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May 29, 2024

Staff Spotlight, Monique DesChane

Staff Spotlight, Monique DesChane

Tell us about yourself! 

My name is Monique DesChane (she/her), MA, LMHC, and I am an Intake Therapist at The Emily Program’s outpatient treatment center in Seattle, WA

What would you like people to know about the role of an Intake Therapist?

There are so many layers to the Intake Therapist role. I am often the first connection clients have with The Emily Program and eating disorder care in general. I want our clients to experience a sense of safety, connection, and value. I want them to know that whatever brings them to The Emily Program has value and they will be heard. I have a brief time with clients and I try to cultivate this as quickly as possible. My job is to assess, diagnose, and provide a treatment recommendation, as well as educate clients on all aspects of their care journey. It is a challenging and rewarding 90 minutes. 

What have our clients taught you?

This is a tough one only because I could write a novel here. They have taught me everything I know about eating disorders, treatment, and myself as a person working in the field. They have taught me about resilience, passion, fear, failure, success, what to say and not to say, and how to and how not to support. I could go on and on. My clients are a great motivator in life because they keep me on my toes and learning every single day. There is never a dull moment nor a lapse in learning in this role.

What piece of advice would you give those struggling with eating disorders? 

Never. Give. Up. 🙂

What three words would you use to describe The Emily Program? 

Acceptance, commitment, and caring.

Strangest job you’ve ever had?

A beauty consultant back in the 80’s. I was promoting what I am trying to combat now (ugh!).

What’s something you’re really proud of?

Opening Seattle Residential in 2017 — what a challenging three years that was prior to opening. In addition, the process of running the facility, including writing the prototype treatment manual that is currently used today. 

I am very proud of my career at The Emily Program. I have been blessed to work in and experience all levels of care, which provides me with a unique perspective and an ability to share that experience with clients. I am also very proud of the training I have been able to provide new intake therapists. I try to share my passion and commitment with new providers and instill in them the same feeling. Our clients deserve it. 

What do you like to do when you aren’t working? 

Time with my four darling granddaughters, boating, camping, shopping, travel, gardening, wine tasting, and time with friends. 

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, what does mental health mean to you? 

Mental health is multifaceted and encompasses many areas of our lives. Overall, it’s about self-awareness and balance. It is recognizing when we are struggling and need support, and reaching out for that support. It is building skills to maintain a healthy mental balance. It is a passion of mine to reduce the stigma around “mental health,” which has historically been associated with negativity. Needing help and support isn’t a bad thing, it is a gift that allows us to be our best selves and support ourselves and others.



Get help. Find hope.