Living With Chronic Illness

Living with chronic illness can be hard. As a therapist, I specialize in supporting newly diagnosed and long-standing illnesses. Get help today, no waitlist.

Counseling For Living With Chronic Illness

Alicia Dorn, MS, LCPC Is A Counselor In Maryland Specializing In Chronic Illness & Its Toll On Your Life

Alicia is accepting new patients, please inquire today.

Many individuals and families seek my help because they want to experience a meaningful life with a chronic illness. The physical agony and emotional rollercoaster chronic illness brings can make even the day-to-day efforts harder. Whether you are suffering with a newly diagnosed illness  or have lived with one for a long time, living with chronic pain has a direct impact on your happiness, energy, and outlook on life.

You can read my personal story about chronic illness here , but please know I have been through it myself. As such, serving clients with chronic illness isn’t just a part of my practice, it’s my chosen specialty. So whether you are really struggling to get your daily life on track with your limitations or you are stuck in anger, grief, worry, or sadness about the future with your illness, I can help you find a meaningful way forward.

Alicia is accepting new patients, please inquire today.

Below you’ll find more information about what counseling around chronic illness is like with me. I’m happy to answer any other questions you may have after reading it, please call me at 443-977-4885 or email me to either talk more about the process or to explore working together.

How Does Counseling For Chronic Illness Work?

Counseling for chronic illness involves getting more comfortable with who you are with your illness. We look at what’s realistic for your life so we can open the doors you need to be able to support yourself within the context of your current life. Some people need to process the grief they feel around their illness. Others have done this work and need to understand their new-found identity. “Who am I with this illness” is one of the questions we often explore.                                  

We meet weekly to explore how you’re doing and work through the best ways to get you the support you need to move your life in the direction you want it to go in. This is critical because of the nature of chronic illness. We are looking to help create a meaningful life for you that aligns with the realities you’re facing and the dreams you still have.

What chronic illnesses do you help with?

Here is a comprehensive list of chronic illnesses I can help you with. If your challenges are not here, please reach out so we can discuss your needs and see how I can either help you or refer you to a therapist who can.

  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Lupus
  • Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome
  • Hypermobility syndrome
  • Iliotibial Band Syndrome (IT Band Syndrome)
  • Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain Syndrome
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Lyme Disease
  • Migraines
  • Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)
  • Diabetes
  • Hidradenitis Suppirativa
  • Celiac Disease
  • Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV-1 AND HSV-2)
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Other Autoimmune disorders
  • Chronic pain disorders and undiagnosed conditions.

How Counseling Can Reduce Your Stress & Anxiety

Over time, counseling will provide you with a practical roadmap to manage the expected (and unexpected) events that happen with a chronic illness. Instead of fearing the future, we work on what is in front of you with honesty and kindness. There is a mind-body connection to chronic illness.

The more you understand the interplay between your emotions and your body, the more you will learn the rhythm of your illness. This work helps you to feel more in control of your life which is invaluable to reducing your anxiety.     

My goal is to be with you as you experience the realistic ups and downs that happen with your illness. As we work with the experiences you face, we meet your emotions head-on together so you learn how to handle challenges skillfully the next time it arises.

We work on creating a vocabulary so you can talk about your illness and self-advocate when needed. This reduces stress with doctors, family members, coworkers and your loved ones because you’re able to share your limitations and feelings in an empowered way.

This reduces the experience of feeling discounted or ignored by others who have less of an understanding of what it’s like to live in your body and heart.

How Long Does Counseling Last?

Counseling lasts as long as you need. It can be 6 months, a year or longer. When we meet, we’ll discuss your progress and next steps in every session so you feel aligned with the work we’re doing and see the progression being made.

What Groups Do You Offer For People Living With Chronic Illness

For teens, I currently offer “Teens Living with Chronic Illness.” This 6-week skills-based support group is for teens 13-18.

Date: Tuesdays from May 10, 2022 – Tuesday June 14, 2022

Time: 6-7PM

Cost: $300

Getting Started

Schedule a free 15-minute consultation to meet with me

We can discuss your goals in the meeting and make a decision about when to begin counseling if the fit feels right.

Once we have a plan, I’ll schedule your intake evaluation and you will receive a link to open your private therapy portal.

All paperwork and counseling sessions are completed on the portal. All material shared with me either in writing or in person is confidential.

To get started, please call me at 443-977-4885 or email me to either talk more about the process or to explore working together.