Mind over Matter


Mind over Matter
By Bernadette A. Moyer

If you don’t mind, it really doesn’t matter. It is amazing how freeing it is when you let go of what other people say and think about you. “What other people think about you is none of your business.” Paulo Coelho

What matters is what you think and feel and what you know about yourself. How we feel about ourselves shows itself in how we look, how we act and even how we react. There are many things in my life that I am most proud of and when I think of it, it isn’t about my achievements or my success but rather in all the times that I was true to myself.

I am most proud of the times when I stood up for myself and the times when I brushed off the actions and words of bullies and angry people; people that try and put their stuff on you. They want you to look bad so they can justify their own poor behaviors. It truly is mind over matter, if you don’t mind it really doesn’t matter!

During a three hour birthday celebration lunch just yesterday with my “other mother” who repeatedly told me how great I look and how beautiful I look and how happy I look, I had to smile and to laugh and to accept that I feel great! This woman has known me for over 20 years when I was her Real Estate agent. She is 80 years old and witnessed my life during some of the highest points and lowest ones too. Upon reflection, I know that I look good because I feel good because I have genuine peace in my heart and because I am surrounded by love.

The people in my circle are people that love and support me, period. I have cut out and I have deliberately cut off people and situations that cause undue drama and where I am no longer learning or growing or feeling good and happy. Life really is too short for other people’s sh –!

My most recent book Along The Way includes so many valuable lessons about life that I literally learned Along The Way, much of it was not so attractive and most of it came from the people that really should have been family and they should have been kind and loving. It just was not to be for me and for many years I struggled and I couldn’t accept it. I fought against the natural tide and the natural ebb and flow. Looking back I can see where this was a huge mistake and cost me much love and peace. I was looking for love and for acceptance in all the wrong places, looking for it outside of myself when it reality I have and I had everything I ever needed deep within myself, I always had God and a deep sense of faith. My life today is so good I want to get up and scream all about it!

I was getting in my own way of peace, love and happiness due to the unwarranted judgements of others, sad but true and truly a waste of time. I am so much bigger and better than that. For years I suffered in silence, feeling so much shame that related to my first family and later due to the untimely death of my husband, branding me a widow at 23 made me feel different than my peer group. Then later again feeling all the shame associated with abuse. I felt it so deeply and I initially took it all in and isolated myself. When the healing began I not only could speak about it but I wrote about it. This all helped me to heal. So did the thousands of connections I made with others by sharing my stories and my life experiences. Many of the most painful stories shared drew thousands of “likes” in just one platform; Facebook.

In one book Along The Way I bound all those lessons, the good, the bad, the happy and the sad. I am over it. I did the work. I grieved my losses and I moved on, parts of the book were written as far back as 1998. The entire book is past history and past lessons learned. Many people have shared with me how much my writings have helped them in their own life journey and for this I am eternally thankful.

Today I am in the midst of completing the next book titled; Another Way and it contains blogs, articles and essays that are happier and more fun and include more and different life lessons, experiences and observations. I have closed the door on all the hurtful stuff associated with my family of origin and opened the doors to much more love and peace and it shows on my face and in my heart.

Last week I turned 56 years old and I had another wonderful birthday celebrated in Las Vegas, Nevada. I have experienced so much Along The Way and today more than ever I know that there is Another Way … when things don’t go like you think they should, it really comes down to mind over matter and to seeking out a newer and better and Another Way … there is always Another Way …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

New book! ALONG THE WAY available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble

ANOTHER WAY coming out November 1, 2015


Navigating Through My Estrangement


Navigating Through My Estrangement

By Bernadette A. Moyer


It used to be considered a “silent epidemic” when estrangement took place in the family. For the most part parents were just so hurt and humiliated that they often hid it or made excuses as to where their adult children ended up.

Today more and more parents have bonded together as a result of their adult children estranging from the family. Parents no longer feel the need to hide it and are actively seeking healing and coping skills and trying to come to peace and understanding.

Through the years I have written several articles about estrangement, the most popular ones are titled P.E.A.C. E. Parents of Estranged Adult Children Everywhere, Dear Parents of Estranged Adult Children and most recently Dear Estranged Adult Children. All can be found on my website at www.bernadetteamoyer.com and you may keep up with me on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer.

This article is about sharing the many stages that go with an estrangement from an adult child. There are numerous stages and many resemble the same stages that we experience with death and the grieving process. The greatest challenge for many parents is that unlike a death, the adult child has made the choice to estrange themselves.

Let me share my experiences the last 17 years and also what I have learned and witnessed from the hundreds and hundreds of others that have communicated with me.

Stage 1 – The Battle Begins – Shock

The estrangement begins and sometimes it is a declaration of “I hate you” and “I want nothing to do with you.” And statements like “Don’t ever contact me again.” Other times it is the silent treatment with no communication at all. Messages are left, letters are written and calls are made and they all go unanswered.

At this time most parents are shocked. They can’t believe that little “Johnny” could react this way toward them. The parents begin to question themselves, their children and all the years they shared together. The overriding question “How did this happen, how did we end up here?”

Most mothers will express their grief through tears. They are so hurt. There is no deeper cut for any mother than to have the child that you loved and raised decide to reject you. All she wants is her “baby” back. Mothers and fathers begin to look at one another almost a silent look of “What did YOU do?”  Although they are looking to place blame is not communicated as such and at least not initially.

Fathers often react differently. They feel the loss but almost immediately decide to go into “survival” mode. They will look at it from every angle and decide that, “If that is the way it is, it may well be a blessing.”  My own husband immediately wanted to close ranks. He accepted it for what it was and made my health and well-being his priority. I don’t know that I could have ever survived without him and his love. It also caused him to look more closely at his own children and their actions. Things he may have chosen not to see in the past he acknowledged that he could no longer deny.

Stage 2 – Uncovering Some Ugly Truths

Few parents want to believe that their children are “liars” or “sneaky” or “sloppy” or have manipulated them. Few parents are willing to see their children through less than loving eyes until they are absolutely faced with the harsh truths.

Mothers just want the kids back; they want their family restored at all costs. Men see the danger in opening the door back up to what has already been disclosed to them.

Stage 3 – Denial This Can’t Be Happening … Not to me!

My grief was intense when my child left home in 1998. I couldn’t imagine living my life without her. I had already suffered the loss of my first husband who died and family that I was estranged from as a result of sexual abuse. I couldn’t imagine losing my daughter too. But I did. I ended up in therapy twice a week and for the first time ever I began taking antidepressant medication. She had been my reason for living and without her I felt I had no true purpose in life. Wrong, wrong and wrong but that was how I thought.

Each anniversary and each holiday and all birthdays were storms of tears and anger. How could she? How could I have meant so little to her when she meant so much to me?

Stage 4 – A Different Kind of Life

Everything changed. I changed. We moved our holidays to travel destinations and started making new traditions. Slowly but surely I began the letting go process. Her things were given to her and anything that crept up years later was given away or donated. Pictures of her began to be removed from public displays and all her photos, cards, letters and any pertinent papers were filed. She was being removed from my life bit by bit.

I would be fine years 4 and 5 and then have a complete breakdown in year 6. In the beginning I lost a lot of weight and I felt so deflated. I beat myself up pretty badly. I still had hope, I still thought she would grow up and find her heart.

Stage 5 – Coming to Acceptance  

It is over! It really is over! After 10 years in I stopped crying and I came to acceptance. This was my new normal, I was living my life without her and she was living her life without me. My husband and twins filled my life along with a career that I loved. We had many friends and beach vacations. We had peace. Life was good again.

Stage 6 – Here We Go Again!

She was in legal trouble and would strike out at me again. We had already been estranged for 13 years. I couldn’t believe she could still carry such deep seated hatred in her heart. How can you hate someone, anyone so much when you haven’t even seen them or talked to them in well over a decade? This would also be my biggest eye opener. It was also when my heart changed for good.  Now I was done. The things that she did and the things that she said were such outrageous lies but what was most telling was the degree that she could and would go to and still want to hurt me. It changed everything for me. I could finally wholeheartedly let her go. We were strangers. The daughter that I knew and the daughter that I loved and adored was long gone. I always saw her through rose-colored glasses but not anymore.

Stage 7 – I Am Whole Again!

There is no scenario on the face of this earth where I would ever welcome her back into my heart and into my life. I gave her back to God. When I could finally do this I was free. My life was mine again. I was back to enjoying everything. It was like the dark clouds lifted and peace came over me. My mother had died and my family would show themselves yet again. I could finally conclude that I was better off without them. That I had a really nice life and it wasn’t going to include them. I am softer more loving and more open but I am also so much wiser. I trusted when I should have questioned. I walked away when I should have confronted.

Today I share what I learned and I do my best to try and comfort others who are going through estrangement. I share my story I share my path so others will know that 1) you aren’t alone and 2) you can and you will survive too!

Bernadette on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

You can share your story with me at bmoyer37@aol.com
NEW BOOKS! Along The Way and Another Way are available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble