WHAT IS GROUP THERAPY?

Group Therapy is form of psychotherapy that uses a group dynamic to address specific issues that each member shares. The groups are designed to provide support and treatment to people with various mental health needs. Participants in a therapy group take turns talking about their struggles, feelings, experiences, and goals. Therapy groups may be tailored to a specific recovery topic, such as how to recognize and avoid triggers, or they may be general, such as how to handle difficult family, peer, work, or other interpersonal relationships. Group therapy focuses on such issues as depression, anxiety, and loss and trauma. When coupled with individual therapy, group therapy can be very beneficical.

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WHO WILL BENEFIT FROM GROUP THERAPY?

Group Therapy is beneficial for many types of people with many types of mental health concerns. Being part of a group gives people a sense of togetherness and support. Hearing that others share concerns is reassuring. Additionally, group therapy has an added element of motivation. As bonds are formed, members motivate each other to reach their goals and necessary outcomes. Illinois Healing For Trauma and Addiction currently offers the following groups:

  • Early Recovery – ​A Mixed Gender group for members in the early stages of recovery (2 years of sobriety or less) from substance or alcohol addiction. This is a mix of psycho-education, process, and psychodrama. Ages 21 and older.

  • Continued Recovery – A Mixed Gender group for members in the more advanced stages of recovery (2+ years of sobriety) from substance or alcohol addiction. This is a mix of psycho-education, process, and psychodrama. Ages 21 and older.

  • Betrayal Trauma – ​A Female only group for members whose spouse or significant other/partner was recently found to be having an affair or caught inappropriately watching pornography. This is a supportive trauma-based process group for spouses/partners who have experienced the traumatic betrayal of infidelity.

  • Problematic / Compulsive Sexual Behaviors – A Male only group for members struggling with negative sexual related behaviors/addictions. Ages 21 and older. The following are goals that guide this group are still being developed.

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WHAT IS INVOLVED IN GROUP THERAPY?

Group therapy sessions may be open or closed – meaning new members may join at any time (open) or the group membership remains the same from beginning to end (closed). Therapy groups are usually led by a single therapist, but on occasion be co-led by two therapists.  The role of the therapist is to set and reinforce group rules and guidelines, lead the group process, and ensure the atmosphere is cohesive, healthy, safe, and productive for all participants. Additionally, groups are formed according to specific needs.

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WHAT DOES THE THERAPIST-GROUP RELATIONSHIP LOOK LIKE?

Group therapy therapists are not only facilitating the therapy groups, they are providing psychotherapy services to each member. They should be licensed and have training in and experience doing group therapy. Group therapy can be conducted in several different formats. Each individual therapist is unique and will tailor their groups in a way that is most beneficial.

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