World Parkinson Congress 2019 Bloggers: Mariëtte Robijn


Author: Joe McAweaneyPublished: 9 May 2018

Parkinson's LifePrep: Parkinson's LifeCook: Parkinson's LifeServes:

In the fifth in our series profiling the bloggers supporting the World Parkinson Congress 2019, we talk to Dutch blogger Mariëtte Robijn about her condition

Do you have a particular audience in mind when you’re writing your blog?

I write because I write – the only people I have in mind when writing are a few close friends, my husband and our children. They are, so to speak, my conscience.

Is there an aspect of Parkinson’s that you’re most passionate about?

Well, in its original sense the word ‘passion’ means suffering. So I am passionate about all aspects of the condition because, at the end of the day, there is not an aspect that doesn’t involve some suffering.

I’m particularly passionate about changing the mindset of people with Parkinson’s: I want to help make them aware of their strengths.

How widely read is your blog and in which countries?

It’s read by a worldwide audience. I’d say approximately 50% of my readership is from the Netherlands, with around 40% from the UK and the US combined – the rest come from a variety of countries all over.

I have been a guest blogger for the Michael J Fox Foundation, the Parkinson’s Foundation and Parkinson’s UK.

Mariëtte Robijn

Have you been surprised by the global audience you’ve attracted? 

To be honest it has always been something that I have aimed for. I am an ambitious blogger and I have always aimed high. Contributing to high level publications is another thing I’ve worked hard for.

It’s like training for a gold medal – surprise doesn’t really enter the equation. Although gratefulness does. I am both grateful for my talent, and even more so for my readers.

Which of your posts have attracted the most interest from your readers?

“It’s so not you” – on being brave with Parkinson’s

Which has been the most controversial? 

“You are your disease after all. Bummer.”

Talk us through your routine: when do you find time to blog?

I find that if I want to write a blog, then I find the time to do so. I write most of my blogs in 20 to 40 minutes.

Need to know

Name: Mariëtte Robijn


Region: The Netherlands

Describe yourself in one sentence: Enjoying life, whilst dealing with Parkinson’s from the comfort of my own chaos.

What physical challenges do you face in writing and do you use any technology to support you? 

Luckily I do not face any physical challenges in writing. If a blog is ready to be ‘born’, I am just as happy typing it with one finger on my phone as I am typing it on my laptop.

What do you hope people will take away from reading your blog?

A smile, courage and a new thought.

How did you get involved with the World Parkinson Congress?

I first got involved via the Parkinson’s Foundation, whose director put me in touch with the team at the World Parkinson Congress.

What are you most looking forward to at the World Parkinson Congress 2019?

It’s an exciting opportunity for me to network with researchers and Parkinson’s professionals as well as have a great time with others in a similar position to myself. I’ve built quite a circle of friends of people with Parkinson’s via social media and I can’t wait to meet them.

I also spent time in Japan when studying modern Japanese studies at university – so I am really looking forward to going back.

Read more: World Parkinson Congress 2019 Bloggers: Tim Hague 

World Parkinson Congress 2019 Bloggers: Heather Kennedy

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