What is it?
Group psychotherapy has an illustrious tradition with one of the most important texts, Theory and Practice of Group Psychotherapy,(2005) co-written by our own Toronto psychiatrist, Dr. Molyn Leszcz, and the novelist and psychoanalyst, Dr. Irvin Yalom.
A group setting provides an opportunity to interact with others, and learn to understand oneself in relation to others in a very vivid and powerful way. Group members will have the opportunity to bring in their own concerns and difficulties; and be heard, supported and responded to by other members including the therapist in a safe thoughtful way. A natural occurrence in group therapy is the relational dynamics that arise within the group reflecting patterns that occur in the lives of the members. The group is an opportunity to learn how to work through and repair relational difficulties.
Who would come to the group?
Women and men who wish to foster greater capacity for engagement with others and are capable of openness to reflecting on their relational patterns. This group would be helpful for anyone who has suffered harm in childhood related to emotional, physical or sexual abuse, or who have suffered deprivation and neglect in addition to any of the following:
• Self-esteem problems
• Relationship difficulties
• Feelings of guilt and shame
• Feelings of alienation and isolation
• Developmental trauma
What will you gain?
Each session begins with a guided meditation. We will work together on building inner resources using the principles of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy and Mindfulness. This work will be based on the particular needs of individual group members as these concerns are brought forward during group discussion. There will be demonstrations and practice in the group setting. This will help participants develop their abilities to self-regulate and to interactively regulate, skills that are so vital to thriving in life.
Part of the benefit of an interactive group is that it gives the participants a safe place to have reactions to each other, and work them through in a new way. Often others trigger material that is from the past, and this can be worked through in group, building relationship skills that will translate into better relationships in life and work situations.
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