group topics

Following is a sample of activities and discussions that are part of the support group sessions.

emotional

  • Members write down their emotional challenges from being isolated, lonely and homesick (these are confidential and can be shared or not with the other members)
  • Resources will be provided for emotional support (references to books, podcasts, articles, meditation centres, smartphone apps, and referrals to professionals with skills in selected areas)
  • Living in Ireland with a working spouse, yet unable to work here yourself, can cause a loss of self-esteem and confidence, boredom and loneliness
  • How to support children and other dependents with the move (change of school, separation from family and friends, cultural differences)
  • Resources to help the family transition – from fun, family activities to the names of counsellors with training in marriage and family therapy

practical

  • Navigating differences between American and Irish Cultures as experienced through language and social customs
  • Ways to ‘stay connected’ to loved ones, friends and American culture, which help to reduce isolation and homesickness
  • Discussion of the language differences and ‘turns of phrase’ used in Ireland, which is a lighter, fun-filled topic
  • Making the most of life in Ireland including music, comedy, theatre, galleries and museums, sport and leisure facilities, yoga, meditation, seminars and more
  • How to assimilate American holidays, traditions, and rituals into life in Ireland
  • Where certain American-style products can be purchased
  • Group members who have been living in Ireland for a longer time are invited to provide peer support to others in these discussions

Read more about Jennifer Gordon