Families Give Staying Connected a ‘Thumbs Up’!
Even as they continue to move towards adulthood, establish independence, and look toward college and careers, older teens still value their parents’ advice and look to them for guidance on important matters.
But how can parents shift their communication style to acknowledge that need for independence and desire for self-determination of the senior high teens and young adults in their household? And how can parents and teens engage in respectful conversations when those young men and young women take stands on controversial issues that the parent disagrees with?
These are some of the questions that Family Honor’s newest program, Staying Connected, hopes to answer. The Staying Connected program was written for parents of high school age teens and young adults. Only parents come to the program, however. No teens attend.
Family Honor Presenters Vincent and Jeannie Weaver delivered the first-ever Staying Connected program at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Greenville, SC on Saturday, October 22. Initial response from parents who attended the program has been positive, with 100% of survey respondents agreeing that: “The program will help me better communicate with my [teen] about sexuality and chastity.” In addition, 100% of parent respondents agreed with the statement: “This program increased my confidence and ability to convey my beliefs and values about sexuality to my [teen].”
In addition to giving some excellent background on why the parental role is so important in talking about chastity, the program also includes some possible scenarios for handling questions and conversations from older teens that could be very challenging. A Parent Workbook is provided as part of the program, along with another book on raising pure teens. The Workbook includes a lengthy list of resources for parents of older teens, along with some resources specifically designed to be shared with the teen.
Staying Connected is meant to be delivered live at parishes by Family Honor Presenters in one of three formats:
- a single 2 ½ hour session in the daytime or evening, during the week;
- a 4-hour session on Saturday that includes lunch, allowing for some social time and fellowship with other parent participants;
- a 2-hour workshop session that can be built in to an existing conference or seminar hosted by a parish or diocese.
Family Honor hopes to pilot at least two additional programs by May, 2017, and will then refine the curriculum and Parent Workbook based on accumulated feedback from parent participants.