[32] S3, Ep1: Fern Brady: autistic meltdowns, understanding emotions and being the ‘black sheep’
Topics in this episode: Alexithymia, autism at work, comedy, counselling, disordered eating, food, meltdowns, theory of mind

Scottish comedian Fern Brady was diagnosed autistic in January this year, in her 30s, after a series of meltdowns caused her to seek answers. She has been open about her diagnosis from the start, when a throwaway tweet about it went unexpectedly viral.

Fern started out as a journalist before moving into stand-up comedy in 2010. As well as touring, she has appeared on shows such as Live at the Apollo and the BBC Radio 4 News Quiz, and her live show, Power and Chaos, is currently available on BBC iPlayer. She also co-hosts the hilarious BBC podcast, Wheel of Misfortune

In our conversation Fern and I talk about:

  • Meltdowns (what they feel like, and finding your triggers)
  • Alexithymia, theory of mind and her experiences of counselling
  • Food and disordered eating
  • Being the ‘black sheep’ of the family growing up
  • Autism and employment
  • and how her autism and her stand-up comedy intersect


SQUAREPEG PATRONS! You’ll find some additional content from my conversation with Fern on the Patreon platform as a bonus recording. So if you enjoyed my chat with Fern, head over to Patreon now and have a listen.

I hope that these conversations will be inspiring and thought provoking, open you up to new ways of thinking about being neurodivergent, and help you feel more connected to a worldwide community of people with similar experiences.

I’m Amy Richards, and after being diagnosed autistic at the age of 37 I’m now on a mission to learn more about different perspectives and issues around being a neurodivergent adult in a world that feels like it doesn’t quite fit.



You can find Fern on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fernfrombathgate/ 

And on Twitter: https://twitter.com/FernBrady 

Her show Power and Chaos: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p097tnpb 

Her podcast, Wheel of Misfortune: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p08m3z73/episodes/downloads 

Info about alexithymia: https://www.spectrumnews.org/news/people-alexithymia-emotions-mystery/ 

Shop with episode sponsor, ND Renegade: https://www.ndrenegade.com/ 


If you’d like to connect or get in touch with Squarepeg, you can find me on:

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/squarepeg.community/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/squarepegautism 

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/squarepegautism/ 

Or on my website:  https://squarepeg.community/ 



A HUGE thank you to my amazing patrons, who support my work on the podcast:

Cat Preston, Corinne Cariad, Elise, Kate Faust, Katharine Richards, Lea Li, Lilli Simmons, Pete Burke, Sarah Hardy, Vera Cady

If you’re enjoying the Squarepeg podcast and would like to help me carry on making new episodes, you can become a member of the Squarepeg community on Patreon from £3 per month: https://www.patreon.com/squarepegpodcast

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