If you have cut down or stopped using alcohol or drugs and it is your intention to remain this way, a self-help RPG group can greatly assist your efforts, and compliment the one-on-one therapy you may also be engaged in. You may have recently been through withdrawal or inpatient detox from alcohol or drugs and are looking for further support so you don’t have to go it alone.

These groups are facilitated by a psychologist and are held once a week in 3 locations (North, South, City) and run for 90 minutes. Generally, the groups are held in the late afternoon/evening to allow people who work to attend. Groups usually comprise between 6-10 attendees as well as the facilitators.

These groups are mainly designed for people whose primary drug of concern is alcohol, cannabis, prescription opioids or benzodiazepines. There is a separate group specifically for people whose primary drug of concern is methamphetamine or intravenous opioids. If you are unsure which group is right for you, the psychologist you see prior to commencing a group and your GP can assist.

The groups are structured, meaning that the psychologist facilitator will go through specific materials designed to help you:

  • Build and maintain your motivation to change
  • Learn the nature and effects of psychoactive substances, and how that impacts on recovery
  • Learn the importance of activities scheduling and routine
  • Learn about your trigger-thought-craving-use cycle
  • Identify your internal and external triggers
  • Understand cravings and how to cope with them
  • Identify, manage and dispute your unhelpful ways of thinking
  • Learn new coping techniques & problem solving strategies that do not involve substance use
  • Identify your warning signs of relapse and strategies for avoiding it
  • To build healthy self-esteem
  • To achieve lifestyle balance
  • To practice assertiveness

Prior to the commencement of the group you will likely be required to have a pre-group assessment and screening. In this session the psychologist will determine if group therapy is suitable for you, and also go through what is expected from group attendees.