Are Support Groups Right For You?
What is a Support Group?
Members of a support group are made up of people who are overcoming similar obstacles. Group members provide each other with a safe space where they can share their experiences and feelings and receive guidance, feedback and support. Support groups offer coping strategies as well as a sense of community and empowerment.
CarePlus NJ offers a variety of support groups and therapeutic group sessions for children, teens, and parents who are facing social, behavioral and/or mental health challenges. These support groups provide a safe, stigma-free environment where you can heal your mind and body together.
What are the Benefits of Joining a Support Group?
The common experience among support group members often means you are with people that have similar feelings, worries and struggles. Participating in a support group provides you with an opportunity to be around others who usually have a common purpose and are more likely to understand each other.
Benefits of participating in a support group may include:
- Staying motivated
- Feeling connected to others – a sense of belonging
- Reducing loneliness and/or isolation
- Relief from feeling judged
- Reducing anxiety and depression
- Decreasing distress and fatigue
- Being able to speak openly and honestly about feelings
- Improving coping skills for current and future challenges
- Gaining a sense of control and empowerment
- Finding hope
- Improving understanding of traumatic experiences
- Getting practical feedback from others with the same issues
- Learning about additional resources
Support Groups Offered by CarePlus NJ
ALLIES (Acceptance, Life, Leadership, Identity, Education and Support) is a LGBTQ wellness and support group for youth, ages 14 through 17. Research indicates that LGBTQ youth who have peer-to-peer connectedness are more likely to have overall improved mental health status and sense of well-being than LGBTQ youth who lack connectedness and social support.
BRIGHTER FUTURE PROGRAM
The CarePlus NJ Brighter Future Program utilizes Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT) to support youth who have difficulty with anger and also engage in impulsive or delinquent behaviors. MRT is a cognitive-behavioral counseling program that combines education, group and support, individual counseling, and structured exercises.
FREEDOM FROM ANXIETY
This intervention group is for youth ages 10 through 13 struggling with anxiety symptoms. This interactive treatment program teaches healthy coping strategies to manage thoughts and feelings in a positive way. The program combines a behavioral approach, including relaxation training and interactive activities, with a cognitive approach, including problem-solving. Healthy interpersonal relationships are encouraged in this group setting.
PARENTING WITH COMMON SENSE
The CarePlus NJ parenting education group features the evidence-based Common Sense Parenting® model. Parents learn practical and effective parenting methods through an interactive, skill-based approach. Communication, discipline, decision-making, relationships, self-control and school success are addressed. Through group therapy, the goal is building strong, healthy family relationships. (English and Spanish available)
This skill-building program for children and adolescents age 7 through 17 focuses on age-appropriate social challenges, as well as developing the skills needed to build relationships and improve communication with others. A recommended bi-weekly Parent Support Group runs simultaneously with the program.
TOOLBOX FOR WELLNESS
This 10-week therapeutic group for teenage boys and girls ages 13 through 17 follows a cognitive behavioral therapy model to help youth examine their attitudes, beliefs and behaviors. The group environment provides a safe place for adolescents experiencing symptoms of depression.
NEW PARENT SUPPORT GROUP
This group connects you with other parents to discuss experiences while learning about helpful tools and resources as you begin your journey as a parent. The adjustment to new parenthood is full of emotional experiences and challenges. If you experience changes in your mental health before, during or after pregnancy, the Maternal Family Center is here for you.
THE PREGNANCY & INFANT LOSS SUPPORT GROUP
The loss of a pregnancy, infant or child causes incredible pain and grief. Parents often feel alone and lost. The Maternal Family Center offers this support group for parents who have suffered miscarriage, the death of an infant or child, stillbirth, termination of a pregnancy, as well as families who are pregnant following the loss of a pregnancy or infant.
How to Get Help
Due to the current COVID-19 crisis, all support groups are being held in a virtual setting for everyone’s safety. In-person groups will return when it is safe to do so. To learn more about a virtual support group or sign up, visit our website. Direct contact information is listed for each group. You can also contact CarePlus NJ here. You are not alone. Reach out today and find the support group right for you.