Grief and loss are experienced by all, but talked about by few. By definition, grief is the feeling you experience when you lose someone or something. COVID-19 has left many of us feeling some sense of loss.
Several of our therapists work with adults, adolescents, and children who are experiencing grief and loss. Child, adolescent, and adult reactions to grief can look very different. Working with a therapist can help provide you the support you need as you define your new normal after loss.
What is Grief and Loss?
Most of us can identify the grief we felt after the physical loss of a loved one. Friends and family even with the best of intentions can sometimes make us feel even more alone in our sorrow as they try to make us feel better. The grief we feel is multifold. The loss of a loved one is more than the physical loss of them, it’s the relationship we had with them. Grief is a natural response to loss but for some people, their grief becomes complicated and they need the support of a trained therapist to help them work through this.
Am I experiencing grief?
Possible signs of grief can include, but are not limited too:
As David Kessler said, grief is unique for everyone. No two people will grieve the same way. This list is certainly not exhaustive. Your grief reaction is affected by many things, including but not limited to: your loss history, trauma history, support system and the nature of the loss. If you feel you need some support in your grief or if you have concerns you or someone you love may be experiencing complicated grief, reach out to a therapist.
When should I seek help?
You should consider seeking help for your grief when you are unable to integrate back into your new normal and any of the following areas of your life are impacted:
- School (difficulty concentrating)
- Work (difficulty keeping up with your work, interacting with coworkers or supervisors. Not wanting to go to work)
- Relationships (conflict with loved ones, avoidance of interactions or conversations with loved ones, feeling fear that you may lose them too)
- Sleep (difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep, or feeling tired when you wake up)
What kind of help is available?
Just as grief and loss can look different for each person, the approaches that can help will not be the same for everyone. There are several approaches to therapy that can help with grief and loss including, but not limited to CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), Existential Therapy, and Psychodynamic Therapy. A therapist trained in grief and loss will be able to help you process your loss and learn to navigate your new normal.
Related Therapist Profiles
The following therapists specialize in Grief and Loss
Kimberly Johnson, MSW, LCSW, CADC
Lake Zurich | McHenry
Kimberly has a MSW, LCSW and a CADC along with over 7 years working with serious mental health diagnoses and substance abuse from Schizoaffective Disorder, Bipolar, Anxiety, Depression, substance abuse(s), etc. Additionally, the last 5 years were spent in Hospice on a multi disciplinary team working with terminal illnesses, end of life “issues” and families.
Juan Torres, MSW, LSW, CADC
Chicago | Vernon Hills
Juan is a Licensed Social Worker in the State of Illinois and can provide services in both English and Spanish. He specializes in treating substance use disorders and mood disorders. He works with adolescents and adults in both individual and group settings.
Michael Albert, MA, LCPC
Grayslake | Vernon Hills
Michael is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor in the State of Illinois. He has nearly 2 decades of experience in the mental health field. He has provided services in many different settings including agency and hospital settings before private practice. Michael works well with a broad age range of clients, but has a special affinity for adolescents and young adults.
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
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.
Diane Geiser, MSW, LCSW
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
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.
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
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, PMHC
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, LSW, CCTP
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
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.
Jack Gordon, MSW, LCSW, CCATP
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.
Liz Lattof, MA, LCPC, CCATP
Deer Park | Lake Zurich
As a Licensed Clinical 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.
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.
John Kim, MA, LPC
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.
Alessa Rosati, MA, LMFT
Alessa Rosati is a Licensed 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.
Alison Yu, MA, M.Div., LCPC
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.
Justin Feinberg, MA, M.Div., LPC
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, LPC
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.
Debbie Levine, MSW, LSW
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.
Emily Salomon, MS.Ed., LPC
Emily earned her MS.Ed. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Northern Illinois University. Emily holds deep value for the safe space that exists within the therapeutic relationship. She embraces the importance of being provided with new lenses with which a client may see the world a bit differently.
Elaine Iwicki, MA, ALMFT
Elaine has an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Wheaton College. She enjoys working with adolescents, adults, families, and couples. She believes that relationship health is crucial to healing and she is passionate about being a part of that healing process.
Laura Ronkoske, MSW, LSW
Laura has been a school social worker for 23 years. Nothing brings her more joy than helping young children, adolescents, and adults through life’s most challenging times. She has recently moved to private practice to help others outside the school environment to be their best selves and help give them the tools to be able to do so.
Patti E. Krivo, MSW, LCSW
Patti is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with decades of experience in the mental health field. Patti specializes in work with trauma recovery and PTSD as well as the impacts of those experiences on family relationships.
Georgene Manley, LCPC, CAADC
Georgene is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. She has worked in a clinical setting most of her career. She has treated clients in residential, outpatient addictions and mental health treatment programs, and corporate settings. She loves helping clients tap into the resilience that is often overshadowed when anxiety, depression, or addiction surfaces.
Diann Pomeroy, M.Ed., LPC
McHenry | Grayslake
Diann has an M.Ed. in Mental Health Counseling from DePaul University. She has a passion for working with women, supporting them across the lifespan as they navigate continuous change and transition. She believes that all parents need support in the parenting journey at every stage and considers being a part of that process a great privilege.
Kristin Hunt, MSW, LCSW, MAT
Kristin Hunt, LCSW, has a passion for helping individuals, couples, and families to heal from various types of trauma. Kristin's warm, safe, and non-judgmental presence makes her a great companion for people on a journey of recovery and wellness. She works with clients of all ages including individuals, couples, and families.
Anna Subich, Intern Therapist
Anna is an intern therapist completing her final year of studies on her Master of Social Work degree through University of Missouri. Anna is passionate about working with couples who are healing from relational trauma. She also supports the healing process for partners of those with sex/love addictions.
Julie Berry, Intern Therapist
Julie is passionate about working with women, young adults, and individuals helping them find the power within themselves to navigate any struggle they may be facing. She loves forming a strong trusted relationship with her client. She focuses on helping people name their struggles or pains and identify ways to take action toward healing and wholeness. She believes we can learn from life’s experiences as helpful information to understanding ourselves more.