Peggy Burns, MA, LPC
CLINICAL FOCUS: GRIEF/LOSS, ADOLESCENTS, anxiety, & Depression
Have you been feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and stressed? Is it difficult to stop the thoughts in your head when you lay down to go to sleep at night? Maybe you’ve been feeling sad and lonely, and have had a difficult time finding joy in your life?
Perhaps you’re feeling stuck and helpless and finding it easier to disconnect and disappear.
I became a therapist because I’m aware of how much pain people carry around. I want to help them sort it out and let them know they can work toward feeling relief. We have the power to change our behavior and see things from a different perspective, and that is what I strive to help my clients with. I have experienced many losses in my life and know firsthand the time it takes to heal, the ups and downs, the back and forth with good days and not-so-good days.
I became a therapist to help people with their grieving process. This doesn’t just pertain to those who have experienced the death of a loved one, but anyone who has suffered a loss of any kind. This can take various forms: loss of close friends/changing social dynamics (particularly for adolescents), loss of a significant relationship (parent, spouse, sibling), retirement, changes in identity (adolescents and older adults), a major change in routine (new job, birth of a child, caring for an elderly parent), and any other life altering event we may have difficulty adapting to.
As a therapist, I support my clients by listening and reassuring them they can get through the pain and regain the ability to lead a joyful and fulfilling life.
My clients often come to therapy asking questions like:
- Why do I feel like everyone is talking about me? Why do I care so much what other people think?
- Why can’t I stop the thoughts in my head when I try to go to sleep at night?
- Why, when I’m getting ready to go out, all of a sudden I can’t breathe and feel like I cannot be with other people?
- Why am I sad or anxious?
- Am I ever going to feel happy again?
- I miss my loved one so much, and it hurts all the time…..will it get better?
I help by:
- Listening to whatever you are feeling and not judging your feelings/thoughts
- Talking about the feelings/thoughts and looking for patterns you may have never noticed, which could shed some light on why you do the things you do
- Collaborating with you to redirect your feelings/thoughts in a more productive manner
- Normalizing your feelings/thoughts surrounding the loss and encouraging hope that each day things will get a little better
- Alleviating some of the sadness, loneliness, anxiety, and pain by providing a safe space to process through those feelings
If you’ve been feeling stuck for too long, and you’re ready to obtain some emotional relief, I would be grateful to accompany you on that journey. Please call the main number to schedule an appointment with me today: 773.498.3799
More about Peggy:
Peggy grew up in Countryside, IL, and came from a family of seven (second youngest). She’s lived in the area most of her life, except for brief jaunts to Atlanta, GA and Appleton, WI. She has three daughters and two grandchildren, however her oldest daughter passed away from cancer during summer 2017, which has left her family deeply saddened.
Her days and nights are typically spent working as an adolescent job coach and therapist, so she doesn’t have a ton of time for hobbies, but she makes working out a priority to maintain self-care. Peggy joined a gym a few months ago and loves the personal training aspect of it, feeling more energized and stronger than ever before.
Peggy enjoys reading books about personal growth, psychology, and romance. Fall and winter are her favorite months, but she enjoys taking in a concert at Ravinia during summer. Her favorite things to do are listening to live music (specifically City Winery or Winters for jazz) and trying out new restaurants (pizza is her go to!).
Peggy is passionate about working with clients experiencing grief and loss, and her personal and professional experiences allow her to empathize with the depression, loneliness, numbness and shock that accompany the grieving process. Peggy has facilitated counseling groups for survivors of cancer and bereavement, in addition to providing support in their journey toward wellness. She also has experience as the Operations Manager at the Ronald McDonald House, providing comfort, compassion, and a sense of community for families during their child's hospitalization.
Peggy also has a vested interest in working with adolescents experiencing anxiety and/or depression. While there are many benefits of technology, its seductive lure has teens disconnecting from what is most important in life - each other and the world around them. To be successful and happy in our digital world, it's imperative they learn how to navigate these often treacherous waters.
Whether it’s social media, bullying, self-esteem, academic perfectionism, or college admissions, Peggy helps adolescents explore these challenges with a healthier mindset. She has co-led and facilitated counseling for adolescents at Pride Alternative School, and has developed and implemented IEP's & Behavioral Intervention Plans. Peggy also has experience as a job coach at A.E.R.O Special Education Cooperative.
Peggy’s approach is compassionate, warm, and understanding. She believes in each person’s individuality and doesn’t prescribe a “one size fits all” solution to pain. She listens to her clients and tries to understand their needs. She then tailor makes an approach to encourage and guide them. She assesses underlying patterns and clues and determines why her clients are in the position they’re in and how to get out of it.
Peggy's counseling theory is based on Client-Centered/Humanistic Psychology, which embodies non-judgmental acceptance of individuals and multicultural sensitivity. She also utilizes Worden’s task-based model of grief & loss, which sees mourning as an active process that involves four main tasks. Peggy also utilizes Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy to identify incongruent thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Her ability to combine feeling with intuition means she can easily understand how a client's situation may unfold. She assists her clients in regaining control of their lives, reaching their goals, and determining what steps they need to take to do so.