Help for Parents of Teens Through Building Family Connections Training 

Marilyn Henderson, BSN, RN, SRAS

There is ONE factor that affects more behaviors in adolescence than any other: PARENTS.1 Ironically, parents often feel that they have lost their influence over their teens, but that is so untrue. Kids are listening, even when they roll their eyes, walk away, or shake their heads. There is nothing easy about parenting teenagers, and a healthy seminar can be a great encouragement to discouraged parents.

Medical Institute’s Building Family Connections (BFC) is a 2 1/2-day training program for anyone who wants to bring hope to parents of teens. Often, parents of teens are the ones who seek out training for themselves and then share it with friends. Pastors, social workers, nurses, pregnancy care centers, teachers, administrators, and counselors can all benefit from BFC. Often our participants are learning from one another, as well as from the presenters, as we interact and engage in activities to help illustrate the principles presented.

Building Family Connections starts with a module on what Great Parenting is and the benefits it brings to our children. None of us have been a perfect parent, but when we set a high standard for our own parenting skills, it helps us to set high standards for our teens, as well. Then we discuss Effective Communication and ways to counter the shrugs and dead-end answers that teens often challenge us with. Parents often need help understanding how the teen brain works which is covered in the Decision-Making module and in the information on Adolescent Development. The workshop continues the second day with lots of scientific and medical information about Sexually Transmitted Infections, Teen Pregnancy, and Contraception. This is all crucial information that gives parents the confidence to face the sexualized society that our kids are living in today. We finish the seminar with a talk about Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships and try to bring a better understanding to the term Sexual Risk Avoidance and how it benefits our children.

Medical Institute is so pleased to bring much of this critical information to our participants through a mother who is right on the front lines, rearing 3 teenagers. Diana Moore will have you laughing and crying with her as she shares real-life experiences to illustrate clearly the trials and the victories of parenting teens intentionally.

At this upcoming BFC Austin event, we will have as our special guest, Dr. Joe McIlhaney, the founder of Medical Institute. He will be presenting the module on Adolescent Development, including information from the recently updated book, HOOKED: the brain science on how casual sex affects human development. He will be happy to sign his book for you, as well; and we will have plenty on hand for purchase.

As Director of the Science Department, here at MI, I will be presenting at the seminar, as well. I had the privilege of rearing two girls and later two grandchildren. My greatest joy comes now as my grandchildren repeat back to me, sometimes quite specifically, things that I taught them that have served them well in life. They really were listening!

Although the BFC early bird pricing for our Austin workshop has expired, you can get the early bird price by calling our office and saying that you learned about our seminar through this newsletter. Call us at (512) 328-6268 and leave a message please.


1. Hoskins DH, “Consequences of Parenting on Adolescent Outcomes,” Societies  3 June 2014, 4(3) 506-531

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