Book Review: Van een andere planeet by Dominique Dumortier

I have read a few autobiographies by autistic authors, but never one by someone that lives in the same country as I do. Published autobiographies of autistic authors are already incredibly rare, as I only know of a handful, let alone those of women, although I know more autobiographies of autistic women.

This is one written in Dutch, my native language and you see the search of someone that is looking for herself.

She explains in clear language what she has difficulties with this book was first published in 2002 and her follow up book will be published 2018 at the end of september, which I am also looking forward too, because it will show how much she has grown in her identity, I will explain.

In this bundle, she writes down anecdotes of things she noticed before she got her diagnose. She, also like me, got her diagnose in adulthood. She recollects things of earlier where she had trouble with and things she still struggles with. In that sense she is much further in her autism identity acceptance than me.

In this bundle I see a person which had a lot of trouble growing up undiagnosed, whom felt as if she belonged on another planet instead of the one she inhabits now, in which her chapter entitled “ET” is a big tip-off.

I love to read autobiographies to see the diversity in autism. She has difficulties in things where I don’t seemingly have difficulties, but we were brought up differently in different places of the same country, and I notice that we have similarities as well, like getting gifts. I hate getting unannounced gifts because I don’t know how to react, and apparantly I am not alone in this.

In this bundle she goes over all the negative stuff that her autism brings her, all the things she struggles with, and this is a part of the growth process.

I love reading biographies of autistics (or people with autism (I don’t know which you prefer Dominique but I know you don’t like autistics, for which I apologize, because it is my prefered term, also autistic people is one of mine. Let me know which you like so I can adjust it here).

I did all the negative stuff while growing up, I knew I struggled with things and I looked for ways to overcome them. I read a lot of psychology to see how neurotypical people behave and why they do what they do. Also my sense of confidence is derived from the fact that other people don’t know why I would do certain things, so I don’t fret about it. They may think I’m weird, but I know different. I can’t control their opinion so I don’t try to, when it needs to be clarified I will, but not always.

I want to thank Dominique for allowing me a glimpse in her past and for the delightful hours I had reading this book. It gave me a glimpse in how much work you, as an autistic person (or person with autism… let me know) have already done and how much needs to be done.

I look forward to reading your second book to see how much you have grown on your path with your diagnosis. A must read for all those that want to read a sincere look into the life of an autistic person ( or person with autism).

Thank you, Dominique.

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