I am a palm tree in Scandinavia …

A drawn palm tree in front of a picture of a snowy forest, with the texts "I am a palm tree in Scandinavia" "I am parlm tree" "actually autistic"Or a polar bear in the Mediterranean region.

A while ago I found that comparison to explain the life of neurodivergent people in a world built by and for neurotypical people:

Imagine a palm tree. In its natural environment, it’s in good health – except in cases of ilness or parasites.
Now, plant it in the ground in a Scandinavian forest.
As far as I know, it will have a lot more difficulties to survive, and it might even not make it at all.

Another comparison: move a polar bear to the Mediterranean region. He’s not going to like it at all.

The difference between a palm tree and neurodivergent people is that everyone (or almost?) will not get upset against the palm tree and tell it it could try harder.
We understand it’s not supposed to live there.
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Social networks, community and autism

I made a planning of future publications, mostly to know when which type is coming out, and I’m already making exceptions. Typical!


I recently made an attempt at coming back on social media, partly with the idea of getting this blog a bit better known and partly because I would like to exchange with people more.
My stay was brief both on Twitter and on Instagram and it will stay like this for a while more. There is still as much noise, which isn’t a surprise, but even trying to downsize my following triggered some anxiety.

I have to manually post on Instagram to share the articles so I will most likely stop by once a week, but I don’t take time yet to look at what’s posted and I still haven’t read my direct messages.

I still managed to land on a publication on Instagram, whilst going through my feed looking at accounts I want to unfollow, which talked about autism, social media and the community that can be found there.
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Summer review and “back to school”

I have the intention to post more seriously and regularly (no promises), and I have a regular little project based on photos to share.
I’ve also changed the motto of the site to make it more fitting: Fantasy & Differences.


In May, I published « the summer of hope » which talked about my hope to be able to keep access to my bubble of calm this summer regardless of the social events planned.
I am very happy to say that I succeeded.
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Veganism and a long term love story with cheese are incompatible

It’s true that autistic people have a special, even complicated, relationship with food. We are sensitive to tastes, textures, colours to a point that affects what we eat and how. We can eat the same food for days (months) at a time because that’s the one thing we like and can eat at that time.
That does play a role in my difficulty to become a vegan, but the difficulty goes beyond that.
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The summer of hope

I read an article in The Guardian recently that was talking about what people had in mind for and hoped to do this summer and apparently it’s a lot about sex and meeting new (vaccinated) people. Or maybe that’s because the article was written with that angle.

In my case it’s « the same as usual », since last summer wasn’t much different from the previous ones.
Borders should be open and family friends should be able to come around so we’ll get to eat together, 6 (and 7) around the table.
My partner and I will spend our traditional 10 days in July together and celebrate our 6 years anniversary – we’re not sure whether it’ll involve (grounded) planes again or not.
There’ll be a couple of birthdays, so a couple of meals – we’re French (and Swiss) after all.
Hopefully there’ll be waves and I’ll get to jump in them. I am not a major fan of going to the beach but I love waves.
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Overwhelming social networks

I have a Facebook account which I don’t really visit, and a page for my blog on which posts are automatically shared.
I’ve had several Twitter accounts, two of which are still actives but currently on hold – except for the blog articles automatically posted on one of them.
I have an Instagram account, also on hold.

I have spent countless hours on them, and always ended up in the same state: overwhelmed. I also get a bit depressed and anxious – but that might be part of being overwhelmed?
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I ask – unwillingly – too much of others. Really?

I struggle with self-acceptance and regularly have some sort of relapses where I consider what I ask of others as too much and unfair on them.

I must have heard a couple of times during my younger years that I shouldn’t put what I was going through on to others but my mind working as it does, it translated into “if I can’t manage it on my own, I am a bad person and I am not trying hard enough”.
I have extended this from emotions to anything to do with my disabilities.
(Part of what I was going through was due to my – then undiagnosed – disabilities. I’d say a lot was.)
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Autistic and confined (part 2): resting outside of the world’s busyness

[Foreword: I am merely sharing my experience, and I don’t think it invalidates the experience of others.]

I know that this confinement is for a serious and severe reason and I am aware of the negative consequences it has and will have when it ends.

I don’t have to go out and the world is calm so to me this is a welcomed, because needed, rest.
I don’t have anxiety, I live at my own rhythm, my mind is freer – even though I am not always here, as I said in my previous article.

The world before this was tiring and aggressive and I have a feeling it’s going to be the same afterwards, although it will most likely come back progressively, so I savour the calm even if I apprehend what will come after – for this but also for all difficulties that already exist and that will carry on. I am not centred on myself, occulting what others go through.

I perceived the appointments I had as black blocs in the planner I have in my mind, and I had a hard time freeing myself of this on the days I didn’t haven any, even though there were more days on which I didn’t have any.
And depending on what I had done during the week and my current state (which changes depending on internal and external causes) I had difficulties finding the energy to do things on my “free” days.
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Autistic and confined (part 1): creation of stories in a parallel universe

I decided to post the French and English versions of this article separately to facilitate reading but I will carry on doing double posts for shorter, or lighter, reads.

[Foreword: I am merely sharing my experience, and I don’t think it invalidates the experience of others.]

We have been officially confined (in France) for three weeks now. I know some people count differently, following schools closure for example, but the general confinement was decreed as starting on Tuesday 17th of march.

The previous weekend I was watching the various announces and suppositions worriedly.
On one hand because I hadn’t done any “big shopping” – i.e. that last me for a long time so that I don’t have to go out – in quite a while since I was planning on going away, and I hadn’t been to do some “small” shopping (in the village) in a while because I was a bit sick and thought it was better to wait.
On the other hand because my parents were abroad – not far – and were supposed to come home on the 17th. They crossed the border without any problems.

All the messages I saw were calling for people to stay home so the idea of going shopping was stressing me out. I didn’t think I was really at risk but the idea that I could somehow carry the virus and spread it, contaminating other people, is worrying me.
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