Support Groups

Please note: Due to COVID-19, all support groups are administered virtually, via ZOOM.

You will receive instructions on how to join the groups after registration.


Free support groups and family education workshops through the Eisenberg Family Depression Center and Department of Psychiatry offer additional therapy options and learning opportunities for individuals and families with bipolar disorder and depression. Held at the Rachel Upjohn Building, these groups and workshops offer patients and their families a chance to develop a support network and learn more about these illnesses, including discussions about risk factors, treatments, coping, healthy communication methods, and stigma.

The groups are open to anyone who wishes to learn more about depression and bipolar and find support for themselves or a family member, although some require advance registration.

Please note that the free workshops and support groups are separate from therapy groups for children, adolescents, and adults that require a referral from Department of Psychiatry staff members.

Group Offerings

Depression and Bipolar Illness Support Groups

Note: This group is for adults 18 years and older

These groups offer opportunities to share ideas for coping, link with community resources, develop a support network, learn about depression and bipolar illness, and discuss issues of stigma.

  • When: 2nd & 4th Thursday of each month 5:00 pm – 6:15 pm

  • Group Leaders: post-graduate social work fellows will be the facilitators of the groups in conjunction with Laura Nitzberg, LMSW, supervising the program.
  • Cost: Free

Family Members of Persons with Depression and Bipolar Illness

Note: This group is for adults 18 years and older

This group is for adults who have a family member or loved one with a mental health condition. Meeting topics are generated by group members. Participation in this group offers a chance to gain insight, support, and resources from those facing similar circumstances.

  • When: 2nd & 4th Thursday of each month 5:00 pm – 6:15 pm
  • Group Leaders: post-graduate social work fellows will be the facilitators of the groups in conjunction with Laura Nitzberg, LMSW, supervising the program.
  • Cost: Free

Family Education Workshops

A two-hour workshop that offers patients and families the opportunity to learn about depression and bipolar illness while gathering information about risk factors, treatments, impact on families and healthy ways of communicating with each other. Attending a group meeting means that you will meet others with your circumstances and condition. Each member of the group will be asked to be respectful of confidentiality and will sign a statement saying they will not disclose any confidential information.

  • When: 1st Wednesday every other month 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
  • Group Leader: Laura Nitzberg, LMSW

Other Depression and Bipolar Support

The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) also maintain searchable lists of support groups and links to local resources that allow you to find help in your area, wherever you may live. NAMI Washtenaw County offers support group options both for family and friends of individuals with mental illness, and for people living with mental illness.

Survivors of Suicide

Note: This group is for adults 18 years and older

This support group for adults who have lost a loved one to suicide holds twice-monthly meetings that run for eight-session cycles.

The group meets on the UM campus (location provided at registration) the first and third Thursday of each month from 6-8:00 p.m. The support group is free, but pre-registration is required, and only adults 18 years or older may attend. Sessions are professionally facilitated by clinical social workers from Michigan Medicine. John Kettley, LMSW or Jim Svensson, LMSW to register or learn more. 734-936-5893 You can also email at survivors-of-suicide-group@umich.edu.