Frequently Asked Questions
- When will I get detailed information on where the program will be held, travel instructions, and other details?
- Where exactly will the program be held?
- Do I have to stay at the camp or retreat center? Can I stay off-site instead?
- What time does it start? What time does it end?
- Do you provide transportation assistance?
What Is A Woman Who Loves?
A Woman Who Loves: Healing Loss, Opening Hearts is our peer-led, experiential-healing and personal-growth retreat primarily for women who are working through confusion, hurt, betrayal, fear, anger, and grief related to issues with the men in their lives.
A Woman Who Loves is also intended for women who simply want to better understand themselves and the men they love. Or who want to strengthen themselves and their relationships. Or women who want to open their hearts to loving again.
This weekend retreat is for women who are committed to their own personal growth — and who are ready to experience breakthrough emotional shifts and insights, regardless of some of the choices the men or others in their lives may have made.
What is an “experiential” workshop or retreat?
Experiential workshops primarily use active participation methods — live, personal experience — rather than lectures, discussion or analysis as teaching methods. They use processes designed to enable self-discovery — to create “aha” moments of insight into one’s self, one’s behavior patterns, thinking patterns and feelings.
Scores of organizations and individuals offer “experiential weekend” retreats or workshops each year for personal growth and empowerment, self-discovery, emotional healing, spiritual enlightenment and more.
Examples of experiential processes at A Woman Who Loves may include:
- Guided imagery (visualization)
- Emotional processing (especially around, anger, grief or fear)
- Shame release
- Psychodrama (or a simplified form of it sometimes called “guts work”)
- Inner-child work , including (optional, of course) inner-child holding by a “golden self” of your choosing
- Profound, introspective questions
- Sentence stems
- Body awareness and connection (breathing, posture, dance)
These types of processes tend to elicit much more profound self-awareness and dramatic, even cathartic emotional shifts than typical didactic teaching or dialogue ever could.
A typical feature of experiential learning of any kind is that experiential processes are designed to be experienced, not revealed, discussed or analyzed before participation — or their impact is significantly diluted. Nevertheless, participants are repeatedly reminded that they can withdraw from any specific process at any time if it doesn’t feel helpful or authentic for them.
Who leads the program?
See “About the Volunteer Staff” near the bottom of the “About the Weekend” page.
Who attends the program and why?
See “About the Participants” near the bottom of the “About the Weekend” page.
How much does it cost?
The regular registration fee is $590 (with a minimum initial deposit of $250), but the early-bird fee is just $490 if you pay the full $490 no later than 6 weeks before the event.
If you can’t afford either the full fee or the discounted early-bird rate, you may want to apply for financial assistance — either a payment plan or a partial sponsorship. Generous donors who believe in our program are willing to give partial sponsorships (minimum $200, maximum $340) to support women who are committed to their own personal-growth work but who don’t have the resources to pay the full amount.
How do I sign up?
What is your refund policy?
Registration fees are fully refundable to anyone who cancels 30 days or more before the start of the Woman Who Loves weekend.
If you cancel more than 10 days but fewer than 30 days before the start of A Woman Who Loves, the minimum deposit of $250 is NOT refundable, although it may be “rolled over” and applied to registration for a future event. (Any amount pre-paid ABOVE the minimum deposit of US$250 is fully refundable.)
If you cancel 10 days or fewer before the Woman Who Loves weekend, your deposit and registration fees are NOT refundable.
No other refunds apply, except on an exception basis approved by the director, Rich Wyler.
When will I get detailed information on where the program will be held, travel instructions, and other details?
After you have paid your deposit, or about 4 weeks before the event, we will send you an email with all the information you need.
If you have questions in the meantime, or have not yet received the information, you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 1-434-299-8696.
Where exactly will the program be held?
Each Woman Who Loves event is held at a rented camp, conference center or retreat center usually within a 1- to 2-hour drive from a major airport. (The names of the nearest airports are on the online registration form when you pay your deposit.) This type of facility gives us sufficient privacy and provides a “retreat” environment set apart from normal day-to-day life.
Accommodations are comfortable but not luxurious. Rooms are usually in a dorm setting, typically shared by 2 to 4 participants.
After you have paid your US$250 deposit, and several weeks before the event, we will email you a letter with detailed information that will include the exact location of the program and directions on how to get there. We do not give out this specific information to anyone who has not paid the full deposit.
Do I have to stay at the camp or retreat center? Can I stay off-site instead?
The residential experience of being together as a community in focused personal-growth space for the full 50 hours is an essential part of the experience. If you choose to leave the premises, you will not be allowed to return.
What time does it start? What time does it end?
We will begin at 1:30 p.m. on Friday. Please do not arrive on site BEFORE 1:00 p.m. Please do not arrive on site AFTER 1:30 p.m.
We normally end between 4:00 and 5:00 pm on Sunday.
Please make your travel arrangements to accommodate this schedule. If you are flying, please be sure to allow enough travel time between the airport and the weekend location.
Is there anything else I need to do to prepare?
YES. After you register, and about 4 weeks before your JiM weekend, we will email you an instruction letter with links to the following:
- An online travel questionnaire to complete (to help us coordinate carpools, as needed).
- An online health and life-experience questionnaire.
- A link to electronically sign the Liability Release, Confidentiality & Other Agreements form.
IMPORTANT! It is very important that you fill out these questionnaires, answering as honestly as possible, and submit them to us NO LATER THAN 2 WEEKS BEFORE the event.
What about confidentiality?
Confidentiality is extremely important to create a safe place to do deep emotional healing work. All participants must sign a strict confidentiality agreement.
This commitment to confidentiality is also reiterated verbally, in person, at the start and again at the end of the weekend.
What will I need to bring with me?
- Legal identification, such as a driver’s license or passport. This is to help ensure that all participants are at least 21 years old and that no one is attending under false pretenses or signing release forms under a false identity.
- Sometimes, a sleeping bag and/or blankets and a pillow. (This depends on the location. The instructions letter will give you more information.)
- Your personal effects and appropriate indoor/outdoor clothing. Rain gear is strongly recommended, but be assured that the significant majority of the time we will be indoors.
- Necessary prescribed or over-the-counter medications. If you have a history of asthma, please be sure to bring an inhaler.
- A towel, soap, sunscreen, bug repellent, and any other personal-care items you may require.
- A refillable water bottle with your name on it.
- Earplugs (highly recommended, in case of snoring).
What NOT to bring:
- Please leave all electronic devices at home or in your car when you arrive, including watches, mobile phones and wireless handheld devices. We ask you not to use them at all during the program. (Exception: electronic devices required for your health, such as a CPAP nighttime breathing machine.)
- Usually, the sites do not allow food in the residential rooms. If you bring food (such as kosher food), it must be kept in the site’s kitchen.
- No alcoholic beverages, street drugs or illicit mood-altering substances of any kind.
- Anything that may distract you or others from our healing purpose.
Can I call home or work during the weekend?
We ask you to agree not to make or receive phone calls during the weekend and in fact to leave your phone in your car throughout the entire workshop. This is to help everyone stay in the experience and focus on their personal work in the present, rather than to be distracted by what might be going on at home or work.
We will provide you with an emergency number that you can give to family members who may need to contact you in case of emergency only.
Possible exceptions for unusual circumstances can be discussed with the weekend leader once you arrive.
What if I don’t want to participate in one of the processes?
Your choices will be respected. We ask you to participate in every process, but no one will force you to do anything against your will. Anyone may choose to “pass” and not participate in a particular process. The staff may challenge you to consider the reasons behind your choice, but they will never force you or manipulate you into participating.
What if I want to leave early, or want to leave for part of the time?
The residential experience of being together as a community in focused personal-growth space for the full 50 hours is an essential part of the experience. We ask you to stay on site for the full program, from arrival on Friday afternoon to departure on Sunday late afternoon. If you choose to leave the premises, you will not be allowed to return.
Of course, anyone can to leave the program altogether, at any time, for any reason. Certainly, no one is required to stay who does not wish to continue with the program.
What if I have some physical limitations?
A Woman Who Loves is not a very physically rigorous program for most participants. Most of our “work” is indoors. We have always been able to accommodate the physical limitations of participants, whether due to age, weight, physical fitness or some type of disability. Of course, each woman is responsible to take care of herself physically and to communicate her physical limitations to the staff, as necessary.
What if I have special dietary needs, or if I only eat kosher food?
When you register, one of the questionnaires we ask is about any special dietary requirements. Our cooks are typically able to accommodate most common dietary restrictions. In unusual cases, you may need to bring and prepare your own food and keep it in the kitchen.
Will my religious values be respected? Will my religious practices be accommodated?
A Woman Who Loves is not an overtly religious retreat, but we do strive to create a spiritual framework for deep personal growth work where the participant’s individual religious beliefs (or non-belief) are welcomed and may be incorporated into the individual work they do.
We do teach the spiritual principle of surrender to God and his divine will, but we never intentionally challenge anyone’s religious beliefs, or lack of belief, or values. We will do our best to work within a participant’s existing framework of spiritual beliefs and values.
We also make sincere efforts to accommodate requirements of Jewish Sabbath observance.