FAMILY SUPPORT GROUPS
The NAMI Support group is facilitated by a layperson volunteer. This group is for families and is an informal resource that attempts to provide healing components to a variety of mental illness problems and challenges that family members face. An informal support outside of family, friends, or professionals often provides greater understanding, more similarity (from individuals experiencing similar life events), an opportunity for empathy and altruism, and a sense of identity for participants. Learning new ways to handle challenges, cope with changes, and maintain new behaviors are all important aspects of the support group experience.
A characteristic unique to support groups is the mutual support members are able to provide one another. This support and validation from other group members help facilitate personal growth and change in a way that individual therapy cannot. Although experts and professionals can provide support and positive direction, the mutual exchange of information between group members is a powerful experience that often induces lasting change. Meeting others who truly understand one’s experience has a very powerful effect. For many parents, participation in a support group is the first opportunity to learn that there are other parents who are experiencing the same challenges and frustrations.
NAMI support uses an open format, which means that the groups are ongoing, and individuals have the option of attending when it is convenient for them. The open format allows individuals to feel some degree of anonymity, and to participate, as they are comfortable. For some people, simply attending meetings and listening to the experiences of others can be helpful. All meetings are free of charge. If you have questions, please call. Keep checking our website to get the detailed information on additional support groups.