Group therapy can offer a unique environment in which to learn more about ourselves and others. We all live in groups for much of our lives and working together with others in a therapy group can provide valuable insights into characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and relating, in a group setting.
Why consider group therapy?
- You can learn more about yourself by taking time to notice and reflect upon how you relate with others
- You can experience the support (and challenge) of thinking aloud about yourself within a group and hearing feedback from others
- You can hear a range of perspectives on your difficulties from your peers (not only from a therapist)
- You are all 'in a similar boat' and hearing about the thoughts and feelings of others can help you to feel less alone
- The experience can be mutual and reciprocal - you can both offer and receive
- You can relate with a range of people who you may not usually get to meet in a unique, emotionally intimate way within a confidential setting
- You can be assured by the containment of an experienced professional facilitator
The format of therapy groups – how they work
The group is made up of up to 8 students plus a psychological therapist who facilitates the group. When new members join, a bit of time is spent talking through the necessary procedural issues, such as confidentiality, absence, attendance etc. Generally, after this, there is no prescribed format to group therapy sessions, so the discussion will be led by the group members and will evolve naturally during the sessions. Each group has a different way of being and each session may feel different.
The role of the facilitator
A Psychological therapist’s role within the group is to manage the boundaries of the sessions and to encourage, prompt, invite and reflect as appropriate. Each group member is also encouraged to take responsibility for engaging with others.
Where and when the groups meet
The groups normally meet in a room in Wellbeing Support Services in Senate House, on central campus, but are currently meeting online by video link (using Microsoft Teams) due to restrictions associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Group sessions run for one and a half hours each week, with most groups running during term time only. There are groups running at different times during the week.
What is expected of group members
Group members will commit to meeting on a weekly basis to share their experiences, both past and present, with the therapy group. The commitment will be to attend for a minimum of 5 consecutive group sessions to give people time to use the group and experience the full benefits, as well as allowing time for trust to build within the group. After that, members can continue in group for as long as they are finding it helpful. All group members will agree to the terms of the group agreement which includes maintaining confidentiality and attending regularly for the entire session each time. Group therapy can be very rewarding but can also be challenging and members will need to have the personal resources to tolerate uncertainty and frustration, which is all part of the learning that contributes to personal growth. It is worth spending time looking at Questions to help prepare for group therapy. If you would like to find out more about group therapy please check out our FAQs page.
Think you might be interested? Either discuss this with your therapist if you are in individual therapy within the service or submit an 'enquiry' through https://wellbeing.warwick.ac.uk/ Before joining a therapy group, you will be invited to a pre-group meeting with a group facilitator to discuss how the group works and whether or not the group could work for you.
NB - please choose whether you wish to register for group therapy OR individual counselling OR email counselling. It is not possible to work simultaneously in more than one counselling medium
Group counselling helps you get in touch with yourself and others. It helps you realise that you are not alone
Group therapy is an eye-opening experience. It is a warm and inclusive environment where all members are respected and presented with the opportunity to speak their mind freely, which allows members to not only help themselves, but also help other members in the group
Group therapy has been one of the most meaningful and yet challenging experiences that I have taken part in at University. I realised that a lot of my patterns of behaviour were associated with both the way I saw myself and the way I saw the people around me