Support & Therapy Groups

Support & Therapy Groups: How to Join

An initial phone call with our support & therapy groups coordinator is the first step towards receiving appropriate treatment.

Below is a list of all groups led by The Women’s Center therapists – not all groups are active all the time. All groups meet at our Vienna, VA offices, unless otherwise noted. 

Initial Consultation with the Group Leader: $49

Group Participation Fee: $130/month

Please call Support & Therapy Groups Manager Lauren McDonough, at 703-281-2657, ext. 236 (dial # before the extension), to set up a consultation to join one of our groups. She is also reachable by email at (please do not share confidential information via email). Reduced fee and sliding fee scale options available, based on financial need.

Click on each box to the right to view more information about each group.

A group of men and women will meet for twenty-four weeks to acquire skills to address anxiety. The group will progress through orientation, psychoeducation, ventilation of external stressors, and stress management skills acquisition in the first phase of seven weeks.

The group will be facilitated to restructure thinking about anxiety triggers, engage in exposure exercises to improve acceptance and prevent unwanted responses in situations that arouse anxiety, and restructure core beliefs that maintain anxieties over fourteen weeks. In the final three weeks, group members will engage in relapse prevention training and say goodbye. Members will be selected through two individual interviews.

The first interview will assess anxiety and apropriateness of group therapy. If appropriate, the second interview will be used to develop a trigger response hierarchy that will determine targets for exposure homework assignments during the second phase of treatment.

In this group women will work together to eliminate the core symptoms of depression and support each other as they establish joyful lives. Participants will learn about depression, set personal goals, and then work to achieve those goals.

The goals will relate to establishing a regular sleep pattern, engaging in pleasurable and achievement oriented activities, regulating mood, altering negative self-talk and depression-generating beliefs, and controlling obsessive and/or perfectionist thinking. They will select and examine events in their lives to set behavior change goals that they will work toward at their own pace in order to produce desired outcomes.

The overall aim is to function in all dimensions of life with a sense of contentment, while embracing the ups and downs of living.

Focuses on formulating and implementing personal strategies for dealing with the emotional and situational changes of this life experience.

Explores long-lasting scars that affect people’s feelings about themselves and others. Offers space to understand the common feelings of low self-esteem, lack of confidence, inability to trust, humiliation, shame and isolation.

Offers a safe environment for adult women who were sexually abused during childhood or adolescence. Focuses on unresolved feelings, and long-term effects of abuse and developing self-esteem. Individual therapy is a prerequisite.

Focuses on the challenges facing women nearing or older than 50. Addresses physical changes, roles and relationships, professional development, leisure time and more.

The social anxiety group will meet Thursday mornings to provide a supportive environment in which men and women living with social anxiety can engage cognitive behavioral therapy for change while achieving mastery of social skills. Cognitive behavioral therapy will include education about social anxiety; stress; challenging circumstances; triggers; and anxiety provoking and maintaining thoughts and core beliefs.

Group members will self-monitor to identify anxious thoughts and emotionally driven behaviors. They will use replacement thoughts to change self-talk; dispute false beliefs; and challenge automatic responses to triggers. They will support each other as they role play new behaviors and practice gradual exposure to feared activities freeing themselves to live more fully. Social skills will be rehearsed every fourth Thursday morning when group members will participate in a media review forum. Group members will choose treatment of a current issue by media, a television show, a film, or a book for monthly review.

Trichotillomania and Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors Support Group- for Kids!

Most individuals who engage in body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs), including hair pulling, skin picking, and nail biting, begin exhibiting symptoms in late childhood and into early puberty. For these children, feelings of embarrassment and worry about being different than their peers can impact their self-esteem. Combating these feelings, along with cognitive behavioral treatments, is a crucial part of the recovery process. This weekly group will focus on providing child members with peer support, allowing them to connect with children with shared experiences while incorporating evidence-based cognitive behavioral treatment techniques.

The group will provide children with a safe, supportive environment to discuss their behaviors, thoughts, and feelings, and ultimately work toward self-acceptance of themselves as unique individuals. The group is open to individuals ages 9-12 and will include one week of parental education/support. An initial meeting with the group leader is required.

Please note that this group is not intended to take the place of individual therapy but rather to provide peer support and self-esteem building for children with BFRBs. Tuesdays 4:30 -6:00pm

Throughout its 43 years, the Center has helped thousands of victims of domestic violence reclaim their lives through the Break the Cycle of Domestic Violence Program (Break the Cycle).  This program provides critical components in the continuum of care for victims that help them find physical safety, economic stability, and improved mental health. Specific services include: crisis intervention; court accompaniment; trauma-informed, evidence-based mental health counseling; information about accessing and navigating the criminal, civil, housing, legal, medical, mental health and other service systems; safety planning; referrals to community resources; education about the dynamics of domestic violence and its cyclical nature; long-term care management; financial education and counseling; career mentoring and individual coaching; and, social-connection support groups that foster empowerment and development of trusted connections. In addition, the program provides education to victims and the community and support to the clinicians working with victims of domestic violence through training, peer and supervisory support. 

The support group meets twice a month. Please contact Amanda Millir, Break The Cycle Program Coordinator for more information.