house it needs to be addressed immediately and your daughter should have emotional counselling and support."

If you or someone you know is struggling and needs to talk, call the free Samaritans helpline 24/7 on 116 123. You can also email [email protected] or find your local branch online.

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