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Group psychotherapy offers the opportunity for you to process emotional or social challenges in a supportive environment with other clients who are experiencing similar challenges. All groups are led by experienced and licensed psychotherapists. Many of our groups focus on LGBTQ+ issues of identity and expression, while some groups focus on behavioral health issues like relationships, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), or understanding problematic behaviors and emotions.

 

Group therapy is available to both existing medical patients and non-patients. For non-WWH patients, find out more about how to become a patient here:

 

There are two main ways to learn more about groups, find out about openings, and begin the screening process. Please note that for certain groups, the facilitator may ask you to complete an additional screening before joining the group:

 

  1. For current Health Center patients, you can request a behavioral consult for a group from your medical provider. Just let your provider know that you would like to speak with a Behavioral Health Specialist.
  2. Non-patients of the health center can get more information about groups by emailing Kevin Waldorf-Cruz at kwaldorf-cruz@whitman-walker.org.

*Most psychotherapy groups continue to be offered through Telehealth.

 

Need Support Now?

  • National Suicide Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
  • Trans Lifeline: 1-877-565-8860
  • The Trevor Project Lifeline: 1-866-488-7386 (for LGBTQ+ youth)
  • Crisis Text Line: text “GO” to 741741
  • DC Mental Health Access Line: 1-888-793-4357
  • In crisis? Click here for additional resources.

WWH Psychotherapy Groups:

Understanding Your Use

Time

Group Facilitator: Chad Wheeler, LICSW

Understanding Your Use is a group at Whitman-Walker Health that is designed to be a first step in thinking about/receiving addiction treatment at Whitman-Walker. This group is designed as a safe space to talk about participants’ relationship with substance use and the behaviors they may wish to change (Abstinence based/WWAS) or reduce (Harm Reduction). Work through psycho-education for identifying potential addictive behaviors within yourself and treatment options either in Whitman-Walker’s Addiction Services/Harm Reduction programs. We can also refer you to other programs within the community. Participants will discover tools, learn about the disease of addiction, self‐assess where they are in the stages of change and readiness for treatment. This group is open to anyone and pre‐screens are required. 

To learn more, contact: cwheeler@whitman-walker.org or 202-207-2386

In crisis? Click here for resources.

Understanding Your Nervous System

Time TBD

Group Facilitator: Jessa Llewellyn, LICSW

Learn how to work with your natural nervous system responses instead of against it. In this short-term psychotherapy group, you’ll learn the basic concepts of self-regulation through mind-body education and experiential exercises. You will develop the tools to be better partners with your body, allowing for increased healing and emotional well-being.

To learn more, contact: jllewellyn@whitman-walker.org

Stress Reduction for Overcoming Anxiety, Depression and Insomnia

Thursday Afternoons

Group Facilitator: Dr. Kevin Waldorf-Cruz, LICSW

 

This is an ongoing psychotherapy for individuals coping with the effects of chronic or acute stress in their lives. This group offers a supportive environment to connect with others, process mood disorders and the effects of stress on the mind and body. The group is open to anyone with mood disorders, adjustment issues or other chronic stress. Mindfulness, mind-body relaxation, breathing and other stress reduction techniques will be utilized throughout each session. 

 

To learn more, contact: kwaldorf@whitman-walker.org

Trans Stress Reduction Group

Tuesday Evenings

Group Facilitator: Nicole Armstead-Williams, LICSW

 

This weekly therapy group emphasizes mindfulness practices and stress reduction skills.  This group is intended to be held for all people who identify as trans — this includes non-binary, gender non-conforming, gender expansive, or even just in the beginning stages of exploring gender identity.  This group aims to invite more compassion and less judgment when approaching experiences of dysphoria, depression, anxiety, and even trauma/grief – so that members can experience being fully present for their transition and journey toward living authentically.

To learn more, contact: narmstead-williams@whitman-walker.org

Gender & Us

Tuesday Evenings

Group Facilitators: Esette Negussie, LGPC & Jen Bindeman, LICSW, LCSW-C, LMSW

 

Gender and Us is a group open to trans and gender diverse clients between 14-17 years old. It’s designed to be a creative space for trans and gender expansive youth, focusing on improving coping skills, expressing gender, and creating community by connecting with peers. The group will use creative and expressive techniques to provide space for clients, including making visual art, using music, or using movement to facilitate conversation.

 

To learn more, contact: enegussie@whitman-walker.org 

Families in Transition

Thursday Evenings 

Group Facilitators: Jen Bindeman, LICSW, LCSW-C, LMSW & Dr. Kevin Waldorf-Cruz, LICSW

Are you the parent, guardian or caregiver of a transgender or gender-expansive youth? This is a psychoeducational/psychotherapy group to help support you with some of your questions and challenges in raising a young person going through gender transition. Group is held 3-4 per year for 4 session cycles. 

To learn more, contact: jbindeman@whitman-walker.org

Raising Awareness in Partnership

Thursday Evenings 

Group Facilitator: Dr. Monique Walker, LMFT

This group allows couples/partners* to build and supplement their relational toolkits through 13 weekly meetings on topics such as communication, conflict resolution, relationship roles, and sexual expectations. The group will infuse techniques from two well-known relationship models, Prepare-Enrich® and Imago™ Relationship Therapy. Group members will learn and practice skills, while connecting with other couples, with the intention of creating a more “Conscious Partnership.”

To learn more, contact: mwalker@whitman-walker.org

Sexual Compulsion for Gay Men

Thursday Evenings 

Group Facilitator: Dr. Randy Pumphrey, LPC, BCC

This group focuses on out-of-control sexual behavior, sexual compulsion issues, love addiction and love avoidance. Group members must make a commitment to a minimum of 12 sessions. An initial screening appointment with the group facilitator is necessary for admission.

To learn more, contact: rpumphrey@whitman-walker.org

Gay Men’s Mood Disorder Group

Monday Evenings 

Group Facilitator:  James Johnson, LPC

 

This ongoing psychotherapy group is open to gay men who are experiencing symptoms of major depression, dysthymia, bipolar disorder, social anxiety or adjustment disorders. This group focuses on strengthening coping strategies and self-compassion for people with mood disorders. Group members must make a commitment to a minimum of 12 sessions. This group is accepting new members at this time and an initial screening appointment is necessary for admission.

To learn more, contact: jjohnson@whitman-walker.org

Thriving with HIV

Thursday Mornings

Group Facilitator: David Facenda, LICSW

This group is designed for people who have lived with HIV for more than 10 years. The group addresses issues of being a long-time survivor of HIV and aims to help members improve their quality of life. Some topics include aging with HIV, managing multiple medical conditions, dealing with intimacy and coping with loss.

To learn more, contact: dfacenda@whitman-walker.org

Freedom from Eating Disorders

Tuesday Afternoons

Group Facilitator: Jen Bindeman, LICSW, LCSW-C, LMSW

Freedom from Eating Disorders is designed to be a safe space to talk about one’s relationship with food, their body, and recovery. This is a process group for frank discussions about disordered eating/eating disorders/negative body image and following one’s path to wellness. Members can display a variety of symptoms, such as restricting food, binging where large quantities of food is consumed in a short period of time, purging behaviors using diuretics, laxatives, over exercising, and/or vomiting. Group participants can expect non-judgmental support and compassion from two trained clinicians. This group is open to anyone in the LGBTQ community.

Please note this is not a weight loss or dieting support group, but rather a space to develop healthy ways to understand and cope with eating disorders and eating disorder behaviors (such as restriction, over exercise, binge eating, purging, etc.).

All participants must be in treatment with a medical provider and ideally, also seeing an individual therapist. 

To learn more, contact: jbindeman@whitman-walker.org

Eat & Engage

Group Facilitators: Jen Bindeman, LICSW, LCSW-C, LMSW & Emily Gerlach, MS, RDN, LD

Eat and Engage is an opportunity to use a lunch hour and improve one’s relationship with food and eating over your lunch break. We will work on concrete strategies to find greater peace with eating and to learn to trust your body with an introduction to Intuitive Eating. This group is ideal for people who have struggled with an eating disorder or disordered eating and want a supportive environment to eat in with others to re-discover the fun in eating. Please note this is not a weight loss or dieting support group, but rather a time to learn new ways of thinking about food and your health. Come ready to share what you are eating with the group each week. 

To learn more, contact: jbindeman@whitman-walker.org or call at 202-939-7666

Cognitive Behavioral Strategies

Wednesday Afternoons

Group Facilitator: Dr. Matt Salmon

This is a 12-16 week, didactic group with 75-90 minute sessions that teaches skills for addressing problematic thinking and behavioral patterns which contribute to depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, avoidance, and more. The group is for people with motivation to change, who would either benefit from learning and practicing such skills as identifying & labeling troublesome thoughts, fostering acceptance & willingness, goal setting, problem solving, motivation, mindfulness and boundary setting. It is a great group for those with a specific goal in mind or just want to improve mental health in general. This group is not a group for processing past experiences; rather it focuses on the here and now, addressing the ways those past experiences detract from living a fulfilled and meaningful life.”

To learn more, contact: kwaldorf@whitman-walker.org

Walking with Grief

Monday Evenings

Group Facilitator: Chad Wheeler, LICSW

Walking with Grief is an ongoing process group for anyone experiencing the death/loss of a loved one. There is not a wrong way to grieve. This group is designed to provide a safe space to grieve, talk about the process, and the many stages of grief. Psycho-education will be incorporated into how we think about grief using a scientific and holistic lens with a focus on mindful meditation. This group is to learn from and support others as we explore the many ways we can grieve and heal. 

To learn more, contact: cwheeler@whitman-walker.org or 202-207-2386

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Skills Group

Group Facilitators: James Johnson, LPC, Joseph Wrenn, LICSW, Esette Negussie, LGPC, Dr. Kevin Waldorf-Cruz, LICSW

Wednesday Afternoon DBT Skills- 24 week group

Friday Afternoon DBT Skills- 12 week group

Tuesday Evenings DBT Process Group

 

DBT focuses on teaching participants how to manage difficult emotions, suicidal thoughts, self-harming and other impulsive or damaging behaviors to improve relationships. 

The group members are introduced to four modules of specific skills: 

  1. Mindfulness
  2. Distress Tolerance
  3. Emotion Regulation
  4. Interpersonal Effectiveness

The group is run more like a workshop where the group leaders teach the skills, assign homework for clients to practice using the skills in their everyday lives and review the assigned work regularly. Although sharing is part of the group experience, the sharing is focused on practicing the skills in daily life or in group with an emphasis on ways of enhancing mastery and efficacy. 

The group members are required to have access to an individual therapist or psychiatrist for the duration of group membership. An initial screening appointment is necessary for admission. 

To learn more, contact: kwaldorf@whitman-walker.org 

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