I do this for a reason
I grew up in an emotionally confusing environment. My father’s traumatic upbringing, coupled with his undiagnosed/untreated mental health challenges didn’t set him up to understand the value of (or inspire him to create) an emotionally safe space. In his world, emotions were more often weaknesses or signs of personality flaws than functions of a normal human being.As a boy child, it was made very clear that crying was not an acceptable option. Shedding tears was met with homophobic or sexist slurs, shame, and other forms of degradation. I cried easily, so there was a lot of this.When I wasn’t allowed to cry, I’d often get quiet. That wasn’t welcomed either. “Cheer up, sad sack,” or “stop moping,” or any other number of hurtful and dismissive comments were hurled my way.Worry was interpreted as a lack of faith in God – which was sinful. Anger or frustration were understood to be the devil at work in me. These had to be punished in ways which were severe, to say the least.Happiness and excitement weren’t allowed either. Laughter was “annoying cackling,” happiness was “empty-headed BS,” and excitement seemed to be a sensory trigger.I was often told that I should talk about whatever bothered me but my words were almost always dismissed.As a result, I didn’t really talk. Ever. Not around adults, anyway. As the years passed, I went from being a child who didn’t speak to being an insecure adult with extremely unhealthy communication skills, and a preference for staying quiet.That changed when I met Michelle. I was doing some repair work at her house, and she was a person who was starved for human interaction. She relentlessly peppered me with questions, and insisted that I be honest in my responses. I told her my story, and she cried with me.On the last day of the project, she handed me a small box with a card. It read simply: “you have a voice. Use it.” Inside the box was a cheap USB microphone which I used to record my first podcast. From there, I found the voice that I didn’t know I had.Since that day, my podcasts have been downloaded countless times, and my voice has been heard around the world. My hope is always that people who hear my message will be inspired to find their own voices while connecting with the versions of themselves which have been silenced through trauma.I have a specific passion for connecting people to their platonic relationships, through helping them to establish and maintain healthy relationships with self.Much Love!
What I'm working on
In The Blood explores our relationships with others, with self, and the connection between the two.The host and guests offer from their experiences with family estrangement, separation from loved ones, reconciliation, and hope. Inspiration and insight are at the heart of this project.This is a fantastic resource for anyone who has experienced the pain and confusion of connecting with others and ourselves.
The Estranged Heart provides guidance & support for estranged parents and adult children.Twice per month, I join host Kreed Revere in discussing everything related to family estrangement. These conversations are powerful, meaningful, and offer insight to the pain and confusion of broken family relationships.
Episode 1 available nowan introduction from the host:"Most people take for granted that they have answers to questions they didn't need to ask. I am not one of those people...I don't know the sound of my mother's voice. I don't know what it's like to drink in her scent when she hugs me. I've never even seen her face...I find myself looking in the mirror, wondering if I look like her... Wondering if I sound like her... Wondering if she'd be proud of me...I love this woman who I don't know because she is the reason I'm here...I'm so desperate to connect with my roots but I don't know where to start digging. In the meantime, I will explore the branches of my tree. This is the beginning of that journey...Thank you for coming along..."~Janelle
let's get in touch!
I'm always happy to connect with fans and listeners. Please do not hesitate to connect with me on social media, or via email. I'd be thrilled to chat about your thoughts on anything I've spoken about! If you'd like to be a guest on one of my shows, or have me as a guest on yours, I would be honoured.