What is a Support Group?
A support group is a collection of people who come together for help, strength, encouragement, and guidance. This group normally consists of people who are working to overcome and work through similar issues or addictions, and they are looking for an outlet to express their fears and struggles as well as offer coping strategies and support to others.
Often, support groups will meet in person and in sizes that are conducive for everyone to speak in a conversational and open manner. This allows people to maintain human contact and develop a sense of belonging and community.
It also aids in permitting members to provide and discuss relevant situations and relating personal experiences, offering compassion, and creating social type of family.
Real Stories of Addiction and Recovery. As posted by: youarenotalone
Over the years, these support groups have been instrumental in helping those fighting alcohol addiction, drug addiction, sex addiction, gambling addiction, etc. to maintain sobriety while working through life’s issues. If you are working to overcome an addiction, find a support group to help through this extremely difficult time and to help give you the strength to maintain your sobriety.
Find an Addiction Support Group Near You
Everyone needs help from those who have already walked the rocky road of recovery. If you need help in finding a support group, please take a moment to view Addiction Hope’s list of support groups by clicking on this link.
Types of Support Groups
Support groups are frequently used in the treatment and rehabilitation of addictions. There are two main types of addiction support groups.
- Self-Help Support Groups – This type of support group is completely managed and operated by its members. Normally, the organizers are volunteers who have experienced similar struggles as the members such as prescription drug addiction, heroin addiction, sexual addiction, etc. Sometimes, this type of support group is referred as peer support groups, fellowships, mutual help groups, or lay organizations among others.
- Professionally Operated Support Groups – Professionals like a social worker, licensed counselor, psychologist and possibly a clergy member will lead these support groups. The leader of the support group will control the discussions and other administrative services. Commonly, these types of groups are held in addiction treatment centers, hospitals, correctional facilities, etc. The group will sometimes run for specific period of time and may require a participation or membership fee.
Both the Self-Help and Professionally Operated Support Groups may be either “Open” or “Closed”.
- Open Support Groups – These groups are open to the public and will allow anyone to participate in the support group.
- Closed Support Groups – Generally, this style of support group will have some sort of criteria that must be met before a person can attend, and there are normally a limitation on the number of people who can attend.
Some examples of addiction support groups include:
- Alcoholics Anonymous
- Al-Anon – Families of addicts & alcoholics
- Gamblers Anonymous
- Narcotics Anonymous
- Sex Addicts Anonymous
- Celebrate Recovery
- Over Eaters Anonymous
- Debtors Anonymous
Who Should Attend a Support Group?
Support groups are often an invaluable component of successful addiction treatment, and they exist to help support others that are going through or have been through similar situations and experiences.
The membership of support groups can be comprised of someone trying to end an addiction to methamphetamines or opiates, the loved one of an addict, a friend, a concerned colleague, etc. Anyone struggling with addiction and those affected by the addiction may benefit from attending a support group.
It can be cathartic to be around people who understand the trials that you are going through. Speaking and sharing your troubles with someone who has “been there and done that” allows for a special connection and support that can help in the recovery process.
Support groups are frequently a significant element of successful addiction treatment. If you are a friend, family member, or someone working to beat an addiction, investigate a support group that understands your difficulties, issues, sufferings and pain.
They are there to help you continue and take the next step to healing and sobriety. The help is out there. All you have to do is ask. Seek the help because support groups may be the key to your recovery.