I hate small groups AKA Divorce Care week 1

Posted: September 10, 2013 in Uncategorized
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I frickin hate small groups – like the kind where you talk about your feelings, you all tell your story during “sharing time” and some lady breaks down crying.

Maybe it’s because I started them at an early age.

Maybe it’s because I never really fit the mold.

Maybe it’s because I am not ever the one who has the big emotional breakdown that feels like the expected response, thus leaving facilitators feeling like they never really got through to me.

Regardless, I went to my first Divorce Care group tonight.

I committed to myself to go for one week. I wanted to see if it was possible there was something there that could help. Like I posted before, I have some really great friends, but if you have not been through this, then there are things you just will not understand.

I did have my boundaries though, and  if it was a bunch of middle aged women sitting around complaining and blaming their x, then I was not going back. Well there was actually 4 of us and that included the facilitator (who was a middle aged lady) and one guy.

I am not going to lie, it did feel REALLY awkward that there was a guy. Maybe it’s because all my small groups all my life were only with other women (other than couple groups). I don’t think I really expected a guy to be in the group either, though I knew it was possible. I will take a moment to say kudos to him for being there because it must have been even harder for him because of social stereotypes, but thank goodness he didn’t cry.

I will say it did get slightly more awkward when the facilitator was laying the group rules and said no one can date because this wasn’t a singles dating group. Not even remotely interested in meeting a guy from divorce care and starting a relationship – seriously!

To be fully truthful, the beginning of the video looked like a really bad infomercial and I heckled it to my friends by text. The actual content of the rest of the video, setting aside bad graphics, wasn’t bad. One thing that was said that hit for me was along the lines of: stop thinking you need to do this better and just get through it.

It was helpful to hear how hard this is for other people and how big of struggles they have had. It made me realize that I needed to stop minimizing the situation and be real and honest about the fact that if my husband had just died I would not be expecting the things of myself that I am currently expecting – and this should be no different.

The video and facilitator repeatedly said that you did not have to share during “discussion time” but I pointed out that if anyone didn’t then there would be an awkward silence because really it is awkward if everyone talked except you – I know, I’ve been stubborn enough to do it and live through the awkwardness. With only 4 people in the group it was unlikely we would not get around the table to each of us.

So we talked. It was strange at first and somethings we could all relate to and other things not. It was astounding that one person admitted to thoughts of self harm and then we all agreed. The pain is just at times so overwhelming and to know that you are not crazy and not the only one that wrestles with these things is pretty significant.

We laughed and no one cried. I don’t see myself coming out of this with any new BFF’s or anything, but they were nice people, and hurting people – just like me.

I’m going back. We’ll see how it goes, but I’m willing to give it a shot. It may help, and if not then I can at least say I’ve done it. I may shed a tear or two just to make the facilitator feel like she got through – but probably not!


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