The words “support group” used to mean you had to seek out a physical group, usually in your own town or nearby. Then when you learned the meeting information, you’d muster the courage to get yourself ready and leave the house and take some sort of transportation to and from the meeting. And bare your soul of hurts while you’re there.
In more recent years, we can find support without leaving the comfort of our couch or desk. There are support groups and pages right on Facebook, and aside from what are referred to as “trolls” (the few bad apples who pop up on sites and pages with unfortunate comments with the purpose of stirring up issues, usually under a fake name), most groups are full of sincere, caring folks who are struggling with similar issues and are willing to offer encouragement and happy to receive it.
I’ve compiled a list of some support groups on Facebook that you may find helpful. (Please bear in mind that I’m not a member of all of these communities. I have looked into each and to the best of my knowledge have found them to be sound, however, I am not an administrator of any of these groups and cannot speak to their activities fully so please do your own research and test the waters as you would with any online group. As always, be careful not to divulge personal information such as your location, etc. Exercise the same measure of safety and caution as you would with any social media outlet). These groups are not listed in any particular order and I have included the link for each and I hope you find something that meets your need!
Christian Helping Christians with Mental Illness and Struggles This is a closed group which means you must join in order to post and read other posts. Check with the admin before posting to make sure that only those inside the group can see what you’re sharing. There are currently over 1,200 members of this group. Its description shares Hebrews 5:8 and Phillipians 4:6 and has an extensive set of goals, rules, and expectations. I find this to be a good thing. It means they are clear about what’s to go on there and what won’t be acceptable.
PTSD Support and Recovery This is an open page–not a group–where you can simply ‘like’ the page and enjoy what it has to offer. I’m a new ‘liker’ to the page and have seen some great quotes on the page of upwards of 75,000 ‘likers’. It seems to be an active and informative page with compassion and it appears they have a website. It looks like they supply several posts per day and one should be able to find some good information there.
PTSD Perspectives This is a page I can speak about personally and recommend. PTSD Perspectives is managed by two lovely, strong, courageous women who I had the privilege to meet at a writers conference last year. They’re talented authors and speakers and I’m not making a special plug here because I know them. I’ve actually heard them speak and read their book Love Letters from the Edge. They know of what they speak. They share great encouragement and articles on their page and they’re just a ‘like’ away from your access.
Abuse No More is a very well-liked page…literally. There are nearly 150,000 followers of this page that features a secret chat group. The page is active and shares such recent articles about gas-lighting (so important and so painful if you’re the victim. Ask me how I know!) and narcissism. It’s really worth looking around it.
Mental Illness Support Group This page states that it wants to provide a safe place for those with mental struggles to speak about any issues they may be having. It’s not a closed group, but a page you simply ‘like’ and can follow and participate freely. It has over 1,600 supporters on the page and seems to be moderately active.
Anxiety and Depression Support Group The tagline for this group is “This is a fellowship for those who suffer silence. END THE STIGMA! Start talking…” This is categorized as a community on Facebook but only takes a ‘like’ to get notifications of posts and offer and find support there. There are over 99,000 people in this community and it appears very active. It offers many helpful quotes and memes to read.
Anxiety, Panic Attack and Depression Is a community where again, you don’t join but ‘like’ the page and start reading and participating at your leisure. Over 39,000 folks support this page and it offers links to websites as well. The admin(s) here seem very responsive to those who post on the page and there’s some good information here.
Mental Health Support and Friendship Is a large closed group with over 9,000 members. The description states the group exists to offer support for those struggling with mental health issues or those who are caretakers of same. There are several administrators of this group and since I’m not a member of the group I can’t speak to the level of activity or nature of it, but if you’re interested in what you read in the description, check it out for yourself.
Christian Bipolar Support Group There are just over 400 members of this closed group. One can assume it’s a Christian group based on the obvious name. It describes itself as dealing with “depression, anxiety, PTSD, social anxiety, and borderline personality disorder.” The extensive description and rules look really inviting. My personal opinion is that it appears to be an environment where they want people to feel safe to share and seek and offer encouragement and support.
Christian Anxiety/Depression Support Group Shares the description “This is a drama~free zone, created to support each other in friendship, fellowship and God’s Word regarding issues of depression and anxiety.” It goes on to give a longer explanation of expectations and rules of the group. There are just over 600 members of this group and although I cannot see its posts, the description leads me to believe it is an inviting and informative environment.
This isn’t an endorsement of the groups, but meant to be informative and provide you with some options of Facebook communities and support. This time of year is often difficult for many people and depression deepens with the stress of the holidays and the longer sunless days. I encourage you to check out these pages and see if you find one that’s a fit for you. If you’re in crisis and battling some serious feelings and symptoms, please don’t be afraid to seek help. Call a trusted friend and then your health care professional.
You matter. You are worthy. You are needed. There’s a place for you here and you’re here for a reason!
Meet Melanie P. :
Melanie Pickett is a mom, wife, writer, blogger, and Jesus girl. Melanie spends most of her time at her own blog, melaniespickett.com where she writes about her domestic abuse survival, healthy relationships, life, and faith. She is busy with her work in progress, her first nonfiction book. Melanie has been featured on BlogHer.com and published on Splickety Magazine, Whole Magazine, Breathe Writers Conference blog, and various other blogs as a guest writer. Having worked in the medical field for nearly two decades, Melanie recently “retired” so she could concentrate on her family and writing career. She is also a substitute teacher. Besides writing, Melanie loves to read, travel, enjoys hockey, playing piano, listening to music, helping and encouraging others, speaking on Periscope and Blab, volunteering, movies, and hanging out and cheering on her very favorite people: her family. Melanie lives in west Michigan with her husband, two teen children, and her pug Gracie and beabrador Lillie. Her favorite Bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11 and one of her favorite quotes is: “They call us the dreamers, but we’re the ones who never sleep.”