Group Counseling

 "It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man* can sincerely try to help another without helping himself."   Ralph Waldo Emerson       *or woman!   

Support Groups

Group counseling provides private support, encouragement, and helpful feedback for students wishing to enjoy their lives more, improve their relationships, and feel better about themselves. Groups can help you maintain your motivation, make changes, and stay hopeful in the face of  depression, anxiety, or difficult family or personal circumstances. 

Groups Running spring 2015

 Other Groups not already scheduled that may run based on student interest are listed below.  If there is a group you would like to see offered either from the list below or some other topic, contact us at (203) 392-5475: 

Meditation/mindfulness:  In this weekly step-by-step psycho-educational group you can begin to understand  how your brain works and learn meditation and mindfulness techniques that are sure to help reduce the stress and chaos in your life.  Mindfulness helps to calm the mind and body as well as bring awareness to the negative patterns that impact our life so that we can change them for the better! 

 Graduate Student Forum:  Explore your changing personal and professional life in a safe environment that encourages personal growth, self-challenge, and mutual support.  Build your confidence and learn to manage the stress of balancing school, jobs, internships, and relationships.

 Grief Share and Recovery Group Grief is a normal and natural process. However, many of the ideas we are taught about dealing with grief are not helpful. This group allows individuals who have experienced a loss or many losses learn more about the tasks of grief and how to rediscover meaning in life. While grief is a highly-individualized experience, participation in a support group often helps the healing begin.  If you have experienced one or more losses, and you wish to move beyond the pain, this program offers you the probability of a richer and more rewarding life.  Please contact Michelle A. Lawler, LPC, Grief Recovery Specialist for more information.  (203)392-5475

LGBTQI and Questioning Group:  A confidential place to connect and discuss whatever’s  on your mind with other LGBTQI or questioning students who get it… relationships, coming out, family, body image, defining yourself,  stress, finding a place on campus,  religion, planning for majors, careers, transitions.

Family Issues:  Family…can’t live with them, can’t live without them!  Explore how your family experiences and role in your family influences how you approach life and relationships now. Get support in defining your own life path and learning to balancing your needs with others’ needs.

Inside Matters:  A support group for students suffering from or recovering from an eating disorder.  In this confidential environment we will explore, and begin to learn how to manage and cope with the many challenges of eating disorders with others who get it!   

Body Wise:   An eight-week program designed to help you understand the development of negative body image and the perpetuating factors that keep you from loving your body all in a supportive and confidential environment. 

Life Mastery group:  In this group we will examine life choices, identify values, begin to understand personal barriers to success and to develop goals and action plans to create your own reality the way you want it! 

Positive Psychology/Happiness  

Spirituality/Finding Meaning

Men's Group 

Healthy Relationships 

Adjusting to College



Benefits of group counseling:

Group counseling is a process where 4-10 individuals meet weekly with a professional counselor (facilitator) to discuss specific issues. Members are encouraged to give support to one another and to provide feedback to other members. Students build trusting relationships where members feel safe to explore sensitive issues and resolve emotional difficulties. Members work through these issues through discussion, trying out new behaviors, and paying attention to how they interact with and react to one another.  It is an opportunity for students learn how to change life situations for the better.

One great benefit of group counseling is that members are able to relate to others who are in a situation similar to their own. This allows members the opportunity/possibility to see how someone else handled a certain problem and provides a model as to how he/she might handle the same problem. It also fosters empowerment, for example, when a member can report to the other members a successful interaction in dealing with a difficult situation outside of the group. Members learn from each other, and many times, grow together emotionally throughout the group process.

Group counseling is also a safe place where you meet with the same individuals each week. The group is generally closed to anyone else once the core members have been established. When people join a group it is requested that they keep the contents of the group discussions confidential. Disclosing group information outside of the group is inappropriate; therefore, it is stressed that what people talk about or share with the group must remain within the group.


How does group counseling work?

Group counseling can be very successful. It requires a commitment on the part of the members and the leader to fulfill the contract that is made during the initial meetings (confidentiality rules and attendance commitments, etc.). When this commitment is made, and members can talk openly about their issues, the work can begin. Group counseling is a reflection of what goes on in "real life." The group setting is a place where the behaviors and emotions that initially brought the individual to group counseling can surface. When this happens, the dynamics of the group actually allow members to practice new behaviors and learn new skills that are more appropriate.

With the support of the other group members and the facilitator(s), members learn that they are not alone. Additionally, members and facilitators offer options and use caring confrontation to challenge negative behavior in other group members so that they may develop more positive behaviors.