Kayla Wingert



" Kayla has helped me make therapy a very safe and open space. I quickly became inclined and able to be vulnerable with her, which is very important to me. She not only listens to me, I can tell she really hears me. She attuned to my needs fast and knows what to say and how to help me when I need it. I place my trust in her hands and feel cared for, respected, and secure in our sessions.

Recent Posts

As a queer and polyamorous therapist, I am passionate about working with queer and trans people, polyamorous individuals and relationships, kink and BDSM communities, and folks living life outside the religious traditions they were raised in. I particularly enjoy working with couples who are exploring opening their relationship or otherwise restructuring their relationship. I also work with triads, polycules, metamours, and other non-monogamous relationship configurations around communication and conflict, jealousy and insecurity, dating and breakups, and rethinking relationships.

My background includes working with clients who have experienced relational and religious traumas, and I firmly believe that healing from these traumas can occur through the therapeutic relationship we co-create together. I also enjoy working with people who are experiencing shame around stigmatizing topics, exploring gender and sexuality, struggling with sexual concerns such as low desire and sexual dissatisfaction, and healing from diet culture and disordered eating. I also work with individuals and couples who are forming a family (in all the many ways that can occur), and who are navigating perinatal and reproductive mental health challenges, including queer family planning and (in)fertility, postpartum depression and anxiety, and abortion experiences.

My goal is to create a space where you can bring your full self without judgment, especially the parts of yourself that you might be ashamed of or embarrassed about. Together, we can make meaning out of your experiences, fight shame with curiosity and self-compassion, and support you in living your authentic, values-based life.

My approach to working together is compassionate and warm while also challenging you to grow and make peace with uncomfortable emotions. I draw from principles of Psychodynamic Therapy, Relational Cultural Theory, Internal Family Systems, Attachment-Based Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Health at Every Size, and Somatic therapies, and practice from a trauma-informed perspective and feminist and anti-racist lens.

I earned my bachelor of science from Johnson & Wales University and my master of social work from the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice. Prior to my graduate studies, I worked for several years in nonprofit administration, fundraising, and in adult sex education. The latter taught me so much about the significance of our relationships with our own bodies and sexualities and about the power of healing from shame in order to live authentically as our truest selves.

  • IL LSW License Number: 150110927
  • Supervised by: Kate Ernstrom, LCSW, PMH-C, CST
  • Type 1 NPI Number: 1194402859
  • Accepts: BCBS PPO and Blue Choice plans, Aetna PPO, self-pay clients

Selected Training & Affiliation

  • Trauma Informed Care training
  • LGBTQ+ affirming services
  • Polyamory and kink affirming services
  • Psychodrama training
  • Psychodynamic therapy training
  • Family therapy training
  • Health at Every Size training
  • Gottman Method Level 1 and Level 2 Couples Therapy Training
  • Member of Postpartum Support International

Key Beliefs

  • “All that you touch, you change. All that you change, changes you. The only lasting truth is change.” – Octavia Butler, Parable of the Sower

More About Me

  • I am a bit of a hobby hopper! I love diving deeply into new hobbies (embroidery, gardening, puzzles) for several months at a time and then hopping onto something new – or back to something old – to keep my curious brain satisfied.