Can A Depression Anonymous Group Really Help Me?
Updated August 27, 2019
Reviewer Kristen Hardin
Depression, while very treatable, is painful and uncomfortable for the person with depression. Those who are going through bouts of depression can experience extreme feelings of sadness, and they may even feel as if they are isolated from the world. People going through depression issues tend to retreat inside of themselves. This can wind up making the depression worse.
For this reason, it's worth considering getting the help of some type of support group. Some people refer to these support groups as Depression Anonymous, and are groups that brand their groups with this phrasing. While different that Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous because depression is not an addiction, these groups are similarly structured and even have their own 12 Steps for members of the group to work through.
Why Support Groups Are Helpful
Support groups are so helpful because those who are going through depression problems need to realize that they aren't alone. Depression can make you feel as if you're strange or somehow broken. Being able to see that there are so many others who have the same struggles is very eye-opening. It becomes obvious just how common depression is, and you'll be able to work with others to help get over your depression issues.
Depression isn't something that you get treated for once and then feel completely better. For most people, the fight against depression is going to take some time and support is a big part of treatment. Having the help of a dedicated support group just makes it that much easier to get through the day. You can build up a rapport with other members of the group, and you can give each other the strength to keep going even when things get tough.
This type of depression support group isn't going to be just about the people who comprise the group. Keep in mind this is a different type of treatment than group therapy because there will not be a trained therapist there. It is led by other people with depression. It should be a very cathartic process, and you'll be able to keep making progress.
What Are the Advantages of Being A Part of a Support Group?
There are many advantages to being a part of a support group. One of the most obvious is that you'll have a group of people who will be able to relate to what you're going through. Depression might feel as if it's pulling you away from the people that you love. Those who aren't going through depression struggles might not be able to fully understand what you're experiencing, but other people who fight depression every single day will get it.
You'll be able to listen to stories from other members of the group about depression and the struggles that they have had to endure. Sometimes people just need to share to get support or to get something off of their chest. Other times, people can use their stories to inspire, showing others in the group that depression can be managed effectively. It works out very nicely due to their being people at different stages of progress in the support group.
These support groups are usually comprised of newcomers and people who have been members for quite some time. Those who have been managing and coping with their depression symptoms for longer periods can provide more strength to the newer members of the group. They will have stories that they can tell that will show that things can indeed get better. Being able to have other people to use as an example of what you want to achieve does make a difference.
Of course, another advantage of going to a support group is that you'll be learning coping mechanisms and techniques all the time. If someone goes through a particularly tough day or a week, then they can share what happened with the group. A discussion can occur, and the group can come up with ways to deal with this situation more positively in the future.
Finally, you won't feel nearly as lonely when support group sessions to look forward to. You're going to develop a bond with many members of the group. These people will become your friends, and you'll be able to look out for each other in various ways. Depression doesn't have to be a lonely or isolating experience when there are groups like this banding together. Don't hesitate to reach out to a depression anonymous group if you feel like you need some help.
Finding A Support Group
Finding a support group may be easy or difficult depending on where you live though there are online options for some of the groups so even if you are in an area where a group does not meet, you can still be a part of a support group. You can search online to find a nearby group you can also google Depression Anonymous. Once you've located a support group that is close to your location, reaching out to join may be scary, but once you attend your first meeting it will get easier. You could also ask your doctor or therapist if they have a support group that they could recommend to you.
There Are Various Other Types of Support Groups as Well
There are also going to be support groups for other mental health struggles. If you're experiencing more than just depression, then it might be beneficial to find a group that is tailored to your specific problem. For instance, there are support groups for people who are dealing with bipolar disorder. You'll also find support groups for problems such as anxiety and grief.
As referenced above, you'll even find that there are online support groups many of the other mental health needs. It's possible that going to a traditional support group might not be easy for you to do. In this situation, turning to an online group is going to be a good answer. You'll be able to get support from others who are experiencing the same thing. The only difference is that you won't have to leave the comfort of your own home to do so.
If you are reading and aren't sure if a support group is for you, but you like the idea getting help for your depression online, you may prefer to pursue online therapy.You should just know that it's readily available. It can wind up being more cost-effective than traditional therapy methods, and you'll always be able to reach out to a therapist if you're having a tough time with something. The big difference between online individual therapy and group support is you will not have the support of a group, but you will have the one on one individualized care from a professional therapist.
Signing Up tor Online Therapy
Signing up for online therapy is not difficult to do. You'll be able to reach out and be connected to a therapist within 24 hours. Online therapists with BetterHelp are fully licensed, and they're ready to help you get through your depression problems. With BeterHelp, you can communicate with your therapist in a variety of ways from exchanging messages on the platform to live phone, video, and chat sessions.
As mentioned earlier, online support groups are an option for those who need it. It's also possible to reach out to an online therapist to seek traditional one-on-one therapy sessions. Either way, you'll be getting the help that focuses on helping you to manage your depression symptoms more effectively than you can do on your own.
Depression doesn't have to continue to make you feel terrible. You can have allies on your side that care about your well-being. Having people to turn to when depression is getting rough is important. If you choose online therapy, you can message your therapist at any time, so you can contact them even during odd hours if you need to.
A therapist will be there to listen to you, and they can also provide feedback and suggestions that you can put into practice. Over time, you're going to learn how to manage your depression symptoms. You'll be able to make it so that your depression is manageable, and it shouldn't negatively impact your life as it does now. The first step is going to be to find a group or to sign up for therapy, so don't wait to get started if you know that this is the route that you want to take.
Depression isn't always easy to deal with, but it's a lot better when you don't have to face it alone. Whether you want to sign up for a support group or if you want to have a professional therapist help you one-on-one, you'll never have to be alone in the fight. You can also do both! Help is here for you.