About Dr. Meg-John Barker

Brief Biography

Dr. Meg-John Barker is a writer, therapist, and activist-academic specialising in sex, gender and relationships. Meg-John is a senior lecturer in psychology at the Open University and a UKCP accredited psychotherapist, and has over a decade of experience researching and publishing on these topics including the popular books Rewriting the Rules, The Secrets of Enduring Love, Queer: A Graphic History, and Enjoy Sex. Website: www.rewriting-the-rules.com. Twitter: @megjohnbarker.

Longer Biography

Dr. Meg-John Barker is a writer, therapist, and activist-academic specialising in sex, gender and relationships. Their popular books include the (anti-)self-help relationship book Rewriting the RulesThe Secrets of Enduring Love (with Jacqui Gabb), Queer: A Graphic History (with Julia Scheele), and Enjoy Sex, How, When and If You Want To (with Justin Hancock). Meg-John is a senior lecturer in psychology at the Open University and has published many academic books and papers on topics including non-monogamous relationships, sadomasochism, counselling, and mindfulness, as well as co-founding the journal Psychology & Sexuality and the activist-research organisation BiUK. They were the lead author of The Bisexuality Report – which has informed UK policy and practice around bisexuality – and are currently co-editing a book on non-binary gender with similar aims in that area. They are involved in running many public events on sexuality and relationships, including Sense about Sex and Critical Sexology. Meg-John is a UKCP accredited psychotherapist working with gender, sexually, and relationship diverse (GSRD) clients, and they blog about all these matters on www.rewriting-the-rules.com. Twitter: @megjohnbarker.

A note on names and pronouns

When referring to me it’s great if you can use the name ‘Meg-John’. I’m also happy for people to use ‘MJ’ for short.

My pronoun is they, them, their, so I’d prefer that you said ‘they are the author of Rewriting the Rules’, for example, rather than ‘she/he is the author of Rewriting the Rules’. You can see more examples of how ‘they’ can be used in the biographies above, and you can find out more about the singular they pronoun for non-binary people here.

I’d like to be referred to in non-binary gender terms, for example saying ‘we’ve got all women and non-binary speakers tonight’ (rather than ‘all women’); saying ‘Meg-John is a person who has done…’; calling me ‘mate’ or ‘friend’ rather than ‘madam’, ‘sir’ or ‘miss’; referring to a group I’m in as ‘folks’ or ‘guys’ rather than ‘girls’ or ‘ladies’, or introducing an event with  ‘friends and colleagues’ rather than  ‘ladies and gentlemen’.

Feel free to ask me directly if you’re not sure. If you slip up it’s fine just to apologise and move on. Also please note that other people have different preferences with these things, so it’s always worth checking with the person concerned.

Full CV

You can see my full CV here.


This photograph can be used in publicity.