Education: Graduate of University of Michigan; California State University, M.A.
Home and office—Ann Arbor, MI.
Psychotherapist and marriage and family counselor, Ann Arbor, MI. Public speaker and consultant to mental health professionals on the topic of adult Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD). Former consultant to counseling program for adults with learning disabilities at California's Marin County Family Service Agency.
National Attention Deficit Disorder Association, Children and Adults with AD/HD (CHADD), American Counseling Association, California Association for Marriage and Family Therapists, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists.
National Attention Deficit Disorder Association award for outstanding service by a helping professional, 1996.
Women with Attention Deficit Disorder: Embracing Disorganization at Home and in the Workplace, Underwood Books (Grass Valley, CA), 1995, revised 10th anniversary edition published as Women with Attention Deficit Disorder: Embrace Your Differences and Transform Your Life, Underwood Books (Nevada City, CA), 2005.
Journeys through ADDulthood: Discover a New Sense of Identity and Meaning While Living with Attention Deficit Disorder, Walker (New York, NY), 2002.
Sari Solden, a psychotherapist who specializes in treating individuals with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, is the author of Women with Attention Deficit Disorder: Embrace Your Differences and Transform Your Life. In the work, Solden, who herself has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), discusses the symptoms of the condition, examines available treatments, and presents strategies for living a productive life. "Solden's own journey, plus the case histories she records, are painful yet powerful insights to the world of a disorder which can lead to creative problem solving and a compassion for others with ADD," observed a contributor in Herizons.
In Journeys through ADDulthood: Discover a New Sense of Identity and Meaning While Living with Attention Deficit Disorder, Solden outlines a three-step approach to leading a fulfilling life for adults with ADD. The author contends that individuals must first understand the disorder, then discover and accept one's true identity, and finally learn to connect with others. "The ADHD adult has to separate themselves and their self-worth from the symptoms of ADHD," wrote Lew Mills on the CHADD of Northern California Web site.
"Solden emphasizes reconnecting with the dreams that unexplained ADHD symptoms may have prematurely cut off." "Perhaps most useful are the dialogues that are included to help readers handle situations that have been problematic in the past," noted a Publishers Weekly reviewer. Library Journal contributor Dale Farris praised Journeys through ADDulthood "for its focus on adults and the author's emphasis on learning how to come to terms with and live comfortably with the disease."
Solden told CA: "I have been writing all my life, mostly poetic prose, but these are my first books from a therapist's point of view. Even though these books were written from my mental health professional perspective, I was able to infuse my own authentic voice into the material. This was very important to my goal of connecting to my readers and allowing them to discover themselves in the characters I used to bring the material to life.
"My writing process is unusual in that I have organizational problems and am very creative, so I create a huge amount of writing based on several years of work and then I try and pare it down—more like Michelangelo sculpting out of stone rather than starting from scratch and building up. I put everything I have thought or created or written during several years on a subject and whittle it down to the essence. So I have to go very wide first in order to go deep in the end.
"What I have learned as a writer is how to work with editors—what to insist on in order to keep your voice in tact but when to let go and let someone else objectively help you cut."
When asked to identify which of her books is her favorite, Solden said: "I guess I will always have a special place in my heart for Women with ADD because when it first came out, no one else had written on the subject. It healed so many women around the world who saw their experiences described and for the first time knew they were not alone in what they had been experiencing.
"I once read a line that said the best part about writing a book is that ‘it brings your tribe to you.’ I have made so many wonderful connections and relationships with people who are my ‘tribe’ all around the world as result of this first book, and I think that has been the best part of all."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Herizons, summer, 1997, review of Women with Attention Deficit Disorder: Embracing Disorganization at Home and in the Workplace, p. 39.
Library Journal, September 15, 2002, Dale Farris, review of Journeys through ADDulthood: Discover a New Sense of Identity and Meaning While Living with Attention Deficit Disorder, p. 79.
Publishers Weekly, August 19, 2002, review of Journeys through ADDulthood, p. 85.
Small Press Bookwatch, November, 2006, review of Women with Attention Deficit Disorder: Embrace Your Differences and Transform Your Life.
CHADD of Northern California, http://www.chaddnorcal.org/Books/Recs.htm/ (April 20, 2007), Lew Mills, review of Journeys through ADDulthood.
Sari Solden Home Page,http://www.sarisolden.com (September 27, 2004).