crochet saved my life

Hi everyone! :)

So most of you have heard about this amazing new book by Crochet Concupiscence‘s very own Kathryn Vercillo, titled Crochet Saved My Life.

What I haven’t shared yet is that I myself was interviewed for this book by Kathryn, to focus on my Asperger’s Syndrome and how crochet helps me cope with the daily issues of having Autism.

Let me first share this YouTube video with you all; for me, it perfectly describes what Autism is.

In this video, Sadie describes what it feels like to have Autism, especially what it sounds like. And that’s what it’s like for me, too. And that is just one of the senses! I react the same way to bright lights too, so I’m not particularly fond of Summer, because it is just too bright! :) (and the heat, and the humidity… don’t even get me started)

At the end of the video, the question ‘What do you do to cope?’ arises. For me, that’s where crochet comes in! :) Here’s an excerpt from the book:

Having Asperger’s isn’t all bad. Marinke points out that she has an above average intellect and that she’s a very creative person. And she has found that crocheting allows her a creative outlet that also assists her in managing her Asperger’s symptoms. She shares:

“A lot of people with Autism find repetitive activities or actions soothing. At the office (when I still had a job) I could be doing the same thing for a while, such as cutting images and saving them. I would go into a trance and just cut, save, cut, save, cut, save until it was finished. ‘Regular’ people might find this boring to do but for me it was relaxing!
Crocheting works the same. Crochet is basically repeating the same thing over and over again, and for me that flow really helps me get through the day. But at the same time, you have to keep thinking about what you’re doing, so it never gets boring. And you get to be creative while you’re at it – what more can you want?”

It was in 2012, a year after her diagnosis, that Marinke figured out that crochet could be healing for her. She was really depressed after the diagnosis, to the point where she had to be hospitalized for three months. She knew that she needed something to do to keep her busy while she was in the hospital. She thought that crochet looked cool, so she decided to teach herself.

And although Marinke may be socially awkward in large groups in person, crochet has helped her feel like part of a great community ever since she started her crochet blog in May 2011. She shares:

I get a lot of responses to thing I post and that makes me feel so so blessed. I’m really part of a community that before last year I never knew even excisted! Also, since I started crocheting, a lot of people in my family have started as well, because I told them how much it helps you when there’s something troubling you. I have a lot of aunts that have made countless bags, potholders and stuffed animals because of what I told them!”

Kathryn has interviewed 23 women for this book, and also shares her own personal story about coping with depression.

I for one loved reading this book. I had NO idea that something so simple as keeping your hands busy helps so many women, all around the world!

And I just want to thank you, my lovely readers, for keeping me motivated on a daily basis, and for making me feel so welcome in this amazing bloggy family. I love you all ♥

You can buy this book in print or for your Kindle.


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  1. as a aprent to and autistic son .. all I can do is offer you and open hand for you to hold, a strong tension relieving hug and a warm fresh cushion to hold and bury your head into to help drown out the noises… I send you love xxx

  2. I am sorry about the typos… I was crying at the time and have just noticed how awful I this message is… but it came from my heart. xxxx

  3. Wat heb je dat mooi opgeschreven!
    Enne, ik vond je helemaal niet “socially awkward” tijdens de haakmiddag,hoor! Of komt dat misschien omdat we allemaal dezelfde interesse hebben? ;)
    In ieder geval een dikke knuf voor jou en haak ze! :)

  4. Beautiful post. It was wonderful to have you be a part of this project. I hope it raises some awareness about the autism spectrum issues among people who crochet … and helps others see how a simple craft we can all enjoy is healing in so many ways!

  5. Lovely to read this. Thank you for your inspiration.
    I felt compelled to teach myself to crochet this (very rainy) summer, following a series of bereavements in the last year.
    Yarn, stitches and colours are so beautiful to work with. All thumbs at first, but soon the house began to fill with crochet flowers and mandalas :) Healing joy …
    With love, in peace xx

  6. I’m so impressed and of course proud, that you gave us the honor of sharing these private informations with us. I have a better pic in my mind of what autism means to the person himself. And I really, really admire you how you find your way out of depression. By the way, I love your mandalas too :D
    So go on like this, I’m glad every day I open my blogreader and see you blogged something! Keep your head held high, you do gorgeous things and are a real lovely person I don’t want to miss in my little blogging world!

    Hugs and Greets from Germany!

  7. Bless you Wink you are an inspiration, your work is always so beautiful. I agree totally with what you say about crochet, I find it soothing too, it’s helps me to relax and wind down after a tiring day at work it even calms me down if I am worried or stressed. Keep it up I love reading your blog ((hugs)) xx

  8. This is amazing and inspiring Wink! I’m so glad that you found crocheting and the blogging world to help you, because I know you are helping and inspiring many more people as well!! I absolutely love reading your blog, and now I have a new book I have to read too! Thanks so much for sharing!
    Kate :}

  9. Thank you for sharing this fascinating post. :) x

  10. thank you Wink for a peek into your background….a show of incredible courage and trust…I feel honoured. Again, thank you.

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  12. Handcraft including crochet is not just a hobby, it’s a life saving activity. You are one living proof of it. Thank you for sharing.

  13. Thank you for sharing your experiences – you’ve found exactly the right tone to reach to the hearts of your readers. It’s amazing that something that’s merely a nice hobby to some people can be such a great help for others. I’m glad that you’ve found crochet for yourself, and I hope that it will always be a source of help and inspiration to you!


  14. hello wink,

    i was listening to a really interesting lecture on the telly earlier today, and it made me think of you and this post.

    the man giving the talk was Theo Peeters, a writer who specializes in neurolinguistics. i really liked his perspective of “neuro diversity”, that idea that asperger’s isn’t something “wrong” but just a different way of being and perceiving, like a different culture. a different kind of normal, as he put it :)

    the most memorable part of his talk was a (true) story that he told in a very warm way, about this man (flemish?) who really enjoyed knitting. hankerchiefs and other small stuff. and then a few years later he had knitted a human-sized doll. one arm, one leg, green hair etc. he called her anna, and he brought her along when he went to town to run errands etc. unsurprisingly lots of people found this really bizarre and strange, and when asked about it this man simply replied that “they just don’t understand how important it is for me to have a social relationship that is predictable”.

    i loved that, so bittersweet and wonderful and sad…

    (it also reminded me of that funny, bittersweet, video that has been all over the web some time ago, about the woman who knitted a boyfriend for herself…)

    the story also reminded me of one of my absolute favourite movies of all time ‘Lars and the Real Girl’, starring Ryan Gosling. it’s such a amazing, quirky, adorable, brilliant, funny and heartfelt movie… i love it to bits! if you haven’t seen it yet, i couldn’t recommend it warmly enough :)

    last but not least, thank you so much for sharing so generously of yourself and your experiences. it’s really interesting and courageous and such a beautiful thing to do. very inspiring. i hope it reaches the hearts of all the ones who need to hear it to most.


    • Thank you so much for this wonderful reply Magdalena! I just got the movie and will watch it for sure, thanks for the recommendation! :)
      Much love to you,

  15. Ik kwam dit boek al een tijdje geleden op een blog tegen, het leek me een prachtig boek met al die verhalen over hoe haken helpt in diverse omstandigheden. Wat is jouw verhaal ook mooi passend in dit en toevallig dat ik nu iemand ken die er in staat. Met jou heb ik ook van de haakmiddag genoten en helemaal niets gemerkt, dus het haken helpt echt goed! Blijf haken, doe ik ook, voor mij een vorm van ontstressen van een burnout.

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  18. I often call crochet my therapy and people laugh as if I am joking, but the truth is that it IS therapy for me. I suffered from post partum depression for close to two years and crochet really helped me to escape and refocus. I am glad to know others find the same therapeutic qualities… It’s wonderful to share this with others… Thanks for being open!

  19. Knap dat je dit zo wilt en kunt delen!
    Voor sommige mensen mag haken een suffe of truttige hobby lijken, maar ik kom meer en meer verhalen tegen waaruit blijkt dat het ook een heel belangrijke rol kan vervullen. Ik merk dat ik de kleuren ‘nodig’ heb, kan daar heel erg van genieten. En hoe geweldig is het, om na je therapie-sessie er ook nog een mooi kussen, deken, kleedje etc aan over te houden?! Het resultaat is tastbaar, blijvend, warm, zacht en mooi….. Met andere woorden: het levert je veel positiefs op, in concrete dingen, maar ook in abstracte dingen als emotie.

    Dank je voor je verhaal!



  20. Wink you are an amazing person, a wonderful example that everything in life (even our problems and “disabilities”) can bring many blessings and are truly blessings if we choose to see them and use them that way! You are an inspirations!