finding the best support group for you; part 1

In our last post, we looked at some of the concerns many of you may have about joining a widowed support group.

If you’ve decided to take the next step, consider the following:

Many hospitals, hospices and places of worship offer free or low-fee non-denominational support groups. Contact the Social Services Department at your local hospital and/or look for listings in your community newspaper.

If possible, select a group(s) specifically for the widowed. “Bereavement” groups tend to deal with all types of loss, such as parental, child, etc.

Finding the right support group is like finding anything else that’s a good fit. Ideally, you should shop around a bit until you find the most comfortable group for you. Most groups will let you sit in for a session before you make a commitment to join.

When you sit in with a group you’re considering, watch for how respectful the members are of each other and how well the leader manages time issues.

The most important thing is to gage your own comfort level. Expect to be nervous at first, but after a few times, that should lessen.

In our next post, we'll suggest key questions you should ask about any prospective support group.