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Handbook for Mortals : Helping Family and Loved Ones

How to find support groups

Ask around. Try your doctor, nurse, and social worker. Try hospitals and nursing homes in the area. Call national organizations to ask how to contact a local chapter. Check with your local Area Office on Aging, which may have a list of a variety of help that is available to the elderly; those services are often available to younger persons also. Call your church or other religious institution. Call other religious institutions that are geographically close even if they are not associated with your religious tradition. A support group at any church or synagogue is usually quite welcoming to persons of all faiths. Then, try it out a few times. If you don't find it supportive, move along and try something else. Some people are finding a great deal of support by joining in chat rooms or listservs on the Internet. If you do this, be careful: it is hard to know whether the information being given is honest or accurate.

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