Well? Are you normal? How do you rate yourself on the normalcy scale?

What did you say? There’s no such thing as “normal”?

Strange, that. Probably most people would say that. It’s the normal answer. And yet, most people have a pretty good idea of who is normal and who isn’t. Normal people dress in certain ways, act in certain ways, talk in certain ways.

Talk in certain ways. When I’m not sure whether I’ve made a faux pas, I only have to look at my listeners’ eyebrows to have my fears confirmed. When you’ve seen as many raised ones as I have, you know that the things you say are often socially abnormal. Or that the way that you say them is not acceptable amongst normal people.

That’s why it’s nice to meet others with similar problems. Suddenly, it becomes all right to hesitate, stumble or even to keep mum. You know that the other person understands. And in such company, your behaviour becomes normal.

The people I meet in my daily life don’t have these problems. And because I, like most people, don’t want to be the ugly duckling, I have always tried to pretend to be what they see as normal. Tried and failed.

Enough! Pretending means keeping quiet in order to hide deficiencies, and I want to talk. But the imagined necessity of pretending is ingrained and therefore hard to change.

From now on, I’m going to try. I shall keep my hands firmly down and try to announce, albeit hesitantly, that I’m not normal.

Tune in again, keep in touch and don’t suffer in silence.