Group Therapy

My practice includes group psychotherapy; groups are usually 90 minutes in length and have six to ten members. I also facilitate support groups that may be larger in number.

Group success depends upon regular attendance and open expression of feelings. Each group member must develop a willingness to say what he or she feels about anything, even if it's not "polite" or "proper." The process of change is slow, and the rate of change differs for each member. This may be frustrating at times but may lead to rewards of personal growth and insight.

It is important that each member feels free to express frustration and other negative feelings as well as triumphs and positive experiences. The more the meeting discussions remain in the here and now – focusing on the members' developing relationships with each other – the more quickly progress will be made.

There is no set agenda or formal structure to the group meetings. Ultimately it is for the group members to decide what to talk about, and part of therapy is to understand your contribution to the way the group develops.

Friendships outside of group are discouraged. If members become "social friends," they are less free to express themselves objectively in group, and if members do have contact outside of the group, they are responsible for bringing the content of the contact to the next group meeting. It is my responsibility to provide protection and structure so that the group can be a safe place for the members to communicate openly. I do not accept “friend” requests from clients on Facebook or any other form of social media, and I discourage this activity among group members.

Group is a place to understand yourself better, to learn more effective ways to deal with yourself and with others and to practice these new ways often enough in a confidential supervised setting so that they become natural. Much of the value of your total group experience will come not from getting the "answer" to your problems, but from experiencing the group itself. The more you put into the group experience, the more you will get out of it!