Nelson counsellor Mark Peart knows all too well what it feels like to be stuck in a rough spot in life, so he’s starting a new men’s group to help others.
The group will start next month in conjunction with Life Linc Nelson and Mark hopes it will create an opportunity for men of all ages to look at challenges and speak freely in confidence.
“There’s quite a lot of research that suggests men benefit more from being in a group than they do than in individual counselling. It’s about camaraderie, and, like any group work, it’s good to be able to share your experiences as part of the process for healing,” he says.
“A lot of problems can create isolation, so this is the opposite to isolation. My experience with being in groups is walking away and just feeling great.”
Life Linc already offer all-gender group counselling, but Mark’s idea of a men’s-only group was inspired by what he was seeing in his male clients.
“We offer ten sessions for individuals, but I saw that it would be really great for some clients if there was something they could go on to,” he says.
“It’s one thing being with a therapist and talking about what’s going on, but then, to move that into a group … it’s like bridging back out into the community in a sense.
“And a lot of people do want to continue, ten sessions in some arenas is considered a lot, in others it’s considered very brief. It’s very healing for men to have that arena for lots of different reasons.”
Mark says the group will be fluid, as opposed to being structured, and he is hoping for a group of six to eight men with a mix of ages.
“There’s already some interest with the potential that we might end up running two groups.”
The group will meet in Nelson every Thursday from 7-9pm at Life Linc’s Hardy St rooms. The cost is $20 a session and it is open to all men over the age of 18.
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