Beth Goodier is living a nightmare. Her mother, Janine, estimates that Beth has been asleep for 75 percent of the past five years — sometimes for as long as six months at a stretch. As a result, Beth has had to drop out of college and can’t keep a job. But her current state isn’t due to laziness or a lack of motivation. Instead, The Daily Mail reports, she’s diagnosed with a very rare illness formally known as Kleine-Levin Syndrome.
According to The Kleine-Levin Syndrome Foundation, the disorder is marked by excessive sleep, behavioral changes, and a loss of understanding about the world. When the illness strikes — the onset usually happens during adolescence — the person suffering has no choice but to stop all daily activities, because KLS can put a person to sleep for days, weeks, or sometimes even months at a time. And, The Kleine-Levin Syndrome Foundation explains, sufferers aren’t able to care for themselves during this time.
For Beth Goodier, who’s been documenting her journey on Facebook, the disorder means that she won’t be able to finish college or chase her dreams of being a child therapist until her symptoms resolve. It also means that she has to catch up with friends and try to cram in as much as she can every time she’s awake (while always dreading another episode).