Herdis Møllehave’s parents were teachers in Flensburg. She trained as a social worker and married the clergyman and author Johannes Møllehave.
In 1977 she published her controversial debut novel Le, which recounts the story of a woman who falls in love with a ‘knudemand’ (emotionally retentive man) and commits suicide. Over one hundred thousand copies of the book were sold in Denmark, and it was instrumental in spreading the 1970s’ debate on gender roles among the middle classes. The novel was soon translated into a number of languages. In 1980 she followed up her success with Lene, a controversial novel about an open marriage, followed by Helene (N) in 1983.
Herdis Møllehave was the co-owner of the publishing house Blandede Bolsjer and also wrote social text-books and debate books, including Socialt set, 1976, published together with Keld Skov, the book Måske bli’r du gammel, 1979, and the controversial reference book En bog uden navn – om det man ikke taler om, 1985.