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Emotional Support on the Internet

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Archive-name: support/emotional/resources-list
Posting-Frequency: bi-monthly
Version: 1.34

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Emotional Support on the Internet V1.34

02 March 2001

(C) Steve Harris 2001

New: HelpLine Users Discussion Forum. see
New: Search Engine for this list and more at

What this list is

This is a list of resources for *emotional* support on the Internet and 
interconnected systems. It is intended to help you find and use these 
groups. Please do *not* mass mail this list for *any* reason at all.

Groups and resources with a focus on information giving, campaigning 
academic study or advocacy are not listed. Some groups are not listed
because I know that they *can* be too rough on people seeking support. On 
the other hand, I have not been able to give all these groups a full "road 

PLEASE LET ME KNOW of errors, changes etc.

Anonymity and Privacy

 The growth of web-based email services such as Hotmail means that 
anonymity is even easier than it used to be. Consider getting a free 
alternative email address from or just for 
use when using support groups.

 Keeping sensitive information confidential? Encrypt your e-mail with 
"Pretty Good Privacy" (tm). "PGP" is a powerful engine and we supply the 
rest of the car! See

How to use this list

 Find the subject in the first column. Look under several headings. 
Generally, you should mail the address in the second column 2 and (where 
listed) "say" the command shown in the body of your message.

 A few of these e-mail addresses are prefixed "mailto:". With these, you 
are talking direct to a person rather than joining a group.
 Where an address is prefixed "news:", you should use your system's normal 
command for joining Usenet groups. Many of these groups are in the "alt" 
hierarchy and you may find that your system doesn't carry the group you 
want. Try asking your system administrator to add the missing group.
 Note: some browsers will suppress the "mailto:" and "news:" tags
 Where an address is prefixed "AOL", "CIS", "CIX", "Genie", "Prodigy" or 
"Delphi", the group is restricted to users of the named system and you 
should use that system's normal command for joining a "conference", "forum" 
 Note that references to "CIX" refer to the UK based system of that name. 
Even if you are not in the UK, CIX membership is possible by Telneting to They charge 29.38 pounds sign up and a monthly minimum 
of 7.34 pounds for which you get at least 100 minutes. On line registration 
by credit card. Is something similar for the other systems I mention? 
Please tell me!
 These groups are not suitable for those who wish to argue that the 
particular condition does not exist. If you believe that what you have to 
say may upset some readers, use a "spoiler". For example, you might prefix 
your message:
 "SPOILER: Explicit account of rape"
 and put lots of blank lines between that and the main text.
 These are primarily *support* groups. They *may* be good sources of 
information too. Let this slant influence the way you post to a group. If 
someone posts "Hey, I've just been diagnosed with X disease, anyone know a 
good doctor?", ask how badly it's affecting them and how they feel about 
it. Information exchange can be valuable but often the hardest thing to 
find is personal emotional support.

Checking the "Rules"

 Be careful to read any "Welcome" message sent to you when you join a 
mailing list or any other source of information about local "rules". Often, 
what's on the list is considered confidential and expected to stay on the 
list. Some posters to Usenet groups maintain that they are confidential 
too. Given the public nature of Usenet it's more gray. Always remember 
these are *support* groups and not hunting grounds for those who want to 
"save" people. Let them be a "safe" place, safe to post a suicide note 


Subject                 Address
----------------------- -------    
Abuse (general)         news:alt.abuse.recovery
Abuse (general)         MUD: SANCTUARY Information at
Abuse                   CIS: HSX200 Section 2
Abuse offenders         news:alt.abuse.offender.recovery
Abuse, Sexual                                                 
Abuse, Sexual           news:alt.sexual.abuse.recovery.moderated
Abuse partners
Abuse Partners
                         say subscribe abpart-l Your Name
Abuse, alternative      news:alt.abuse.transcendence
Abuse, alternative      IRC: #aat
Addiction               CIS: go CIS:GOODHE
                         say SUB Your e-address ADOPTEES
Adoption                news:alt.adoption
                         say SUBSCRIBE ADOPTION Your Name
Adoption                IRC: #adopt 8pm Central Time
Adoption                CIX: adoption
Age Gap Relationships   CIX: age_gaps ( mail 'bio' first)
                         say  subscribe HIV-AIDS-SPIRITUAL Your Name
AIDS partners 
Adoption                AOL: Keyword 'adoption'
Adoption                Prodigy: Adoption Issues and Parenting
Adoption                CIS: Issues Forum, Adoption section
Adoption                Delphi: under Heritage
Adoption                Fidonet: ADOPTION echo
Adoption (Triad Group)  Prodigy: Social Issues DB
                         say SUB BRTHPRNT Your Name
AIDS/HIV                CIS: go CIS:HSX100
AIDS/HIV survivors
                         say Last Name/First Name Your e-address 
Alcoholism              CIX: alkies (mail 'karl' first)
Alcoholics Anonymous    news:alt.recovery.aa
Alcoholics, Family of
                         say SUBSCRIBE Al-Anon Your Name
Alopecia                CIX: Alopecia
alopecia                news:alt.baldspot
Alopecia areata say subscribe alopecia
Alzheimer's disease     MAJORDOMO@WUBIOS.WUSTL.EDU say subscribe ALZHEIMER
Alzheimer's disease
Alzeimer's Carers       (Listen) Telnet: go alz 
                        (Talk) (send Name/Addr)
                         say subscribe AMPUTEE               
Anorexia, bulimia
Anxiety and panic
Attention Deficit
Attention Deficit       CIX: attention_defi
Attention Deficit       Delphi: GO CUS 340
Attention Deficit       IRC: #adhd Tuesday 10pm ESTT or Thursday 8pm EST
Attention Deficit       CIS: GO ADD
Attention Deficit Kids
                         say subscribe addult Your Name
Autism                  LISTSERV@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU say subscribe AUTISM                
Autism                  IRC: #autism on port 6667         
                        (10am and 10pm EST is best) 
Bereavement             CIX: bereavement (mail 'jwd' for admission)
Bipolar (manic-depress) majordomo@ncar
                         say subscribe pendulum YourEmailAddress
BiPolar (manic-depress)
BiPolar (manic-depress) Delphi: GO CUS 340
BiPolar (SO's, etc. of)
                         say subscribe bpso
Bisexual, Spouses of
                         say subscribe spouse-support
                         (or) say subscribe spouse-support-digest
Blind                   CIS: go CIS:DISABI
                         say subscribe BLINDFAM Your Name
Bone Marrow Transplants BMT-TALK-REQUEST@AI.MIT.EDU
Brain Injury  
                          say subscribe tbi-sprt Your Name              
Brain Injury Survivors
                          say subscribe tbi-surv Your Name
Brain Tumours           BRAINTMR-Request@MITVMA.MIT.EDU                                         
Brain Tumours           Anothernet: #BrainTmr
Breast Cancer           LISTSERV@MORGAN.UCS.MUN.CA
                         say subscribe BREAST-CANCER Your Name
Breast Feeding
Broken Relationships    CIX: splitting_up (mail bryan or peewee first)
Borderline Personality
Borderline Personality
                         say SUBSCRIBE BORDERPD Your Name
Bullying at Work        CIX: bullying-work
Cancer                  LISTSERV@WVNVM.WVNET.EDU
                         say subscribe CANCER-L Your Name 
Cancer                  CIS: go CIS:CANCER
Candida Allergies
                         say subscribe YEAST-L Your Name
                         say subscribe C-PALSY Your Name
Cerebral Palsy
                         say SUBSCRIBE CPPARENT
Compulsive Eating 
Children Special Needs  Blank mail to
Children                - see Parent resources also.
Child Support Agency UK CIX: or csa
Child Support Agency UK
Chronic fatigue         LISTSERV@LIST.NIH.GOV
                         say subscribe CFS-L Your Name
Chronic fatigue
Chronic fatigue         CIX: cfs
Chronic fatigue
Chronic Fatigue         CIS: go CIS:GOODHE
Chronic Fatigue         PRODIGY(US): Jump Medical Support - Chronic Fatigue
Chronic Fatigue         GENIE: Page 970 Category 18
Chronic Fatigue         Fidonet: CFS echo
                         say subscribe CFS-Y Your Name
Chronic Fatigue (Dutch) LISTSERV@NIC.SURFNET.NL
                         say SUB ME-NET Your Name
Cluttering              news:alt.recovery.clutter
                        say subscribe decluttr Your Name
Pain/Illness (Chronic)  Anothernet: #LifeChallengs
Codependency            news:alt.recovery.codependency
Colitis, Crohn's
Cross Dressing                                       
Cult members, family
Cystic fibrosis         LISTSERV@HOME.EASE.LSOFT.COM
                         say subscribe CYSTIC-L Your Name  
Deaf                    LISTSERV@SIUCVMB.BITNET
                         say subscribe DEAF-L Your Name
Deaf                    CIS: go CIS:DISABI
                         say subscribe DEAFKIDS              
Deaf-Blind              DEAFBLND-Request@UKCC.UKY.EDU                                           
Deafness, living with
                         say subscribe beyond-hearing        
                         Chat Room
                         say subscribe DEPRESS
Depression              CIX:depressed (Mail kazg or dwindera to join)
Depression              Delphi: Open Delphi (Forums),
                         UK-American Connection, go Cust 351
Depression, Seasonal
Developmental Delays
Diabetes                LISTSERV@LEHIGH.EDU
                         say subscribe DIABETIC Your Name
Diabetes                CIX: balance
Diabetes                CIS: go CIS:DIABETES
Diabetes (insulin dep)  LISTSERV@NETCOM.COM
                         say subscribe TYPE_ONE YourEmailAddress
Diabetes, hypoglycaemia
Diabetics, Parents of
Diabetic Kids (German)
                         say  subscribe diabetic-max Your-e-addrss
Disability, Women (Gay)
                         say subscribe living Name e-Address              
                         say subscribe DIS-SPRT              
Disabled, Parents of
                         say subscribe firstname lastname
Dissociative disorders
Dissociative disorders  IRC: #dissoc (often quiet)
Dissociative disorders (human operated list)
Divorce                 Delphi: Go Custom 56
Divorce (Men) 
Downs Syndrome
                         say Subscribe down-syn Your Name     
Dreams                  news:alt.dreams
Drugs                   see Narcotics
Dyslexia, etc 
                         say sub WITSENDO Your Name
                         say SUB ENURESIS Your Name
Epilepsy                LISTSERV@CALVIN.DGBT.DOC.CA
                         say subscribe EPILEPSY-LIST Your Name
                         say subscribe MY-FACE Your Name 
Families, Dysfunctional
Far from average height news:alt.sigma2.height
Fat Loss (Dieting etc.)
                         say subscribe fatloss-support       
Fat                     - see also Obesity
Fibromyalgia            LISTSERV@VMD.CSO.UIUC.EDU
                         say subscribe FIBROM-L Your Name
Gay (UK)                                                 
Gay                     CIS: go CIS:HSX100
Gay Fathers   
                         say subscribe gaydads Your Name Your e-addr 
Gay Parents   
                         say subscribe queer-parents Your Name Your e-addr        
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual 
                         say subscribe AUGLBC-L Your Name    
                         (This group is quite local in focus)
Gay,Les,Bi parnts&frnds say subscribe pflag-talk
Gay, South Asian say subscribe khush                 
Gender issues           CIX: genderline (mail 'mcbrown' for admission)
General psychological
Gluten Intolerance      LISTSERV@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU say subscribe CELIAC                
Grief (Parents)
                         say subscribe grief-parents Your-E-Address 
Grief (Pet Loss)
                         say sub guilt Your Name
Immune system breakdown                                           
Immune system breakdown
Incontinence            INCONT-L-Request@MAINE.MAINE.EDU                                        
Infertility             news:alt.infertility
Internet Addiction
                         say Subscribe i-a-s-g [Note: Changed]
(partner support)
                         say subscribe netwidows Your Name
Irritable Bowel Syndrm
Job Hunters   
Lesbian, Bi-Sex Women                                           
LesBiGay Catholics      DIGNITY-Request@AMERICAN.EDU                                            
                         say subscribe hem-onc Your Name
Liver Disease  (Manual List)
                         say SUBSCRIBE PBC/PSC Your Name & Address 
Liver Disease           See also PSC
Long Distance R'ships              
Manic Depression        - see "Bipolar"                               
Marfan's Syndrome
M.E.                    - see Chronic Fatigue
                         say subscribe menopaus Your Name  NB no 'e'
Migraine and headache
                         say subscribe MOBILITY              
Mormons, Gay, etc. say subscribe q-saints              
Mothers, noncustodial
                         say subscribe MSLIST-L Your Name
Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple Sclerosis      CIS: go multscler
Muscular Dystrophy
Muscular Dystrophy      MD-List-Request@Data.Basix.COM
                         Subscribe MD-List Your Name
Myeloproliferative d'rs LISTSERV@LISTSERV.AOL.COM
                         say SUBSCRIBE MPD-NET Your Name
Myeloproliferative d'rs
                         say SUBSCRIBE MPD-SUPPORT-L Your Name
Narcotics Anonymous
Negative Equity         CIX: neg_equity
Obesity                 - see also "Fat"
Obsessive-Compulsive or
Oklahoma Bombing
                         say subscribe oklahoma Your Name
Osteogenesis Imperfecta
Other support 
                        CIX: emotional_sprt
                        CIS go CIS:GOODHE
                        Delphi: GO CUS 340
Ovarian Cancer (???)
                         say subscribe ovarian-cancer Your Name
Pain           say subscribe PAIN-L
Pain/Illness (Chronic)  Anothernet: #LifeChallengs
Pain, Chronic 
                         say SUBSCRIBE PAIN-L Your Name
Pain, Chronic 
Paranoia                Delphi: GO CUS 340
Parent (being one)      CIX: l.s.p.
Parkinson's Disease
                         say subscribe PARKINSN Your Name
Personality Disorders   Delphi: GO CUS 340
                         say subscribe POLIO Your Name
Polio (post)  
                         say sub Post-Polio-Med Your Name
                         say SUB PROSTATE Your Name
Prozac Survivors
Primary Sclerosing Chol
                         say subscribe RARE-DIS              
Religion                news:alt.recovery.religion
                         say subscribe RSI-EAST              
Roommates, Psychotic    news:alt.psychotic.roommates
Schizoid personality
Schizophrenia  say subscribe Schizoph
Schizophrenia           Delphi: GO CUS 340
SAD                     - see Depression, Seasonal
Self Esteem, Low
                         say subscribe self-esteem-self-help
Self Injury   
                         say subscribe in *subject* line
Sexual addictions       news:alt.recovery.addiction.sexual
Sexual problems (adult) CIS: go CIS:HSXTOP
Simgle Parents          Delphi: GO GROUP SINGLE
Sexual Reassingment
Short people  
Short people  
Skin Diseases 
Shin Diseases  (New)
Sleep Apnoea            CIX: sleep_apnoea
Sleep problems
Social phobias
Spina-bifida parents of
                         say SUBSCRIBE SB-PARENTS Your Name
Smoking, Stopping
Strokes                 LISTSERV@UKCC.UKY.EDU
                         say subscribe STROKE-L Your Name
Stuttering              V5002E@VM.TEMPLE.EDU                                                    
                         say subscribe STUT-HLP Your Name
Suicidal       Email helpline - not self-help
Suicidal (anon route)
See also      
                        US Mirror site:
Suicidal                CIX: suicidehelp (mail 'mcbrown' for admission)
                         say subscribe suicide-support
Suicidal                IRC: #suicide (often quiet)
Suicidal (non english)  See
Suicide, left behind by
Suicide, left behind by
                         say subscribe suicide-survivors
Tall (see also Marfan)
Tobacco Addiction
                         say subscribe smoke-free Your Name  
Tourette's syndrome
Transgendered           news:alt.transgendered
Transgendered           LISTSERV@BROWNVM.BROWN.EDU
                         say SUBSCRIBE TRANSGEN your name
Trigeminal Neuralgia    TN-REQUEST@WORLD.STD.COM
Twelve Step programs
                         say subscribe Your e-address
Twelve Step LesbiGay say SUBSCRIBE PLUS-L and use a
                         subject of PLUS-L
                         say subscribe MADNESS               
Wounded Child           CIX: wchild (mail 'alib; or 'pjacobs' first)

Checking out the "agenda"

Almost all of these resources are self-help groups. They don't try to sell 
you anything. Of course, individual members may have their own agenda and 
occasionally you'll see blatant commercial postings - usually from 
 When an *organisation* offers a resource, you're entitled to expect it to 
have an agenda of some sort and to be able to discover what it is. The only 
organisation currently listed is The Samaritans. They're a non-profit, 
non-religious support service for the suicidal and despairing. Their only 
agenda is emotional support. They don't sell anything.
 There's a few other people around on the Net offering support services. 
With some of them, I haven't yet been able to discover their agenda. With 
others, at least part of their agenda is to sell you something. Now, 
there's nothing wrong with someone earning a living in this area but when 
your audience is potentially vulnerable, it's important that your agenda is 
easily visible. Such visibility cannot be conveyed easily in a listing such 
as this so that's why such resources are not here. Having said that, I'd be 
interested in hearing from *anybody* on this issue.
 Finally, what's *my* agenda? Firstly I believe that offering people 
emotional support is a "Good Thing". The other half is that I sell 
software for email helplines. See:

Quiet and Busy Groups

Some of these are very busy with dozens of messages a day. If you find that 
doesn't suit you, look to see if there's an alternative. It may be a cue 
that a *regional* group is needed if only to become manageable.
 At the other end, you may find that a group seems to be dead. This can be 
natural, especially in a small group. It doesn't mean that the group is no 
good so don't let that put you off asking for support. The group may spring 
to life and help you and then subside.

Start your own group? Some thoughts

Start your own Internet Emotional Support group? Some thoughts

First of all, ask yourself why. One good answer is that you
can't find what you need in an existing group.  Try using the
search engine at to check that
there really isn't a suitable one already..

You'll probably need to devote a fair amount of effort to starting
up and publicising your group. It takes time for things to really
get going. On the other hand, don't expect a group to be a constant
hive of activity. I know several good groups with only a few dozen
members where it's often quiet for weeks. When a member needs the
group - it springs to life.

Some very successful groups are based on automated mailing lists and
they're easy to start. Try They have thousands
of groups on all subjects so check again that there isn't an existing
group. If necessary, follow their instructions to set up a group. If you
find the process too technical for you, consider finding another sufferer
with more expertise. 
Most group are self-help but The Samaritans suicide hotline in the list is 
modelled on the traditional telephone service. There you are talking to 
trained volunteers. Starting such a service is a major undertaking. See for more information.

Update policy

This list was originally prepared February 1995 and has already seem 
several revisions. I expect to update and post it twice a month. 
Amendments? Please use the form that 
follows to help you include all the information. Thanks to all those who 
helped me with updates

 New/Revised Emotional Support Resource

 Name of Resource:

 Type: Usenet/Mailing List/Help by E-Mail/Conference/Forum


 Any restrictions on membership (EG: CIS members only)?
 Is this primarily a *support* group for sufferers/friends/families?
 E-Mail address of contact name:

Where to get this list

This issue of the list is being posted to Usenet,, sci.psychology, soc.misc, alt.answers, soc.answers, 
sci.answers and news.answers. Archived at MIT  - see headers.

 The most up to date version is at:

No Web access? Any Mail to retrieves this list


Thanks to Ian Pitchford, John Grohol and Bob Zenhausern. Special thanks to 
David Brake HTTP://WWW.WELL.COM/USER/DERB/ for the CIS entries. 
Thanks also to the guys at Oxford who put this list up on the Web without 
me even having to ask :-)

Steve Harris - Net Services - Using the Internet to link *people*

User Contributions:

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