Next week will commence another round of our 6 week Bipolar 101 group for Gateway clients/patients hoping to learn more about how to manage the impact of their moods with more grace and awareness.
Bipolar 101 is an online, six session group that covers topics such as general knowledge of the disorder, medications, substance use, early detection of episodes, healthy routines and stress, and other treatment options. Understanding the disorder in more detail can be hugely impactful in helping to manage symptoms. In addition to gaining more knowledge and specific tools, the group offers an opportunity to connect with others who might share similar experiences and learn directly from their wisdom in a safe, non-judgemental space. As we collectively work to push society into the next era where seeking mental health services is no longer stigmatized, groups such as this have the powerful impact of breaking down the walls of stigma that often leave those seeking treatment feeling isolated and/or broken.
Group therapy can be a great venue to reaffirm that you are not alone. It can be a space to hear feedback, grow, and gain support. Research has shown that group therapy works — it can function as a way of promoting a “sense of shared purpose,” groups can “improve social networks and they can reduce stigma, isolation and feelings of alienation among members” and that “peer interactions appear to translate to real-world gains.” When discussing her experience with groups, Nina W. Brown, EdD, a professor at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Va. describes how, “Members can be agents of change for each other…seeing others’ progress can help group members realize they, too, can cope and feel better.”
If you are interested in attending a future Gateway Bipolar 101 group, please get in touch with us and we will add you to our list. Also, to explore additional support groups, check out one of our previous group therapy blog posts that discusses virtual and in person groups further: http://moodsurfing.com/support-groups-for-bipolar/