Belfast Telegraph

More parents are calling helpline

The number of phone calls for help from struggling parents in Northern Ireland has increased by almost 60%, it was revealed.

Aggression was the most common issue raised earlier this year by parents worried about their children`s threatening behaviour, said the Parenting NI support group.

The organisations teaches parents ways of non-violently resisting the "destructive" behaviour.

Charlene Brooks, director of the Parents Helpline, said: "It really is important that parents seek help when they realise there is any kind of problem and get support/guidance before it gets increasingly difficult to manage."

Parenting NI reported a 58% increase in calls to their helpline for January compared with the same period last year.

The most common issue raised was aggression, particularly from teenagers. Parenting NI is planning to pilot a parenting programme to support work carried out by the helpline.

Ms Brooks said: "The Non-Violence Resistance programme offers parents a completely different pattern of parenting which aims to stop the child`s or young person`s destructive behaviour and prevent escalation and violence.

"Experience and research show that is very effective."

The programme helps parents take a firm stand against violence, while holding back from physical or verbal responses.

In January last year Parenting NI dealt with 425 contacts, compared to 672 last month. Child or teenage aggression prompted 100 contacts with the helpline.

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