Counseling Services offers free group sessions to help students move past unhealthy relationships

Julia Eilert

Unhealthy relationships can leave lasting scars and moving on is sometimes easier with a bit of help.

Students who have faced domestic abuse, sexual violence or other unhealthy interpersonal relationships have a new resource option. Beginning Wednesday Jan. 31, Washburn’s counseling services will be holding Interpersonal Recovery Group sessions from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. every Wednesday until March 14 in Kuehne Hall, Room 201.

“I definitely think that there’s a need for it. It might change over time and evolve into what Washburn is truly needing,” said Molly Steffes-Herman, campus advocate. “I think we’re starting out with something that’s really beneficial.”

 

These sessions can be attended out of order, but it is recommended to go to them all. The circuit will be starting over March 28 through May 9 for anyone who is unable to attend the first set of meetings.

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>“It’s hard to reach out to others, and when you do, they might not know the answers themselves because it’s somewhat of a taboo issue, though it shouldn’t be,” said Ana Lima, graduate assistant at counseling services. “If you have this group though, you have people who are experts in the subject to help you. You have that support and those resources.”</p>” id=”4f8be8a9-c962-4e07-b288-8109609a62ae” style-type=”quote” title=”Recovery” type=”relcontent”}}

“It’s hard to reach out to others, and when you do, they might not know the answers themselves because it’s somewhat of a taboo issue, though it shouldn’t be,” said Ana Lima, graduate assistant at counseling services. “If you have this group though, you have people who are experts in the subject to help you. You have that support and those resources.”

Students will be able to talk through their experiences while learning about self-love, emotional governing, and healthy and happy relationships.

“It’s not just talking at people for an hour, but having a conversation and brainstorming what we want to change, what we think we can improve,” said Herman. “We want people to walk away with a better understanding of what they want, and a better understanding of where they are in their relationships now.”

One of the main goals, aside from support, is to allow individuals to regain control over their lives and bodies, while also giving them a sense of empowerment and personal pride in themselves. These feelings may have been lost in unpleasant experiences, so having them returned can help how students handle and view themselves.

“You can educate not only yourself, but you will be able to extend a helping hand to other people that have been through this- it’s very important to have something like this on a college campus,” said Lima. “There are some things that are really important to work through, so people can finally be free of them. It really does help.”

Any students who feel like they could benefit from this group are encouraged to come and experience it for themselves. Washburn has many resources for struggling students, and if a group setting doesn’t work, WU Counseling Services are free and can be reached at (785)-670- 1470. No one is alone, and the community is always ready to lend a helping hand or ear.

“It’s important to have those one-on-one opportunities to work with people, but it’s also a totally different feel to have a group with people who have shared similar experiences. We wanted to foster students supporting students,” said Herman, “If you feel like this is something you’d benefit from, we hope that you come.”

For any additional information about the program, contact the Campus Advocate Molly Steffes-Herman at (785)-670-3100 or [email protected]washburn.edu.