Melody Beattie – WOMAN of ACTION

A Celebration of Women

is elated to Celebrate the Life of this trail blazer that found through her own life experience solutions to some our world’s deepest and darkest challenges faced by the human race, co-dependency.
In her lifetime, she has survived abandonment, kidnapping, sexual abuse, drug and alcohol addiction, divorce, and the death of a child. “Beattie understands being overboard, which helps her throw bestselling lifelines to those still adrift,” said Time Magazine.

Join us here today, and Celebrate her Life through this tribute that we offer to one of our world’s great souls.



Melody Beattie

Melody Beattie is one of America’s most beloved self-help authors and a household name in addiction and recovery circles. Her international bestselling book, Codependent No More, introduced the world to the term “codependency” in 1986. Millions of readers have trusted Melody’s words of wisdom and guidance because she knows firsthand what they’re going through.

Melody was born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1948. Her father left home when she was a toddler, and she was raised by her mother.

She was abducted by a stranger at age four.

Although she was rescued the same day, the incident set the tone for a childhood of abuse, and she was sexually abused by a neighbor throughout her youth. Her mother turned a blind eye, just as she had denied the occurrence of abuse in her own past.

“My mother was a classic codependent,” Melody recalls. “If she had a migraine, she wouldn’t take an aspirin because she didn’t do drugs. She believed in suffering.”

Unlike her mother, Melody was determined to self-medicate her emotional pain.

Beattie began drinking at age 12, was a full-blown alcoholic by age 13, and a junkie by 18, even as she graduated from high school with honors.

She ran with a crowd called “The Minnesota Mafia” who robbed pharmacies to get drugs. After several arrests, a judge mandated that she had to “go to treatment for as long as it takes or go to jail.”

Melody continued to score drugs in treatment until a spiritual epiphany transformed her. “I was on the lawn smoking dope when the world turned this purplish color. Everything looked connected—like a Monet painting.

It wasn’t a hallucination; it was what the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous calls ‘a spiritual awakening.’ Until then, I’d felt entitled to use drugs. I finally realized that if I put half as much energy into doing the right thing as I had into doing wrong, I could do anything,” Beattie said.

After eight months of treatment, Melody left the hospital clean and sober, ready to take on new goals: helping others get sober, and getting married and having a family of her own. She married a former alcoholic who was also a prominent and respected counselor and had two children with him.

Although she had stopped drinking and using drugs, she found herself sinking in despair. She discovered that her husband wasn’t sober; he’d been drinking and lying about it since before their marriage.

During her work with the spouses of addicts at a treatment center, she realized the problems that had led to her alcoholism were still there. Her pain wasn’t about her husband or his drinking; it was about her. There wasn’t a word for codependency yet. While Melody didn’t coin the term codependency, she became passionate about the subject.

What was this thing we were doing to ourselves?

Driven into the ground financially by her husband’s alcoholism, Melody turned a life-long passion for writing into a career in journalism, writing about the issues that had consumed her for years. Her 24-year writing career has produced fifteen books published in twenty languages and hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles. She has been a frequent guest on many national television shows, including Oprah.

She and her books continue to be featured regularly in national publications including Time, People, and most major periodicals around the world.

Although it almost destroyed her when her twelve-year-old son Shane died in a ski accident in 1991, eventually Melody picked up the pieces of her life again. “I wanted to die, but I kept waking up alive,” she says.

Grief is a multi-faceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something to which a bond was formed. Although conventionally focused on the emotional response to loss, it also has physical, cognitive, behavioral, social, and philosophical dimensions. While the terms are often used interchangeably, bereavement refers to the state of loss, and grief is the reaction to loss.

Death of a child

In most cases, parents find the grief almost unbearably devastating, and it tends to hold greater risk factors than any other loss. This loss also bears a lifelong process: one does not get ‘over’ the death but instead must assimilate and live with it.

Intervention and comforting support can make all the difference to the survival of a parent in this type of grief but the risk factors are great and may include family breakup or suicide.

Feelings of guilt, whether legitimate or not, are pervasive, and the dependent nature of the relationship disposes parents to a variety of problems as they seek to cope with this great loss. Parents who suffer miscarriage or a regretful or coerced abortion may experience resentment towards others who experience successful pregnancies. Because of the intensity of grief emotions, irrational decisions are often made.

Grieving Process

First every step of the process is natural and healthy, it is only when a person gets stuck in one step for a long period of time then the grieving can become unhealthy, destructive and even dangerous. When going through the grieving process it is not the same for everyone, but everyone does have a common goal, acceptance of the loss and to always keep moving forward. This process is different for every person but can be understood in four different steps.

Shock and Denial
Shock is the initial reaction to loss. Shock is the person’s emotional protection from being too suddenly overwhelmed by the loss. The person may not yet be willing or able to believe what his mind knows to be true. This stage normally lasts 2 – 3 months.

Intense Concern
Intense concern is often shown by not being able to think of anything else. Even during daily tasks, thoughts of the loss keep coming to mind. Conversations with one at this stage always turn to the loss as well. This period may last 6 months to 1 year.

Despair and Depression
Despair and depression is a long period of grief and the most painful and protracted stage for the griever. But during which the person gradually comes to terms with the reality of the loss. The process typically involves a wide range of feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. Many behaviors may be irrational. Depression can include feelings of anger, guilt, sadness, and anxiety.

The goal of grieving is not the elimination of all the pain or the memories of the loss. In this stage, one shows a new interest in daily activities and begins to function normally on a day to day basis. The goal is to reorganize one’s life so that the loss is one important part of life rather than the center of one’s life.

She began skydiving, mountain-climbing, and teaching others what she’d learned about grief.


Years ago, in 1978, Life showed me a formula for working with what I had that turned it into more. Frequently, what I received exceeded that which I could imagine myself having. I began a course in learning to live in a way that connected me to the essential creative power that we’ve each been given. Are we God? No. But we’re one with God and with Life, no matter what name we use to call our Higher Power.

If you’re willing to give less than ten minutes a day to this simple activity, you can change your life in less than two months. Most of us spend that much time creating pain and misery for ourselves. Why not take those ten minutes and use them to turn the dross in our lives into gold?

Each of us can become an Alchemist.

When the miracles we create are for the Higher Good, they’ll appear (usually) more quickly. We’ll have more power. But we can use this activity to create miracles for ourselves, too. We can have an abundant life – whatever “abundance” means to us. When our needs are met, we’re in the strongest position possible to serve others altruistically.

When this site first opened, the book that it accompanies wasn’t released yet. We didn’t know what to expect so we created a simple site. The book has been out for a short time now. With over three hundred posts or comments, we realized a simple site wouldn’t do.

That’s why we’ve now turned it into a forum. The forum divided itself naturally into three sections: Help, What to Expect, and Success Stories. The “Help” Section answers most questions about how to do the activity.

If you don’t find your answer there, ask.

“”What to Expect” contains people’s comments on life changes taking place at different stages in their process of working this activity.

“Success Stories” are reports from people — most of whom have stuck with the activity for forty days and want to share what happened from working this activity.

Browse the site. Search for answers to questions. Post new questions or ideas, or update us on how the activity works for you. Most importantly, become familiar with the growing community of people who have learned to make miracles a way of life.

Melody responds to most questions herself, unless she’s immersed in a project. She’ll come up for air and respond to your comment or question — but you may have to be patient. The fun part of this site is that enough people are becoming experts at creating miracles and doing the activity that the Miracle Community is self-sustaining. It operates the way a good group should — giving and receiving support whether Melody shows up that particular day or not. People take what they need, give what they can, and it works.

Where do you need a miracle? At home? With your family? For yourself? In romance? Spirituality? Finances? Maybe it’s something you think of as minor, such as dropping some weight. Whatever your need, a miracle waits around the corner, one that meets your needs perfectly. Come on in.

We’re a community of people actively participating in creating the miracles we need. As the need presents itself, we’ll continue to grow and expand – allowing visitors to post pictures if they want. Meanwhile, we invite you to comment or post about how this activity works for you.

Join us now as making miracles becomes a way of life for you.

Furthermore, worrying about people and problems doesn’t help. It doesn’t solve problems, it doesn’t help other people, and it doesn’t help us. It is wasted energy.” ― Melody Beattie, Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself

A Celebration of Women

welcomes this power of example into our Alumni of WOMEN of ACTION with open arms.

Brava Melody!

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