Self-help groups are support systems for people going through a common issue. There are many types of self-help groups that are geared toward women. Common types of women's self-help groups include programs about domestic violence, divorce or a specific medical condition. Women's self-help groups give females a positive place to find resources and talk about their current situations with others who can understand. There are Internet-based self-help groups as well as local chapters of groups that meet in person.
Women's self-help groups that meet to discuss domestic violent are relatively common in many areas of the world. Some women may find it hard to talk to family and friends about the abuse they have suffered. Many times a domestic violence self-help group will be led by a woman who is a survivor of domestic violence and can help group members get the courage to leave abusive relationships and stay free of them. Many groups also can connect women with resources to find temporary housing or a new job while adjusting to life outside a toxic relationship.
Divorce can be very rough on women, especially if they have been cheated on or have been married for a long time. Women's self-help groups for divorcees give women a place to make new friends who know exactly what they are going through. The women in the group also can provide tips for each other on surviving rough times such as child custody hearings, getting back into the workforce or dealing with an ex-spouse remarrying. Some ladies may even be lucky enough to find new close friends with whom they can develop an active social life.
Another type of women's self-help group is an illness support group. There are many serious and life-changing illnesses that effect women, such as breast cancer, cervical cancer and interstitial cystitis. Both women going through a battle with an illness and women who are in remission from an illness may feel the need to share their stories with others. When women are open about their experiences, it can inspire other women to be survivors. Women also can share home-care tips and pain management strategies within such groups.
Women also may come together through women's self-help groups to promote illness awareness and raise money to find cures for a disease. Support group members can organize or participate in charity walks or organize other fundraisers. Groups also can come up with ideas on how to spread awareness through social networking websites.