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Life initiates some of us in an instant. The loss comes out of the blue. A relationship ends. A loved one dies. Someone we thought would be in our life forever  goes away.  Or the doctor tells us we’re going away. Other losses unfold slowly. Eating disorders, alcoholism, addiction — even Alzheimer’s disease — can hide in plain sight for years.

No matter what you  face, you’re not alone  although you may feel alienated from the world. Whatever your loss, other people have gone through it too.   On the other hand,  you’re unique and different.  While others not in grief go forward full speed, your personal velocity changes.  Full speed?  Ha!  You’re barely crawling through Life.  It’s all you can do to get out of bed.

Welcome to the Club

You belong to an elite group, although you joined it involuntarily.  From declaring bankruptcy to losing a child, whether the world ranks your loss  big, medium, or small, and  even if  the loss  happened to someone  you care about but  don’t know how to help — this site is for you. We  moved to a new facility (template), one easier to navigate.  During the process, I freshened content, adding new  information and editing articles damaged by the move.

You can stay on the outside, using only public content.  If you want access to the Members Only section, put away your wallet.  You already paid a steep enough price. I lifted the requirements for registration about providing us with a valid telephone number and emergency contact.  Registration became easy and non-threatening. There are no dues, fees, hidden costs, or agendas.  All that’s required for membership  is your commitment to not physically harm yourself or anyone else,  and your agreement to hold this site  harmless for your actions.

E-mails from us won’t ask you to buy products. Occasionally I send spontaneous E-mails  to site members.  People report they enjoy hearing from me this way.   It’s not a newsletter.  It’s like the E-mails I send to friends. If you prefer not to receive  any communication from me,  contact me at Melody@MelodyBeattie.com, explain that on the E-mail,  or post a comment at the end of this article telling me that and I’ll  cross your name off the mailing list.

The public section of this site offers stories, many  anonymous,  telling  the raw truth about different losses.   After decades of marriage to a good husband and provider, one woman finds herself living with a spouse who suffers from the effects of a series of strokes. She cares for an  adult youngster instead of enjoying life with a brilliant man and equal partner — her husband.  How does she live with this?

A man discovers his adopted son abuses alcohol and drugs.  The father, a recovering alcoholic, now watches his son take the same destructive path that the Father  took. This man also became  the target for his son’s misdirected anger, hatred, and rage. His son doesn’t really hate his father; his son hates himself.  What’s stopping this parent from packing his bags and leaving the hellish prison his home turned into?

After his girlfriend ends their relationship, another man discovers a gift she left  him — genital Herpes.  Will he ever have sex or  find love again?

After years of suffering abuse at her father’s hands, a  woman  learns  she didn’t cause  her dad’s behavior.  He suffers from the genetic disorder Huntington’s Disease, one of the worst diseases that exist.  Now she needs to get tested to see if she inherited the gene. If she did, she’ll get the disease and everything that comes with it.  How does she deal with her potential destiny?  Can she muster the  courage to get tested?  Living the rest of her life knowing she has Huntington’s will destroy any happy moments she might have left.

The  public section of this site  offers these stories and others, and information about grief and subjects related to it.  I added content to most articles to give you something to hold when you feel like you’re free-falling in a black hole.

You’ll find current resources for problem-solving whether you need money, counseling,  shelter, or for almost any need. Our easy-to-read Privacy Policies, Disclaimers, and Code of Conduct discuss the rules for you, me, and this site to abide by.

I posted the  introduction to the book  The Grief Club:  the Secret to Getting through All Kinds of Change and the Master List of Losses checklist from it on the public side, with Hazelden’s permission. I’ll post the other chapters (except Chapter 2) in the Members Only section.  Chapter 2 covers Alzheimer’s’ Disease.  Because of Alzheimer’s pandemic nature, I posted the chapter about it on the public side to make it available to a greater number of people.

The publisher allows posting of only one chapter at a time of the book, and prohibits any downloading,  except for the checklist.  They also prohibit reading archived chapters. By agreeing to these conditions, you can read The Grief Club for free.

While there’s much for the public, there’s more for   members.  We don’t allow solicitors or harassment. We’ll keep this site  safe.   People who come here have been through enough. They’re vulnerable.  They need protection — not people trying to profit from their loss.

We do have  a small gift store open for your convenience.  It offers  a select group of  products  related to grief.  If you need a gift for someone, you can choose from one of our many floral affiliates.  We also have affiliates who carry beautiful gift baskets, books related to grief, journals, scrapbooks,  music, and movie CDs.  If certain books, songs, or movies helped you, please share that information with us.

My favorite products are the hand-made Comfort Quilts.  My sister-in-law, Pam,  makes them from the jeans of a lost loved one.  For the other materials, she uses colors and fabrics of your choosing from fabrics she knows last and work. Finally,  for people who refuse to use a cane, the Gift Shop offers Diamond Willow Walking Sticks.  The finishing touches to this unique wood are also done by Pam with the same  care she puts into everything she makes.   I link to a small website I made for her so you can meet her and my brother, Jimmy.

Workshops and classes  will take place in the chat rooms inside.  We welcome anyone willing to abide by our code of conduct to attend.  But I need you to tell me what you want to learn.  Most classes will either be free or have a nominal charge. This site’s goal is to heal, not  produce income.

You can connect to my other website from here, Help Yourself at www.MelodyBeattie.com — an umbrella site; a new site going up this week about my new release, the miracle book.  This site, at www.MelodyBeattie.org also  has information about codependency — a subject closely connected to grief. 

Please ask question, make comments,  take part in forums,  tell your story (over and over if you need to – obsession is a necessary stage of grief and  allowed  here).   We invite friends of people in grief to take part in everything we offer.  Read the articles for grieving people and articles with information that specifically applies to you, such as what not to say and how to be a supportive friend.

Over time, you’ll  learn new techniques, including how to gain control over overwhelming pain. You have the power to take a break from emotions when the grief becomes too much.  We  respect each person’s process here.  We won’t tell you how to grieve or that you’re doing it wrong or not quickly enough.  This is a place where people in pain can honestly and openly be who they are.    You’ll meet people experiencing loss like yours, and who don’t have to tell you they understand because you know they do.

Whether you’re going through a rite of passage such as empty nest syndrome, ending a relationship, or feel horrified by the effects of aging, you’re in the right place.  We’re happy to tackle controversial subjects too, such as taking pain medication for quality of life and ability to function if you’re living with intractable pain.  We’ll bring you the most well-informed and caring experts in each field as guest authors, speakers, resources, and links.  If it concerns grief, you’ll find something about it  here.  If you don’t find it, ask  and the information will soon appear.

For too long, grieving people have been the ignored  majority.  Society  likes to pretend people in pain don’t exist  or even worse, accuses them of feeling sorry for themselves or blames them for bringing their loss upon themselves .   That won’t happen here.  It’s time for people not living in the happily ever after to have a say and a place to say it.  Check us out.  This might be the  place that helps heal your heart.

We make no guarantees other than no solicitations. We don’t do professional or pop therapy.  But you’ll  find the oldest healing elixir in the world here — Unconditional Love.  Come in, try it on. See if it fits.  Whether you’re new to the grief process or you’ve walked down that road for a while, the most important thing missing from this site is you.

 

Great news for GC members. We have restored the ability to have friends and send private messages within the site. Check all of the new features now available under the “member forums” tab.

Forums and Login – this tab contains all of the member forums as well as the space to register or log in to your account

My Account – this tab has all of your account information and is the place where you can change your password, add a bio, make status updates, and upload a profile picture

My Profile – shows your profile

My Friends – this page is a list of all of your friends on the site

My Mailbox – all of your private messages are here – click on the compose a new message to send a new PM, or click on an existing message to reply

My Wall – a “Facebook” style wall where you can see the status updates of all of your friends

Member Directory – this is a list of all of the site members so that you can find and add your friends. You can also add friends from inside the forum by clicking on a posters profile and then clicking “add Friend” under their profile picture.

Friend requests – this page shows people who have requested that you be there friend

We are very excited about all the new social features and hope they will be useful to you.

735 Responses to Home

  • loulou says:

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING to everyone on the site. And thank you so much Melody for your comment about staying the the moment and for the remminder about Gratitude. I can loose site of that in an instant but a meditation I get daily from Hazelden was from The Language of Letting Go about gratitude and remaining thankful for everything even if it wasn’t what you wanted. Letting go of expectations and attachments to outcomes is the path I’m taking today. I’m grateful for everything exactly as it is and so grateful to you, Melody, and everyone who participates on this wonderful site!! Peace to all.

    • Melody Beattie says:

      Happy Thanksgiving to you, LouLou — and to all the others on this site. We may not all be experiencing the “holiday of our dreams” — but that’s where Free Will comes in. Some of us may be strong enough to practice gratitude anyway; others may just be “getting through the day.” Whatever your circumstance, may peace surround you today — the Peace that Passes All Understanding. Best, Melody

  • Denise says:

    Hello Everyone….. my heart is over whelmed with the love and encouragement you have all given me and overflowing with Gratitude for it. Thank you Melody Gwen Jan Melancholyj thank you so so much from the depths of my heart. Your words have given me strength and hope and the feeling that I am standing in the center of a circle of loving care…. I feel it ….I truly feel a sense of a peace beyond understanding. I am home for two days and going back on Friday. In the midst of all that is happening I see life as it is and the Grace of God so ever present in those on this site and in other precious souls I have recently encountered. I have a lot I need to do before I return but just had to express my deepest most heartfelt Thanks to my extended family here, Thank you and know your thoughts prayers and encouragement have made all the difference.With Loving Thoughts and Thanks to you all. Denise

    • Melody Beattie says:

      You’re so strong, Denise — and so caring. You know what you want to do; you’re accomplishing it (your goals), step by step — even the most painful of steps, you take — one at a time. Times like that, it helps me just to stay in each moment, do the best I can, be as loving, honest and straightforward as I’m capable of being — and try to stay current with my own emotions. That’s a big plateful for you, right now. But you’ve been doing it, and will continue, of that I’m sure. The thing with Grace is that it’s like breathing; we can only get it (Grace or air) for the moment (or breath) we’re in (or taking) right now. We can’t get it for things that have not yet occurred; it makes us crazy. But we will get all we need for NOW. But I’m preaching to the choir. Each of you know this as well as, or better than, I do. Stay in touch and let us know how it’s going, okay? And you do have a loving family of people here, in the virtual world. Warmest thoughts, Melody Beattie

    • Smerk says:

      I want to wish everyone here peace, grace and blessings in abundance on this Thanksgiving. I want you all to know how grateful I am for your presence here. For all of the love, understanding, support and compassion that is shown for eachother here. The holidays can be exceptionally challenging especially when you are facing grief, loss and other trying situations. I really don’t know of anyone who has that fantasy Norman Rockwell holiday experience, but I do know it’s an opportunity to focus on gratitude, offering forgiveness and striving for acceptance around what is. I’ll be praying for each and everyone here that we not only experience this on an intellectual level, but that we can actually feel it deep in our hearts. Much love. Patty

      • Melody Beattie says:

        Smerk, thank you so much. I’ve often thought about Free Will — and wondered, “How much choice do we really have?” It seems like so much of life happens to us, without our consent. But as the years have passed, I’ve come to realize that the expression of Free Will isn’t about those things that happen to us, it’s about what we’re going to do after those things happen to us — who we will strive to be and become — no matter what. May each of you find the Grace and strength to focus on the true blessings apparent in each of our lives. So much of life has an impact on us, and often in negative ways (until we sort things out). But we also have the opportunity to have an impact on life and other people, a positive one. Sometimes in comes in the form of a smile, sometimes a listening and nonjudgmental ear lent someone’s way — someone who nobody else wants to listen to anymore. May you each find the highest possible expression of Free Will on Thanksgiving (and the rest of the year that surrounds that day). Thanksgiving is still hard for me, so I try to focus on gratitude every day of the year. In that process, I’ve learned about the transformative power that honest gratitude brings. May each of you know and experience that power in your lives. If you’re still raw from something that “happened to you,” then may you experience enough Grace, strength and courage to get through Thanksgiving Day — even though everyone you love isn’t with you in body that day. Best, Melody Beattie

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