DBSA online support groups follow the same format as most DBSA in-person support groups. The format is as follows:
Gathering time - The group assembles.
Welcome - The facilitator brings the group together and provides focus.
Review what will happen at the meeting and group guidelines - Participants are asked to look over the guidelines at every meeting.
Check-in - Participants briefly let the group know how they are feeling and what they would like to discuss during the meeting.
Discussion - This is the heart of a DBSA group. Often the discussion will be based on common concerns or themes that came up during the check-in time.
Closing - The facilitator brings closure to the session.
We read the guidelines before each meeting to remind us that we are all responsible for following and committing to the group standards, which are in place to keep this group a safe place to share.
Share the air
Everyone who wishes to share has an opportunity to do so. No one person should monopolize group time.
One person speaks at a time
Each person should be allowed to speak free from interruption and side conversations.
What is said here stays here
This is the essential principle of confidentiality, and MUST be respected by all.
Differences of opinion are o.k.
We are ALL entitled to our own point of view.
We are all equal
We accept cultural, linguistic, social and racial differences and promote their acceptance.
Use "I" language
Because we do not participate in support groups as credentialed professionals, we do not INSTRUCT or ADVISE. We however do share from our own personal experiences. We are unique individuals, and only we know what is best for our own health (along with our doctor's recommendations). Example: "In my experience, I have found…"
It's o.k. not to share
People do not have to share if they do not wish to.
It's everyone’s responsibility to make the discussion groups a safe place to share.
We respect confidentiality, treat each other with respect and kindness, and show compassion.