“Let the power of the circle represent together what we cannot do alone.”
THE POWER OF THE CIRCLE
Tuesdays 6:30-8 p.m. (Central time)
Group therapy options include a process group. The issues and concerns of group members are the topics. It is not based upon a manual or curriculum. So, as the facilitator, I am like an orchestra conductor. I introduce ideas and pace the group session. The group members are the main attraction. I direct the process so things go smoothly and everyone gets her turn. It is important that every woman feels heard. This makes it different from self-help meetings. I absolutely endorse 12-step and other groups like Refuge Recovery. (See resource page Self-Help Community Resources) A main difference though is that part of group therapy involves direct feedback.
Group therapy gives women the chance to draw on the compassion she has for her peers. Therefore, it serves as a reminder to direct some of that same compassion back to herself. It involves a sense of connection and commonality that individual therapy cannot provide.
HELPING WOMEN RECOVER: A PROGRAM FOR TREATING ADDICTION
Wednesdays 6:30-8 p.m. (Central time)
Other group therapy options include two structured groups. Helping Women Recover focuses on women’s empowerment. This group is divided into 4 Modules:
There are in-session exercises. On their own group members do journal work in A Woman’s Journal. It is helpful to have the accountability and sharing of the group. Women sharing their insights together breaks down isolation. Because of this it encourages growth in a way that individual therapy cannot.
Thursday 6:30-8 p.m. (Central time)
This is a present-focused therapy for recovery from trauma and alcohol and drug problems. The focus is on increasing safe coping skills and setting manageable personal commitments.
I was working at Residence XII during the clinical trials by National Institute on Drug Abuse. (NIDA) This curriculum was developed by Lisa Najavits from Boston. She openly acknowledges surviving trauma herself. She is brilliant researcher as well as a courageous woman. http://seekingsafety.org
Seeking Safety is about learning more about PTSD and recovery. A focus on coping skills in the present is important. A present focus reduces risk of relapsing as opposed to a past-focused approach. We learn about what behaviors and thoughts are common for people surviving trauma and addiction. This group does not delve into details of past trauma. No one is asked to share specifics about her trauma history with the group. If that is of interest it may be part of individual therapy. That will be entirely up to you.
Most often people come away from this group feeling very validated. Group members see that they aren’t alone in their thinking. Old self-defeating coping skills came about in response to surviving trauma.
Developing new coping reduces anxiety and depression symptoms. The goal is to not be bogged down by the impact of trauma. It’s about being able to move on and participate in life and relationships.