A Russian woman has been found to have kept her daughter isolated for 26 years.
The woman’s mother, Tatyana Bushueva, reportedly did it to ‘protect her from the world’.
Nadezhda Bushueva, now 42, only left the house for the first time in over two decades because her mother had been hospitalised – it is unknown what she was hospitalised for.
The pair had lived in the house together with several cats, and had no running water or electricity, causing the 42-year-old to admit she hadn’t washed since 2006 – something that was demonstrated by the large clump of hair on the back of her head that had to be cut off.
The shocking incident took place in the village of Arefinsky, in the Vachsky District of western Russia’s Nizhny Novgorod Oblast.
Nadezdha explained her and her mother shared a bed and that the house was full of rats and cats that would quickly die. Despite the animals dying, the pair wouldn’t move their corpses.
She added: ‘My life is worse than a cat’s life. Cats have more rights. I don’t even exist anymore. I’m the living dead.’
After Tatyana retired, she and Nadezdha apparently began living an extremely secluded lifestyle, with the mother rejecting help from social services and other officials.
Tatyana initially prevented Nadezhda from leaving the house at the age of 16, but eventually she got used to not being able to leave and stopped trying to. According to sources, her mother wouldn’t allow her to finish her studies or get a job.
After her mother was hospitalised, Nadezhda went to speak to local council leader Vasily Tovarnov, where her shocking ordeal was revealed.
Nadezhda came to my office by herself. We wanted to feed her, we prepared her sandwiches, but she didn’t eat anything. But she is not insane.
Nadezhda asked the councillor for a passport and a place to work.
Despite asking for these things, local media have reported the daughter is afraid to make too many changes in her life, fearing she will not be able to understand how the world works. Her fear of the outside world even stopped her travelling to the hospital with her mother when she was hospitalised.