The Family & Friends Group has been operating continuously since 2015. Over that time it has developed a Manual to guide its operations, developing its own model to complement existing supports and training programs. The technical term, 'carers' is used to describe family members and friends. It often sits uncomfortably with us though. To be considered the carer of an adult person seems incongruous and this suits the awkward space that we occupy within the mental health system. Our model of support is peer led, informed by ongoing monitoring and evaluation. It exists to support family members, encourage learning about BPD and all it encompasses, focuses on developing the techniques that work to improve relationships, especially with the person with BPD. In our Family and Friends Group people learn how to support their loved ones, not enable them.
If you'd like to join us, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Below is a record of the monthly meetings of the group with supplementary materials used in the training component of the meeting. We hope you find these of use.
June 18, 2019 - Mindfulness and positive psychology
Our next Family & Friends Group is at 6.30pm, June 18 2019. We meet at 341 Coventry St South Melbourne - in the rooms at Star Health. rsvp to email@example.com
The June session will be exploring the explanation of Positive Psychology in how we perceive our world and the effects this has upon us.
In preparation for this, we have sourced a 5 minute YouTube clip that is a brief explanation of what Positive Psychology is. In the class we will be learning the techniques we can apply that will make an improvement in our lives. COME and JOIN US! We welcome newcomers and do our best to help everyone feel at ease.
May 21, 2019 - MIndfulness and gratitude
It was a small group that experienced one of our most powerful sessions. We revised what we have been learning up to date and followed this with a brief explanation of the benefits of cultivating a sense of gratitude. Gratitude is one of the core values of our Family & Friend's Group, so it was good to explore why it is so important to our group.
We completed the session with a short meditation on gratitude and it was this experience that was so very powerful. In spite of the pain that we can feel as family members of someone with BPD, we can feel gratitude and experience the support of others just like us. This is energising and helps us work on the techniques we need to build better relationships with those we love.
April 16, 2019 - MIndfulness - Feeling emotions mindfully
Familiar faces were willing participants in a simple mindfulness exercise. Ania explained to us the importance of being able to work with identifying our emotions mindfully. Regular short mindfulness sessions are most helpful in reducing our response to stress. The link to the Smiling Minds website (to your left) has a short video explaining this - just click on the photo.
Next month we will be exploring how to recognise our emotions better in Mindfulness 102.
All family and friends are welcome to attend, please rsvp to firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 19, 2019 - Hierarchy of needs
It was a small but enthusiastic group of 8 who accepted the challenge of learning Boundaries 103. Our final session on Boundaries pulled together the previous earnings and allowed us to explore the implications of having strong values based boundaries. Using the handout attached we were able to questions our needs, especially our emotional needs and what that meant in relation to our boundaries. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs allowed us to recognise the basis of much of our fears and therefore how to address them. We had an excellent discussion. Click on the image to see the activity handout.
Feb 19, 2019 - The 10 Laws of Boundaries
We met as usual at Sth Melbourne. There were a few apologies, but we made a comfortable number at 14 people. This was the second of three sessions on Boundaries. The work was dense and challenging but rewarding. The US Boundaries experts are McLoud and Townsend and they are nothing if not direct. They break down Boundaries into these 10 Laws, just like 10 Commandments which is no surprise as they are immersed in the Christian Religion. The work for our group however was revised so that there were no references to religion or the bible. It is less distracting that way. Click on the image to access an abbreviation of these 10 Laws of Boundaries.
Family & friend's group model
Over time, BPD Community has developed a model of working as a peer led group to support families of friends of someone with BPD and to help them improve their relationships with their loved ones.