While there are many support groups in the community, chronic medical conditions, bereavement, or caregiving, and a variety of other groups, one area that seems to be lacking in our community is support groups for adult survivors of child abuse and related maltreatment. For this reason, The Blue Ribbon Project is exploring the creation and launch of a new program. This program, Adult Survivors of Childhood Trauma Support Group, is specific to adult survivors of child abuse.
The common experience among adult survivors of abuse often means they have similar feelings, worries, everyday problems, treatment decisions. Participating in a group provides you with an opportunity to be with people who are likely to have a common purpose and likely to understand one another.
- Feeling less lonely, isolated or judged
- Reducing distress, depression, anxiety or fatigue
- Talking openly and honestly about your feelings
- Improving skills to cope with challenges
- Staying motivated to manage chronic conditions or stick to treatment plans
- Gaining a sense of empowerment, control, or hope
- Improving understanding of residual trauma and your own experience with it
- Getting practical feedback about treatment options
- Learning about health, economic or social resources
- Forming connections with other survivors
What is The Survivors of Childhood Trauma Group?
The Survivors of Childhood Trauma Group is a support group for adults who have experienced childhood trauma as a result of abuse, who desire to offer support to and receive support from other survivors, and who are looking to form meaningful connections on a committed journey of personal growth and healing.
What is the purpose of the group?
The purpose of the group is to provide an open, safe, and supportive space for survivors to build connections and friendships while healing from childhood trauma together. We strive to ensure that everyone feels respected and valued.
What is childhood trauma?
In the context of The Blue Ribbon Project Survivors of Childhood Trauma Group, “childhood trauma” refers specifically to the trauma experienced in childhood as a result of physical, emotional, sexual, and/or deprivational abuse by (but not limited to) a parent or caregiver.
What is the format of the group?
The group is formatted to allow participants to share their stories, struggles, and triumphs along the journey of healing from the effects of childhood trauma. There will be a new or continued topic to discuss each session, but the structure is built with flexibility in mind so that the needs of the participants can be addressed as needed.
The format may be (but not limited to) a video, the reading of a book passage, a guest speaker, question/answer format, or open discussion. Active participation is strongly encouraged, as it best facilitates the purposes of growing and healing, but the sharing of personal experiences is voluntary.
Also, there may also be “take-home” assignments to facilitate self-guided reflection, learning, and growth in-between sessions.
What topics will be discussed?
Various topics related to understanding the cycle of abuse, how abusive trauma affects the brain and body, and how to manage the effects of abusive trauma in a healthy way will be discussed.
This group encourages sharing experiences so that feedback can be provided to help other group members process their experiences. Feedback is guided so that it is done in a manner that is respectful and helpful, and so that members can process their experiences with the added insight of those who can offer a different perspective.
Is this group the same as group psychotherapy?
No- this is not a psychotherapy group. There is no involvement of a counselor, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, or any licensed mental health professional. This is a participant-focused group that is led by a volunteer facilitator to aid participants in guiding each other through their healing journeys. Facilitation of the group is to ensure cohesiveness, safety, organization, and to ensure that the purpose of the group is met.
Is this group confidential?
We respect each and everyone's right to privacy and confidentiality. All participants, including facilitators are expected to maintain the confidentiality of information shared by other participants. Only registered participants may participate, and virtual sessions are not recorded.
However, please understand that there are limitations to confidentiality which would require a facilitator or a member of The Blue Ribbon Project leadership to share the information necessary to ensure the safety of each participant or to abide by mandatory reporting laws (such as disclosure of an intent to harm oneself or another).
What else should I know?
Survivors of childhood abuse are a part of a “club” that only other survivors can understand. For this reason, it is important that group members see themselves as an integral part of the group with “something” to offer. Each person has unique experiences and insight to offer, no matter how far along one is on their healing journey. Being consistent in participation and committed to the group purpose and processes are keys to healing and growth.
This is a new program with the Blue Ribbon Project, and so we appreciate your understanding and flexibility; we welcome your honest feedback so that we can continue to grow and meet the needs of group members