Holiday Stress Increases Need for Domestic Violence Victims Support Group (Tinley Park, IL) — Many families feel stressed during the holiday season, but for those caught in an abusive relationship the tension is even more difficult to navigate. This is one of the reasons the Crisis Center for South Suburbia offers a weekly support group for victims of domestic violence.
“Having a group where everyone is going through similar things helps survivors feel less alone,” said Nicole Suhm, one of the professional counselors at the Crisis Center. “Sharing stories, fears, talking about kids and what it’s like to walk on eggshells all of the time is important,” Suhm added. The support group, like all of the counseling services at the Crisis Center, is free and confidential.
The group educates survivors about the forms of domestic violence, the cycle of violence, the impact on children, and more. One of the most important topics that the group covers is safety planning. “Keeping survivors safe is our top priority, and offering tips on how and when to leave an abuser is always an active discussion among the group,” said Suhm. Examining what healthy relationships look like, how they make you feel and setting boundaries are also discussed.
The support group is a great place for survivors who are living with an abuser, or who have found the courage to leave, to practice new skills together. For example, many survivors don’t know how to accept a compliment. “When you’ve been used to being put down by someone who is supposed to love you, getting a compliment can be uncomfortable,” Suhm said. Group counselors help survivors process those feelings and learn to react differently.
The Domestic Violence Support Group is free and open to all survivors of domestic violence. Meetings are held on Wednesdays from 7-8 pm in Tinley Park. To register for this free group, call the Crisis Center at 708-429-7233 (SAFE). Individual counseling and specialized counseling for children who have been impacted by domestic violence is also offered at no charge.
The Crisis Center for South Suburbia offers survivors of domestic violence emergency shelter, housing, counseling, and advocacy services. Prevention and community education services, as well as programs for abusers, are also offered. If you are a victim of domestic violence and need help, call our 24-hour hotline at 708-429-SAFE (7233). For more information, visit www.crisisctr.org or call 708-429-7255.
Holiday Stress Increases Need for Domestic Violence Victims Support Group