Customer Review

270 of 278 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book has great sentimental value for me., March 29, 2002
This review is from: The Language of Letting Go: Daily Meditations for Codependents (Hazelden Meditation Series) (Paperback)
I had just read Ms. Beattie's famous/infamous "Codependent No More" and was inspired by her revolutionary ideas: I didn't have to depend on others for approval; I didn't have to base my self-worth on how helpful I was to friends; I didn't have to over-react to everything that happened in my life; I didn't have to think negatively about myself; if I didn't cause the problem then it wasn't my responsibility to fix it.

As a teenager about to enter the "real world," it seemed all I heard from others was what I was "not" doing right. I should know more than I did and be more grateful for what I have; what college did I want to attend? Why wasn't I more ambitious? What's more, I was odd for being frightened by the fact that the world as I knew it was about to fall apart when all my friends moved away to college. Apparently, if what teachers told me was any indication, life would only get more difficult as I took on the responsibilities of being an adult. Melody's book gave me something that I so desperately needed and could find nowhere else: compassion.

"Codependent No More" was so comforting that I wanted to "live" in its pages. I felt I had entered a new world, and I didn't want to leave. I wanted a way to remember everything I had learned from Melody Beattie about "owning my power" and being compassionate with myself. I wanted a way to "stay on track." I wanted a "guide," something of a daily ritual to keep myself mindful of the liberation she had introduced me to. To that end, I sent Melody Beattie a letter thanking her for her work and asking if she knew anything about "Codependents Anonymous" groups. I was honored to receive a reply, and she directed me to the national headquarters for CoDA. I began to go to the meetings at the now closed "Journey's Bookstore" in Beaverton, Oregon, and that is where I found this book, "The Language of Letting Go". These meditations helped keep me focused on what I had learned, and the meetings allowed me to share what I had learned. And this all enabled me to do what I had wanted: "live" in the pages of Melody's compassion.

Melody is a poet. These meditations are not "scientific" or technical, and they are not even really "meditations" per se - they are more daily reminders, notes from Melody, on how to find happiness within oneself, and how to be compassionate with oneself when such happiness seems impossible. There is no "fancy" language that will necessitate a dictionary, and no unattainable goals are suggested. There are no come-ons to suggest that your life will not be complete unless you buy her other books. These meditations feel like letters from a friend, a friend who enjoys her life and is happy to share her personal insights and situations she has learned from; that is one of the most enjoyable things about this book, the personal stories Melody shares. There is no "finger pointing" in this book. I very faithfully read one meditation per day during the remainder of my last year of High School, and it made life bearable and gave me hope that things would get better (they did). The underlying message of this book could be: breathe, smile, relax, let go.

If you are looking for a structured way to practice what you have learned from Melody's other books, I would recommend these meditations.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 11, 2011 9:44:26 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Sep 11, 2011 9:46:20 PM PDT]

Posted on Sep 11, 2011 9:45:23 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Sep 11, 2011 9:45:49 PM PDT]

Posted on Sep 11, 2011 9:45:30 PM PDT
Janet Bartoo says:
The phrase "breathe, smile, relax, and let go" seem almost impossible for me as I have tried to control the behavior of my husband for 45 yrs and my daughter for almost 40 years...as they are very passive and non-motivated people. I felt as though for anything to get done, I had to do what they wouldn't do. I was always saying to myself, I feel like I'm raising two 12 year olds, because I was the one always having to tell them what had to be done.
I'm now in the process of separating my my husband as he doesn't like to be told what or how to do anything. So our relationship turned into one yelling match after another. I know that I am a co-dependent as I always felt as though it were my "duty" to try and fix everything without any support from my family.
So here I am living with my sister in a different state from my husband and daughter because I couldn't take it anymore.

Posted on Jul 16, 2014 6:57:29 PM PDT
I don't know if you'll ever read this Andrew, because you wrote your comment about 12 years ago...and you are no longer a teenager. I was moved to tears by what you wrote. I am a mom of a lovely pre-teen and lately recognizing how codependent I am with him - especially now that he doesn't need me directing him as he did perhaps a few years ago (if indeed he ever needed 'directing!' lol. Anyway, I just wanted to say 'thank you' for your words. I was really touched and it reminded me of how my child might feel. By the way, it seemed to me that you were so connected to and fluent about your feelings and incredibly astute (that you needed compassion), that I figured you'd do well in the world. ('Well' meaning that you'd define what 'well' meant for you, not what others decided was 'well'). I hope that became true. Thank goodness for Melody Beattie's books and CODA (codependents anonymous groups). God bless you. A 'recovering codependent' Mom.
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Andrew Parodi
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Location: Oregon, United States

Top Reviewer Ranking: 599