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Our support group meets on the second Wednesday of the month at Temple Tikvah – New Hyde Park, 3315 Hillside Ave., New Hyde Park, NY 11030. We meet in the temple library every second Wednesday of the month unless it becomes necessary to alter a meeting date. Meetings begin at 7:15 PM and usually will end at 9:30PM. Newcomers to our meetings are advised to come to their first meeting at 7:00PM where they will receive a personal introduction to our group. Although meetings take place in a religious institution it is important to recognize that our group is non-sectarian and non-denominational. Everyone is welcome: members of any faith, those claiming no religious affiliations, and people of all racial and cultural affiliations. There are no socio-economic restrictions for membership. At our meetings we will pass around a basket collecting nominal voluntary contributions to offer our hosts, as an expression of our gratitude for the use of their facilities. We expect that our membership base will consist of survivors of suicide i.e. those who lost loved ones to suicide, those who lost a child, parent, spouse or partner, sibling, other relative or friend to suicide. Suicide cuts across most boundaries of class, professions and educational differences and we have among our ranks many professionals and laypeople, all sharing the common interest in how we survive after suicide loss. Suicide survivors who not only have lost someone to suicide but also struggle with their own depression and/or prior history of suicidality are also welcome. We also will be pleased to welcome any other survivors of traumatic deaths of loved ones. We clearly identify ourselves as a self-help group of laypersons and do not profess any professional expertise in the treatment of mental illnesses.
 
We expect meetings will vary in size with anywhere from 10 to 25 participants usually beginning with a traditional candle lighting ceremony, an opening reading and then a ‘go-around’ where each person will offer a brief introduction about themselves and their loss. Then, unless we have a guest speaker or a film program, which will usually not be typical, we will have an open discussion of subjects suggested by those in attendance. Anyone in attendance is free to suggest a topic for discussion. Our co-facilitators will help to keep the discussion going on as long as others wish to contribute to it. If anyone wishes to assume a spectator role in discussions they are free to do so. Sometimes it takes people a while before they feel comfortable to participate more actively. We encourage people to get involved at their own pace. Sometimes, especially in the beginning, survivors may bring close friends or relatives with them to meetings. Above all, it is our hope that this support group will be seen as a safe and comfortable place for survivors, a place where we can meaningfully share our feelings about loss with each other.
 
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