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Process Group

Process group creates a safe setting for patients to share their thoughts and experiences with one another to learn to identify and understand their own experiences and symptoms. The process group offered at Aris Clinic Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) has been tailored to provide social support and experiential learning about interpersonal relationships, as outlined by Yalom (2005). The group is offered as an adjunct to individual and family therapy, along with concurrent psycho-educational groups.

Most of the patients admitted to Aris Clinic IOP have remarkable difficulties establishing and maintaining close, mutually gratifying, and meaningful relationships with friends, school mates, partners, and family members. In the service of addressing these pervasive and often debilitating relational problems, the IOP process group gives patients an opportunity to:

  • Receive and offer support and feedback
  • Improve interpersonal relationships and communication
  • Experiment with new interpersonal behaviors
  • Talk honestly and directly about feelings
  • Gain insight and understanding into one’s own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors by looking at relationship patterns both inside and outside the group.
  • Gain understanding of other peoples’ thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
  • Improve overall self-confidence, self-image, and self-esteem.
  • And ultimately undergo personal change inside the group with the expectation of carrying that learning over into the adolescent’s outside life.

The process group at Aris Clinic IOP does not work under a prescribed agenda, theme, or curriculum for each meeting, aside from the superordinate goals mentioned above. Patients are encouraged to talk about any personal or relationship issues relevant to the problems and goals that led them to the IOP. The process group leader encourages participants to offer support, to ask questions, to wonder about things other members have shared, and to share their own relative associations, thoughts, and experiences. Most importantly, the group leader helps group members examine their relationships with one another—e.g., their thoughts, feelings, fears, worries that they may typically experience in their relationships.

Given that most members have experienced problems in their peer relationships, we believe that focusing on finding healthy resolutions to here-and-now problems between group members is particularly beneficial. At all times, the group leader assists adolescent members in taking their positive group experiences (e.g., being able to resolve intra-group conflict in a healthy manner) and applying them to their outside lives.

Aris Clinic Process Groups

  • Green Group – Elementary
  • Yellow Group – Middle School
  • Purple Group – Younger High School
  • Blue Group – Older High School
Yalom, I.D. (2005). The theory and practice of group psychotherapy (5th ed.). New York, NY: Basic Books

1 in 5 children ages 13-18 in the U.S. need mental health services; only 20% are likely to receive professional help

Source: National Institute of Mental Health