The “Second Wave” of the COVID-19 pandemic is a mental health crisis. Depression, and it’s many variations, are among the greatest mental health challenges facing us now.

Depression is one of the most frequent mental health problems and the most common cause for disability in the United States. Treating depression effectively begins with unravelling its many causes, and tailoring a treatment plan that is unique for each person.

Am I just sad? Or am I depressed?

Depression is often a misunderstood term. Our colloquial use of the word “depression” often refers to our feelings of sadness, grief over losses, or mood swings related to the natural ups and downs of life. Clinical depression, in contrast, describes a debilitating collection of thoughts, behaviors, and physical symptoms that can greatly impact the quality of our lives, and can last for months or even years.

What are the signs of clinical depression?

On the surface, those suffering from depression may not recognize their symptoms as depression. Some may try to explain away their symptoms as the normal ups and downs of life. Others may interpret their symptoms differently due to depression’s many overlapping symptoms with other mental health problems. But, there are common signs that you or a loved one may be depressed. Here’s a quick checklist:

  • Do you feel sad most of the time? Or do others tell you that you often seem sad?
  • Are you easily frustrated, irritable, or regularly angry?
  • Do your thoughts and your negative mood interfere with your daily life? Your relationships? Your schooling? Your work?
  • Have you experienced significant weight loss or gains?
  • Do you have a hard time focusing, feel scattered, or often indecisive?
  • Do you feel highly unmotivated? Or experience low energy most of the time?
  • Do you often feel worthless? Or excessively guilty or ashamed of yourself?
  • Have you been avoiding others? Do you keep to yourself?
  • Have you lost interest in activities you used to enjoy?
  • Are you experiencing suicidal thoughts? Or have a suicide plan? Or think regularly about the subject of death?
  • Are you sleeping much more or much less than you used to?

OK, some of that sounds like me, what do I do now?

Give us a call. You may be unsure if counseling is right for you, or you may feel skeptical that therapy will work for you. We can help sort out these questions and guide you to the help that can most benefit you. We start with counseling, but can also direct you to other supportive services including testing and evaluation, therapy groups, support groups, and educational resources.

Are you in crisis? Do you need help right now?

Please seek emergency care by calling 911 if you are a risk to yourself or others. Alternatively, here are some other free crisis resources that can help:

  • The National Suicide Prevention Hotline (24/7)
    • Phone: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
    • Phone (Español): 1-888-628-9454
    • TTY: 1-800-799-4989
    • Text “HELLO” to 741741
  • Local crisis lines (Many are 24/7)
    • Lake County, IL: 847-344-8088 (County Crisis Care)
    • Cook County, IL: There are many options available on the Cook County Sheriff’s Office website here.
    • McHenry County, IL: 1-800-765-9999 (NW Medical, Woodstock
  • The Veteran’s Crisis Line (24/7)
    • Call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline (above) and press 1
    • Text 838255 to speak with a VA responder
    • Online Chat: veteranscrisisline.net/get-help/chat
  • LGBTQIA+ Resources
    • The Trevor Project (Kids/Teens) (24/7)
    • Phone: 866-488-7386
    • Text “START” to 678678
  • LGBT National Hotlines (Not specific to suicide)
    • (Hours: Mon-Fri @ 3P-11PM; Sat 11A=4P)
    • General Phone: 888-843-4564
    • Youth (25 and under): 800-246-7743
    • Senior (50+): 888-234-7243

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Related Therapist Profiles

The following therapists specialize in Depression

Clark Barshinger, Ph.D.

Lake Zurich | McHenry

Practicing clinical psychology for over 50 years, Dr. Clark Barshinger has broad and deep experience counseling patients. His graduate education includes a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Northwestern University and a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology from DePaul University, and Master’s Degree of Divinity from McCormick Theological Seminary. He works mostly with adults, teens and couples.

Keith Bjorge, Psy.D.

Lake Zurich | McHenry | Vernon Hills

Dr. Keith V. Bjorge is a clinical psychologist with 33+ years of experience. He has experience and passion working with troubled marriages, teen and family related problems, chemical addictions, and mood disorders. Dr. Bjorge earned the Master of Arts and Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology.

Brendan Bell, MA, LCPC

Deer Park | Wheaton

Brendan Bell is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in Illinois. He has worked in private practice for the last 20 years, with offices in both Deer Park and in Wheaton. His expertise involves working with middle schoolers, adolescents, and their families, with extensive experience addressing behavior disorders. Brendan also works with adults and particularly enjoys counseling artists.

Diane Geiser, MSW, LCSW

Lake Zurich

Diane Geiser is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 20 years of experience working with adults, adolescents, couples and families. Diane is a highly skilled clinician who can work with clients in identifying goals and change strategies that promote growth. She also has experience conducting wellness seminars with corporations and executives.

Rick Coffaro, MA, LPC

Lake Zurich

Rick Coffaro’s work experience prior to Cherry Hill includes twenty-eight years in sales, marketing, and management. The theme of his career was making, building and maintaining relationships. Rick offers first-hand knowledge of life and career transitions. He enjoys working with individuals, couples, adults, adolescents and young adults, and groups.

Karen Robbins, MSW, LCSW

Vernon Hills

Karen is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She has experience counseling teens, adults, couples, and families. She is trained in multiple empirically supported approaches including Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples. She focuses on developing rapport with clients and using strength-based approaches to facilitate healing and change.

Gary Gruebnau, MA, LSW

McHenry | Lake Zurich

Gary is a social worker with several decades of experience counseling teens, adults, and couples in secular and church settings. He enjoys working with a broad age range of clients from teens to the elderly. His background includes military service, working in the business world, and teaching in both public and private settings.

Leslie Scofield, MSW, LCSW, CADC

Vernon Hills

Leslie Scofield, MSW, LCSW, CADC is a Licensed Social Worker who has worked in the field of substance abuse for over 15 years. Her practice ranges from children to adults, and focuses on trauma, grief and loss, family issues, and addictions. She is passionate about working with groups. Leslie is also retired from military service, which informs her clinical perspective.

Michelle Schaefer, MA, LCPC, PMH-C

Grayslake

Michelle Schaefer, LCPC, has experience working with adults, couples, teens, and families. Michelle has an advanced certification in Perinatal Mental Health and specialized training in Emotionally Focused Therapy for individuals, couples, and families. Michelle strives to create a secure client-therapist alliance in order to support people as they navigate life challenges and heal relationships.

Chelsea Laliberte Barnes, MSSA, LSW

Lake Zurich

Chelsea A. Laliberte Barnes received an MS in Social Administration from Case Western Reserve University with a focus in mental health for children, adolescents and families. Chelsea has nearly ten years of experience working with individuals and families struggling with substance use disorders and dual diagnosis. Chelsea is also a SMART Recovery facilitator and overdose education trainer.

Elizabeth Haines, MS, LCPC

Palatine

Elizabeth is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. She values a strong therapeutic alliance and believes that a supportive and collaborative working relationship is instrumental in helping clients improve their overall quality of life. She uses her expertise in yoga and mindfulness to assist clients in learning to calm and relax the stressed body and mind.

Maria Catanzaro, MA, LPC

Deer Park | Wheaton

Maria has a Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling from Wheaton College. She believes that it is important to consider each person holistically including the mind, body, and soul. She uses creative methods to help clients articulate their feelings and solve problems. Maria enjoys working with a variety of clients including caregivers, parents, children, teens, young adults, and adults.

Patrick Kelly, MA, LPC, CCATP

McHenry

Patrick’s mission as a Licensed Professional Counselor is to utilize his diverse life experience and graduate-level education to make a positive difference in the lives of struggling and hurting people. His passion is working with troubled marriages along with helping individuals cope with and rise above anxiety and depression brought about by life’s challenges and difficulties.

Jack Gordon, MSW, LCSW, CCATP

Deer Park

Jack is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a certified clinical anxiety treatment professional. He works with adults, families, and adolescents ages 12 and up. He specializes in anxiety treatment and has a passion for work with clients with chronic pain/illness. His clinical interests include anxiety, parenting skills, life/career transitions, and family/relationship issues.

Lydia, Klassen, MA, LPC, CCTP

Lake Zurich | Vernon Hills

Lydia Klassen received her Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University. She has experience working with interpersonal issues, emotional regulation, grief, and trauma. Lydia strives to develop safety in the client-counselor relationship as she journeys with clients toward greater freedom in their lives. She has a particular interest in couples, families, and third-culture kids.

Maria Statkus Ritchey, MA, LCPC, CCATP-CA

Deer Park | Wheaton | Chicago

Maria is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. Maria is enthusiastic about working with different populations, including children, adolescents, young adults, and families. Maria has experience utilizing non-directive play therapy and her approach is client-centered based, while integrating client strengths within the process.

Kristine Buelow, MSW, LSW

Deer Park | Wheaton

Kristine has had the honor and opportunity to help many individuals and families over the past 25 years as a social worker. She truly enjoys working with seniors, family caregivers, adults, parents, teens and kids. Her approach is genuine, full of grace and with a sense of humor.

Liz Lattof, MA, LPC

Deer Park | Lake Zurich

As a Licensed Professional Counselor at Cherry Hill Liz works with a wide variety of clients, children, adolescents, families, and adults. She has additional training in play therapy and groups. She enjoys helping people with anxiety, depression, grief, relationship issues, and other challenges and transitions.

Taylor Sheahen, MA, LCPC

Deer Park

Taylor is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. She has experience working with adults with substance use disorder, trauma, mood and anxiety disorders, eating disorders, emotional regulation, and relationship and family conflict. Taylor’s goal is to help clients develop a healthy level of functioning, leading to renewed hope and happiness.

John Dichtl, MA, M.Div., LCPC

Vernon Hills | Lake Zurich

John Dichtl has worked as a counselor since 2012 in both agency work and private practice. He has focused experience providing couples counseling, and treating mood disorders and addictions. With graduate level training in both therapy and theology, John is uniquely equipped to help clients integrate their psychological and spiritual concerns.

Christina Vargas, MSW, LSW

Chicago

Christina is a trilingual therapist (English, Spanish, and Thai) with a Master’s degree in Social Work from University of Michigan. She specializes in working with children, adolescents, young adults, and families. Christina emphasizes and acknowledges clients’ strengths as she guides them through their personal struggles in hopes that every client she works with will achieve their full potential.

John Kim, MA, LPC

Deer Park

John received his MA in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University where he gained experience doing therapeutic work through the university's counseling center. John is committed to building warm, authentic, and meaningful relationships with his clients as he helps them work toward their unique goals. He works with individuals, couples, and groups.

Risa Becker, MA, LPC

McHenry

Risa is a Licensed Professional Counselor who has a passion for seeing people come into the fullness of what their life could be. Sometimes life takes an unexpected turn, and having someone alongside can make a difference. Other times we need to make a change and need support to make that happen. Either way, I am here for you.

Alessa Rosati, MA, ALMFT

Deer Park

Alessa Rosati is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist. She graduated from Adler University with a Master’s Degree in Couple and Family Therapy. Along with her work in private practice, Alessa has experience working in school environments and hospital settings. She specializes in helping adolescents and adults with relationship difficulties, issues of low self-esteem, grief and loss, anxiety, and stress.

Arielle Miree, MA, LPC

Deer Park

Arielle received her M.A. in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University. She has a passion for helping people heal and grow in order to live a meaningful life. She values authentic relationships and creating a safe space for clients. She has experience working with those struggling with addictions and co-occurring disorders. Arielle enjoys working with a variety of clients including athletes and artists.

Alison Yu, MA, M.Div., LPC

Vernon Hills

Alison Yu, M.Div, MA, LPC, is a bilingual (English and Mandarin Chinese) counselor who is experienced working with individuals, couples and families. She has a special heart for immigrant families. Trained in both psychology and theology, she is passionate about helping people to integrate the Christian faith in their healing process.

Kent Wohlrabe, MA, LCPC, CADC

Vernon Hills

Kent is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor with many years of experience working with clients in a variety of clinical settings. Kent works primarily with adults and specializes in helping clients struggling with substance use and it's impact on daily life and relationships.

Shonda Gagliano, MSW, LCSW

Grayslake

Shonda Gagliano is a clinical social worker with over 20 years in the mental health field. She has experience working with adult and senior patients in outpatient, inpatient, and residential settings. She focuses on partnering with patients to identify and change thoughts and behaviors that are no longer beneficial to them. She is passionate about the ability of any person to change.

Justin Feinberg, MA, M.Div.

Grayslake

Justin’s Graduate education includes both a Master’s degree in Mental Health counseling as well as a Master’s of Divinity from Trinity International University. He works with individuals, couples, and families and has a heart to see relationships flourish and people become who they were meant to be. He has training in Emotionally Focused Therapy and utilizes this toward helping marriages, families, and individuals thrive.

Jennifer Flanagan, MA

Grayslake

Jennifer has a masters degree in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University. She has a passion for helping people see their strengths and potential. She believes this is accomplished through authentic relationships and support for and collaboration with others.

Rebecca Wiegman, MA

Grayslake

Rebecca received her Master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling from Trinity International University. She has experience working with children, individuals, families, and within groups. Rebecca is enthusiastic about working with different populations and has prior experience in the fields of education, health & fitness, and substance abuse.

Raul Bravo, MA, LPC

Vernon Hills

Raul Bravo is a Licensed Professional Counselor, with an MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. He is bilingual (English and Spanish) and has experience working with adolescents and adults. He has worked with families struggling with trauma-related issues by helping them identify meaning and strength. His therapeutic approach includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Person-Centered Therapy.

Debbie Levine, MSW

Grayslake | Vernon Hills

Debbie has worked in both the medical and clinical fields and has amassed much experience helping people navigate their unique life journeys. Her preferred therapeutic approaches include CBT, holistic and mindfulness.

Jennifer Irocky, PhD Practicum Student

Lake Zurich | McHenry

Jennifer recently completed her PhD coursework in clinical psychology at Walden University and is completing her practicum at Cherry Hill Counseling.

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Groups

Here are some groups we recommend to get started

Compassionate Connections Group

During this time of increased distance, stress, and uncertainty, women deserve the support, tools, and unity offered through our transformative therapeutic group.

Date: March 11, 2021

Location: Meetings via Zoom

Cost: $185/month (Please contact to discuss sliding scale fee if needed)

Contact: Chelsea Laliberte Barnes, 438-4222 x35

View more info

Connections Group for Women

Our Wednesday Women’s Connections group is accepting new members. The group is led by therapists Diane Geiser, MSW, LCSW and Chelsea Laliberte, MSSA.

Date: Wednesdays, 3:00-4:30pm

Location: Cherry Hill – Lake Zurich, 61 S. Old Rand Rd, Lake Zurich, IL 60047

Cost: $185/month (Please contact to discuss sliding scale fee if needed)

Contact: Chelsea Laliberte, 847-438-4222 x35

View more info