Authorities won’t tell us where our runaway girl has gone
THEIR daughter's worried friends called them at 1.30am to say the 15-year-old had drunken herself into an unconscious stupor.
She'd snuck out - it wasn't the first time - and when they arrived to collect her they found an ambulance had been called.
The ambulance officers asked if she was on drugs. They didn't know, so agreed for her to be drug-tested.
Then they were told they couldn't get the results because of "privacy" issues.
This is just one of the nightmare scenarios a loving, stable Sunshine Coast family has had to endure since their teenage daughter began to challenge their boundaries.
It's been a living hell for the couple, who have to remain anonymous to protect the identity of their daughter and her two siblings.
"She's been tearing us apart," the teenager's distraught mum said.
"I was suicidal, I was losing my family, my husband.
"We have a good relationship at home. We've always lovingly supported her and given her what she has wanted, within reason."
The parents feel the government agencies they've called on for help have locked them out of their daughter's life and are helping her get access to cash.
"They're arranging Centrelink for her. This will allow her to continue to buy drugs and alcohol," the mum said.
These aren't parents who abuse their children. They have no police record. But their middle child decided she didn't like their rules.
"She started sneaking out of the house and was going out meeting boys, this was not long after she turned 14.
"She'd get punishment, we'd take away social media, then sport, but her behaviour escalated.
"Anything we tried to do, she was not fazed by it, she'd just continue."
The girl's father made an appointment for the family to see a psychologist, but his daughter refused to attend.
"We needed to talk to someone, but she refused to do it," her mum said.
"We had to tell her if she can't stop her behaviour, she can't live under our roof."
So their daughter moved out, which brought peace to the home but left them in the agonising position of not knowing where she was.
"She stopped attending school, we were worried - is she still alive?"
They got back in contact with the government agency brought in to help and were told they couldn't have access to information on where she was staying due to "privacy acts".
"These organisations are helping her, they are providing her with cash (through Centrelink) to support her habits.
"I spoke to them and they talked to like I was abusing my child and I had no right to find out where she is.
"They had me in tears, I broke down, we are the ones who were blamed.
"She is just turning 16. I was always led to believe that if you are under the age of 16 and are not abusive, parents have the right to know.
"There are kids who come from abusive families who need the help and kids like my daughter are stuffing up the resources for it."
The dad said many children believed they "don't have to follow rules".
"They think they can sneak out of the homes, drink, have sex and that is okay.
"What we're trying to teach her is that access to technology and the things we provide is not a right, it's a privilege.
"Kids think it is a right. If they don't want to go to school, they think they can go to Centrelink and get money.
"These kids know how to play the game. They know what to say to get support, but there are kids out there who need real help.
"They're living in violent situations - they're the ones the support should be used for."