Individual sessions are a great start to recovering from addiction to drugs but some adults simply need more out of counseling that just to talk about their own problems. In fact, many adults claim that hearing how others are struggling and have learned how to cope with their desire to use drugs has helped them exponentially in their own recovery efforts. Group counseling for adults offers a safe place for those in recovery to talk with their peers, hear other stories of addiction survival and build bonds with peers who share similar goals in recovery.
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There are many benefits to group counseling but the greatest benefit typically lies in the support mechanisms that come from talking with peers. Many adults continue to go to group counseling and support sessions long after they have recovered from their substance abuse problem. Some will continue to take part in group counseling for many years post addiction as a means of maintaining abstinence from drugs and staying sober.
What is Group Counseling?
Group counseling takes place when a group of adults get together to talk about their addiction, their struggles, and their recovery. The group is typically moderated by a counselor or therapist or a group member who has been in recovery for a prolonged period of time. During the group session, there will be a chosen topic or there may be what is called, open discussion. Open discussion is an opportunity for all group members to discuss any aspect of their addiction, their struggles or their recovery with the group.
Group counseling sessions, though not private, do have respect for the privacy of others. Most groups have a rule that what is said in group stays within the group and is not to be discussed outside of the group. This creates a strong bond between members of the group who develop relationships with one another, build trust and gain greater peer support.
Many adults claim that meeting with other people who are also facing the same struggles with addiction offers a “bigger picture” into their own life, struggles and addiction. Group counseling sessions can broaden the horizons of recovery, open an individual’s eyes to the methods of coping that can be used to achieve recovery success and make things simply seem—not so bad. Listening to what others have to say about their addiction and their recovery can help adults to come to terms with their addiction and find new hope in recovery.