The purpose of a support group for recovery is to help people move beyond their addictions. Group members in recovery are surrounded by people who understand what they are talking about and know how to help them on their recovery journey. The idea of support groups arose from the formation of the 12-step program. Founded in 1935, Alcoholics Anonymous has helped millions of people to recover from alcoholism. Today there are hundreds of groups all over the world that support people with addiction problems. Members meet regularly to share their experiences and help each other stay sober. Do the long history of support groups and their current popularity suggest that they are effective at helping people become sober?
Since they were founded support groups have continued to evolve. In recent times, they have morphed into a variety of different types and styles. Some offer medical advice, others even facilitate speaker series. One interesting evolution of support groups is that they have changed with the times. Now, besides people meeting in person, it’s also possible to join a virtual support group. Online support groups add a new dimension to the group-based healing process because they may also offer remote access to guided meditations and therapy sessions. These group meetings are facilitated by live chat features that allow members to engage with therapists. People from around the world can talk to each other and help one another. Although the original idea of online support groups emerged as a convenience, a way to reduce the barriers of travel to a physical location, online support groups have helped people stay safe during the pandemic.
Do Support Groups Help People in Recovery?
Numerous anecdotal reports and social studies research have repeatedly shown that support groups are effective in helping people with their recovery. They provide everyone an opportunity to share their experiences with others who have gone through similar situations. This group sharing is a powerful healing process for members. It helps them learn from each other to identify triggers and manage emotions. Support groups provide social support vital to someone with addiction or mental health issues. The length of participating in a support group can vary, but most people stay for between 6-12 months. Sometimes it can take longer depending on the individual’s needs and how they progress through their journey.
When a person is going through a difficult time, it’s difficult to concentrate on their own recovery. This is where support groups come in handy. A support group can provide a safe environment for people to share their experiences. It offers participants emotional support as well as practical advice. This sense of connection is indispensable for people to drop their troubling feelings, such as a sense of shame and guilt over their addictions. People no longer need to resort to drugs and alcohol to numb out. Social support also helps those who feel alone, lonely, odd, and unlovable. Now, instead of feeling isolated, they feel part of a group that cares about them.
How to Get the Most Value From a Support Group
Although support groups do work, statistical evidence only suggests that they work for a large number of people. In other words, they work for most people, but not for everyone. The success a person derives from a support group depends on two factors. The first is how much they took part in the group. The second is if they joined the right type of group, one that was a good fit for them. While support groups can increase the rate of recovery, they only help those who are willing to share their own thoughts and feelings with the group.
Getting the most out of a support group is critical for mental health. The first step is to recognize what you need from the group. You may be looking for specific people or information or just want to meet with like-minded people. Once you know what you want, then find the right support group for your needs. If you don’t find the right support group, one where you don’t feel comfortable sharing your story, then resume your search. Support groups work, provided you find one where you feel a sense of rapport with the group.
In conclusion, support groups are effective for people in recovery. There are many types of support groups, and they are also available online and offline. The key to benefitting from a support group is to find one that is the right fit and to take part in it. Call us at 844-639-8371.