Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Group Therapy: Part I

Have any of you been to Group Therapy?  No?  Yes?  Isn't a gas?!  I've been to Group Therapy a few times and it appears that once you've been a bunch, you become a seasoned Group Therapy veteran and can therefore refer to Group Therapy as just "Group."  I guess in some circles it's pretty cool.  Your friends will ask, "Hey, what do you have going tonight?" and you'll say, "I've got Group," then your friend will respond with an envious "Lucky!"

Those who go to Group are so lucky!

Do you wanna to hear about my Group experience?  It went something like this:  I was seriously depressed.  As in, depressed in a serious kind of way.  Jimmy, the EX, insisted that my depression was ruining our marriage, and demanded that I get some help via therapy.  Jimmy was very much the insisting and demanding type.  Going along with what he insisted and demanded was much easier than not, so I looked into it.  Group Therapy was cheaper than the one-on-one therapy, so I signed up for Group Therapy.

I made it three whole months.  I think Group was held once a week, but can't rightly remember.  I was thrown into a bunch that included (but wasn't limited to) a crack addict, a girl who couldn't quit gnawing on her own flesh, one who needed a blankey in public for security, and a tender soul who had been gang raped at age 17, by an actual gang.  She even had the tattooed tear drops to prove it.

The girls in that group had some serious issues.  Life threatening, can't get out of bed, hold a job type issues.  I, on the other hand, was together enough to make it to work every day.  Hell, work was a vacation.  And that's when it dawned on me.  After three months of listening to the horrific past of each of the group attendees, and getting more depressed in the process, it became crystal clear that I was depressed because I was married to a drug addict with a girlfriend.

Duh.  I'm not so quick.

So answer this for me... how beneficial is this group therapy thing anyway?  I mean, it seemed that the girls eventually got into the process of one-upping each other, to see who could appear the most cracker-brained.  Mostly, we'd just sit around and talk.  And talk.  And talk and talk and talk and talk.  It didn't seem like anyone was getting anywhere and I fer sure didn't see the facilitator-psychologist-lady dish out an coping skills.  So, at what point in this therapy process do you take your current issue and declare the ramblings as enough?  When do you decide to leave it behind, quit talking about it, and move on?  My opinion is that excessive talk about disturbances has a tendency to make things boil over and explode.

Sometimes I refer to my group runs as Group Therapy.  It's the best group therapy there is.  We run a few miles, release some endorphins, and talk about stuff.  More often than thrice, we've solved the world's biggest problems, unraveled disciplinary tactics for parenting, designed a prank or two, and brainstormed ways to help those in the group who are smack-dab in the middle of a crisis.  On these runs, we declare our brotherly love back 'n forth like a bunch of drunks.

It's great fun.  It's my new Group.



Jessica said...

And now you know why I'm not a therapist. Running a group is hard, hard, hard. Now a running group is fun, fun, fun. Good choice of therapies.

Lars said...

Depending on the group dynamics and the facilitator, groups can be quite enjoyable in the sense that individuals in the group help each other sort out their "garbage stories" so to speak. Also it is usually more beneficial than individual. Surprising huh?

The group you have now is my preferred therapy.

rookie cookie said...

The group you speak of is free too. So that is much better.

I often think about the story you told me of when you mentioned to Yahoo #1 that you were married before and he said, "Does Dad know?"

Megan and Keli'i said...

What a rad post. I love running group therapy. And I always become the best friends with my running partners? I think it's something about that endorphin releasing, therapy bonding, sweat sessions that only bring people all the closer together. Do you do the same? Make best friends with your running partners?

Wish I could join your group.

Sparks said...

Aw, dammit. I always thought that I was above sycophancy. Uh, nope. Because I'm leaving yet another comment that doesn't add to a discussion or make a point but instead exists for the sole purpose of telling you how stupendous you are. That was a damn fine post. Funny? Yes. Poignant? Uh huh. Pithy? Yup. Entertaining? Of course.

Awfully nice, Wabid.

But this, this doesn't work for me: "We run a few miles."A few? Are you the most cracker-brained of them all? You run something like a gazillion miles.

Makell said...

I saw a study once where the participants who took an antidepressant had the same effect as those who just ran and had the natural endorphins. In fact, over time the runners eventually moved ahead of those who were on the happy pills in the scale of overall mental stability. I've done both. Amen to the free group therapy!

Makell said...

PS - yes, I believe every study I read! haha Great post :)

megan said...

Well said my friend...well said. It's the only answer for why we wake before the sun rises - mental stability. The comment about your boy asking "does Dad know" is going to keep a smile on my face all day long.

rabidrunner said...

Good point, Rookie. Free.

Here's the post that tells that "Does dad know?" story. Very funny day, that one was.

Hawaiian Megan, you'd fit right in to my little running group. You should come some time? Let me know when you're in town! Are you even from Utah? I assume everyone's from Utah some times.

Sparks Megan, no one's above sycophancy, extra especially you and me. 'Cause we can declare our brotherly love back 'n forth like a couple of drunks. Thanks for the love, extra especially the funny, poignant, pithy part. I was afraid it was gonna come across as too serious. Glad it didn't. Did it?

Makell, that's a study I'd believe too. Thanks for sharing. We should ski soon, yes? And that can be more Group Therapy? Not free though. Oh heavens, not free. Unless you're into hiking, but I'm not into hiking and skiing.

Arizona Megan, hi! I love that I know you. Fer reals. The link to that "Does Dad Know" story is up top.

rabidrunner said...

Oh and Sparks, 2:33 AM? Don't you have a job and stuff? How the hell do you do that?

Sparks said...

Eh, sleep is for mortals.

And those who can get their minds to quite down. Wish I could be one a' them.

Are you collecting Megans?

I used to collect postcards as a kid. Your collection is more unique. And spicy.

That's another genius thing you said--that y'all (and me too!) proclaim your love like a bunch of drunks. Gives me mental image enough to carry that around in my pocket all day.

Stacey J said...

Not really relevant to this post, but I thought you'd appreciate the following WRT the other day's admonition to 'own it'

Megan and Keli'i said...

Drunk friends. Makes me happy. Great comments.

No, Rabid, not from Utah. I'm from California, about an hour outside of Tahoe. Only been to Utah a handful of times, but my parents just moved to Springville, so I guess I kinda gots roots there now.

dug said...

thought you'd like to know.

rabidrunner said...

Yeah fer KSL! Thanks for the update.