Peer group

It is with great hope that for years we have been providing the tools for the formation of autonomous Peer Solidarity Meeting Groups, with their own names and identities.  
Here are some guidelines that in our experience are important to consider, along with the text of our Welcome Letter, so that you can use them as an idea or model. 
We know that you are about to realize one of the most important events in the healing process of any wounded person: sharing the word in an empathic and supportive space. 
We embrace and encourage you with all the strength of our collective way!
Silvia and Sebastián (founders of Adultxs por los Derechos de la Infancia)
Opening lecture of our Peer Meeting

Welcome to a new Peer Meeting of the "Asociación Civil Adultxs por los Derechos de la Infancia"!!!!
Our Association is formed by adult survivors of the crime of sexual abuse, adult protectors of child and adolescent victims in the present and anyone who is accompanying someone who has suffered sexual abuse in childhood.
Our Association has two fundamental objectives: one is the Public Visibilization of the crime of sexual abuse against children.
The other is the formation and support of the Solidarity Peer Group.
This peer group has been operating continuously since 2012, and we meet every Saturday of the year from 15 to 17 hours. Since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, our meetings are held virtually.
In our Peer Group we all come to speak in the first person.
The peer group is a place where the word circulates in an empathic and anonymous way, "what is said in the group stays in the group", being fundamental to protect the anonymity of all its members.
The group has a coordinator each Saturday, whose function is to manage the time that each partner has to speak, because everyone present has the right to speak, to be heard and to listen. Over the years we have learned that it is as healing to speak as it is to listen to what our companions have to share with us.
In our group we are all peers, there are no professionals or people with more rights or authority than others. There is no one who knows more. We are all equal in pain and also in hope.
Our group is not a therapeutic group, although it does us a lot of good to attend!
In the group we do not give advice, nor do we tell anyone what to do. It is simply a place where we can talk about the pain of our childhood and the pain that sexual abuse against children and adolescents causes us and be listened to with empathy and

The coordinator will leave a few minutes at the end of the meeting to exchange opinions, emotions and comments. Always with respect and from the emotion of each one of the participants.
At the end of the meeting we will close the meeting with a round of applause or tapping.
All of us who attended the peer support group have experienced the magic of the shared word. That is why we feel the obligation to support the group, in gratitude for the good that it did us to have been received the first time we attended.
Life was easier for us because we had companions!!!
And that is why we are still here!!!
Every Saturday a new companion may be entering our space and deserves to be received with the love with which we were once received.

General guidelines

About the peer group

 It only takes two people willing to talk about their childhood pain, or the pain, anguish, guilt, horror, caused by the sexual abuse of a loved one for the group to be formed: "where there are two there is a group".

Some considerations to take into account:

  • Fixed place and schedule: it is necessary to set a weekly, daily or monthly schedule that can be sustained over time. The frequency of our group since its inception is weekly and we have found it useful for those who attend and possible to be sustained over time.
  • The permanence of the group over time is the most important thing to ensure continuity. As the years go by, the group is continuously supplied with new companions, but for this to happen it is necessary to persevere.
  • Anonymity of its members: it is essential that what is said in the group remains in the group and to keep the anonymity of the companions who attend. Some of us in our group break anonymity and go out to make this crime visible to the community in public and in the media, but this is an individual decision and has to do with our objective of Visibilization. The peer group is anonymous.
  • Rotational coordination: this is fundamental to ensure that all participants are and feel equal. In the group there is no one who has more power than another, knowledge or rights. Therefore, coordination should be rotating and understood as a service to the group.
  • Functions of the coordinator: basically to mark the times so that all participants can speak. In the group we learned that it is as important to talk as to listen, and this is a fundamental fact that the coordinator must enforce. Another fundamental point is that while the companions tell their realities, the coordinator should not allow interruptions. Attentive listening is also a healing process. As it is healing to participate in a space that has a framework, a way of functioning. There are loving boundaries. For survivors and adult protectors of one of the worst crimes, this is fundamental.
  • Before the end of each meeting there will be between 15 to 30 minutes to share a round of comments and questions, always with respect and from the emotion of each partner.