[83] S7, Ep3: Psychology as a special interest: relationships, research and educational equity
Topics in this episode: autism research, burnout, intergenerational autism, intersectionality, masking, relationships, unmasking

Janelle Johnson is an Inclusion Strategist, therapist and researcher from North Carolina, USA. She is self diagnosed and her son is also autistic.

She has recently taken a step back from practising as a therapist to focus on her research as a PhD student and graduate research assistant at North Carolina State University’s College of Education. Her work explores development for students with invisible disabilities, the intersection of mental health and other marginalised identities, and systemic change in education.

In our conversation we talk about:

➡ Being socially awkward, solitary and living in her own head as a child

➡ Learning to unmask in her marriage

➡ Being an empath, and psychology as a special interest

➡ Her take on the word ‘neurodivergent’

➡ Her PhD research

➡ The burnout cycle, and her strategies for helping break it

Squarepeg is a podcast in which neurodivergent women, and trans and nonbinary people, explore navigating a neurotypical world and share their insights, challenges and successes.

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.



Janelle’s company website: https://www.bridgesflc.com/

The website for her research: https://sites.google.com/ncsu.edu/facesprogram/home

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thefamilyfanatic/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thefamilyfanatic/


The Color of Autism: https://thecolorofautism.org/

Autism in Black podcast: https://www.autisminblack.org/podcast/


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:

Abi Hunter, Abigail J Moore, Amy Adler, Amy-Beth Mellor, Annette, Ben Davies, Benita Borchard-Thierbach, Caroline, Cat Preston, Catrin Green, Cindy Bailey, Clare Holmes, Corinne Cariad, Danielle Warby, Dawn Trevellion, Emily, Elizabeth Vezina, Elizabeth Williams, Felicia Libo, Galina, Gwyneth, Jackie Allen, Jeff Goldman, Jen Bartlett, Kate Faust, Katharine Richards, Katherine Lynch, Kenneth Knowles, Laura Battley, Lea Li, Leo Ricketts, Lilli Simmons, Lyb, Mandy Allen, Pete Burke, Rebecca Kemp, Sarah Cottrell, Sarah Jeffery, Sarah Ivinson, Sarah Swanton, Sioned Wynn, Stephanie Murray, Suzanna Chen, Suzanne, Tessa Valyou, Tree Hall, Una Walkenhorst, Vicki Temple, Victoria Routledge and Zephyrine Craster.

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

Become part of the Squarepeg community!

Sign up below to get Squarepeg news and updates - and occasional emails from me about autistic life.

Welcome to the community!