If anyone has a clue...
I don't typically write posts that are directed at my readers, but this is important, so if anyone has a clue what could possibly be behind this, please leave a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My five year old niece has exhibited some frightening behaviour and I keep telling my sister that she needs to get her to a therapist right away because it is not normal for a child so young to be voicing not only suicidal, but also homicidal, thoughts. I figure if I could tell her the symptoms her daughter is exhibiting might be a result of a particular disorder(s), and I could link her to information about it, she might actually get her daughter help. I get the feeling she doesn't want to believe there is something psychologically wrong with her child, but she can't keep denying it cuz things will only get worse if my niece doesn't get help soon. It's blatantly obvious something is very wrong, we just don't know what.
I'd say a good 65% of the time she's a very pleasant, loving little girl. Tonight she wanted to sit on my lap and snuggle with me, and when she wasn't able to (like while we were trying to play a Sponge Bob video game) she would put her arm around me every chance she got. She's also highly intelligent, one of the brightest and most advanced in her class.
But, here's the negative and other strange stuff that concerns us...
She has problems with sleep. She never wants to go to bed and most nights, from what my sister has told me, she only gets about 4-5 hours of sleep. But she's not tired during the day. She's like the friggan Energizer bunny. When she does get some sleep, she often talks in her sleep and/or sleepwalks.
She has on several occasions mentioned that she wants to die. Either outright saying she wants to kill herself or making comments such as my sister would be happier if she wasn't around any more.
She has mentioned wanting to harm or kill her mom and her sister (not sure if she's ever said it about her dad, but my guess is she probably has). These comments typically come when she's angry, but seem so bizarre coming out of the mouth of a 5 yr old. The latest comment my sister told me about was that her daughter told her this week that she wanted to hit her (my sister) over the head with a hammer.
Her mood swings from being sweet to downright evil rather quickly, particularly if someone has done something she doesn't like or if she's asked to do something and she doesn't want to. And once she's in one of her mean streaks, she will throw wild temper tantrums. She'll throw stuff, she'll hit anyone she feels has pissed her off, she'll scream, tear her bedroom apart, etc. This is also when she'll express her suicidal or homicidal thoughts, but they can also be voiced at other times.
I know it isn't possible for anyone to diagnose her based on what I've written here. I'm just looking to get some idea of possible disorders she could have so I can give my sister something to read. Something that might sound like her daughter when she reads it and hopefully remove the denial she seems to be stuck in. So if anyone has any ideas, please let me know. I truly appreciate it. I tried doing a Google search, but nothing really came up when I typed in homicidal, suicidal five year old and I'm not sure what other words to search by.