Support groups with women

Hey, mine's on Wednesday night too. We're both lucky - but more than lucky, we're both doing the best things for ourselves that we can. Let's keep it going!
 
What is especially good for both of you attending mixed gender meetings is that you can come HERE for support from men as you go through that process. I honestly expect I'll be the only man attending the OA meeting focused on Childhood Trauma and It's Impact, so I'll be looking for support as well. Of course, I'll likely know all the women in this new meeting, some of whom are already good friends, so it is not quite so intimidating. Trying this with folks I've never known would be much harder for me. Kudos to you both for taking the leap into the unknown. Glad it is working for you both. In all honestly, despite the fact there was some angry women in the world, they really are the other half of this species, not demons from another planet. At least for me as a heterosexual, I expect my life will be at its richest if I can have intimate relationships with women. This is just good training...
 
At support group today it finally happened ... I was the only man there with five women. AND there was a self-described "man-hating feminist" in attendance. AND the new moderator kept using the term "rape culture" which I hate with a fiery passion. AND I had a chip on my shoulder because I was in pain after some minor surgery today.

But ... it eventually went OK anyway. The man-hating feminist and I ended up getting along just fine, although she admitted my presence there in the group made her angry and uncomfortable. We even had some things in common, which I was amused by. I didn't let her opinions about men cow or silence me and in fact I was more outspoken than ever about my anger at the general lack of resources for abused men. Everyone heard me and I think mostly understood where I was coming from. But I didn't push it too far, and I didn't dominate the conversation. By the time it was time to leave, I felt a lot better.

So that went about as well as it could have, I think. A lot of times after meetings I cringe when I think about the things I said and feel like I have to re-examine my feedback to think about whether I should have stayed quiet or should have said anything differently. Not this time. I think the fact that someone who claimed they hated me was in attendance opened me up, paradoxically enough, and made me unafraid to say whatever I wanted. If she was going to hate me anyway, then I just didn't have to worry about what she or anyone else thought of me.
 
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Well done Strangeways. I guess we shouldn't be surprised that even an angry woman who has been sexually abused would have things in common with us. Of course, it isn't always easy to listen closely enough to one another that those similarities are acknowledged. Sounds like excellent work to be doing. Thanks for the update. I'm still two weeks away from the first meeting of the group I'll be attending...
 
Yes, @Visitor, we both understood very well where we were each coming from in our mistrust of the opposite sex! And, of course, we were both angry - it was quite something.

Sending good thoughts to you about your upcoming group. I hope it's a huge success.
 
I met yesterday with the woman with whom I'm beginning a 12 Step meeting focused on childhood trauma. We're refining the meeting script and related readings that will be part of the group, which has involved conversations about what we're each hoping for from the meeting. We encountered some differences which meant exploring feelings doubtless triggered by trauma. At one point she slid her chair back as though protecting herself from my intensity. We were able to acknowledge that each of us has tender feelings about this subject and were able to keep the conversation open and respectful. I think we're doing very well and am hopeful this meeting will allow compulsive eaters to find some relief by acknowledging the impact of trauma on our lives and eating behaviors. There is a great deal of suffering in 12 Step meetings but it is rare that the connection is made between the acting out behaviors and the residue of trauma carried by members. Our first meeting is October 17. I'll definitely report back after that meeting.
 
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