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GROUP THERAPY: EXPECTATION VS. REALITY

Group Therapy Sitting in CircleWhen addicts who have never been to a group therapy session hear the phrase “group therapy,” they tend to instantly become defensive. Their first instinct is to reject the idea, as they often think it is intimidating or embarrassing. They usually have a few misconceptions about group therapy, including the idea that they will be forced to share their deepest, darkest secrets with a group of strangers, who will then ridicule them for what they said.

Anybody who has attended a group therapy session will likely testify that that is absolutely not true, and that group therapy is actually an incredibly powerful resource for anybody who is suffering from the disease of addiction. If you or someone you know is an addict who has not yet been to a group therapy session, here are some common misconceptions that you may have about attending one — followed by what is actually the case.

“It Will Be Embarrassing. People Might Make Fun of Me.”

Group therapy sessions are not embarrassing. As soon as you step into the room, you will be surrounded by people who are facing similar challenges as you. Everybody there has common struggles and are striving toward similar goals, and they are there with the intention of working together to achieve them. Embarrassment usually stems from a fear of standing out in a negative way, and that won’t ever be the case, because you are all in it together.

“I Will Be Forced to Share Things That I Don’t Want to Share.”

The leaders and attendees of group therapy sessions do not expect anything from you. They encourage you to share your thoughts and feelings with the group, as it will help you to open up, be more honest about your challenges, and it gives you the opportunity to share something that will resonate with one of the other group members. However, nobody will ever force you to share anything at all, let alone things that you don’t want to share.

“Group Therapy Just Isn’t For Me.”

Group therapy is the same as all types of therapy in the sense that you get out of it what you put into it. If you approach group therapy with an open mind and a willingness to learn from your peers, you will certainly learn something new, begin see old problems from a new point of view, or gain a better understanding of what you need to do to achieve your goals.

Give It a Shot!

If you have never attended a group therapy session, we strongly suggest that you give it a try. If you make it to the first meeting, you will undoubtedly realize how effective and enjoyable group therapy sessions are, and how they can help you along the path to recovery.

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