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Reducing Parental Conflict

What is parental conflict?

Conflict between parents can harm children’s outcomes.

Conflict between parents is a normal part of relationships. However, there is a large body of evidence that shows that parental conflict puts children’s mental health and long-term outcomes at risk when it is frequent, intense and poorly resolved.

These destructive conflict behaviours include aggression, non-verbal conflict or the ‘silent treatment’, lack of respect and emotional control, lack of resolution and, in their most extreme form, domestic abuse.

Parental conflict can harm children’s outcomes regardless of whether parents are together or separated, or are biologically related to the child, such as in blended or foster families.

Parental conflict can affect children’s physical and mental health.

Parental conflict may also affect child risk-taking behaviours, such as smoking, drug use and early sexual activity.

Some families are more vulnerable to parental conflict.

Financial difficulties impact on parental mental health, which can increase parental conflict. This in turn can impact on parenting and children’s outcomes. According to data from the Department of Work and Pensions, children in workless families are up to three times more likely to experience damaging parental conflict.

Parental conflict reduces the effectiveness of family services.

Interventions which focus solely on supporting the parent-child relationship (such as parenting programmes) in the context of parental conflict are unlikely to improve outcomes for children.

This train the trainers course will enable you to deliver an accredited programme to practitioners working with parents and families in a range of contexts to help them directly address and reduce parental conflict and its impact on children.

Local Resources

We are currently looking to recruit and train trainers to deliver  DWP funded Reducing Parental Conflict courses which will enable frontline practitioners to work directly with parents to increase their conflict resolution skills and reduce the impact that parental conflict has on children. Please note that you must be currently working or volunteering with an organisation that works with parents, children or families (in any capacity) within Kirklees. We are unable to take requests from independent / private trainers.

If you are interested in becoming a trainer in Reducing Parental Conflict please email

National Resources

The Reducing Parental Conflict Hub is for local leaders, commissioners, practitioners and researchers who are looking to reduce the impact of parental conflict on children. It provides a central repository of key ‘what works’ evidence and tools, including why parental conflict matters for children’s outcomes, and guidance on how to take action. The hub will continue to grow as new evidence and tools are created.

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