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Thread: Group Therapy - Opinions welcome

  1. #31
    Platinum Member RainyCoast's Avatar
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    I used to attend support groups for a chronic illness. It wasn't therapy, sure, but there were stark differences in how efficiently they were moderated. Some were useless because they were 100% defetism and wallowing, some because they were a place where desperate people shared unprofessional and harmful advice ("drink peroxide six times a day!") with nobody intervening.

    I left partly because of that, and partly because I always do better if I don't think of myself as a patient/am not reminded of being ill and complications and prognoses.

    Group sessions need to be *run* by someone. It's not just people talking anything any time, unstructured. Just because there's less professional input in group sessions, it doesn't mean the conversation should never be steered this or that way.

    You can, for the sake of really having tried, attempt to be more assertive. Consider if the girl in crisis managed to hog those twenty minutes, so can you. But I don't think the reason you're paying is to learn how to fight for speaking time and be assertive. It wouldn't be wrong to attend at some place where your actual concerns can be brought up to a reasonable extent.

    Have you asked the therapist why she feels that this specifically is where your next lesson lies? Might she be thinking the issues that brought you there had a lot to do with your discomfort with asserting yoursef, speaking up?

    As for the girl and her safety, it is possible they had a debriefing with the therapist after and addressed the safety issue too or got a social worker/crisis centre on standby.

  2. #32
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    RainyCoast, you're absolutely right about the girl in crisis with respect to her safety: I have no idea what, or if, she and the therapist discussed outside the group, and that part is not my business, so you know what? You just brought up such a valid point, and I thank you for that.

    I agree that the group needs to be run by someone, and that's what I guess the issue is for me. In other groups, the person in charge keeps us on track. I'm in a Professional Women's group, and there are a lot of chatty women in there, lol, but the leader always keeps us on track. In this particular group, the therapist simply does not do that.

    I'm actually very assertive, and I do speak up a lot. But not to the point of interruption. Chatty Cathy is one of those who speaks in one long 30-minute sentence, without a breath. She also talks in a very low volume, and you almost have to strain to hear her. So all eyes and ears are on her, and the only questions are from the therapist. So it feels like interrupting a private therapy session.

    The format is that we start by coming "into" the room, and stating how we are feeling, and to "bookmark" something we want to talk about. I "bookmarked" that I'd like to talk about something. With 12 minutes left to go, the therapist said, "OK LHGirl, you had a bookmark", so I started. I got one sentence out, when C Cathy interrupted with her story that literally had zero to do with mine, and therapist spent the next 10 minutes on her. With literally 2 minutes left, one woman brought up a pretty big issue, and then we were done. There's a huge wall clock on the wall that I can see, so I'm very aware of the time.

  3. #33
    Platinum Member RainyCoast's Avatar
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    Also, in practical terms, apart from holly's advice,

    I would politely point out i'm paying for my own cause

    "I'm here to adress a specific concern of my own"

    And to the big mouth, I may be bolder: "I feel like this is your chance to learn to sit with the discomfort of not being heard and not having a voice" ;)

  4. #34
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    Originally Posted by RainyCoast
    Also, in practical terms, apart from holly's advice,

    I would politely point out i'm paying for my own cause

    "I'm here to adress a specific concern of my own"

    And to the big mouth, I may be bolder:" I feel like this is your chance to earn to sit with the discomfort of not being heard and not having a voice" ;)
    OMG, that's awesome. I'm deciding right now whether to return in 2 weeks. If I do, I'm stealing this.....k?

  5.  

  6. #35
    Platinum Member RainyCoast's Avatar
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    Just make sure to not say "deal with" or "process" the discomfort, because then she'll talk about how painful it is for her to not talk for fourty-five minutes. She needs to sit with it and suffer in silence.

    Turn the tables :)).

  7. #36
    Silver Member SarahLancaster's Avatar
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    "Hilda, I think you could experience a lot of growth tonight by letting someone else talk."

  8. #37
    Platinum Member j.man's Avatar
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    "Janie, you need to shut the **** up for a few seconds."

  9. #38
    Silver Member SarahLancaster's Avatar
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    "Hilda, can I get you a nice hot cup of shut the **** up?"

  10. #39
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    If Cathy talks 60-70 % of the time, who is talking the other 30-40%??
    If the time was split evenly amongst 6, your allocated time would be 16%. Are you getting that?

    Are the other 4 wanting or trying to speak up?
    Are you?

    You mention you want to hear the other 4 peopleís stories?
    Are you there to listen, speak up or both?

    Have you told the therapist that itís not Cathy you have an issue with but rather the therapist herself?

  11. #40
    Platinum Member ThatwasThen's Avatar
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    I wouldn't be able to tolerate that and I'd have no problem simply saying "Does anyone else have anything to share" which I have done in group therapy before. I got a *if looks could kill" stare from my particular "chatty cathy" but she sat back and listened to a couple of the others. The therapist didn't say a thing about my question asking if anyone else had anything to share. Mind you, I was going through menopause and believe me, I wasn't shy about being "assertive" in the least prior to that time of life and certainly not during it. Having a hard time during menopause and being unable to take hormone replacement therapy is what got me in group therapy to begin with.

    I agree your therapist isn't very good at group. She seems unable to navigate the group in a productive way for all involved. I'd be out of there.

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