Reducing Parental Conflict

Conflict between parents is a normal part of relationships and family life. Not all conflict is damaging, but when conflict between parents is frequent, intense and poorly resolved, it can put children’s mental health and long term outcomes at risk. Conflict can be present between parents whether they are together or separated.

Some factors may lead to conflict between parents such as:

  • Financial problems such as job loss
  • Alcohol or substance misuse
  • Transition to parenthood
  • Poor parental mental health
  • Children with SEND
  • Children starting primary or secondary schools
  • Parental separation or divorce

Understanding how children of any age can be affected by conflict between parents may be helpful in recognising when support may be needed.

How does parental conflict affect my children?

Parental conflict can affect children in a number of ways

  • Emotionally – low mood, anxiety
  • Behaviourally – increase risk taking, running away
  • Socially – anti social behaviour
  • Academically - truanting, exclusions

Coronavirus and parental conflict

The coronavirus outbreak has led to some big changes for all of us with new ways of living and working and this can impact on all our relationships.

Relationships will play a big part in helping us get through the current situation we find ourselves in, but equally there may be added pressure and we may need support in keeping our relationships positive and happy.

Useful links

Below are a number of links which provide information and support on how to maintain healthy relationships during this time, how to recognise parental conflict, tools and resources to help manage parental conflict and where to go for any further support you may need.

  • Relate - has a wealth of advice on coronavirus and relationships, and also advice on how to handle arguments with your partner.
  • Cafcass (for those co-parenting and with child arrangement agreements in place) - coronavirus guidance for children and families.
  • Family Rights Group - advice for parents and families with a child in the care system.
  • One plus One - relationship support and forums, see also their Facebook page, and Twitter.
  • See it Differently - four short video clips to help parents recognise what conflict may look like.
  • Space for Us Too (Action for Children) - free text messaging service offering tips to help build positive relationships.
  • Dads Matter - a Greater Manchester project that supports dads with anxiety, stress and mental health issues.
  • Build Sound Minds - a campaign for parents to help improve their and their child’s emotional  wellbeing.

If you feel you need extra support in addition to the advice and resources mentioned in the links above please contact Trafford Children’s First Response.

You can find out more about the Early Help support that’s available at the Trafford Directory

You can also contact Trafford Domestic Abuse Services by calling or texting 07534 066029.