Welcome Ariel Gaines, Psy.D.

Welcome Ariel Gaines, Psy.D.

Ariel Gaines, Psy.D joined LifeWorks Psychotherapy Center in August of this year as a Post-doctoral Fellow. We are very glad to have them on our team.  Ariel holds a doctorate degree in clinical psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. They also earned a master’s degree in the social sciences at The University of Chicago,

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Becoming the Gateway

LifeWorks therapist, Brandon Haydon, submitted this quote from #virginiarosenberg for our reflection and yours. “Presence is a practice. At times, the work of presence is so deeply uncomfortable. And then there are these moments, these cellular sighs of relief, when we quit resistance. We exit fight/flight/freeze, and simply belong to the time we’re inhabiting. In

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“What’s in a Label?” — Being Non-Binary with a History of Trauma

There are reasons for using labels. They can be very useful, in an elemental way. To label something is to identify it and categorize it, which makes it easier to talk about, and therefore easier to share. Labels can promote intimacy and community, and when more and more people agree on the usefulness of a

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Relationship Reset

Girls touching noses in christmas lights

This article is a guest post from Candice Wu, LCPC. She is an intuitive coach and holistic healing facilitator who helps people through the power of love, self-forgiveness, empowerment and body wisdom.    Have you ever felt like you wanted to just reset or reboot the relationship? The Outdated Default Relationship Dynamic Recently, I noticed

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Constructing a Queer Life: On the Choice to Parent, or Be Child-Free

Arrow Pointing Over Rainbow

Many people grow up following a cultural life script: you go to school, get a job, marry your one true love and start a family. Happily Ever After! At least, that’s a common scenario many cultures, based on heteronormativity, have historically supported. But as many of us grow up, we realize that that version of

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My One Problem

arch reflected in water

It is always foolish to oversimplify complex problems. Nonetheless from the viewpoint of the Dreaming, regardless of the complexity of your life, you can have only one problem – ignoring the Dreaming background to reality. Ignoring the Dreaming means marginalizing the deepest unformulated experiences that create your actions in everyday life. Every time you ignore

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Sailing Into Therapeutic Parenting

three sailboats on calm water

This article is a guest post from parenting expert Billy Kaplan, LCSW. He is the President and Clinical Director at House Calls Counseling, which develops and promotes healthy family relationships by encouraging the emotional, behavioral and mental health of children, teenagers, adults, couples and families. This post on therapeutic parenting first appeared here. I learned to

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Meet Our Intake Coordinator, Greenlee Brown

Greenlee Brown

Greenlee moved from Buffalo, NY in August 2017, and began working with LifeWorks in October in an administrative capacity. They are a writer, a musician, and a community organizer. Before moving to Chicago, they received their MA in English and taught writing classes and led gender and sexuality workshops at both the high school and

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When Relationships Fall Apart

handshake

This article was written by Lisa Blair, M.A. and David Bedrick, J.D., who are both Certified Process Work Diplomats. It first appeared here and is reposted with permission.  Every relationship has two handshakes: one above the table and one below. The first handshake is a conscious agreement between the two people, saying “We’re going to support each

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Meet Cassandra Damm, LCSW

Cassandra Damm, LCSW, is a graduate of Loyola University with a passion for working with those who identify as LGBTQ, as well as those who are in the kink, polyamory/consensual non-monogamy and sex work communities. She is also a board member of Sex Workers Outreach Project (SWOP) – Chicago and runs the Sex Worker Support Group as a partnership co-sponsored by SWOP and Lifeworks.

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Welcoming The 2018 Green House Therapists  

Greenhouse Psychotherapy Training Program Logo

LifeWorks is proud to announce the newest Green House cohort. Please join us in welcoming four new therapists to our team, and read on to learn more about Thomas Bateman, MSMFT; Marissa Faustini, MA; Benjamin Marton, LSW; and Courtney Wilson, MSW. The Green House is a postgraduate psychotherapy training and mentorship program developed and sponsored by LifeWorks.

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Meet Adaora Aguoji, MSMFT

Adaora Aguoji, MSMFT, is a graduate of the Family Institute at Northwestern University with a passion for working with diverse populations including varied race, ethnicity, sexuality and gender. Join us in welcoming her to LifeWorks Psychotherapy Center! LifeWorks: What drew you to LifeWorks? On a cosmic level, I am sure this is where I’m supposed to be. Though, if

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Polar Bear Nature

Polar bear with nose in air

This morning, just like every other morning, I was out walking. But this morning it was a frigid 5 degrees, a temperature I long for all year. I know, for some, this is absolutely crazy! But for me, nothing makes me feel more, alive, more vital,  one with nature. I absolutely love the feeling of

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Embracing the Unexpected

Mandala with symbols of people and animals

Nothing but unexpected things kept happening to me. Much might have been different if I myself had been different. But it was as it had to be; for all came about because I am as I am. . . .  I am astonished, disappointed, pleased with myself. I am distressed, depressed, rapturous. I am all these things at once,

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Winter Solstice: Knowing Yourself Through The Night

winter solstice

Happy Winter Solstice everyone! This centuries old celebration is one of the most meaningful days of the year to me. Ever since I was a small child, the inky nights of winter held a certain kind of spooky magic that enthralled me. Starting with the Fall Equinox, our literal time in light begins to decrease,

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Navigating the Relationship Journey

couple celebrating on mountain

Santiago Delboy is a colleague and friend to LifeWorks who brings insight and thoughtfulness to his work and collaboration. We are pleased to share some of his writing. This post appears in Santiago Delboy’s blog, which can be found here. Just to state the obvious, relationships are not easy. While we are “wired” to be in relationships and they

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Domestic Violence: Power and Rank Dynamics

people walking through train station

I practiced family law for 10 years, some 20 years ago now, taking on several domestic violence cases. The police would be called to a house because a man had physically beaten a woman. By the time the police got there, he had released his anger freely, privately; publicly, he presented as calm and rational. The woman, being less powerful, was less free to fight back and express her anger privately; feeling safer once the police had arrived, she was now free to express her terror, anger, and viewpoint.

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How to React After Accidentally Misgendering Someone

sketched figures facing one another

This article was originally published in 2014 through the Q Center in Portland, OR. We are delighted to share it with you. Being misgendered can create an uncomfortable, embarrassing and even unsafe situation for many trans* individuals. There’s no doubt that when working toward creating or contributing to safer, more accessible spaces and services for

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