Making the right choice to get help for your addiction is your best course of action. This action involves some therapies proven to help people establish long-term recovery. Among those therapies are individual counseling, behavioral therapies and a group therapy program. In group meetings, you spend your time learning about addiction, building coping skills and learning how to relate better to others.
What Is Group Therapy?
Group therapy is a type of counseling that brings multiple people with shared problems together. In addiction treatment, the shared problem is usually that of substance abuse. The group discusses common topics or spends time learning better-coping skills together. You gain support, feedback and even criticism from members of your group, just as you provide these for others.
Your group therapy program provides a safe place for discussing topics that concern you most. You speak about your issues without needing to censor yourself, since you know it is a supportive space. The addiction counselor leading your group keeps everyone on topic and ensures all members participate. Through these sessions, you learn a great deal about your addiction, recovery, relapse prevention and even yourself as a whole.
You take part in group therapy one or more times on most days of the week in rehab. Later, as you go back to your home community, you can join a local community group best suited to your needs. There you gain new friendships and receive continued support.
Although most people go into their first group therapy program meetings feeling nervous, shy or like an outsider, you quickly enjoy these sessions. You feel the benefits of attending and see yourself progressing from the very first few meetings. Soon, you find yourself looking forward to going into the group. Even when you receive negative feedback, you know those opinions help you grow stronger in your sobriety.
Participating in group therapy helps you overcome isolation common to people with addiction. Instead of shutting down in response to difficult questions, you learn how to better communicate with others. This helps you learn healthy relationship building skills you take with you into your new life.
Benefits of a Group Therapy Program
Group therapy works well alongside individual counseling, behavioral therapies, trauma therapy and family therapy. You need a mix of methods and approaches for the best possible chance of lasting recovery. Group sessions help you see yourself as others see you and grow from others’ examples and support. Individual counseling provides a more individualized view of your own issues, past experiences and journey through addiction.
Sometimes in a group therapy session, you learn about things very close to your own experience. You possibly want to explore these topics more deeply, but the group environment does not offer direct, one-on-one discussion. That is where individual counseling picks up, filling gaps between the group experience and your own, individual experience.
Group therapy is also not limited to a classroom setting of folding metal chairs. Many types of group counseling exist, such as recreational therapy, holistic groups and experiential groups. For these sessions, you engage with the group through sports activities, arts, music, or other experiences.
Finding the Right Group Therapy Program for Your Best Recovery
- Residential and PHP programs
- Alumni engagement
- CBT, MAT and ACT therapies
- Trauma therapy, individual counseling and group therapy
- Certified Dual Diagnosis Enhanced Treatment
- Mindfulness and Motivational Interviewing
- 12-Step Facilitation
In Illinois, you have options for quality group therapy program treatment and rehab. Those options take place at the nonprofit Gateway Foundation, a Joint Commission-accredited treatment center. Contact Gateway Foundation Caseyville at 618.345.3970 to learn more about available programs and your future in strong recovery.