Support Groups

Support Groups

Postby TCBwithBPD » February 11th, 2016, 10:49 am

Hi everyone. I didn't get a chance to introduce myself properly yet, but I will get to it. I have a question that I'd like to ask in the meantime. Paul and his guests talk a lot about how much support groups have really helped them. My therapist has recommended Emotions Anonymous (I haven't gone yet, but I'm getting close) and I go to a weekly DBT class/group for women, but I feel like that's not enough. Especially in the DBT group, we're not really encouraged to talk about our diagnoses or anything like that, which is something I really would like to do.

So my question is this: Does anyone know of/attend any support groups that they would recommend? How did you find them? I have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder, treatment-resistant depression, generalized anxiety disorder, and borderline personality disorder. This is the first time I've ever said those things and felt pride. This podcast really has been a Godsend for me. I only started therapy in September and DBT last month, so I'm at the beginning of the process, but I feel like I need more. And my poor therapist has been more than patient with me contacting him between sessions and I'd like to be able to respect his boundaries while still being able to talk more about my situations. In fact, I feel like talking to people who are going through what I am might even feel better than therapy. It would be a tough call. :)

Thanks and I look forward to connecting more soon!

Theresa :)
TCBwithBPD
 
Posts: 9
Joined: February 5th, 2016, 9:08 am
Gender: female
Issues: depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, alcoholic father
preferred pronoun: she

Re: Support Groups

Postby oak » February 13th, 2016, 1:24 pm

Theresa,

Good afternoon. Congratulations on using your words, here. You are well on your way. Well done.

Congratulations, also, for getting therapy and for putting a name to what you are experiencing. Also, good job on trying DBT. I hope that goes awesome for you.

I wish I could offer better advice about support groups, but this is what I've got:

IME there are only so many types of support groups. Each has negatives, and wonderful, life-changing positives. For example, AA keeps many alcoholic people sober today. That is unfathomably awesome.

So there's 12 step, religious-type, and I suppose non-profit mental-health affiliated ie weekly meetings (which, it sounds like you are already doing. Good for you.)

Each has a worldview (disease model, religious principles) that may or may not work for you.

My advice? Just go, show up.

I vividly remember the first time I went to Debtors Anonymous. Though I no longer identify with the 12 step model, that first night I felt such love. It was indescribable. I gave myself a dozen reasons why not to go, but just did.

So I say go. Keep your eyes open for weirdness (your conscience will unerringly tell you, so listen). After you go, post here. I'll be interested to read the report.

Good luck. Be bold.
"Work is love made visible." -Kahlil Gibran

"We gotta make a decision: leave tonight or live and die this way." -Tracy Chapman
User avatar
oak
 
Posts: 1091
Joined: January 18th, 2013, 8:44 am
Gender: Male

Re: Support Groups

Postby TCBwithBPD » February 22nd, 2016, 5:33 pm

Hi Oak!

Thanks for the kind words and information. I did wind up going to an Emotions Anonymous meeting a couple Fridays ago. It was...interesting.

First, the pros. It was nice to be in a quiet, dark room with a bunch of people who are also feeling like shit for one reason or another. I didn't choose to speak other than to say my name and that it was my first time. Everyone was very nice and welcoming and the guy i charge invited me back.

Unfortunately, there were a few more cons. First, with a generic name like "Emotions Anonymous," it was hard to tell what kind of problems people were having if they didn't happen to say their diagnoses (most didn't), so I didn't really feel connected to anyone. Also, a good amount of the participants were residents at the hospital where they were holding the meeting and were complaining about their treatment teams and money, etc. A lot of people seemed difficult to understand, too. There were several people in there with electronic tethers. Several people were sleeping. I don't know if this is normal.

Anyway, after sleeping on it, I decided I do like the idea of a support group, but I don't think that one is the one for me. I don't think an in-person group for people with borderline personality disorder even exists. I'm going to keep seeking though. At least I got some free coffee out of the deal.

Theresa
TCBwithBPD
 
Posts: 9
Joined: February 5th, 2016, 9:08 am
Gender: female
Issues: depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, alcoholic father
preferred pronoun: she

Re: Support Groups

Postby oak » February 23rd, 2016, 5:37 pm

I super duper extra double honor you for giving the meeting a try. That is really great. Really really great.

I say this, not only because it is objectively true, but because I remember the certain sort of courage it took me to walk into my first support group meeting. Well done!

I am glad you were a good sport at the meeting. I didn't know what "electronic tether" meant, and just looked it up. That's a tough situation.

I don't really know you, TCB, but there's something I like about your post. You've got a certain moxie, a spunk. I like your chances. You're going to make it.
"Work is love made visible." -Kahlil Gibran

"We gotta make a decision: leave tonight or live and die this way." -Tracy Chapman
User avatar
oak
 
Posts: 1091
Joined: January 18th, 2013, 8:44 am
Gender: Male

Re: Support Groups

Postby TCBwithBPD » March 3rd, 2016, 4:33 pm

You're too funny, but I'll take the compliment. :)

I actually went to another EA meeting this past Sunday and it was much better. Different crowd than the Friday evening one. I don't know if it's really the right group for me, but it's definitely a start.
TCBwithBPD
 
Posts: 9
Joined: February 5th, 2016, 9:08 am
Gender: female
Issues: depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, alcoholic father
preferred pronoun: she

Re: Support Groups

Postby Namu » September 16th, 2017, 7:22 am

Hello, people.

I live in a rural area, in a depressed region -- lots of poverty, not much else going on. I have benefitted from support groups in the past -- mostly Adult Children of Alcoholics (though alcoholism wasn't my family's thing, it was the closest match I could find).

I'm in therapy. I've asked my therapist for help finding a support group of some sort, but she also knows of none in our area. My stomach sinks as I type that; it seems so unlikely. I've even tried searching for AA groups, though addiction isn't one of my issues, thinking that might be a step toward finding other groups, but I haven't even managed to find AA anywhere close. AA meeting locator sites, admittedly, appear not to be functioning properly for me; I don't have any more life force to try harder that way.

I found a site that lists some "phone meetings" for survivors of sexual abuse, and I probably ought to reach out there, but I'm afraid of more downward-spiral-triggering discouragement -- most times I reach out for resources that claim to be available, it turns out they're defunct or otherwise not actually there. Also, my landline service is terrible -- always undependable, and usually so laden with line noise that conversations are difficult, sometimes impossible. There is only one landline company that services my area, so I can't change providers, and enormous investments of time and energy haven't been enough to get the phone problems fixed. I can't engage anymore in that effort.

Internet is available only via satellite, so service is slow, metered, and expensive -- so Skype isn't really an option.

My point: I really need an in-person support group. It looks like I'll have to start it myself, if I'm going to have it. I would like to avoid the 12-step format, which always bothered me (god and all), and I guess my first-choice population/focus would be people with complex PTSD and/or survivors of incest.

My question: Does anyone have experience with starting and running a support group? I'd love to have the benefit of y'all's wisdom and ideas. I'm very easily exhausted and overwhelmed, so I'd need to keep it as simple and low-maintenance as possible.

Thanks.

Namu
Namu
 
Posts: 51
Joined: September 4th, 2017, 8:53 am
Gender: female
Issues: Frustration with life's rules, which seem arbitrary and too hard
preferred pronoun: she

Re: Support Groups

Postby oak » September 16th, 2017, 11:53 am

Hi Namu.

Do you have an Intergroup you can reach out to?
"Work is love made visible." -Kahlil Gibran

"We gotta make a decision: leave tonight or live and die this way." -Tracy Chapman
User avatar
oak
 
Posts: 1091
Joined: January 18th, 2013, 8:44 am
Gender: Male

Re: Support Groups

Postby Namu » September 17th, 2017, 4:28 am

Thanks, oak.

I've heard of intergroups, but don't know what they are.
Namu
 
Posts: 51
Joined: September 4th, 2017, 8:53 am
Gender: female
Issues: Frustration with life's rules, which seem arbitrary and too hard
preferred pronoun: she

Re: Support Groups

Postby HowDidIGetHere » September 17th, 2017, 10:59 am

I'm of the addiction related recovery community, so things are a little more established when starting new meetings. Plus, I don't know what works for recovering from incest/sexual abuse in a peer setting.

That said, the usual process that I'm aware of is to find a location that will let you use their facilities, pick a day of the week or month that you think you can manage reliably, and start publicizing it. Something like telling local therapists and hospitals -- the people who refer the people who need support.

Hopefully you can find a buddy to do this with you.

(btw, intergroups are 12 Step organizations that manage the activities of the program on a regional level.)
'The field “Issues” is too long, a maximum of 80 characters is allowed.' Wow. Totally outed by a message board.

WTF Just Happened?—a new web magazine on coming out as mentally ill.
User avatar
HowDidIGetHere
 
Posts: 245
Joined: June 22nd, 2016, 9:51 am
Location: No fixed abode
Gender: Male
Issues: Bipolar II, Borderline/Avoidant Personality Disorder, child abuse/neglect
preferred pronoun: he

Re: Support Groups

Postby hobojungle » September 19th, 2017, 8:58 am

Great info HDIGH.
I am acceptable; you are acceptable.
hobojungle
 
Posts: 197
Joined: June 13th, 2016, 3:01 pm
Gender: Lady
Issues: Depression. Anxiety. Agoraphobia. Possible ASD.
preferred pronoun: Lady


Return to Misc

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

cron