Q:

What are some recommendations for my friend to get help?

Hi Vic I have a friend that wants to get help. He hits his girlfriend, he doesn't care for his kids the way a father should. Can you recommend some agencies I can forward to him?

 


A:

Hi, thank you for emailing in your question wanting to help your friend. People like you that are prepared to help a friend are very rare to find.

I really feel for his girlfriend and the kids, because if his behaviour is allowed to go unchecked his kids will grow up to be a mirror image of him. There are agencies around that help but your friend has to want the help and want to make changes to be free of family violence.

Either you or your friend can ring 0800 456 450, they will give you the numbers of the local agencies that can help your friend. He will need to check into a stopping violence programme, to get a handle on the cycle of violence.

Your friend needs to get a handle on his family violence that it's not ok. He needs to stop hitting his girlfriend and get the tools and skills to understand why he is doing that and how to have a relationship that does not involve violence and abuse.

Your friend also needs to attend a parenting course or programme where he can learn about parenting and the difference between bad parenting and good parenting and the impact that it has on the kids.

He will also need to attend counselling by himself or if possible with his partner on relationships and communication.

His girlfriend, if she feels that she and the kids are not safe, should ask for help and make contact with the local Women's Refuge or other support organisation. She does not have to go through this alone, there is help for her.

The kids will also need to be assessed by a child counsellor or advocate to get an impact report of his violence on them. For kids, the most important years of their life are from the womb to about 3-5 years old, this is when their brains are the most active and they're soaking up all the info around them.

All of the advice that I have written about is what I had to do in order for me to stop perpetrating the violence and the abuse in my family and on my wife and children.

Your friend is going to need your help. At the time I was on the stopping violence programme I would have loved to have had a friend to confide in, to talk to, to share the journey with. I did the journey with the other men on the stopping violence programme and with the help and support of my family.

I would have loved to have had a friend join me on the journey to be violence free. Stay close to your friend and thank you for writing in and asking for help for your friend and his family.

It's OK to Ask for Help.

Vic

 

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