Family and friends can certainly provide a shoulder to lean on. Although their listening skills may be helpful to you, ultimately you'll probably want to get some advice from a professional counselor who specializes in separation and divorce; these professionals can help you ride out the tumultuous feelings you may have. Somewhere between these two options lies a third choice: a self-help group.
A self-help group can be any number of things. It can be a group of people getting together to share information. It can be a group led by a trained facilitator, or a group managed by members of the group itself. The bottom line is that a self-help group is a forum for people who have "been there" to get together, share experiences, solve problems, and share resources. Participating in a self-help group can help you regain your emotional center.
How do you find a group? A word of mouth recommendation is always a good starting place. You can ask your doctor, spiritual counselor, or social worker for their recommendation. A check through your local Yellow Pages can yield some choices.
Figuring out which is the right group for your own personal needs is another challenge. Here are some questions to ask yourself when choosing a self-help group:
Your immediate needs may go beyond a support group: you may need a counselor for yourself or for your children, or a chiropractor or message therapist to help ease the stress, or a financial consultant to help put you on the road to a brighter post-divorce future.
WHEN USING THE DIVORCE MAGAZINE LISTINGS...
Our listings offer a sampling of self-help organizations, programs, workshops, and support services in each state/province. Each listing provides key information about the group, along with any relevant upcoming seminars or events. Groups are listed for information purposes only and should not be viewed as having received the endorsement of Divorce Magazine. Some groups offer sliding scale fees or ask for a small donation, and some may even be free; others have fixed fees. Call them for more information.