A 12-year-old girl in China's Shaanxi province has spent her life tied up by her own parents to stop her from running away because of a heartbreaking reason.
According to Shanghaiist, Xiaoyu became permanently brain damaged after suffering a series of high fevers at the age of eight months old.
Her father, surnamed Yang, said her health condition began to worsen and she suffered several convulsions on a daily basis.
Yang then sold his pig to pay for her medical treatment in a large hospital in the city, where she was diagnosed with cerebral vasospasm.
As the poverty-stricken family couldn't afford her medical fees, Yang simply asked for a prescription of oral medicine to treat Xiaoyu at home.
When she was one years old, Xiaoyu fell off her bed and hit her head during a convulsion. Since then, she has had no ability to communicate.
For the sake of her safety, Yang fastens her to a window in the kitchen when he is at home and ties her to a tree outside when he leaves to go to work. The rope he uses is only one metre long.
When approached by strangers, Xiaoyu would lift her head up for a look but soon after return to her own pattern of mumbling.
"She'll run away if I don't restrain her. I have no alternative way to fix the problem," said Yang.
Visit STOMP for more stories.