Children of alcoholics ringing helpline for bedtime stories

A children's helpline received 32,000 calls and emails last year - with kids as young as five asking to be read bedtime stories because their parents were too drunk to put them to bed. Some children call the National Association for Children of Alcoholics so regularly that counsellors keep a pile of their favourite books by the phone. One child, a seven-year-old girl who called on Christmas Day while hiding from her drunk parents under her bed, asked to be told a story about her imaginary friend - a dog called Bruce.The charity also helped a five-year-old girl whose addict mum locked herself in the bathroom overnight and was found dead by paramedics.