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Andrew Solomon Reflects on Resilience

Esperanza, February 2016

by Lori Hile

“I can’t imagine myself without depression,” writer Andrew Solomon tells a roomful of therapists, educators, and peers gathered for his keynote address at the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) national conference in Chicago.

Solomon, 52, seems the picture of poise and self-assurance as he holds court, cutting a dapper figure in his crisp pinstripe suit. With the erudition of an Ivy League professor—he’s on the faculty at Columbia University Medical Center—and the panache of a polished speaker, Solomon delivers his carefully crafted prose with apparent enjoyment.

Can this vibrant presenter really be a famous chronicler of his own profound depression?

…Solomon knew he risked stigmatization by publicly plumbing the depths of his despair.

“I felt it needed to be spoken about,” he tells Esperanza in a brief interview after the lecture.

(To read the full interview, please visit Esperanza.)