What is it?
Group therapy includes at least one therapist and multiple group members who meet at the same time. Group therapy can be for specific ages, such as children, teens, or adults, as well as for those who share a common challenge or struggle, such as grief/loss, parenting, communication skills, LGBT+, or mental illness, to name a few. The length of time for the group can be a specific number of sessions or on-going.
How does it work?
The group is run by a therapist who provides education about the topic and helps to facilitate a discussion in each session so that group members can share and process their experience. You could expect some sort of format for the sessions, such as introductions at the start of each session; however, each group will vary in their format. The main purpose of group therapy is obtaining social support through open sharing amongst group members about a particular struggle, as well their personal experience with it.
What are the benefits?
- Allows for a mutual connection and sharing of personal stories with other group members, which is not obtained in individual therapy or psychiatry.
- Great as a standalone treatment, or in conjunction with individual psychotherapy.
- Decreases loneliness because you will be in the company of others who share your struggle or challenge.
- Helps to relieve shame, stigma, or blame that you’re experiencing.
- Provides a safe space to share your thoughts, feelings, and experience with others who will listen, validate, and provide feedback.
- Restores and provides hope for the future through the exchange of experiences shared by other group members who are also living with similar struggles or challenges.
Don’t wait to get the help you need. If you would like to take the next step towards finding a therapist for your young child, contact Ethera to get matched with a provider.
About the Author: Robyn Tamanaha is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, writer, and podcaster. She has a private practice in Orange County, CA and is the host of the podcast Books Between Sessions.