Support Groups Supporting You

By Marie Gress, LLMSW – Director of Operations at Milan Seniors for Healthy Living

I can give you five short ‘n’ sweet reasons support groups are incredibility beneficial. 1) You realize youare not alone in your struggle and much of what you are feeling is normal. 2) You receive and give support from peers, facilitated by a professional. 3) You find your “voice,”learning how to express yourself and complicated emotions. 4) You learn to relate to others (and yourself) in healthier ways. 5) Group can be your safety net, peers you can report back to about successes and mistakes made since the last meeting. (PsychCentral)
Milan Seniors for Healthy Living (MSHL) offers support groups as a way of carrying each other through the more difficult aspects of aging. No one explains how to age or how to handle the challenges that come with it: loneliness, depression, grief, forgetfulness, body decline, providing care to a parent or spouse, etc. While MSHL has had groups for most of these topics, we will host the following at the Senior & Community Center for the remainder of 2017:
A Pet Loss Grief Support Group on the second Wednesday of the month at 10-11 a.m. led by Colleen O’Brien, LMSW, who has dedicated her profession to supporting people through the loss of the beloved animals. Milan Animal Hospital, Milan Veterinary Clinic, and Country Kennel sponsored this group, open to the entire Milan Community.
A Caregiver Support Group on the third Monday of the month from 6-7 p.m. led by Lance Slatton from Enriched Life Home Care Services. We know caring for a loved one is a weighty role. This group is here for you to share your challenges, receive advice and resources, and recharge. This group is open to the entire Milan Community.
A Grief Support Group on the fourth Monday of the month at 10-11 a.m. led by Melanie Sharp, LMSW, from Huron Valley PACE. It takes courage to confront the intense and varied emotions of losing a loved one. Whether you’ve lost someone in the past few months or several years ago, we have a safe space for you to explore and process. This group is open to anyone in July, but will close in August.
For more details on these groups, please feel free to call MSHL at 734-508-6229 and mshl [at] milanseniors [dot] org or visit our website at

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