View Full Version : Group therapy - impossible to find?
Has anyone found any group therapy programs for Social Anxiety Disorder?
I keep trying to find some type of group therapy program for this, but I have had absolutely no luck in finding anything in my state (New Jersey), nor in New York City. I'm beginning to wonder if there are any places that exist for this. Maybe I need to expand my search, but to what I don't know.
There are a few things that would be great for group therapy - learning social skills, practicing them with others, finding a way to be comfortable with others by facing your fears in a small controlled & monitored atmosphere. Role playing and assertiveness training could work well also in a group. Maybe even group activities outside of the therapy center would be cool too.
It would be scary as heck facing a group for therapy, but I'm convinced its the only way I can overcome this disorder. Any others feel the same?
06-24-2005, 12:39 PM
Shoey, in my experience those types of programs for sa are almost non-existant. I've had no success in Alabama at all, but I DO seem to notice a lot of help for anxiety disorders in New Jersey. You might need to look a little harder in your state. :)
well, theres a number of self-help support groups, but those are not what I'm talking of. What I need is a therapist-run group which works towards goals and on 'healing' people. The self-help support groups I've been to are nice for talking about your disorder and helping each other through the hard times, but I've never found one that is focused on helping each other overcome their illness.
There's also a bucketload of therapists in this state, but none I've contacted do group therapy. You could be right though, I should keep trying to find one ;)
06-27-2005, 02:25 PM
this sounds like agood idea, i should search for somthing like that. i dont know if i could do it, my anxiety is very bad and i think most peopl in town know me so it would be even harder if someone fuond out (a lot of gossiping around here :(
12-07-2005, 02:34 PM
Hi all... I know this thread is from July but when I read it I giggled & thought "How odd... of course people with social anxiety wouldn't want to go out to a group meeting". :lol: That's just a teeny bit funny, isn't it? Someone could spend a lot of time putting a group meeting together and then no one would come. No offense, I'm agoraphobic myself.
Jackie, actually this exact same thing happened at my local county mental health center. There was a therapist looking to create a group, consisting of a few types of anxiety disorder sufferers, and it got like 10 people signed up.. but in the end only 2 showed up! doh
I know on the surface it sounds silly to have group therapy for people who are totally afraid of groups, but its probably the best thing for them. And I'm certain there are other SA sufferers who would be willing to try despite their anxiety. Perhaps there should be some kind of slow integration for people that don't want to be faced with a whole bunch of others at once.
we used to joke about having get-togethers when I was at another anxiety site a while back.. we figured that neither the agoraphobics or social phobics would show up, or if the social phobics showed up, noone would talk hehe. :P
12-08-2005, 11:18 AM
LOL... that's funny! I think that's why it's so great that you put this forum together so people can talk without really facing their fears. I know facing our fears is a big part of therapy but people are still reluctant to do it.
Can you go to other non-specific anxiety meetings or aren't there any of those either?
Can you go to other non-specific anxiety meetings or aren't there any of those either?
I've been to self-help support groups for non-specific anxiety, but those weren't helpful to me.
Therapy-wise I wouldn't feel it'd be worth my money to go for a 'general' therapy for all anxiety sufferers, because each anxiety disorder has its own traits that need to be specifically addressed. Some things are shared in common obviously, but still you need to address the unique aspects of each disorder in order to help someone overcome it.
12-08-2005, 01:32 PM
Ok, that makes sense.
How's your magnesium intake? I've been reading that a low level of magnesium can cause anxiety. One testimonial that I read while looking for a book on amazon.com says that magnesium supplements totally cured her panic attacks. I'm becoming more & more convinced that a lot of our anxieties stem from our diets, vitamins & minerals, or lack thereof. I haven't eaten any sugar or aged meats & cheeses containing Tyramine in 4 days and I have to say that I do feel better. I just came back from running some errands and I didn't feel any anxiety on my trip at all. One of my errands was to buy some magnesium supplemets! LOL
Jackie, thats great that your diet change is helping you out.
I've experimented with different diet changes myself as well as taking vitamins & supplements (including Calcium w/ Magnesium). I've found that for the most part taking vitamins doesn't seem to have much of an effect on me, but I'm always looking for new things that I may be missing out on. Currently I'm just taking a multivitamin and extra vitamin D (since I hardly get enough sun), but I take them for health reasons.. I don't seem to be negatively effected anxiety-wise if I don't take vitamins.
I'm also currently experimenting with the supplement 5-HTP (precursor to serotonin). I haven't really noticed much of a difference on this supplement either but I need to give it more time.
There's some links in the Resources section in 'Alternative Therapies' under 'Food Therapy' which might be of interest to you. Foods with tryptophan are nice things to add to the diet hehe.
12-31-2005, 03:38 PM
I'm in Albany, and I've found groups around for OCD and Generalized Anxiety Disorder which I also have but nothing for Social Anxiety Disorder. Like someone mentioned, it's always going to be difficult to get a huge turnout for a group from Social Anxiety patients since that's their fear to begin with. I find this to be very frustrating as SAD is probably the one disorder which would benefit most from a group therapy.
Also, as awareness of mental health increases in society there will probably be more groups around. A lot of people with SAD probably don't even realize they have it. I've had OCD since childhood but never knew it had a name until I was in college. There isn't very much awareness of mental health when compared to physical health where a lot of effort is exerted from childhood to check for problems with hearing, eyesight, etc. Anyway, I hope the situation improves over time and people become as aware of their mental health as their physical health. This would probably increase the turnout for groups.
01-01-2006, 03:57 AM
I wonder if there are social anxiety chat rooms on the internet. Of course, if you already have no trouble with that, it wouldn't help but you still might find people near you, and if you all wanted to, you could pitch the idea to a local therapist, someone who specializes in anxiety, maybe.
Did you check with hospitals? I did a quick Google search, did all of these turn out to be a bust?
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=l ... new+jersey (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=lang_en&safe=off&rls=HPIB%2CHPIB%3A2005-19%2CHPIB%3Aen&q=social+anxiety+new+jersey)
I am looking forward to talking with everyone whenever we set a chat time for this site!
Keep us posted,
01-03-2006, 12:41 PM
I've look everyday in the local paper where they list support groups and I too have only found for GAD and agoraphobia. I have attended several meetings in the past, hoping to find some social phobics hidden in the group and I did find two. We were always running into the bathroom when it was our turn to speak. I hate that "going around the room and introduce yourself." I think that should be banned.
Most people in one particular group who seemed to be seasoned enough were very considerate as I tried to explain my situation while I looked at the floor. At first, I felt like more of a freak because no one could understand how someone could be afraid of people, but I explained it as being overly shy. As I couldn't relate to being afraid to drive, I could relate to their panic and the wanting to go back home or to a safe place.
The experience of going to the group and practicing socializing was very good for me. People, as they began to know me, were very kind and I started to feel safe there and then I enjoyed going and started to feel good about myself for going to the group, making it through the meetings and when I was able to speak and actually help some people there. I met some good friends. It took a lot of work. I used the group to face my fears.
My dream would be to find a group of social phobics in person, because we could help each other so very much.
But we have this spot! So we do have something very good.
maggie, thanks for the search results link, I've actually looked at a number of those links before, and haven't come up with much. I appreciate it though.. I know I should keep looking and I will try.
soshy, I probably could try that with some of the general anxiety self-help groups around.. practicing with them, but the only ones I find are full of people 10, 20, even 40 years older than me.. and I sorta feel intimidated because they don't have the social anxiety bit. Plus this last group I tried going to was women only lol, so I dropped that.
I really feel I need a therapist-run group made for SA sufferers to really attack this thing head on tho.
03-23-2007, 03:43 PM
To me, the idea of talking about my anxiety with a group is terrifying. Just talking to my doctor about it made me cry.
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