BRIS Report 2003


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BRIS Report 2003

  1. 1. The BRIS Report Calls and E-mails to BRIS 2003
  2. 2. contents 2003 Contents: The BRIS Report 1. Summary.........................................................................................4 2. Calls from children and young people .......................................6 3. ...........................................................................................18 4. BRIS-representatives and counsellors ......................................24 5. Children verbally and in writing ...............................................26 6. Calls from adults..........................................................................28 7. Topical themes .............................................................................31Responsible editor: Kerstin Thuresson, Chairman Riksförbundet BRIS | Text: Gunnar Sandelin, Press Director BRIS 3Research: Peter Irgens, Development Secretary BRIS | Translation: Eqvator AB – Eric Hörnquist | Design and production: IK Stockholm | Stockholm February 2004
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  4. 4. summarySummaryCalls and e-mails destructiveness and severe psychological illness. Helpline for Adults – about Children. In three outThe Children’s Helpline and the BRIS-mail form the In 2003, the number of e-mails that directly dealt of four of the cases the adult caller is a woman,basis of BRIS’ support services. In 2003, there were with suicide almost tripled compared with 2002, usually a mother.about 16,000 statistically recorded calls of a suppor- rising to roughly 1,000 e-mails. Slightly more than half of the calls related prima-tive nature and 60,000 shorter, so-called test calls. “The trend that we see has become even more rily to girls. The average age of the child, 10.5 years,About 6,000 e-mails were given supportive responses. frightening. More girls seem to feel that life is not is lower than on the Children’s Helpline.This means that the Children’s Helpline is still the worth living. This is why the government must make Seven out of ten calls related to something in themost often used means for children and young people a great investment in preventive measures,” says family; the most common call topic is divorce-relatedto get support from BRIS. Göran Harnesk, BRIS’ Secretary General. conflicts that dealt with custody and access. Family But e-mails are on the rise. The increase of e-mails Many girls have had suicidal thoughts for a long conflicts and problems in the parental role are alsowas roughly equivalent to the decrease of the time and some have also attempted suicide several common reasons that adults call BRIS.statistically recorded call contacts in 2003. Compared times. It is common that they do not want to speakwith 2002, e-mails increased by 25 percent while the to an adult, due in large part to previous negativesupportive children’s calls decreased by 13 percent. experiences of professionals who could not help. Girls seek help more often: almost nine out of tene-mails and three out of four supportive calls are Perpetrator profileabout girls. The average age of those e-mailing is 14 When it comes to abuse, the home is the most com-and the average age of children callers is 13. mon place where offences are committed. According E-mails contain substantially more about the to calls from children, nine out of ten child abusechild’s own problems than calls, which are more cases and six out of ten cases of sexual abuse takeoften about relationships. For many years, bullying place in the home. The abuse is commonly commit- “The trendhas been the primary reason for calling BRIS and it ted by a close acquaintance or relative, usually a that we see has becomeaffects about 18 percent of the calls, but is substan- parent. For the most part, the perpetrator is a man, even more frightening. Moretially less represented in the e-mails. However, family and in the majority of cases the victim is a girl. girls seem to feel that life isconflicts top the list for both calls and e-mails. not worth living. This is why Adults who call the government must make a great investment inYoung girls and suicide In 2003 there were just over 2,200 statistically recorded preventive measures.”Most striking in BRIS’ supportive work in 2003 was calls from adults, an increase of 14 percent comparedthe exceptional increase in e-mails from young girls to 2002.with problems of suicide. In 2002, we warned of the As with previous years, it is primarily the child’srapidly growing number of e-mails about girls’ self- parents and other relatives that call the BRIS 5
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  6. 6. calls from children and young peopleCalls from children and young people compared to 2002. In comparison, there were 3,000 Boys, girls and their families Number of statistically recorded calls from children in 1991. In three out of four cases, the statistically recorded A statistically [See figure A.] call related to a girl. The average age was just over recorded calls Additionally, 60,000 calls were so-called test calls, 13 years. where the caller investigates in different ways if BRIS We note that, after having neared a third, the boys’ 1991 3 000 can be trusted. Together these calls account for just share of the call volume has dropped to a quarter in 1992 4 828 under one third of the total call time and did not con- the last two years. BRIS has generally seen clear sig- tain enough information to be able to be processed in nals that the psychological illnesses of girls seem to 1993 6 203 our statistics. be increasing [see and The BRIS-mail]. 1994 9 926 In total, BRIS volunteers received 76,053 calls in But at the same time boys more often express their 1995 12 189 2003, which is a marginal decrease by about a thou- problems less articulately than girls. Counting the test sand or 1.5 percent fewer calls than in 2002. calls, it turns out that a majority of calls to BRIS are 1996 11 169 However, from the statistically recorded calls there about boys. 1997 10 345 is information on gender, age, domestic circumstances Despite boys and girls calling about similar 1998 12 788 and call topic, among others. The child is anonymous, problems, in the girls’ calls there is an emphasis on which means that the number of calls is not equal to their own or family related topics. Girls call relatively 1999 14 341 the number of children calling. Previous surveys show more often than boys about problem areas such as 2000 17 431 that about 10 percent of the statically processed calls family conflicts, love and friendship relationships, eat- 2001 17 150 come from children who have called before. ing disorders, sexual abuse and self-destructiveness. The statistically recorded calls have greatly Boys, however, account for a larger proportion in 2002 18 348 increased in number, particularly since the early areas such as bullying, physical abuse, personal 2003 16 008 1990s; largely due to the ease of calling with mobile drug/alcohol abuse and sexual development. phones in recent years. In 2003, 83 percent of the calls Roughly speaking, calls about the caller’s own came from mobile phones, which comprised almost development and love problems increase with age,During 2003 there were 16,008 statistically the whole cost of the telephone bill that BRIS paid to as do problems with self-destructiveness and otherrecorded calls from children and young people. its telecom operator, Telenor. psychological illnesses. Instead, divorce-related callsThese account for two thirds of the call time on the But many more want to call. Our accessibility and problems with friends and bullying drop forChildren’s Helpline with an average call time of studies still show that only every fourth try can be teenagers.slightly more than 12 minutes. The calls are almost answered directly. BRIS needs more money for more Calls about child abuse decrease in the teen minute longer on average compared with the telephone lines and employees who will be able to Younger children call the least about sexual abuse.previous year, but decreased in number by 13 percent train yet more volunteers. However, it is no foregone conclusion that they are 7
  7. 7. the bris report 2003 spared from abuse to a corresponding degree, as it is more difficult for young children to dare to tell. Themes Calls from Children B With respect to the average age of just over 13 years, one can see that the most common group that 49% Relationships with peers calls BRIS are secondary school children. 43 percent 36% The child’s problems/development of the calls from children are from 13–15 year-olds. 26% Family Middle school children are also well represented and 16% Abuse account for one third [33 percent] of calls, while young people in upper secondary school [16–18 year- 16% Miscellaneous [n=16 007] olds] only comprise 17 percent of calls. Children under 10 account for 5.4 percent. The most common family profile is the biological nuclear family, in which 61 percent of the children callers live, which is a lower proportion compared with the normal population. 15 percent live with a The 15 most common call topics in calls from children C lone mother, while those who live in stepfamilies, with a lone father, with both parents after divorce or 18% Bullying separation (joint residency), or in foster care or home 14% Family conflicts placement are encountered to a lesser extent. 13% Relationships with friends Children that live in stepfamilies or joint residen- cy call more about family conflicts and physical 13% Love relationships abuse. More than one in three calls deal with abuse 7,7% Physical abuse if the child lives with a lone father. 7,4% Loneliness 6,9% Sexuality Themes and call topics 6,7% Sexual abuse NB! In earlier BRIS reports we only The call topics are covered in a few themes that described what the call primarily related roughly summarise what traffic on the Children’s 5,1% Sexual development to. To provide a better overall view, this Helpline relates to. 3,8% Drug/alcohol abuse in family year for the first time we tally up what One out of two calls deal in some way with rela- 3,5% School problems the call both primarily and secondarily tionships to peers, slightly more than one out of 3,4% Divorce-related problems relates to. This entails that the total three with the child’s own development or personal 3,3% Existential/life issues percentage exceeds 100%, since more problems, and one out of four calls relate to some- than one theme/call topic can be dealt thing happening in the family. One out of six calls 3,2% Body/appearance with in a single call. relate to abuse, and the same applies for the topics 2,9% Suicide [n=16 007] covered under the collective heading “Miscellaneous”. 8
  8. 8. calls from children and young peopleTheme: Childrens relationships with their peers AnnCha Lagerman, NB! To protect the child’s integrity the callThe call topics of bullying, friendship and love has been training notes in the BRIS Report have been slightlyelationships as well as sexuality are covered here. school personnel, altered where necessary. Being a victim of bullying has been the most com- teachers and pupilsmon reason for calling BRIS since the mid-1990s. throughout the coun-Almost one out of five [18 percent] of all calls prima- try in anti-bullyingrily or secondarily relate to bullying, which means a programmes withtotal of slightly more than 2,800 “bullying calls”. friend supporters, 1 13 year-old girl is bullied in school because she The children who call are most often dejected, self- bullying teams and is overweight. She is verbally teased and beaten.destructive thoughts are involved and suicide plans mentor talks. In 2003 They pull her clothes off and flush her head in thecan exist. Usually they have been victimised for a long she visited about 500 toilette, chase and harass her. She thinks that shetime, and many times BRIS personnel are the first schools with her pro- only has herself to blame. Hasnt told an adult.adults they dare tell. Substantially often they say that AnnCha Lagerman gramme.the school has known about the problem, but been “It seems as if 2 The boys have photographed the girl when sheincapable of resolving it, which may be due to cut- bullying in school is a problem that generally is not changed in gym. The pictures have since beenbacks in school healthcare, among others. Especially declining. The school environment is perceived by copied, and put up in the school and on thebefore the start of school, BRIS receives an increased both pupils and school personnel as tougher and Internet.influx of calls from children who do not want to go more brutal. The schools’ often difficult financial situ-back to school to again be forced to suffer. ation has contributed to not as much being invested 3 Boy who is teased because he is an immigrant. The bullying almost always happens in school and in education as previously. But the schools that Says that the adults at school don’t do anythingconsists of everything from being frozen out, or sexu- deliberately and consistently work with the proper because they are racists. Has spoken with theal harassment in word and deed, to pure physical methods can keep bullying at a very low level by head teacher, teachers and school counsellor, butabuse. New types of harassment are mirrored in the detecting every single case early on,” she summarises. nothing has helped.growing number of calls that relate to bullying over Also at the top of the list of call topic areas arethe Internet and with text messaging. friendship and love relationships. They are vital areas 4 Seriously bullied by schoolmates. They hit, kick Girls partially taking on the boys’ patterns can be dealt with in one fourth [24 percent] of all calls from and shout cunt and slut at her. Once she had tosuspected from the year’s perpetrator profile where, children. Being all right, finding friends or a partner, visit the school nurse because they had poundedfor the seventh year running, BRIS studies who does becoming popular and being liked for who one is, her head into the desk so that she got an openthe bullying from bullying calls: In nine out of ten comprises an inexhaustible area. With regard to wound in her forehead. This has been going oncases the bullying is done by a group, but information questions about sexuality, there are both curiosity for three years. Has contacted the head teacherfrom 2003 indicates more gender-mixed groups and and anguish in many calls that relate to the issues of and school counsellor, but nothing happens.fewer cases where only boys are the perpetrators. hetero/homo, attractive/ugly, sleep with/or not. AndAlmost half [46 percent] of the bullying cases have per- above all: the ever present: am I good enough? 5 The boy was a bully who would make thingspetrators of both sexes, one third [35 percent] are only Here are some examples from the counselling ses- right tomorrow. Had taken off from school to vboys, and one out of five [19 percent] are only girls. sion notes on what child callers can say to BRIS about apologise. He was nervous about tomorrow. For many years, BRIS’ expert in bullying issues, relationships to peers: 9
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  10. 10. calls from children and young people thoughts on their self-worth and the value of life. 6 16 year-old girl who met her considerably Loneliness is a theme that is common to most of 4 The girl was tired of life and very lonely. older boyfriend over the Internet. He has often the calls from children and this is particularly “I play a part, my smile is faked.” had sex with her against her will, ties her up. She noticeable in calls that are about children’s personal does not want to break up, but nor does she problems, but also in those about friendship and love 5 16 year-old boy who takes drugs, shoots up want him to continue to rape and beat her. relationships. heroin. Has been under the supervision of social Thinks the solution is to kill herself. Their own sexual development and questions services for 1 year. Has started to do drugs again about pregnancy also fall under this heading, where and wants to stop, but does not want to get the 7 A 14 year-old girl is in love with her new, 35 the child in different ways brings up questions dealing authorities involved. year-old teacher. He’s so nice. She has told him with becoming an adult. that she is in love with him. But she doesn’t Here are some examples of the children’s personal 6 Girl whose best friend recently killed herself. think that they will get together. problems from our counsellors’ notes: The girl feels great sorrow and guilt. The friend had sought her support in vain. The girl is con- 8 A 15 year-old boy who is worried about having 1 Six months ago she tried to commit suicide. vinced that it’s her fault. sex for the first time with his girlfriend who he’s “Look at everything that’s happening in the been together with for 2.5 months. She has done world; war, famine, unemployment and so on. 7 Problems with anorexia for several years. it before. There’s no reason to grow up.” Takes tablets Considering completely starving herself to get against depression and it doesn’t feel like she her parents’ attention. Doesn’t dare speak with 9 A 13 year-old girl called and wondered: What’s knows where she stops and the tablets begin her parents. Many deaths around her! Has no the difference between a peck and a kiss? Is it anymore. one to talk to. OK according to the law to snog at the age of 13? 2 Boy [12] who for a month has been wonder- 8 “I caused a girl to commit suicide a few !≈ Girl [12] who believes she is homosexual, ing a lot about if he might be homosexual/ months ago.” Had harassed a girl with text doesn’t know how she should find out if it’s true. bisexual. It all began with an entertainment messages and on a web page. Police and coun- Asks if there is something wrong with her. Will program on TV that focused a lot on homosexu- sellor involved. Feels extremely bad about what ask a girl she is in love with to go out with her. ality. The thoughts come when he is alone and happened. he feels great uneasiness, worry and anxiety. 9 The boy is afraid of himself because anTheme: The child’s development/personal problems 3 A 17 year-old girl is 2 weeks pregnant. The enormous, bloody hatred wells up sometimes.This is a collective term for many call topic areas father is considerably older, a secret boyfriend. Wants to hurt others. Is afraid of himself and isthat are largely about the increased psychological ill- The girl should be a virgin and is to be married off in a very bad way. Wants help!ness among children and young people. It deals with in her family’s home country. Should she haveeverything from existential life issues, loneliness an abortion? Have a hymen operated in? Or will !≈ The girl has taken 30 Alvedon (paracetamoland sadness, to stress, alcohol/drug abuse and sui- she keep the baby and maybe be abused/ shot by tablets) 2 hours ago. Help her to hospital incide. So this theme involves the most serious calls relatives? Will call the youth counselling centre. X-town. Ambulance pick up – she arrived.with regard to children’s and young people’s own 11
  11. 11. the bris report 2003 Theme: The Family Family conflicts constitute a central problem area 3 The girl’s father had seen her talking to 2 !≈ 11 year-old girl bears all the responsibility for that comes second among all the reasons for calling male friends today. Father is very angry, called the mother’s and siblings’ lives, protects her BRIS. Family conflicts can include everything from her whore, slut. They come from a non-European younger siblings from a drunk and violent children’s normal struggles to establish their own country, father wants his old culture to apply. mother. She prepares all food, takes care of the identities to conflicts that are close to abuse, where The girl wants to do as her friends, but is afraid home and her siblings. The girl cuts herself, culture clashes often occur. of her father, cried. began the first time the mother beat her. The girl A total of three fourths of these calls deal with is afraid that she will commit suicide, that she conflicts between the child and an adult. Girls are 4 Crying girl who found out that her parents can’t stand it anymore. more often in conflict with their mothers or both will get a divorce. She is very sad and worried parents, while boys are in conflict with their fathers about it and has many questions about what will Theme: Child abuse to a greater extent. The considerably less frequent happen with her, with Christmas and so on. This heading summarises the call topics of physical calls about divorce-related problems also belong and psychological abuse as well as sexual abuse. to the family theme, as do issues about family mem- 5 Mum and dad forgot the boy’s birthday today. The worst abuse that children can suffer from adult bers’ drug/alcohol abuse and health. These calls They’ve been on drugs for the last 2 years. The perpetrators is gathered here. Our perpetrator almost exclusively deal with the parents; primarily boy is sad. profiles clearly show that these crimes very often the drug/alcohol abuse of the father [40 percent], take place in the home. then that of the mother [33 percent] or of both 6 “My mum intends to quit as a mother – and The past few years BRIS has stated that approxi- parents [20 percent]. go to social services. Can she do that? Then I’ll mately one third of all statistically recorded calls to These are examples of calls from children with be alone. I can’t manage on my own.” the Children’s Helpline relate to crimes against chil- the family as the topic: dren in a legal sense, but many of the bullying calls 7 Girl who wonders what she and her mum can are also included in that calculation. 1 11 year-old girl lives together with her mum do to get more money. They almost don’t have In 2003, about 2,800 calls were received that dealt and “pretend dad”. Is expected to care for her enough to buy anything. with abuse, where the trend from last year’s drama- 1 year-old little brother at home. Doesn’t have tic rise in calls about sexual abuse turned and these time to be with her friends. Is punished with 8 Dad is dead. Mum takes out money from the calls reduced by 22 percent. The calls about physical denial of food if she does not obey. Will tell her boy’s accounts. She’s an alcoholic. Has tried to abuse dropped by the approximate average for calls biological father of how she has it with her get help from social services. The boy ran away from children this year [15 percent]. mother. Wants to live with him. once. Then mum threatened to kill herself. For the eighth year running, BRIS presents its perpetrator profile, which has been consistent from 2 A 13 year-old adopted boy who says that 9 Has no one to talk to, lives in a foster home. year to year. It shows that a parent is the most his mum and dad often get irritated at him Sex contacts on the Internet to earn a little common perpetrator and that in 85 percent of the and threatened to kill him once. They have said money and feel a bit like somebody cares. Cannot cases the children are abused in the home. several times that they wish they could send handle going to school. Has received an offer to With regards to the gender distribution, the him back to his country of origin. act in a porn film. Wants to have a family to go to. perpetrators were men in 69 percent of the cases while in 31 percent of the cases they were women. 12
  12. 12. calls from children and young peopleIncluded in these figures is that 13 percent of the casesinvolved both a male and a female perpetrator commit-ting the abuse at the same time. In two thirds of thecases girls were victims of the abuse, compared withabout one third of the cases where boys were the victims. From the National Council for Crime Prevention’sstatistics for 2003, it is evident that police reports con-cerning abuse and aggravated assault on children haveincreased by 16 percent with regard to children between0–6 years of age and by 3 percent with regard to crimesagainst children of ages 7–14. Referring to the low fre-quency with which crimes against children are resolvedand to get help in this vulnerable situation, BRIS is con-ducting a study of signals of resistance from child crimevictims. BRIS is aiming to present this material at theend of spring 2004. Sexual abuse is also committed largely in the home[although to a lesser extent than physical abuse]. In sixout of ten cases [61 percent] the children report thehome as the scene of the crime, and in close to one outof five cases [18 percent] the school as the crime scene. The perpetrator profile is generally similar to previ-ous years with the exception of a halving of the propor-tion of stepfathers as perpetrators and an increase inthe proportion of female perpetrators. 82 percent of the perpetrators were male while 18percent were female. This includes that 4 percent ofthe sexual assaults were committed simultaneously bya male and a female perpetrator. Compared to 2002, there are also relatively more boyvictims, but three fourths are still girls. The greatmajority of abuse takes place in the home. This is whythe victimised child seldom intends to have the perpe-trator caught, despite the exploitation of the child’sdependency on a person who actually has the task ofprotecting him/her. 13
  13. 13. the bris report 2003 Police reports are therefore uncommon. Exposure to this violence instead often leads to thoughts of suicide and other types of aggressiveness directed at oneself. Here are some call examples from the Children’s Helpline on abuse: 1 1 year-old girl who sat together with her sister in the lavatory. Their father used to beat them, and now he was drunk and stood outside, bea- ting on the door. The girls were waiting for their mother to come home. 2 The girl’s mother has been beating her for about 1 year. Her father lives elsewhere. Been in touch with the police before, has not been believed. 3 8 year-old girl who lives with her mother and stepfather, who beats her when her mum is away. Also tells her how much he hates her and that he feels sorry for the mother for having such a child. 4 Today the girl found her mum lying on the floor, beaten by her dad. The girl was scared and wanted this to stop, and when she let her father have sex with her, he had promised that he wouldn’t beat mum. The call was cut off because somebody was knocking on her locked door. 5 Her boyfriend has been beating her for 1 year. Has tried breaking up, but he won’t budge. Extremely scared. Cries the whole time. Has not told anyone, but agrees that she should tell her foster parents. 14
  14. 14. calls from children and young people6 Girl [12] who had been chatting with a boy that Physical abuse, perpetrators [Portion of calls about abuse] Dshe thought was 13 years old. Agreed on going ona date after a long time. It turned out that he was 41% Fatherabout 40 years old. He videotaped her. Is threate- 19% Motherning to publish the pictures on the Internet if she 10% Both adultsreports him to the police. 10% Known peer (not sibling)7 Girl, 11 years old, sexually abused by her father. 5,5% StepfatherHas been going on since she was 7. Her father ties 2,4% Teacher/school personnelher up, has both normal and oral intercourse. 2,0% SiblingThreatens her to not tell. Says that it’s the way it’s 1,6% Stepmothersupposed to be and that the mother knows andconsents. The girl thinks that it hurts, sometimes 3,8% Other known adultshe bleeds and feels that it’s wrong and disgust- 4,8% Other [n=1 231]ing. First time she has confided in someone.8 Boy has been sexually abused by his mother inthe last 2 weeks. Cries. The mother has problemswith alcohol and the sexual abuse happens on theweekends. His father is not there. Advise him to Sexual abuse, perpetrators [Portion of calls about abuse] Espeak with another adult too... [He hung up.]. 29% Father9 Sexually abused by her father almost daily. 13% Teacher/school personnelTwice a month the girl and her father travel to anapartment in a larger city where he sells her to 11% Known peer (not sibling)other men. If she doesn’t go along, her father will 6,4% Motheruse her little sister instead. When it gets to be too 5,4% Stepfathermuch, she cuts herself. 4,9% Foster parent 2,6% Sibling!≈ 16 year-old boy sexually abused since he was10. Lives alone with his father. According to his 5,6% Another family memberfather, the boy is a good lover. The boy is scared, 9,4% Other known adultscared, scared. First time he dares to speak with 14% Other [n=1 005]anyone about the abuse. 15
  15. 15. the bris report 2003 Others and miscellaneous This is a collective heading where calls that do not fit 4 “What can BRIS do to help a 10 year-old girl in under the other theme headings are gathered. and her brother to stay?” The family has received During the year, for example, journalists have wanted their final deportation notice. People just can’t do to know how dramatic events that have been given this to children! The family are gipsies and have considerable media attention have influenced the neither home nor possessions.” children that call BRIS. As a whole the reactions have been rare; only slightly more than 100 calls were of 5 Two boys spoke with me about what hap- this nature. Most [64 calls] related to the U.S. invasion pened today. Anna Lindh, 5 year-old girl at day- of Iraq, while the murder of Anna Lindh was the topic care and 16 year-old girl found dead in Sundsvall. of 29 statistically recorded calls. Here are some exam- They felt that it was really rough and wondered ples of calls that deal with a bit of everything: what’s happening in Sweden. 1 15 year-old girl. Is placed in care because she 6 Boy who tells of troubles between a Swedish came into bad company and could not carry on and an immigrant gang at the place where he with school. Has moved around to five different lives. The last time one of the immigrants had a places during the child welfare investigation. knife and the boy who is calling is worried about Does not get on at the treatment centre where what might happen. there is a lot of trouble and many who cut them- selves and try to commit suicide. Wants to go 7 Girl who should pick her little brother up from home. day-care. He had already been picked up by somebody else. The girl had called her mum and 2 10 year-old girl who calls and is very there was no one else who should have picked frightened. She explains that she and a friend him up. The girl was worried. “rang-and-ran” on the door of a man in the same stairwell of their building. The neighbour is 8 Girl who is afraid of predatory animals when threatening her with calling the police even she goes to school. She walks a kilometre to the though they have apologised. bus on a dark country road. She has spoken with her parents about being scared, but they say that 3 Last summer the family was in their home the predators are probably more afraid of her. country and the girl was matched with a fiancé whom she is to marry when she turns 18. She’s 9 Girl who wondered why there are so many tried in every way possible to avert the marriage, women at the Children’s Helpline. Said at the but hasn’t succeeded. Now she’s trying to adjust same time that it’s good that there is a BRIS to the situation as she knows it’s inevitable. phone line! We thank you. 16
  16. 16. calls from children and young people Assignments The assignments have related to girls in three !≈ The girl is agitated as a boy has put her A child who calls BRIS can choose to have a more out of four cases, which corresponds to the gender phone number on his homepage, called her a firm intervention than a referral. In such cases a BRIS- breakdown on the Children’s Helpline. The average slut and said that she offered sex-services. representative can take over and together with the age was 14. Compared to calls from children in child formulate an assignment, which in the majority general, there is an overrepresentation among of cases involves going in and concretely helping in “assignment children” of those living in stepfamiliesAfter the call establishing contacts with different authorities or or with a lone father.BRIS acts as a support, which means that together other adults. The authority most often contacted Family conflicts, physical abuse and sexual abusewith the child we investigate possibilities of referring is social services. However, no contacts are made were the three most common problems for childrenthem to possible contacts in their surroundings. without the child giving BRIS instructions to do so. and young people in the handling of assignments.This is possible in six out of ten calls. The following We have completed 94 assignments in total The assignments have lasted from one day toshows the breakdown of these contacts. during the year, which is 14 less than in 2002. more than a year with an average length of 45 days. Further contacts following calls from children F 32% School 15% Teacher 10% School nurse 8,0% School counsellor/psychologist “BRIS acts as a support, which 4,5% Head teacher means that together with 31% Adult in the family the child we investigate possibilities of referring them 18% Friend + boy/girlfriend to possible contacts in their 10% Youth counselling centre surroundings. This is 6,1% Social services possible in six out of ten calls.” 3,0% Child psychiatry and health services 1,3% Police 4,8% Other adult outside the family 24% Further contact with BRIS 7,8% Other referrals [n=9 716] 17
  17. 17. the bris report 2003 03
  18. 18. bris.seBRIS.seThe website was established in its current are large age differences between the children andform in January 2001 as an essential way of convey- young people that contact us. One can therefore “Our vision is thating information and support over the Internet. The choose between using a fictitious identity in the will become a channel that activelyintent was primarily to offer an alternative means of form of an imaginary animal, called Mumla, or using contributes to a positivereaching us besides the helpline. The website has the just a user name and password if one would like to development of theyouth, general public, authorities and institutions of e-mail or chat with BRIS or peers in a safe manner overall service”Sweden as its target group. The focus lies on the dia- on the website.log with children and young people, from the BRIS-mail above all, but also through Discussion Forums. The BRIS-mail Today, is constantly being refined with Particularly notable is the rise in e-mails relating toregard to supporting children and young people, the problem of suicide. Our figures show that theseinfluencing opinions and maintaining media con- e-mails have nearly tripled during 2003 comparedtacts as well as fundraising to be able to continue to the previous year.offering services. In 2003, we renovated the website When the BRIS-mail began in January 2001, it wastogether with the web agency deasign so that it will intended as a digital complement to the Children’sbe able to more clearly meet the rising demands Helpline. Today, e-mail services are instead an equalplaced on BRIS by its surroundings. On 6 October, a part of BRIS’ fundamental work. No other form of In 2003, there was a 25 percent increase to 8,350completely new website was launched with a new support is growing as much as the incoming e-mails. e-mails, of which slightly more than 6,000 weredocumentation system similar to that used with This shows that there are not only new ways of com- statistically recorded as advisory or supportive.the Children’s Helpline. This is an important part municating, but rather that a large part of young Of those e-mailing BRIS, 87 percent are girls andof an ongoing effort for a unified communications people prefer writing to talking. For many who have 13 percent are boys. The average age is just over 14,platform that BRIS is implementing with the adver- a hard time explaining on the phone, e-mail is a way or one year older than the average of those who call.tising agency IK Stockholm. to write a diary or a short story for themselves and Slightly more than half of those who e-mail BRIS “A major objective was to gather “all of BRIS” on then send the account anonymously to somebody live in nuclear families. Less than one out of five liveone site with simple navigation. Our vision is that else. Many who e-mail say that it feels safer and with a lone mother, almost one out of ten live will become a channel that actively con- more secure to write. joint residency, and the same is true of those whotributes to a positive development of the overall Many only write one e-mail, but one sender live in stepfamilies.service,” says Johnny Nordström, Communications writes almost two e-mails on average. Project manager for the development of the BRIS-and Marketing Coordinator. During the first year in operation, about 4,300 mail Maria Rådlund and BRIS-representative Mia The fundamental communication principle at e-mails were received. In 2002 this had increased Svensson have the following reflections on trends builds on security and anonymity. But there to 6,700. e-mailing over the past year: 19
  19. 19. the bris report 2003 Themes and e-mail topics + The difficult e-mails about serious problems Like the calls on the Children’s Helpline, e-mails are Theme E-mails from children G are becoming even more serious and more com- covered in the themes that are summarised in Fig. G. plex, where possible. There is a constantly This generally means that approximately three 72% The child’s problems/development increasing flow of well-formulated stories that out of four e-mails deal in some way with the child’s 47% Relationships with peers relate to psychological illness – depression, self- own development or own problems, every second 37% The Family destructiveness and thoughts of suicide, where e-mail is about relationships to peers, four out of ten 12% Abuse the child should get professional help. about something in the family, one in eight about abuse, and 15 percent of the e-mails are about any 15% Miscellaneous [n=1 556] + Others have had contact with professionals, one of all of the topics covered under miscellaneous. but these efforts sometimes do not seem to work. A lack of trust in adults is common; bad experi- Suicide/thoughts of suicide ences from contacts with authorities and others The information above shows a near tripling [+185 involved in helping can be found. The child feels percent] of the e-mails that relate to problems of The 15 most common topics H that he/she is not listened to or believed. suicide. Such a large increase within a specific in e-mails from children problem area is, to the extent known, without com- 23% Family conflicts + The children who write to us have lived with parison in BRIS’ history. After last year’s BRIS Report 21% Other friend relationships their secret a long time. They are often very lonely we warned specifically about the increase in psycho- and put up a front. logical illnesses among young girls and the increasing 16% Suicide/thoughts of suicide number of e-mails about cutting oneself. 13% Love relationships + We have noticed the demands and pressures During 2003, e-mails dealing directly with suicide 12% Psychological illness that young girls feel. It is about sexualisation and totalled to about one thousand. 11% Bullying the demands of being clever, attractive, sexy and “The e-mails we receive mirror a troubling deve- growing up so quickly. A great deal of questions lopment, to say the least, primarily with regard to the 11% Self-destructiveness that 11–12 year-old girls have today are questions psychological health of young girls in our country. 11% Loneliness that used to be asked by 14–15 year-olds. Last year we warned of the rapidly growing number 9,6% Existential/life issues of e-mails about girls who cut themselves. This year 9,0% Identity issues + Lastly: a new area that we have seen more of we are forced to confirmthat the trend we see has 6,2% Eating disorders is the worry that arises in connection with surf- ing on the Internet. Examples are bad chat expe- NB! The themes and e-mail topics are based on 6,1% Physical abuse riences with sexual harassment, dating over the e-mails from the last quarter. This is due to the 5,9% School problems Internet that has gone awry, situations where renovation of the documentation system 5,7% Body/appearance adults have tried to sexually abuse and threaten described in the introduction. However, informa- 5,1% Divorce-related problems them, and where even pictures of the e-mailer tion on, for example, the total number of e-mails, have ended up on porn sites. gender and age is calculated on an annual basis. [n=1 556] 20 NB! The themes and e-mail topics are based on a compilation of what the e-mail both primarily and secondarily dealt with. The total is therefore more than 100%.
  20. 20. bris.sebecome even more frightening,” says BRIS’ Secretary The ways they want to end their life are many, butGeneral Göran Harnesk. tablets, cutting themselves deeply and jumping in “If more girls feel that life is not worth living front of a vehicle are common.because they have unbearable circumstances at home It is also common that friends e-mail to expressand school, and feel that the pressure on them is so their worry for their friend’s self-destructiveness orgreat that they are not good enough, then the govern- suicidal tendencies. Moreover, these problems affectment must make a great investment in preventive not only girls: 13 percent of the “suicide e-mails”measures.” received last year were about boys. The common signs that we can see from the year’s As a result of the problems above, the organisatione-mails about suicide are that many young people SPES [Suicide Prevention and Victim Family Support],have entertained thoughts of suicide for a long time, the Child Safety Delegation and BRIS began a projectone or two years. Some have also attempted suicide in 2003 about young people’s suicides, suicideseveral times. Commonly they do not want to speak to attempts and other self-inflicted adult, due in part to previous negative experienceswith professionals [school counsellors, child psychia- NB! To give an illustration of how children andtry, among others]. Others do not want to talk because young people describe their own situation, wetheir parents might find out. have given some examples of how letters to Most describe symptoms of depression: crying the BRIS-mail can look. Note that constructed,often, feeling worthless, having difficulty sleeping and but representative information has been com-not having the energy to do much. Feelings of self-hate, piled to guarantee the individual child’spowerlessness and alienation are evident. The girls that anonymity.e-mail BRIS indicate that problems with suicide arecreeping further and further down in the age groups. Itshould be of utmost importance to all decision-makers + Why should I live if it were easier if I just die…and professionals who work with children and young cut myself all the time, no one sees. The schoolpeople to understand the gravity of 12–13 year-olds counsellor and child psychiatrist are just crap. Iexpressing a compact longing for something away from just never feel good, it feels as if all of my friendsthis world and seeing suicide as a relief. also cut themselves so they have their own prob- The stated causes of their condition and actions lems and can’t manage mine. Is life really sup-vary. Triggering factors can be the parents’ internal posed to be like this? Everything feels meaning-discord with quarrels and/or alcohol abuse in the less because I’ve decided to die. At night I liehome, too high demands, too much stress or bullying there and cry. Sometimes when I’m happy I startat school, loneliness or love problems. It is common to think about not feeling good and then it feelsthat they do not trust adults, want to keep their prob- crappy again. Help me, I can’t take it any more.lems to themselves and do not see any possibility of [Girl 15]getting help anywhere. 21
  21. 21. the bris report 2003 Psychological illness/self-destructiveness This involves a condition of great loyalty to, and Bullying This heading has direct links to the problems of sui- worry and responsibility for the parents. Being cide; this primarily concerns self-destructive beha- involved in the adults’ conflicts means that the + I usually hang out with three guys in my viour. Here, there are many e-mails about girls who children become lonely in an ever-earlier adult role. class, but why do I feel so alone???? They usually cut themselves, which BRIS particularly emphasised E-mails about family conflicts increased by 38 per- turn away and then I usually ask what they’re last year in the influencing of public opinion. Many cent compared with last year. talking about, but they never answer. who e-mail about cutting themselves describe the act I thought it would get easier when I started as calming and that the self-mutilation helps them to + Hi BRIS! I’m a girl who is about to turn 16. It eighth grade. handle the feelings like anger and sorrow, for which seems like everything I do and say just turns out Always a load of nasty things in e-mails or they do not find any other release. Self-mutilation wrong, and soon I’m just going to give up on text messages. I’ve tried talking with a teacher, becomes a relief for the moment, but afterwards everything. If I’m with dad and his new girl- but they don’t seem to get it or they say not to many express feelings of shame over their actions. friend, there’s a row because she just complains mind them and that it’ll soon pass. But it never and dad always takes her side. Why doesn’t dad does. When will it get better?? can you help + When the anxiety comes, the knife is my understand that I get really sad???? If I stay with me…answer [Boy 14] salvation. Cut and cut until I can finally relax mum, she shouts the whole time…When I was and fall asleep. Can’t stop, it eases my pain in little, she said that she would put me in an some strange way. I can’t handle always being so orphanage because I was such a pain. Don’t tell Loneliness damned “successful and happy”. Sometimes I me to talk with my parents because I’ve tried wish that the mirror could change its reflection. and it always ends with a massive row. [Girl 16] + Dad’s been unfaithful and everything is Am I mad??? You are the only ones I can turn to. complete chaos here at home and mum cries Thanks. [Girl 14] the whole time. I know that dad regrets it and Other friend relationships he’s asked mum for forgiveness. Dad’s going to have to live with this his whole The difficulties mentioned in the e-mails about self- + My life feels upside down. I have a best friend life and nothing’s going to be like before. I feel so mutilation are, like the cases dealing with suicide, whose name is Klara and we’ve been best alone. about loneliness and alienation, being bullied and/or friends like our whole life, now we’re 15. My There’s no one I can talk to. I can’t talk with adults not seeing or listening. Problems in the family problem is that she’s become so sad and is mum because she just gets sad and dad is just are also common: rows, divorces and the parents’ thinking about running away and she cuts her- ashamed and silent the whole time. new partners are mentioned as problems. self with a razorblade. She’s said that I can’t ever I try to pretend like everything’s like normal say anything or else we won’t be friends any- and talk the whole time at home because other- Family conflicts more. I want to help her, but don’t know how. I wise it’s so quiet. Can’t handle feeling like this Even if the increase in e-mails about problems with don’t think she has any confidence and she anymore… [Girl 12] suicide has been the most alarming, issues relating could use some. Am I betraying my friend if I tell to family conflicts are the single most common rea- somebody? Sometimes at night I think I’ll tell sons for e-mailing BRIS. Here, the child often bears my mum, but I then don’t dare. [Girl 15] the symptoms of a dysfunctional family. 22
  22. 22. bris.seThe Discussion Forum Examples of contributions and responses from the away several times. I don’t want to have the life IBRIS’ open platform for communication on the web, Discussion Forum under the themes “The floor is have now. I feel so alone. I want to be like every-the Discussion Forum, is operating for the second open” and Siblings: one else. I’ve been a foster child for 11 monthsyear in a row, and in 2003 gathered 4,000 published now. Is there ANYONE else whose a foster child?contributions. Here, children and young people can + Faking it 24–7 Or somebody who knows what I should do?discuss current topics with each other. Everyone who hmm going the first round in sixth form. in allparticipates is anonymous and no e-mail addresses of 7- until now i’ve been faking it i’m not really + Response: Foster childcan be traced. The traffic takes place under the adult the same person i am when i’m alone, i’m at Hey. i was a foster child for 8 years!! it was reallysupervision of a moderator from BRIS. home or in school. i have to act tough in school tough the first few years, but i can almost pro- After main contributions have been approved, it is otherwise i’m done for i’d be labelled a *nerd*… mise that it’ll get better. Don’t think you shouldopen for all visitors to respond. It is usually about a at home i can’t be like everyone else run away, talk to somebody who understandsrespondent recognising the problems and wanting to talk about everything w/their parents… some- you and maybe you can move to a place that youshare their own experiences. It is also largely about times i’m so tired and can’t manage putting up a like… hope everything turns out well!!!giving advice and supporting the person having a front anymore… just want to go away… no one ihard time. One can see the Discussion Forum as a can talk things thru with… no one i can trust… if + To those who hate their brothers or sisterstype of self-help group where children and young i’m sad and want to cry and need comforting Don’t you understand that they’re a part of yourpeople write about their thoughts, feelings and prob- there’s no one… i’ve learned to not cry any- life? If you’ve got a problem with them, talk tolems. Getting support from other peers who have more…i have to learn… them and get them to understand that you’resimilar experiences is a great relief to many. It is serious. Love my brothers and sisters. Love yaa!strengthening for the child to see that he/she is not + Response: Faking it 24–7 Hugs! [[middle child]]alone; that there are others who have the same i feel just like you... although i’m in sevenththoughts on, for example, love, friends, loneliness grade but…i think everyone fakes it in school… + Response:and other normal teenage problems. they’re probably completely different people at To those who hate their brothers or sisters “Children and young people of various ages can home or with some others… it can be nice to i love my little brother, but i’m just sending in tomeet in the Discussion Forum, even though they talk things thru w/a mate who listens or some- say to them and maybe everyone else that thinksmight not meet in reality. The meetings are possible body else that might have smthng they’re dea- like me… LOVE YOUR BROTHERS OR SISTERS!!!where age, place of residence and class in society are ling with…i think some do...but you can’t see itnot hinders. For example, I think of a 12 year-old on the outside…but maybe they’re keeping + Response:who felt alone in never having been together with a something inside…try to really talk with some- To those who hate their brothers or sistersboy and who got an answer from a 17 year-old girl,” one… you’ll probably have a lot to talk about… heyya!! i know what it’s like… but i’m alwayssays BRIS-representative Ingrid Wiklund, who is a fighting with mine, but i’ll think about what youmoderator. + Foster child wrote. In 2003 the following themes were current in the Hi! I’ve been placed in a foster home and thinkDiscussion Forum: Love, Siblings, Adults, Stress, it’s really tough! I want to move home to my In December 2003, the Discussion Forum changedImmigrants/refugees, and “The floor is open”, while mum, but I can’t. I’ve thought about running topics. “Love” and “Siblings” were replaced by the“Loneliness” was the single largest. themes “Separated parents” and “Not fitting in”. 23
  23. 23. the bris report 2003 04
  24. 24. bris-representatives and volunteersBRIS-representatives and volunteers BRIS’ fundamental serv- part of the job. After all, they are the ones who “We often have discussions about how to act with- ices consist of the guarantee that children and young people are treated in the scope of our mission. What is a child’s perspec- Children’s Helpline and properly. This is why it is important for us to refine tive? It involves after all not ending up on the child’s the BRIS-mail. Through our recruitment so that we can hand pick the very level, but rather being able to do what is within our these channels BRIS’ best,” says Henrik Brolinson, adding that several who power with the eyes of an adult. It demands that one volunteers had a total apply as volunteers are turned down. can listen and be able to receive children’s accounts of about 22,000 support- An enduring flame with a strong enough glow to at whichever level they come, from severe abuse to ive contacts with chil- not fade; this is how one might summarise Henrik funny stories,” Henrik Brolinson summarises. dren and young people Brolinson’s basic view of the good characteristics After four years in the same job, he is fascinated during 2003. The organi- required when one is to help children in trouble. by the trust that children have in BRIS. “They trust inHenrik Brolinson sation’s existence rests Like many BRIS-representatives, he is a trained social the fact that we do not have number presentation oron these roughly 400 people who are tied to the five worker by trade. In his previous jobs, he was a school tracing, then they tell their story,” he says.regional offices. They are trained and supervised by counsellor, worked in social services and with chil- Being a BRIS-representative involves a clear, well-employed BRIS-representatives who also bear the full dren and young people at treatment centres. defined professional role. Henrik Brolinson does notresponsibility for the Adult Helpline two hours daily. “If you are passionate, you can get burned out. But need to work with finances or administration, butHenrik Brolinson in Norrköping has long-term experi- I feel that individual suitability is about being curious, can rather focus on the children on the phone andence with these fundamental services. being capable of reflection and being earnest. A las- in e-mails. ting commitment is the most important.” Individual To get variation and inspiration, and to make newEndurance and curiosity suitability is judged by the BRIS-representatives. To be contacts, he also goes out and lectures. He empha-BRIS’ Eastern Region in Norrköping has two 4-hour accepted to BRIS’ 40-hour training programme over a sizes that it is a true benefit to get to meet committedcounselling sessions a week. The volunteers free term, the prospective volunteer must also be at least people, to be there and listen in on magical conversa-themselves from work and studies, come on time to 25 years old, have a theoretic foundation and be accus- tions between volunteers and children, and to be therethe regional office, and also stay afterwards for a tomed to speaking with children. for support when it is and an “after chat”. Every counselling session The average volunteer at BRIS is a womanis done together with another region that has similar A child perspective with adult eyes between 30–35 years of age. If Henrik Brolinson couldstaffing. In Norrköping, at least four phone lines are Today, one must also be able to handle the written make a wish, it would be to have more men who takeopen and there are also a few breaks so that one can word, which is on the rise through the BRIS-mail. the children’s calls and e-mails.get away and rest a while, or go through things with Henrik Brolinson particularly emphasizes its impor- “Nonetheless, I think we have a fantastic corps ofthe BRIS-representative responsible for the evening. tance with regard to the possibility of formulating volunteers. Six to seven people come on Christmas “For me, the training of e-mail and phone volun- oneself without interruption when it comes to identi- day, voluntarily and without any financial compensa-teers is both the most important and the most fun ty and life issues. tion. Where else can one find that?” 25
  25. 25. the bris report 2003 05
  26. 26. children in the spoken and written wordChildren in the spoken and written word– differences between calls and e-mailsWith the renovated database, for the first time BRIS ous psychological illnesses. This is particularly clear and e-mails show that it is easier to write when thehas the possibility of making direct comparisons in the virtual tripling of the number of e-mails dea- focus lies on internal conflicts and problems.between the content and scope of calls on the ling with suicidal problems as well as in those about However, children and young people prefer to speakChildren’s Helpline and that sent to the BRIS-mail. self-destructiveness. These subjects have a conside- about relationships to the external world and the In a phase where e-mailing is experiencing a very rably lower ranking on the Children’s Helpline. threats that can originate there.strong rise while the growth of phone calls has stag- With regards to the topics, it is clear that e-mails The similarities in the Children’s Helpline and thenated, it is of great interest to try and capture what contain considerably more about the child’s own BRIS-mail are primarily reflected in the frequentis happening. problems than calls, more of which deal with rela- contacts relating to family conflicts. Friendship and What differentiates children’s and young people’s tionships. There is also a certain predominance of love relationships are also high among probleme-mails from their calls? What do they prefer to the topic of abuse on the phone line. areas for both calls and e-mails. The perpetrator pro-write about and which problems or questions would files for physical and sexual abuse are pretty similarthey rather talk to an adult about? Easier to write to each other, except that the victimisation of girls is During 2003, about 16,000 statistically recorded about internal problems again more clearly reflected in the e-mails.calls were received, while about 6,000 e-mails received Serious psychological illness of the child dominatesa supportive response. This means that the Children’s e-mails combined with existential issues. Focus onHelpline is still the most often used way for children the child’s own problems confirms the nature ofand young people to get support from BRIS. writing a diary, which has been present on But the trend speaks for e-mailing gaining from the very beginning. This deals with an internalground. The rise in the number of e-mails was process where the child formulates the problems forroughly equivalent to the decrease of the statistical- themselves and then waits for responses. “During 2003,ly recorded call contacts in 2003. On the other hand, it is primarily the case that about 16,000 statistically With the perception of the Internet largely being a children prefer calling to writing about bullying. Here recorded calls were received, while about 6,000 e-mailsmasculine arena, we thought from the beginning there is a need to soothe their pain by getting in touch received a supportive response.that the BRIS-mail would contribute to more boys with an adult voice that hopefully can help solve the This means that the Children’scontacting us. The opposite has turned out to be conflict between the child and the perpetrators. Helpline is still the most oftentrue: the proportion of boys who e-mail [13 percent] If one compares calls to e-mails as a whole, one used way for children andis only half of that for those who end up in the call also sees that the calls relate more to violations by young people to get supportstatistics [26 percent]. The BRIS-mail has above all adults such as abuse and to sexuality and sexual from BRIS.”become a barometer of young girls’ increasingly seri- development. In summary, the differences in calls 27
  27. 27. the bris report 2003 06
  28. 28. calls from adultsCalls from adultsIn 2003, 2,239 statistically recorded calls were Slightly more than half [55 percent] of the calls rela-received from adults. This means an increase of 14 ted primarily to girls. In seven out of ten cases, the Themes in calls from adults Jpercent compared to last year. call was only about one child. Adults worry about 71% The Family However, compared to the total number of call younger children. The average age was usually lowerattempts made during counselling sessions, only one than on the Children’s Helpline: 10.5 years of age. 50% The child and his/her relationshipsout of five call attempts got through directly. 26% Abuse Content of calls 37% Miscellaneous [n=2 239]Adults who call In brief, seven out of ten calls are about somethingAs in previous years, it is primarily the child’s parents in the family, one out of two about somethingand other relatives who contact BRIS because they around the child him/herself or their relationships toare worried about the child in question. Additionally, peers, one out of four are about abuse, and lastly justrepresentatives that call from the authorities often over one third of the calls deal with any one of thewant to discuss serious cases with BRIS. topics covered under miscellaneous. On average, the The 10 most common K In three-fourths of the cases the adult caller is calls lasted just over 20 minutes. call topics in calls from adultsa woman. Adults are particularly worried about how separa- tions and conflicts in the family affect the child. 34% Divorce-related conflicts Physical abuse, sexual abuse and the child’s psycho- 19% Access-related problems Callers in calls from adults I logical illness also cause marked worry with adults. 13% Custody conflicts Thus, on the Adult Helpline the same input comes 44% Mother 21% Family conflicts from another direction and confirms the children’s 15% Father 20% Problems in the parental role own accounts from the Children’s Helpline. But there 11% Grandparents are differences between the adult callers: 16% The child’s psychological health 5,8% Authority representative/other prof. 14% Other problems related to the child 5,7% Stepparents 14% Problems with authorities 1 men call more about divorce-related topics. 5,6% Siblings/other relatives 11% Physical abuse 2 women about problems in the parental role. 4,5% Family acquaintance 9,9% Sexual abuse 3 grandparents call often about divorce and 2,8% Neighbour family conflicts. 9,0% Neglect 5,9% Other [n=2 041] 4 neighbours, acquaintances, parents of friends 7,0% Psychological abuse [n=2 239] often call about abuse and neglect. NB! The themes and call topics are based on a compilation of what the call both primarily and secondarily dealt with. The total is therefore more than 100%. 29