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#468879 - 08/13/14 12:26 PM Advice regarding Group Therapy
frankie72 Offline

Registered: 11/23/12
Posts: 32
Loc: Australia
I've screwed a lot of things up in my life over the past few months, and without being able to centre myself, I finally bit the bullet and started seeing a CSA therapist. I've only been to a couple of sessions so far, and currently I'm still trying to get used to the therapy.

So I've been shown a few techniques to control my outbursts and anger, though it has still been happening from time to time. I've basically ruined a relationship due to acting like an irate child over the smallest things. I ended up speaking to my therapist about the situation, and apart from apologising and taking ownership of my actions, she has also suggested group therapy.

As it stands, I'm really uncomfortable talking about what happened. Every relationship I've had where I have opened up has been destroyed by it and my actions, and we've only circled around the issue so far in therapy.

Having to sit in a room with a group of people is really daunting. I really dislike the idea of doing it, and I have only been advised to. But I feel if I want to try and recover the scraps of this relationship, I need to push myself to come to terms with my childhood.

I wanted to know from people who have done these sessions think of them. What is it like sharing with strangers, even those who are CSA survivors? How therapeutic was it compared to one on one therapy? Or any other insight you can tell me.

#468883 - 08/13/14 12:52 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]
traveler Offline

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 4151
Loc: resettling in NE Ohio
i know there are different approaches. one friend did group therapy before seeing a therapist one-no-one. i started with a therapist in solo sessions and later did some group work. by the time i found a group i could attend, i was eager to talk to and listen to others like me. that worked best for me.

if you are having difficulty opening up to a single person - with your therapist, it might be a good idea to become more comfortable in that arrangement before trying a group - since you seem to feel it would be an even bigger challenge.

either way, the main thing is to keep on working at it. the way i see it, whatever facilitates progress is the right approach for you.

"My experience has shown me that I all too often tend to deny that which lies behind, but as I still believe, that which is denied cannot be healed." Brennan Manning, "All is Grace - A Ragamuffin Memoir"

#468884 - 08/13/14 01:32 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]
frankie72 Offline

Registered: 11/23/12
Posts: 32
Loc: Australia
Thanks for your feedback Lee.

The other issue I have is that the relationship that has been ruined is also the only person I really had for support. A few days ago, I thought there was no way I could continue this on my own. I ended up deciding that if there was even a chance of making amends for my behaviour and to make it successful if things are resolved, I need to continue this on my own.

As apprehensive as I am, I'm sort of inclined to try group therapy. I'm at a point where I think I should just go all in and do what needs to be done. Currently I am at a point where I am sick of the way I am acting, ready to snap at any minute.

As you said, you were ready to share at the time. I don't know if I will ever be at that stage where I can be comfortable talking about it.

#468887 - 08/13/14 02:30 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]
don64 Offline

Registered: 10/09/13
Posts: 1105
Loc: St. Croix, USVI
Some of the most productive things in my life have been the things I have been forced to do, didn't see any other options. Sometimes I have understood what's going on at the time. Sometimes only after the fact. My damaged thinking frequently precludes the ability to make healthy choices. That's why getting cornered has sometimes been the only way for me to get "funneled" in the right direction. Overcoming fears has always been at the heart of the problem for me. Don
Divine Law is not judgment or denial of self truths. Divine Law is honoring harmony that comes from a peaceful mind, an open heart, a true tongue, a light step, a forgiving nature, and a love of all living creatures. Jamie Sams & David Carson, Medicine Cards

#468922 - 08/14/14 12:45 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]
dark empathy Offline

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2607
Loc: durham, north england
As I've said, I'm going for therapy in September. When doing the assessment I was asked if I wanted group or one to one. I decided on the latter.

I have tried a male sa group before, at the Mike Loo workshop I attended in 2010, where I even met some of the chaps from this site. Yes, it was helpful, more than I thought particularly getting my emotions out in an accepted arena. However, it was an amazingly intensive experience, but not really something I'd like to do every week, plus if I am going to get around things like Genophobia which are particular to me, I probably should do that with a therapist.

Then again, I know for a fact a natural intravert. I can deal with people, and indeed do so in a healthy way but relaxing for me is always a matter of being alone, so groups aren't as natural an environment.

the point of all this is that I completely agree with Don that it is worth a try, but if your not naturally an extravert person who is happier in a group than with one single other person it might not be the place to go into things in depth, or at least such was my feeling on the matter anyway.

#468924 - 08/14/14 02:16 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]
unhappycamper Offline

Registered: 10/21/11
Posts: 753
Loc: VA
Group discussions can put individual problems into perspective, and they certainly relieve that "alone" feeling. However, i found open groups to be frustrating because we had to go back to square one every time a new guy came in.

#468927 - 08/14/14 03:49 PM Re: Advice regarding Group Therapy [Re: frankie72]

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3618
I found group support meetings to be quite helpful. It allowed me to some of me in what they were experiencing. Like me they were struggling, some had made progress and their milestones gave me inspiration. You are with like kinds, people trying to make sense of what happened so they can have a purposeful life. I always looked forward to support groups because I could share, listen and learn from others who were healing.

I found support did not put pressure on anyone to speak. You talk, you share when you are ready. For me the group setting was extremely valuable.


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