I recently attended a support group for a medical issue. I was hesitant, having never attended anything similar, but went ahead on the recommendations of others.
It was incredibly mawkish and depressing. Most of the people who spoke constantly spoke of their misery and sadness. No one wanted to try and improve or help themselves, it felt like a competition of who had it worse. The people guiding the discussion did nothing to offer hope, but encouraged this virtual orgy of dread and depression. These people didn’t want to be helped, they didn’t even seem angry, they just wanted to wallow in their own misery. The more I thought about it, the more fucked up it became.
Maybe it’s just me, but the fact the that others are dealing with the same condition as I am does not make me feel any sense of community or give me any solace. Hardly any medical condition is unique, someone else has experienced it before. There’s no catharsis there, just a enabling mechanism for others to feel bad about themselves with other like-minded people.