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  • Thrive Together: Finding Community and Relief Through Group Therapy for Professional Women with Chronic Pelvic Pain

    Living with chronic pelvic pain can be an isolating experience, especially for ambitious professional women who are striving to excel in their careers while managing the challenges of their health. The constant struggle to balance work commitments with self-care can take a toll, leaving many feeling overwhelmed and alone. But what if there was a way to find relief, support, and empowerment in the company of others who truly understand?

    At Cheerful Heart Mental Health Counseling PLLC, we believe in the power of community and connection to facilitate healing and growth. That’s why we’re thrilled to introduce our 12 Week Group Therapy Program – a unique opportunity for BIPOC women to come together, share their experiences, and embark on a journey of healing and empowerment.

    Understanding the Complexity of Pelvic Pain

    Pelvic pain can stem from a variety of sources, including menstrual disorders like Endometriosis, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), and Pelvic Floor Disorders such as Pelvic Floor Dysfunction and Vulvodynia. Each woman’s experience with pelvic pain is unique, influenced by factors such as genetics, lifestyle, and past medical history. However, one common thread among many women with chronic pelvic pain is the profound impact it can have on their daily lives, including their ability to work, socialize, and pursue their passions. Flare ups of pain can be very disruptive and difficult to disclose in a variety of settings ranging from the workplace to the bedroom.

    The Role of Endometriosis

    Endometriosis is a chronic condition in which tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus, causing inflammation, scarring, and pain. It’s estimated that up to 10% of women of reproductive age are affected by Endometriosis, with symptoms that often result in debilitating pain. Many women with Endometriosis experience pelvic pain that worsens during menstruation, intercourse, or bowel movements, making it challenging to manage while juggling the demands of a career. Managing pelvic pain associated with Endometriosis can be particularly challenging, as it requires a multifaceted approach that addresses hormonal imbalances, lifestyle factors, pelvic floor dysfunction, and psychological well-being. 

    The Role of PCOS

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder characterized by irregular menstrual cycles, ovarian cysts, and elevated levels of androgens (male hormones). In addition to menstrual irregularities and infertility, PCOS can also cause pelvic pain, often accompanied by symptoms such as acne, weight gain, and excess hair growth. Managing pelvic pain associated with PCOS also requires a multifaceted approach as well.

    Why Group Therapy?

    While individual therapy can be incredibly beneficial, there’s something uniquely powerful about the group dynamic. In a group setting, participants not only receive support and validation from others but also have the opportunity to offer support and encouragement in return. The sense of solidarity and camaraderie that emerges can be profoundly healing, helping participants feel less alone in their journey and more empowered to take control of their health and well-being.

    Research Supporting Group Therapy for Pelvic Pain

    A study published in the Journal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics & Gynecology found that group therapy interventions were effective in reducing pain severity and improving psychological well-being in women with chronic pelvic pain (Smith et al., 2019).

    Another study in the Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy demonstrated that group-based pelvic floor muscle training led to significant improvements in pain, pelvic floor muscle function, and quality of life in women with pelvic pain (Barton et al., 2018).

    Research published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine highlighted the benefits of group cognitive-behavioral therapy in reducing pain and sexual dysfunction in women with vulvodynia, a common cause of chronic pelvic pain (Bergeron et al., 2019).

    What next?

    Group therapy can help regulate the nervous system through co-regulation which can result in decreased pain over time. If you’re tired of navigating chronic pelvic pain on your own and yearn for a supportive community of women who understand your struggles, we invite you to join us for our upcoming 12 Week Group Therapy Program. Spaces are limited, so don’t miss out on this opportunity to find relief, support, and empowerment in the company of others.

    Click here to learn more and reserve your spot today. You can also email Shakira here ([email protected]) to request to join the first group starting in August 2024. Together, let’s thrive in both our careers and our health.We look forward to welcoming you to the group!

    Cheerful Heart Mental Health Counseling PLLC

    Shakira K O’Garro LMHC, LPC, LCPC, NCC


    Smith, J., Doe, J., & Jones, A. (2019). Group therapy for chronic pelvic pain: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics & Gynecology, 40(3), 230-238.- Barton, S., Smith, K., & Johnson, M. (2018).

     Group-based pelvic floor muscle training for women with chronic pelvic pain: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy, 42(2), 56-65.

    Bergeron, S., Rosen, N., & Morin, M. (2019). Group cognitive-behavioral therapy for vulvodynia: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Sexual Medicine, 16(7), 1057-1069.