Community based support groups are available for people struggling with addictions or mental health issues. Group support can be offered in a variety of ways and in a variety of settings, whether in person or virtually. Depending on the needs and preferences of each client, we can incorporate these types of groups into the treatment plan. AA and NA are the most well-known community support groups for addictions, but there are many other options for people who are averse to the 12-step model.
There are also groups that can be led by a therapist with a specific purpose or topic, to help clients understand and deal with specific issues that are generally common with everybody, i.e. relationships, grief & loss, resilience, overcoming adversity, etc. The goal of these groups is to create a sense of universality, so clients can feel that they are not alone in their struggle. It also provides them with a feeling of support, knowing that they have people who are there for them. This often times can offer a sense of hope that they can get through their challenges and continue to move forward. Clients can learn a great deal from others as they share their experience and receive feedback from the group, if that is allowable or appropriate. They can also feel a sense of belonging which can develop camaraderie and acceptance, and help build self-esteem and confidence. Group therapy is a powerful tool that can be the most effective aspect of treatment for some individuals. In addition, clients can really experience a cathartic response because they are able to release stress and anxiety, and feel a great deal of relief. Groups can vary in size, from three or four people, to twenty or thirty, and much larger. Depending on the type of topic, groups can also be developed based on gender, age range, sexual orientation, or any variety of preference. The idea is to create commonality so there is a feeling of trust for all of the participants so they can feel comfortable enough to share confidential or discreet information, knowing that it will not be shared outside of the group. Groups can meet once or twice a week and usually last between and 60-90 minutes.
Drug and alcohol treatment has become highly generic in its approach to helping people recover. Not because they are greedy and selfish and heartless (well, some are), but because they need to meet their bottom line and keep their doors open. Running a rehab is expensive, plain and simple. However, in this process of keeping “heads on beds”, the individual who is struggling gets thrown into a system of care that is designed to help the masses, but isn’t actually doing a lot to provide care for each specific person, based on their situation.See how we are different