Relationship Reality 312, 333 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1010, Chicago, IL 60601 312-219-3399 inquiries@relationshipreality312.com

Our Team

Our Team

It’s not easy choosing the right therapist. We understand that. How do you know if you can trust us? What if a therapist makes things worse? You’re going to share with us your hearts, your relationships, your fears and doubts, and your hopes and dreams. It’s not easy meeting with a stranger and trusting them and what they’re going to say. We get it.

What we can tell you is that we are all passionate about our work and helping our clients. We are a team of highly skilled therapists who have gone through a lot of education, training, and experience to call ourselves experts. We continually seek out research-based trainings to make sure we are providing our clients with cutting-edge care.

We want you to work with someone who is a good fit. Some of us are gentle, some of us are direct. Some of us swear in session, some of us don’t. But one thing we can guarantee is that we’ll tell you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear, and be proactive in helping you achieve your goals. We won’t leave you hanging. Promise.

Hi, I’m Anita Chlipala!

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist & Founder

People often ask me how I could listen to problems all day. My response: I have a comfortable chair…just kidding. There’s nothing more rewarding than to hear my clients’ stories and to help them achieve their goals.

I founded Relationship Reality 312 to focus exclusively on romantic relationships – from getting one to maintaining one successfully. I use cutting-edge research in my work to bring you the latest information and tools to help you achieve a happy and healthy relationship. Whatever problems or issues you want addressed, I don’t just listen – I’ll teach you the skills you need so that you no longer need to see me anymore (or a twice-yearly check-in will suffice!).

I provide coaching and therapy not only in my Chicago-based office, but nationally and internationally as well. If you’re looking for a no-BS approach, contact me today.

Instagram: @AnitaOnLove

 

Areas of Specialty:

Helping singles navigate dating and find love
Infidelity – emotional and physical affairs
Making the decision to stay or leave your relationship
High conflict couples

Credentials & Qualifications

  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
  • Author of First Comes Us: The Busy Couple’s Guide to Lasting Love
  • Emotionally Focused Therapy Externship
  • Level 2 Certification in Gottman Method Couples Therapy
  • Trained in Discernment Counseling
  • Certified in PREP (Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program)
  • Blogger for Verily Magazine
  • Former blogger for The Million Dollar Matchmaker, Patti Stanger: pattiknows.com

My Education

  • M.A. in Marital and Family Therapy from the University of San Diego
  • M.Ed. in Secondary Education from Arizona State University
  • B.A. in English and Religion from the University of Iowa
  • Clinical Fellow in the Illinois Affiliation of Marriage and Family Therapists

Hi, I’m Karen Washington!

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

I want to make the world a better place one sex life at a time.

I once had a therapist tell me figure out what you’re good at, and how to get paid for it. As it so happens, I am really good at talking about sex with people and helping them learn how to talk about it, too. From there, I also learned that I am fascinated by people, their own self-esteem, how they feel about each other, how they do (and don’t) communicate. Most importantly, I learned that I am completely enthralled with learning about and love to talk about sex. So now I do what I love, and it never feels like work.

I studied Sociology in undergrad, which rounded out my study of the individual and all it is impacted by from its environment. From there, I pursued my Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy at Adler University. The systemic foundation reflected my belief that, while sex is not necessarily the primary problem (although it can be), typically it is what suffers from all of life’s problems. I am committed to helping individuals and couples work through life’s obstacles in order to return to a fulfilling intimate life – whether or not problems exist – by teaching better communication and coping skills. I further incorporate psychoeducation on self-esteem and sex education to enhance my clients’ understandings and enable them to continue to thrive. I write advice and editorial pieces on sex/sex related topics for online publications.

I believe my clients are experts on themselves; sometimes they just get stuck and need someone else to help them problem solve. That’s why I do what I do – to help you get unstuck by collaborating on tools specifically designed for each of your unique problems, issues, and circumstances.

Areas of Specialty:

Sexual issues
Desire discrepancy
Sexual dysfunction
Consensual nonmonogamy
Kink/BDSM

Call me at 312.971.6846.

Credentials & Qualifications

  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
  • PREPARE/ENRICH certified
  • M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from the Adler University
  • Candidate for M.Ed. in Human Sexuality at Widener University
  • B.A. in Sociology from DePaul University (Chicago)
  • Clinical Fellow in the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Clinical Fellow in the Illinois Affiliation of Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Early Career Professional in the Society for Sex Therapy and Research
  • Committeeperson for SSTAR
  • Freelance writer for Kinkly.com
  • Freelance writer for Sexology International
  • Adjunct Professor at Adler University
  • Interviewed by NBC News February 2015 about the social impact of 50 Shades of Grey
  • Interviewed by Kellye Howard Jue, September 2018, about practicing sex therapy for podcast, Kellye Talks. (Found on iTunes & SoundCloud)
  • Quoted on opinions for best sex mattresses

Hi, I’m Hollie Schmid!

Applicant for Associate Marriage and Family Therapist

Sometimes I joke and say that I started being a therapist way before I actually did. Being that go-to person for advice in most of my relationships with friends and family evolved into a passion for helping others. Furthermore, the naturally assumed role of being a listening ear and a voice of reason for many is what eventually lead me to pursuing my education in therapy. My intense desire to understand individuals and how their relationships can impact the way they think, feel, and act drove me to studying Marriage and Family therapy.

My approach to practice emphasizes emotional expression, building connections, finding support, validating emotions, and creating healthy and effective interactional patterns. My goal within each session is to always ensure that I am providing a warm, welcoming, and comfortable environment for my clients. Therapy can bring up a lot of emotions, and I believe that it is important for my clients to feel as if they have a safe place to share in these feelings.

The process of healing may not be an easy one, but I believe my role as a therapist is to put an end to the cycle of avoiding difficult topics, and dig deeper into them instead. Change ultimately begins and ends with you. You are the creator of your own journey to healing. My passion comes from helping people pave their way to growth and happiness.

Instagram: @therapywithhollie

Areas of Specialty:

Increasing emotional Intimacy
Post-baby relationship blues
Learning effective communication skills/how to argue fairly
Self-esteem issues
Codependency

Call me at 312.219.5721.

Credentials & Qualifications

  • Applicant for Associate Marriage and Family Therapist
  • M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy, Northern Illinois University
  • Member in the Illinois Affiliation of Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Level 2 Certification in Gottman Method Couples Therapy

Hi, I’m Apollonia Kang!

Licensed Mental Health Counselor

I’ve always been fascinated with human relationships. I consider it a privilege and an honor to hear people’s stories and be a part of their efforts to better their relationships, and to live an authentic and happy life. I believe that individuals being their best selves incrementally lead to a better world, just like ripples spread across the pond.

We yearn for fulfilling intimate relationships, but we don’t always know how to cope with relational challenges. I can help whether you see me individually or as a couple.

How we relate to ourselves profoundly impacts how we relate to others. I also strive to help you cultivate self-compassion, and connect you with your inner desire, power, and confidence, so that you can uncover the strength that’s always within you.

I don’t intend to teach you how to feel better (you already know how to do that!), but how to be better at feeling. We may develop unhealthy habits to avoid experiencing certain feelings or thoughts. When we avoid, we lose touch with part of who we are. When we’re in pain, we abandon our values. I hope to help you become aware of how your history shows up in your life, sit with the pain and still organize your life based on what matters to you. I want to help you examine the workability of your behaviors, and build new, healthier habits that lead to a life worth living.

Over the years, I have developed a multicultural lens that allows me to understand the unique intersecting challenges of identity, acculturation, studying abroad and immigration, and how those factors impact our relationships. In addition to the general public, I am passionate about working with Asians and Asian Americans in both English and Chinese.

Instagram: @apolloniakangtherapy

Areas of Specialty:

High-conflict relationships
Nonviolent communication
Intimacy building
Interracial relationships
Multicultural counseling

Call me at 312.880.9656.

Credentials & Qualifications

    • Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor
    • Licensed Mental Health Counselor
    • B.A. in Psychology and Philosophy from Emory University
    • M.Ed in Psychological Counseling from Columbia University in the City of New York
    • Member of Asian American Psychological Association
    • Certificates in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
    • Currently training for Level 1 Certification in Gottman Method Couples Therapy

    Hi, Sara Haynes!

    Associate Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

    From day one we begin to develop a relationship with ourselves and those around us. These deeply personal experiences create different layers to who we are and effect what we bring to a relationship. Experiences like overcoming conflict, communicating effectively, trust issues, intimacy issues, parenting differences, heartbreak, modern day dating, healing from heartbreak, anxiety and overcoming negative self-talk are just a few things that I have experience in helping couples and individuals navigate and find resolution with.

    I start off by getting to know my clients through curiosity. I help you peel back the layers of what you bring to relationships, individually or as a couple, in order to build your awareness of yourself and your partner. I will work collaboratively to witness and help identify what is working in your relationships and leave behind what is not.

    What strengths are within you already? I will help you identify them while using a warm, empathic approach that encourages respect. I will provide you with research-based tools and knowledge that will help build connection in your relationships and help you create the love that you desire. Change can happen in your relationship and these tools WORK.

    Instagram: @sarahaynestherapy

    Areas of Specialty:

    Parenting
    Blended family issues
    High conflict couples
    Dating

    Call me at 312.463.9246.

    Credentials & Qualifications

          • Applicant for Associate Marriage and Family Therapist
          • Certificate in Trauma Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
          • M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy, Northeastern Illinois University
          • B.A. in Early Childhood Education, Arizona State University
          • Member of American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
          • Board-certified National Certified Counselor
            (NBCC / NCC / 1096334)

    Hi, I’m Jeannie Sytsma!

    Associate Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

    Relationships have always sparked my interest, and it was no surprise to my family and friends when I decided to pursue a career in marriage and family therapy. One of the reasons I chose to become a therapist is because I have always admired the resilience of people, which includes looking at the darkness in our lives in order to grow and move forward. As humans, we are wired for connection with one another and sometimes it can be challenging to let down our defenses and open ourselves up to vulnerability. I believe that being in therapy will allow you (and your partner) to understand your vulnerabilities, identify troublesome patterns, and make concrete changes in the present that will carry into the future.

    I do this work because I care deeply about helping others and I believe that everyone deserves a skilled, fierce ally with lots of resources to support them when life gets tough (as it inevitably does). As a therapist, I strive to strike a balance between showing empathy and challenging you to move you towards transformation. I know therapy can be intimidating, which is why I practice from a non-judgmental and caring stance in order for you to feel safe and secure in our time together.

    It is my belief that you have the strength inside of you to make the necessary changes in order to achieve the results you want; I am here to help you gain insight about what is blocking you from getting there on your own, and provide you with skills to sustain your growth outside of therapy. My goal for you is to have connection with others and I believe that happens when both people feel heard, seen, and valued. Lastly, I will leave you with the words of Brené Brown: “Love is not something we give or get; it is something that we nurture and grow, a connection that can only be cultivated between people when it exists within each one of them – we can only love others as much as we love ourselves.”

    Areas of Specialty:

    Pre-Marital
    Conflict Resolution
    Intimacy and Sexual Issues
    Religion/Spirituality
    Couples with Life Changes

    Call me at 312.625.8556.

    Credentials & Qualifications

    Applicant for Associate Marriage and Family Therapy
    M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Adler University
    B.A. in Theology from Wheaton College
    Member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy
    Member of the Delta Kappa Honors Society
    Level 1 Certification in Gottman Method Couples Therapy

    Hi, I’m John Christian Schloegel!

    Applicant for Associate Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

    I’m here to help you find a way through what’s happening in your relationship now. It could be substance abuse, infidelity, adjusting to parenthood, or difficulty communicating. It could be improving a relationship, or questioning leaving a relationship. It could be a first serious relationship or even not being in a relationship at the moment. I have experience with all of these.

    Deciding to go to therapy is a difficult process, and deciding on a therapist is probably just as hard. So here’s a little about me: I like to spend time figuring out goals for therapy, how you want your relationship to be different, and then work together towards achieving those goals. I’m a good listener, and value hearing what you have to say. I also value honesty; I tell my clients what I think. I often ask couples to talk to each other in session, rather than just talking with me. I’m myself in session, and value therapy as a place where you can feel comfortable being yourself, too. My goal isn’t for you to stay in therapy forever; it’s to give you skills to keep accomplishing goals on your own.

    I get going to therapy can be a scary decision—it’s really hard to talk about problems, much less with someone new. I get it can be hard to trust the therapist, especially if you’re worried they may take the other person’s side, or that you’ll be blamed for everything. Let’s talk about it. Please, feel free to give me a call, I’m happy to talk more about my approach and learn about your goals and concerns. I’m ready to get to work and help you create the change you’re wanting.

    Areas of Specialty:

    Substance abuse and addiction
    Men’s issues
    Commitment issues
    Professionals

    Call me at 312.768.8630.

     

    Credentials & Qualifications

    • Applicant for Associate Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
    • M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy, University of Southern Mississippi
    • Member, American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy
    • Previous experience working in partial inpatient treatment center for professionals with substance abuse issues and their partners.

    Hi, I’m Katie Roach!

    I vehemently believe that with the right tools, our romantic relationships can be the container in which we build the very best version of ourselves and our lives. As a couples therapy intern, I’ve made a profession in studying those tools – ones that allow us to develop a solid, resilient sense of self that serves as the foundation for a compassionate and enduring relationship with our partners.

    I come from a journalism background, which means I spent years writing about sex and relationships before realizing that I might just have a knack for working with people face-to-face. It also means that I have a particular penchant for clear, constructive communication, and I believe that honing our ability to understand and express ourselves can completely shift our lives.

    The truth is – working ourselves and our relationships takes some Herculean courage, which is one of the things I’m here to support you in maintaining (and if you’re reading this, you’ve already got it!). We’ll work on developing the self-esteem it takes to communicate with ourselves and one another transparently, to listen compassionately to difficult truths, and to make room for the growth and change that each relationship inevitably experiences. (AKA, making space for reality.) Talk about relationship durability!

    We’ll also weave in tools for identifying and explaining our emotions without blaming one another, taking accountability for our experiences while allowing ourselves to share them, and, in the words of relationship guru John Gottman, turning towards each other instead of away, even when we’re upset.

    As your therapist, I fully believe in practicing what I preach, and I’m so passionate about helping you and your partner tap into the glorious potential your relationship holds – both for yourselves individually and together as a dream team.

    Areas of Specialty:

    Self-esteem & personal growth
    Singles work and partner selection
    Attachment discrepancies
    Incorporating the Enneagram

    Call me at 312.650.9249.

    Credentials & Qualifications

    • Couple and Family Therapy Master’s Program, Adler University
    • Bachelor of Journalism, University of Missouri
    • Student member of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
    "My husband and I found Anita when we were at a very dark place in our relationship; we weren’t sure if we could ever get back to that place that brought us together.  But with Anita’s help, we are closer friends, better lovers, and our partnership as parents is stronger than ever.  We appreciate Anita’s patience, her amazing knowledge, and her practical tools which helped save our marriage! Thanks Anita!"
    T&J
    "Jeannie is clear and direct while also kind and empathetic. She isn’t afraid to push through discomfort towards truth and connection, which has made a lasting impact on my marriage and my own identity seeking. She asks hard questions, listens with compassion, and gives me hope in every situation without fear of judgment. I am so grateful to have her in my corner!"
    H.G.
    "Apollonia is compassionate, willing to listen, and offers great advice. She not only helped me gain a clearer view of myself particularly in dealing with conflicts in a relationship, but also gave me useful tools to improve my relationships with my romantic partner and my parents."
    C.K.
    "RR312 provides therapy in a way that I always had hoped would be provided. They set the bar high. Other providers failed miserably."
    R.W.
    "Sara is incredible to work with! She has helped me through some rocky relationship issues. She is a great listener and provides thoughtful feedback. Working with her has helped my relationship move from surface level communication to truly understanding each other and how to communicate bigger issues in a productive way."
    K.L.
    "I had been struggling within my relationship as well as loving myself. Hollie helped me get out of my 'rose color glasses' to really see the reality/bigger picture of things in my relationship. She also gave guidance on how I can find my voice and go about standing up for my own needs. Whenever I talk to her, I feel more confident and stronger in myself."
    M.R.

    Contact Relationship Reality 312

    Book an appointment below. To ensure you will work with the best therapist for you, please let us know the following: a little bit about what you want help with, such as communication, trust, disconnection, dating, etc.; your general availability; and if you are planning on using insurance. Please leave your phone number as well as your email address as sometimes our email goes to spam. Your therapist will respond within 24 hours. Thank you and we look forward to working with you. 

    312.219.3399

    333 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1010, Chicago, IL 60601