DBT Peer Connections

Building Hope, Community and Skillful Means

Web Based DBT Peer Support Group Coming Soon!



I have been leading a DBT skills Peer Support group on Facebook for several months now and it is going better than I could have ever expected and after many members expressing interest, I have decided that I am going to take the group to the next level and create a core curriculum that teaches dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) skills. The goal is to offer free skills training to people who do not have access to a DBT program and a means for those who have completed a program to check what they have learned.

The group shall function according to a peer support model. (See image above.) What is more I am petitioning my college for permission to conduct an independent study that my work may add to DBT’s scientific evidence base. Regardless, I am certain that together we shall create a new vision of peer support and community mental health.

I am in the process of creating educational videos for the curriculum (see introductory video below.) and hope to have the curriculum ready to accept participants by January 2014. The group format will only adapt standard DBT skills training as is necessary to include aspects of web-based communication technology, honor copyright protection laws, and orient the group structure toward peer leadership. If my college approves my petition,  to protect safety and confidentiality, all prospective research participants shall receive informed consent before and there decide whether they wish to take part in the study. I look forward to building mastery with you.

Love and Kindness,

Rachel Gill  (aka Pinki Tuscaderro)
BPD Survivor, DBT Peer Skills Coach
Social/Behavioral Sciences Researcher

Components of DBT Skills Training Peer Support Group

Peer-delivered DBT Skills Training Online Goals:

  • To develop a peer-oriented DBT skills group online delivery format
  • To provide access to no-cost, easily accessible DBT skills training services
  • To teach the four DBT skill sets training modules covering:
  1. core mindfulness skills
  2. interpersonal effectiveness skills
  3. emotion regulation skills
  4. distress tolerance skills
  • To refine skills in changing behavioral, emotional and thinking patterns associated with problems in living causing misery and distress
  • To create an environment that nurtures building a supportive community of empowered peers
  • To conduct scientific research and increase DBT’s evidence base

Components of Evidence Based Dialectical Behavior Therapy

  1. Weekly 1-hour one on one sessions with licensed therapist (on average for 6-12 months)
  2. Weekly 2-hour Group skills training with licensed therapist (on average for 6-12 months)
  3. Group and individual therapy sessions meet in person at an agreed time and place
  4. Therapists are on-call and offer skills coaching to clients according to therapist & client agreement
  5. Therapists engage in regular case consultation to prevent therapist burnout and maintain DBT adherence

Components of DBT Skills Training Peer Support Group

  1. Individual therapy not provided, but seeking or maintaining individual therapy with a licensed therapist (whether trained in DBT or not) is highly recommended.
  2. Each session consists of a video to watch, a handout, a worksheet, and a worksheet discussion thread where each member will make a minimum of 1 post that refers to experience with completing worksheet and 1 post that replies to another member’s experience with homework post. Therefore, session is not necessarily linear and may be started/stopped according to group member’s preference.
  3. Group is online and group leaders and co-leaders are peers who have demonstrated mastery of DBT skills and leadership among peers.
  4. Coaching will be provided to members either by posting a thread to the group or by private messaging or chat with group leaders (group administrators).
  5. Group leaders will regularly correspond by chat or private message for case consultation purposes

A Web-based Group Curriculum:

  • Videos that teach skills, introduce new material
  • handouts, worksheets, and diary card management provided in a single PDF Adobe Reader fillable workbook that corresponds to videos,
  • Homework discussion threads corresponding to videos/worksheets and moderated by group leaders
  • A minimum of 1 group leader per 10 group members who post responses a minimum of 10 times each per week.
  • skills coaching for members by forum post to all members or individually with a group leader via private chat or messaging
  • Group leaders shall take part in case consultation on a weekly basis via chat or private messaging.
  • An open group format so people can join when they want and complete the modules at their own pace.
  • Those who complete the workbook and turn them in to a group leader for evaluation will receive an honorary certificate of completion.
  • Whether a group leader, professional therapist, or not, all peers are of equal status and shall act so as peer supporters not as licensed professionals.

If you are interested in participating, please sign up using the form below.


Author: Rachel Gill

I am a survivor on mission to synthesize balance from division, to find dialectical healing, learn to love what I am feeling, live in the now, show my peers how.

3 thoughts on “Web Based DBT Peer Support Group Coming Soon!

  1. This sounds terrific. I’m very interested in taking part in this. I’ll be sharing this info with others interested in dbt. Thanks for taking the time to put this together and the hard work you’ve done to accomplish it.


  2. It’s hard to find experienced peoole for this subject, however, you seem
    like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks


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