If you’ve been thinking of exploring something different because doing nothing or continuing to do what you’re doing isn’t working., you may be wondering what being in an emotional support group is like. For most people who join, a support group is something they haven’t tried before. They’re surprised at the humanness and connection they can find there. Many people are actually confused about support groups, how it works and what it’s really like. This post will hopefully shed some light on the topic.
What is an Emotional Support Group?
Support groups can be used alone or in conjunction with individual therapy. All members are encouraged to find a 1:1 therapist to dive deep into their individual issues and past. An emotional support group is not therapy unless facilitated or led by a mental health professional. To define support groups, we’ve got to discuss the most common types of support groups:
Open anonymous drop-in support groups
These groups focus on drop in as needed. They often don’t go deep and aren’t as interconnected. Drop in means that you may or may not get to know the other participants and any of you can attend for 1 minute or 1 hour per group. This a great place to get immediate feedback, maybe even vent or get perspective on what’s going on in the here and now even on your particular experience. However if more people are there and talking ahead of you, you may not get to get a turn. Nevertheless, listening can be helpful too.
Small private small group support groups
These groups are more personal, involve deeper connections, sharing of life and interconnectivity to support you on your personal journey. You can expect to share in these groups–altho what and how much you share is up to you. This is a deeper level of
The focus here is on educating people about their specific disorder and ways of coping. People with addictions often go to these kinds of group therapy sessions. One popular example of this is Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).
How Big are Groups?
Groups can be as small as 3 people or as large as 12 people. The average group size is usually somewhere right in the middle. The group will typically meet as often as once a week for an hour..
What Issues Can Group Therapy Help With?
Support groups can be effective at helping you manage:
- Stress/Anxiety over
Benefits of Support Groups
A Shared Experience
Members are there for each other, sharing their struggles and helping others in the group. This sense of altruism can boost self-esteem and confidence.
Sharing your darkest parts with one therapist can be very helpful. But sharing in a group setting has been shown to bring about a deep sense of relief from pain, guilt and shame.
Development of Social Skills
Working intimately within a group setting is a great way to develop social skills.
If you are interested in meeting with a group, please get in touch with me. I lead multiple group session each week. You can book a connection call at www.greatrivermediations.com