In order to attend the DBT skills training group, the participant must be receiving individual DBT treatment from a DBT therapist. New group members will be added after being fully prepared by the individual therapist and when there is an opening and this usually takes 3-5 weeks. Preparation consists of the therapist orienting the client to how the group works, and some introductory concepts, and insuring commitment to attending. The group is focused on enhancing clients’ capabilities by teaching them behavioral skills. The group is run like a class where the group leader teaches the skills and assigns homework for clients to practice using the skills in their everyday lives. Groups meet on a weekly basis for approximately 1 3/4 hours and it takes 24 weeks to get through the full skills curriculum, which is often repeated to create a 1-year program. The decision to repeat the group is made by the client and individual therapist.
DBT includes four sets of behavioral skills.
- Mindfulness: the practice of being fully aware and present in this one moment
- Distress Tolerance: how to tolerate pain in difficult situations, not change it
- Interpersonal Effectiveness: how to ask for what you want and say no while maintaining self-respect and relationships with others
- Emotion Regulation: how to change emotions that you want to change
Each one of these Modules is 4-6 weeks long and there are “Transition Groups” in between each module which are used to welcome new participants, or graduate members who are leaving. the maximum number of participants in each group is 8. The fee for each group is $60.00 per group and members are financially responsible for paying for group for each module regardless of attendance. See the calendar on the website for current dates and times of the group.