Online Group Therapy in Thailand
Online Group Therapy in Thailand
Online Group Therapy in Thailand Group therapy, as the name implies, is a type of therapy that is conducted within a group, rather than on an individual basis. Groups are usually designed to target specific issues, such as depression, panic disorder, substance abuse, social anxiety, or grief. Group therapy or group counseling as it is also referred to can assist individuals in developing better communication skills and socialisation skills, so clients can learn how to express their thoughts and feelings and also accept feedback from others. The group therapy setting provides a safe, confidential environment where clients are able to develop self-awareness, empathy, and compassion by listening to others with the same or similar issues.
Benefits of Group Therapy v. Individual Therapy
Group therapy is not necessarily meant to replace individual therapy. In fact, it is sometimes recommended that a client engage in both, although it is not necessary and some people prefer one or the other. Interesting though, many studies have found that group counseling can actually be more effective than individual therapy for a variety of reasons. One such study notes that while CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) is highly effective in improving overall mental state and global functioning, longer term group psychotherapy can be very effective at improving life skills.
Another major advantage of group therapy is that it can offer a cost-effective option for many people. Because there are more people in the group, the cost for one session of group therapy is typically less than that of an individual therapy session in Chinag Mai or Bangkok.
Individual counseling in Bangkok, Thailand (especially with a Western-trained counselor) can get expensive with some Bangkok counseling services charging as much as 4000 THB per 50 minute session. Therefore group therapy can provide excellent value for money. Counselling Thailand is proud to offer affordable rates for both individual and group therapy and encourage our clients to select a modality that best suits their needs and lifestyle.
How is a Support Group different from Group Therapy?
Our online group therapy in Thailand is led by one or more qualified facilitators with specialised training and experience. Group therapy is also typically more structured in terms of skill and theme development. These sessions often have a fixed schedule, such as meeting once a week for 4-8 weeks. The therapist leading the sessions will offer guidance, topics, and supplementary materials as appropriate and the group works through the issues together.
More often than not, we often advise that any of our clients who attend CBT or 12 Step support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous also receive individual therapy outside of the support group. Support groups may also meet less frequently than group therapy sessions take place, for example, once or twice a month v. once weekly.
What Should I Expect During Group Therapy?
Group therapy involves one or more facilitators who lead a group of roughly 5-15 patients. Typically, groups meet for an hour or two each week. Some people attend individual therapy or online counselling in addition to group therapy, while others are more comfortable in a group setting.
Many groups are designed to focus on specific issues faced by the individuals within the group, whereas, other groups focus more generally on improving social skills, and helping people overcome or manage a range of issues such as anger, timidness, low self-esteem and loneliness. Engaging in group counseling also often helps those who have experienced loss and are grieving as they counteract isolation and encourage connection, empathy, and understanding among members. Group therapy in Thailand may also be centered around issues that are unique to expats or those involved in bicultural relationships.
It is important to keep in mind that it is perfectly natural to feel some anxiety about starting in group therapy as a first-timer. With time, most members find they become more comfortable amongst the group process and with the other group members.
What Should I Expect From My Group Members?
➢ Attendance: Regular attendance at group meetings and commitment to the work of the group are crucial. Some groups ask for an initial commitment from all members, while others may ask for commitment for an entire month or course.
➢ Confidentiality: It is expected that all group members will maintain confidentiality and not discuss what happens or is said inside of the group setting, outside.
➢ Expressing Feelings: These group therapy sessions may often invoke strong feelings, therefore, it is expected that these feelings should be expressed effectively using skills gained in therapy such as assertive communication, emotional awareness, and CBT skills.
➢ Responsibility: Each group member must take responsibility for working on their own therapeutic goals. No one is going to provoke or force members to reveal difficult material, so it is up to each member to direct their own healing and recovery process.
Are there any Disadvantages to Group Therapy?
Short answer…no! There are aspects of group therapy however that may seem uncomfortable or strange to some people at first. For many people who are not familiar with group therapy, sharing openly in a group setting may not come naturally. Usually after a few sessions this fear subsides, but initially, it may prevent someone from fully engaging in the therapeutic experience.
Why is Group Therapy so Successful?
Group therapy provides a challenging as well as a supportive environment in which members can explore and discuss their concerns amongst their peers and with the support of a qualified counsellor. Group therapy offers more than solely an individual perspective on issues and challenges participants to view things from multiple different perspectives.
Within the group setting, members have the opportunity to practice new ways of interacting with others. The level of support as well as trust received in group settings make it easier for others to be open and vulnerable. Group settings also provide participants with the opportunity to receive or give help and also feedback to their peers.
If a group setting has more than one counsellor, it also allows us to view different therapy styles and techniques. Lastly, group therapy can model family or community systems and allow clients to practice skills in a safe space that they can later apply in their everyday lives.
A great advantage of group therapy is that it allows people to recognize that they are not alone in their feelings or concerns. Realising that others have experienced or are currently facing similar difficulties can be an incredibly encouraging and empowering experience. Hearing and sharing different perspectives and ways of coping with similar issues, may help group members to develop new techniques and mechanisms of managing their lives.
Virtual Group Therapy in Bangkok, Thailand
These days, due to the impact of COVID-19, therapy has become more accessible than ever. With the Zoom platform, group therapy can be safely and easily conducted within the comfort of one’s own home, and in most cases, with the same effectiveness as in-person therapy.
Particularly for those who are living in major cities like Bangkok, virtual online group therapy can provide individuals who may not otherwise have been able attend in-person sessions due to issues such as scheduling or traffic, with a convenient option.
Book your First Group Therapy Session Now
Counselling Thailand currently facilitates weekly online group therapy sessions via Zoom on Mondays at 6.30pm Thai time (Indochina time) .An initial consultation and booking is required in advance.
Focus groups including Women’s Groups, Codependency Groups, and Substance Abuse Groups are now forming. If you have an interest in these areas of focus, please mention this at the time of your enquiry.