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To Sam


my mum and dad split up in the summer after years of constant fight and my dad constantly drinking,he usually drunk when my mum was at work and i was in the house with him and my brothers and he wouldnt stop drinking he just sat up all night and drank and if i tried to help him he would just shout at me and call me names i was really scared and my brothes were always sleeping i lay awake in bed and didnt sleep now they have split up for a few months and everythings getting worse i dont really get on with my dad and i think thats due to the relationship he had with drink when he was living with my mum we always fight and he always talks about my mum in a bad way nad threatens her and shes always crying becauseof her and when he is talking about her to other people he says nasty things and makes everything out to be her fault me and my mum have quite a good relationship but now she has got a new man and i feel if things get more serious our relationship wont be the same because she wont have as much time for me anymore and my brother moved out after my dad because things are so tressful and we were aways fighting and my younger brother doesnt get on well with me and my mum he is always calling me names and telling me its my fault and i tore the family apart and everything seems to be getting worse and y mum wont got to a solicator about my dad because she is scared of him
Ask Sam



Thank you for getting in touch with me and explaining everything so clearly.

It doesn’t surprise me that the way your dad was behaving was very frightening for you. You said he has been drinking a lot for a long time and you’ve had to find ways to cope with that. I can hear that you care about your dad and tried to help him. It’s important to try to remember that nothing that your dad is doing is your fault. There is an organisation called NACOA that has provide help and support for families of people with a drinking problem - you could call their free confidential helpline on 0800 358 3546.

You also told me that your mum is very scared of your dad. I think it might be good to have a look at the ChildLine Domestic violence page in Explore. You could also have a look at The Hideout which is a website for young people who are worried about violence at home.

It sounds like you care a lot about your mum, and it hurts when you hear your dad saying bad things about her. It’s good to hear that you have a good relationship with your mum. Have a think about telling her that you want to make sure you still get to spend time together, maybe you could suggest something that you would like to do together.

I think you’ve been really brave telling me about what things are like for you. I’m wondering whether you’ve been able to talk to anyone else about it. If you have other family that you get on with (like grandparents, aunts or uncles) perhaps you could tell them about your worries. Another option might be to talk to a member of staff at school that you get on well with.

You’ve told me about a lot of changes that have happened at home and it sounds as though your little brother wants to blame you for some of these changes. It seems like your younger brother might also be feeling upset, and is showing his feelings by shouting at you. That doesn’t mean he is right, or it is ok for him to do that – nothing that you have told me about is your fault. Looking at the Home and School message boards may help you to find out more about how other young people have coped with similar experiences.

I’m very concerned that you feel like things are getting worse right now. It may help to phone ChildLine, or have a chat with a ChildLine counselor online to talk about how you feel things are getting worse. Talking through what’s going on, and about how you would like things to be can be a way to make problems feel more manageable.

Well done again for talking to me about this.

Take care,


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