Title

Bridging the Gap: Creating Effective and Lasting Communication Between Teens, Tweens, and Parents

Location

Harborside Center East and West

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Strand #2

Family & Community

Relevance

This proposal relates to the “Home” strand, as the focus is on implementing change within the family system through increasing communication skills of both parents and adolescents.

Brief Program Description

Participants will learn how to better facilitate communication between parents and their teens/tweens, so as to increase mutual empathy, understanding, and relational intimacy. Further, participants will learn which communication styles are less and more effective per a Structural Family Therapy model.

Summary

The presentation will start with identifying problems in communication between teens/tweens and caregivers/parents. Participants will be taught the process of problem identification and problem categorization. Participants will learn how to create an environment of mutual respect and empathy within the family system. This will include helping learning the value of in home practices to increase family cohesion including the following 1) Use of family meetings 2) Use Modern day Meal times to improve communication 3) Creating constant/ongoing communication. Participants will learn techniques for effective communication, such as role plays, experiential techniques, structured dialogues, active listening, drawing the teen out by asking open ended questions, and role clarification exercises. Each Participant will receive handouts for many of the techniques to aid with practical application in the home. All techniques will be discussed and demonstrated. A portion of the presentation will focus on the importance of understanding family structure and being able to assess the need for family restructuring , ie. Structural Family Therapy. A part of this would be understanding the family structure, which would entail learning about the history of the family from both the perspectives of the parents and teenagers. Clarifying any discrepancies in perception here is often helpful, as there are often differences. Participants will learn about linear, interactive, and transactional models of communication and how this impacts their family of origin. Participants will learn which of these models works best most frequently, as well as how and when to use each model. The assertion is that each model is of equal beneficence and parents should consider which model is appropriate to use in varying situations. The presentation will conclude with highlighting the impact of parent-teen communication on teen choice. This will include elaboration on the significance that effective and lasting parent-teen communication can have in risky behavior prevention.

Evidence

Evidence for this presentation comes from a compilation of empirical, peer reviewed research studies. The practical techniques (family meetings, family mealtime/dinners, and creating ongoing communication are supported) are supported by the research studies referenced below. The multiple studies suggest that family dinners decrease high risk behaviors and increase parent communication. The family therapy component is supported by Salvador Minuchin’s Structural Family Therapy model, which is widely applied by Family therapists. Fulkerson, Jayne A.; Pasch, Keryn E.; Stigler, Melissa H.; Farbakhsh, Kian; Perry, Cheryl L.; Komro, Kelli A. Journal of Family Psychology. Jun2010, Vol. 24 Issue 3, p261-270. 10p. 3 Charts, 2 Graphs. DOI: 10.1037/a0019311. Metzger, Aaron; Ice, Christa; Cottrell, Lesley. AIDS Research & Treatment. 2012, p1-10. 10p. 4 Charts, 3 Graphs. DOI: 10.1155/2012/396163. Austin, Cynthia A.; Krumholz, Lauren S.; Tharinger, Deborah J. Journal of Personality Assessment. Nov/Dec2012, Vol. 94 Issue 6, p571-585. 15p. 3 Charts, 1 Graph. DOI: 10.1080/00223891.2012.670679. Cho, Eunae; Allen, Tammy D.; Community, Work & Family, Vol 16(1), Feb, 2013. pp.88-99. Publisher: Taylor & Francis [Journal Article], Database: PsycINFO Gunlicks-Stoessel, Meredith L.; Powers, Sally I. Journal of Research on Adolescence (Wiley-Blackwell). Dec2008, Vol. 18 Issue 4, p621-642. 22p. 6 Charts, 3 Graphs. DOI: 10.1111/j.1532-7795.2008.00574.x. , Database: Psychology and Behavioral Sciences Collection Barnlund, D. C. (2008). A transactional model of communication. In. C. D. Mortensen (Eds.), Communication theory (2nd ed., pp47-57). New Brunswick, New Jersey: Transaction

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Kenyon C. Knapp, Ph.D., LPC, NBCC, CPCS is the Assistant Coordinator for the Doctoral Counseling Program and Associate Professor of Counseling at Penfield College of Mercer University, Atlanta campus, where he teaches Masters and Ph.D. level counseling courses. He has had a part-time private practice for over 18 years, and has worked in numerous counseling settings. He currently serves as a board member for CACREP, the national accreditation body for the counseling field. He has specialties in the areas of crisis counseling, sexual addiction counseling, and Christian counseling. However, his greatest joy and accomplishments come in the form of his wife and four children, who keep him practical, multitasking, and very grateful.

Jacqueline Robinson obtained a Master of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Richmont Graduate University (Formerly the Psychological Studies Institute) and a BA in psychology from Spelman College. She is an Associate Professional Counselor and is currently pursuing credentials as a Nationally Certified Counselor and licensure in Marriage and Family Therapy. Jacqueline has worked extensively in the field of counseling and mental health and is in practice at Trillium Springs Counseling under the direction and supervision of Vilda S. Brannen, M.S., LPC in Atlanta. Theoretical orientations used by Jacqueline in practice are integrative and may include cognitive behavioral therapy, Structural and Behavioral Family Therapy, and Solution Focused therapy. Jacqueline specializes in Marriage and Family Therapy and the treatment of Bipolar Disorder.

Keyword Descriptors

Communication, Teenagers, High-risk Behaviors, Family dinner, Family cohesion, Structural Family Therapy, Minuchin

Presentation Year

2015

Start Date

3-3-2015 4:00 PM

End Date

3-3-2015 5:30 PM

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Mar 3rd, 4:00 PM Mar 3rd, 5:30 PM

Bridging the Gap: Creating Effective and Lasting Communication Between Teens, Tweens, and Parents

Harborside Center East and West

Participants will learn how to better facilitate communication between parents and their teens/tweens, so as to increase mutual empathy, understanding, and relational intimacy. Further, participants will learn which communication styles are less and more effective per a Structural Family Therapy model.