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Bear-ly Holding it Together 🧸
Where Emma ponders support groups.
Hello lovelies, thank you for supporting the new Sun Deck cards. You are the best! Many of you asked about the availability of them as posters and screen savers. Leave it with me I’m on the case 💪🏻💋
I have been pondering support groups. Oh yes, those awkward spaces where we all sit in a circle and stare at our shoes hoping to be swallowed up by the furniture.
OK, I know they aren’t like that. I wonder if there are certain personality types who benefit from or at least find these groups more straightforward and more productive than others. I know of a marked difference in how men and women approach support and group-orientated care.
There are positives. A connection with people who are speaking the same medical, mental and emotional language as you can help a sense of belonging. We as a group here can express an aspect of Parkinson’s and it is understood without lengthy explanations of the condition. We also don’t have the sell the idea that we are in fact actually ill. Belonging, identity and validation are all good things - in groups, we can find acceptance and hope.
Groups can also provide excellent support for carers as they often present an opportunity for judgement-free expression. They are also great sources of problem-solving and socialisation.
In spite of all the above I am very resistant. I feel like I breathe, eat, sleep and write Parkinson’s 24 hours a minute! I didn’t even want to write about this bastarding condition.
I have done things you know! I’ve lived (am living) a life! - things that are bugger all to do with PD. So the idea of talking in a group about it makes me a little queasy. And yet, I know how therapeutic it is to share the frustrations and fears.
And perhaps that is where it’s helpful to look at what works for you. I am happier working through ‘stuff’ over a pint and the football - you might be more at ease in a group or on a phone call or even texting.
‘Ok Emma,’ I hear you ask, ‘where has all this come from?’
Well, it’s all your fault! You keep sending me emails and messages stating how awesome it would be if we all lived closer and could run a ‘group’. I wonder if we couldn’t consider an informal Zoom meet-up every so often or perhaps an online community.
I would love your thoughts on this! Hit reply, or leave a comment.
Now we have to be realistic you know there would have to be wine…