SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse

I’m Mickie Zada and I lived in abuse…for 34 years…from age 19 until I was 53. I believe we create our realities, and I chose to stay in a damaging relationship for so long because I thought it was my Calling. I was wrong. I changed me. I am now an enthusiastic participant in Life. “The words ‘I am’ are potent words; be careful what you hitch them to. The thing you’re claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you.” A.L. Kitselman I am a strong woman, a fabulous woman, over 60 years old. I am a Change-agent. I am an encourager. I am uniquely qualified to speak to living in abuse, getting out and surviving to the fullest extent. I know what it takes. I know the fear. I am a survivor. I am a coach. I am happy to have these “I Am” words to reach back and claim me! The actions I teach and share are those that I’ve learned in my Journey from choosing to live in abuse to choosing to create my authentic life; safe, sound, Real. I invite you to read through this web page. Think about who I Am. Read blogs, listen to some podcasts, watch live videos. Do we connect? I am open and exposed. Choose to reach out to me or not. What I know for sure is that I lived the life of abuse, and got out, and I’ve thrived, to serve as a beacon to other women. If you live in abuse, or you’ve recently escaped, it’s my Mission to support and encourage you to choose and live a healthy life. The materials, the tools, the support is here. It’s your responsibility to grab hold and change yourself, from the in-side out.
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SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse






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Now displaying: 2018
Dec 26, 2018

Dr. Wayne Dyer described life changing perception the best I’ve ever read:  When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change!

Today you are at a milestone in your Life.  Today, choose to change the way you look at things.

Doing the same things over and over, expecting different results is what? Some people say it’s insanity.  I say it’s a victim state of mind.  We can whine and cry, be angry and feel drained.  We can “wonder why” our lives are “like this” when others are happy, thriving and enjoying life.  Yet, we keep doing the same things: re-acting to stimuli in our lives, embracing the emotions of fear and re-acting in anger. Over and over and over.  

Today you are at milestone in your Life.  This new thought is revolutionary:  YOU are in control of your life!

You’ve come so far!  You left your abuser!!  You are a survivor, a victor not a victim.  

You have the power to change your mind-set, change how you look at things, create the life you love.  

No matter how long you’ve been out of abuse, these 3 steps will empower you to choose a new direction.

Listen to more podcasts, watch live videos, read blog posts, and contact Mickie on her web page:

Join her online Facebook community at SHATTERPROOF Thriving After Domestic Abuse

Dec 19, 2018

Aimee Cabo’s life is a testament to the power of honesty, love, belief, faith and survival.

At age 15, she was part of what the Miami media dubbed "The Case from Hell"—a sexual abuse case that pitted her parents against her and her sister. Beaten daily by her Mother, it’s no wonder she was attracted to abusive partners.

To this day, Aimee credits her faith in God and the love of her support network for getting her through.

Years later, she would need that same faith and love when her daughter was brutally beaten into a coma. Her daughter's against-the-odds recovery alone is enough to restore your faith, but set in the context of this incredible family's life, it is even more moving.

Contact Aimee on Facebook at God is the Cure, which is also the name of her first book, available on Amazon and in bookstores across the Country.

Dec 12, 2018

Like the fact or not, each of us has a life pattern, some “program” deep in our brain that creates our attraction to abusers.  My lesson, my program, was “Anything the boys did was OK.” 

 Practically from the time my first brother was born (I was 15 months old), I was taught that males were granted more leigh way, were not held to the same levels of responsibility as girls and could do whatever they wanted to…while girls made excuses for their poor choices and negative behavior.  My parents did not program me and my sisters that way to cause us problems:  Our training was to protect our brothers, who had learning disabilities.

Thus, the stage was set to continue my life as a co-dependent enabler of men’s damaging behavior toward me.  I stayed in domestic abuse for 34 years, always believing it was my Mission to keep my abuser between the lines.

I was wrong.  It took many years and a lot of personal growth to embrace that Truth.  I was 53 and had allowed myself to be worn away. I was 53 when I embraced the fact that I didn’t know who I was, what I thought, what I wanted in life.  I did the work to change:  If we don’t change, nothing changes.

Not only did I discover Me, I created my own name in which I anchored my new Being.  My Truth was finally set free, the culmination of which is this podcast and my business: Surviving Abuse Network

Dec 5, 2018

Traumatized by molestation when she was a youngster, raped when she was 18 and then choosing a violently abusive partner, Amber Elizabeth had a lot to overcome.

But, overcome she did!  And now she is the leader of a group of women who also are dealing with the results and agony of moving forward in their lives after abuse.

How has she made the transition from abused victim to thriving and vocal leader?  Self work…personal growth… and dedication to applying the lessons she learned.

Contact Amber by friending her on Facebook.  Request to join her private page, Breaking Free:

Nov 28, 2018

Executive Producer of the film “The Last Time”, author of Authentic Me: a Story of Strength, Perseverance and Faith, a keynote speaker, and an employment law attorney and legal advocate for increased awareness of domestic violence, my guest is Tiffany

Nov 21, 2018

After her third marriage spiraled into violence and ended in divorce, Beverly Wilkinson had an epiphany.  She realized the common denominator in her abusive relationships was herself!  She had a vision for a life of value, dignity and worth.  She also had the dogged persistence to see THAT life come to fruition.

Born and raised on a cotton field in Mississippi, Beverly endured physical and emotional abuse through most of her developmental years.  In 1991 she escaped Mississippi, with 3 young children in tow.   They took a Greyhound bus to Seattle where she and her children were homeless for a while, living in a shelter until she could find permanent housing.

Today Beverly is a speaker, blogger, author and storyteller!  She shares with us the challenges she faced, her 6-year process of changing her life and how she clung to and created the healthy, safe, joyful life she knew was her destiny.

Beverly may be reached at:
Instagram:  dressedupoutside
Facebook: dressed up on the outside, but messed up on the inside

Nov 21, 2018

After her third marriage spiraled into violence and ended in divorce, Beverly Wilkinson had an epiphany.  She realized the common denominator in her abusive relationships was herself!  She had a vision for a life of value, dignity and worth.  She also had the dogged persistence to see THAT life come to fruition.

Born and raised on a cotton field in Mississippi, Beverly endured physical and emotional abuse through most of her developmental years.  In 1991 she escaped Mississippi, with 3 young children in tow.   They took a Greyhound bus to Seattle where she and her children were homeless for a while, living in a shelter until she could find permanent housing.

Today Beverly is a speaker, blogger, author and storyteller!  She shares with us the challenges she faced, her 6-year process of changing her life and how she clung to and created the healthy, safe, joyful life she knew was her destiny.

Beverly may be reached at:
Instagram:  dressedupoutside
Facebook: dressed up on the outside, but messed up on the inside

Nov 14, 2018

As professional women we are strong in our careers as entrepreneurs, CEOs, attorneys and doctors; proficient, well-skilled women.  At work we live in our power.

When we lived in abuse, that powerful person morphed into someone else.  The emotional, financial and physical abuse at home caused us to abandon our business power…we changed into someone else.  Someone our abuser created.

Now that we are out of abuse, we have the option to create our authentic lives 24/7/365.  We have the choice to stay in that condo we created in Victimhood or ebb and flow into who we were created to be.  A strong woman in all phases of our lives.

Professional women over 50 is a niche of domestic abuse that is underserved.  Much support and inspiration are available for younger women.  Those of us who are professional women, who are over 50 AND who lived in domestic abuse … we are overlooked.

Mickie owned golf courses with her former husband.  She lived a privileged life.  She shares her experience and process in embracing her authentic self after leaving her abuser.  She was 53:  No longer a “spring chicken”. Her transformation and growth experiences are real and achievable. And, it continues! She is morphing her business from Surviving Abuse Network to Shatterproof Thriving After Domestic Abuse.

Mickie shares ideas for you to live in your power, too…you’ve got this!

Oct 31, 2018

My guest is Rosie Aiello.  History is being made today on Surviving Abuse Podcast.  It’s the first time I’ve hosted two guests…and it’s the first time I’ve had the opportunity to gain the perspective of domestic abuse from a child who lived it.  Rosie is joined today by her daughter, Sunny.  Yes, she’s the daughter who plead with her Mom…”get me away from my abusive father.”

Learn more at


Oct 24, 2018

Abigail Manning is an Awareness Coach who speaks, writes, and conducts workshops on Authentic Health, which defines abuse as repeated mistreatment. Having experienced childhood abuse by both parents and domestic violence as an adult, she combines firs-hand experience with five years of intensive research on abuse and mental health. 

With a light-hearted, empathetic approach, Abigail creates awareness and moves all forms of abuse out of the silent darkness where they start and thrive, into the colorful light of mainstream conversation.

Learn more about Abigail at

Oct 17, 2018

My guest escaped the abyss of abuse through pinpoints of light.  Her analogy is being in a pitch-black cave, when a tiny pinpoint of light is seen…and it grows…and leads us out of the darkness. It’s a perfect metaphor for our journey into, through and out of the abyss of abuse.

My guest is April Tribe Giauque.  She is a Mother to nine children, an author, a teacher and a coach.  She also shares her amazing story of living in abuse, escaping with five children in tow, and creating a safe, happy, healthy life after her escape.

The other person in April’s marriage was a huge surprise to me.  John was her abuser’s business partner.  He made family decisions and controlled all the money. Her husband talked with John on the phone.  He met John at work sites. “John” was her schizophrenic husband’s alter ego.

Don’t miss this inspiring and insightful conversation.  

Listeners may learn more about April at

April’s book, Pinpoints of Light; Escaping the Abyss of Abuse is available on Amazon.

Oct 10, 2018

Feeling silly in this episode… a cute analogy of life being like popping popcorn.

When we pop popcorn, we have to make decisions…timing of our decisions is important, or we’ll burn it, right?

You’ve got to listen to the kernels pop, paying attention until the popping is far apart, and you have to stop the microwave before the popcorn burns.

Just like life, we have to keep our eyes and ears open to the opportunities in front of us.  We have to be patient and time our decisions as best we can.

Life is like a bag of popcorn…much more like life than I ever considered before!

Oct 3, 2018

Like many of us, Justine said a lot the early signs of abuse were just missed.  Her guy was her Russian tutor…he was exotic, charming, bright and caring. Those are the traits she chose to pay attention to.  She was a young college student, 19 and vulnerable.

Justine Wentzell transformed from domestic abuser to an advocate for survivors.  Her book, Pocket Full of Dreams, is available on Amazon .  Her You Tube Channel is called “Tea with Justine” and it falls under her blog, “Love, Justine.”

A busy woman, for sure.  High energy, enthusiastic about creating the life she loves, and helping inspire and encourage women on the path to healing and recovery from domestic abuse.  Meet Justine Wentzell.

Sep 26, 2018


“Hello, I as Suzanna.  I’m too Emotional.  I’m also too Sensitive, too Needy.  I’m Incapable. Unqualified.  I’m Like a Sailor (if I cuss). Life a Virgin (when I play innocent). Like a Whore (when I play).  I’m often Mistaken and very often Wrong…unless I’m right, then I’m Out of Line.  Then I Have it Coming.”

My guest is Suzanna Quintana.  The words above resonate with me…you, too?  We can’t do anything right…and when we do, we are out of line, aggressive, we “have it coming”.

Suzanna is a writer, abuse survivor, women’s advocate, feminist and single Mother of 3 boys.  She serves as a guiding voice to those ready to escape their pain and claim their space in the Light of freedom.

Want more information?

Sep 19, 2018

Who is Mickie Zada?  What is Surviving Abuse Network?   We are part of a growing wave of change…Join us in refusing to accept status quo!

Women are not equal in lots of places…but especially not in many of our homes and, certainly, not in the court system.  Do you know that 70% of abusers manage to come out ahead in our court system today?!?

The goal of Surviving Abuse Network is to bring the reality of domestic abuse out of the closet and on to center stage.

Equally as important is making it clear to those of us attracted to abusers, if we don’t change, nothing changes.

I am not victim blaming.  I lived in domestic abuse for 34 years.  I don’t blame myself for that.  

Our attraction to abusers is the result of a lesson, a pattern that was programed into my brain when we were kids.  The programmed pattern controls our thought process, our emotions.  It tells us that abuse is normal.

When I identified that programmed pattern in my own mind, I was able to deal with it and eliminate my attraction to abusers.  You are able to do that, too.

Learn more about programed patterns, hard wired lessons that affect our lives and we don’t even know they are there.   

Why I do not accept status quo and how Surviving Abuse Network challenges the current norm?  I am traveling to the beat of a different drum, just like you! 

Here’s the fact:  Domestic abuse affects 1 in 3 women in the United States.  1 in 3!  

Domestic abuse is real, and we don’t have to live with it!

Sep 12, 2018

My guest says, in person and on her website, “I want to put a stop to survivors of abuse feeling broken, unfixable and absolutely frustrated because it seems nothing they do is helping. Honestly, it really pisses me off when survivors are not able to have the lives and relationships they deserve. Whenever I hear stories of survivors giving up, falling deeper and deeper into despair, or worse, being further traumatized by people who are supposed to help, I get so upset. It also reminds me of my past and how excruciating life was for twenty plus years.”

“I was definitely convinced that there was no way out of the pain, constant instability, and feeling of worthlessness. It sucked, but I found a way out and I would love to support you in doing that as well.” 

Rachel Grant is the owner and founder of Rachel Grant Coaching and is a Sexual Abuse Recovery Coach. She is also the author of Beyond Surviving: The Final Stage in Recovery from Sexual Abuse

She brings to the table a passionate belief that her clients do not have to remain trapped or confronted daily by the thoughts or behaviors that result from abuse. Through her own journey of recovery from sexual abuse, she has gained insight and understanding about what it takes to overcome abuse. This makes it possible for her to relate to and appreciate your struggles intimately. 

Learn more about Rachel and download her free checklist, “3 Stages of Recovery”, go to

Sep 5, 2018

He swept her off her feet, even bought her a house with a big back yard for her two lovely daughters.  She believed she had fallen deeply in love with an ideal partner.

On the first day of their honeymoon, he grabbed her hand, squeezed it very hard and said “Now that you are my wife, you will do as you’re told, how you’re told and when you’re told.”  The relationship deteriorated quickly.  A few months later she literally ran for her life.

Susan Ball used her traumatic domestic abuse experience as the impetus for her transformation into coaching women who have experienced, or are experiencing, domestic abuse.  Her company is called Empowered Her.  She believes every woman can heal from domestic abuse.

Blog posts, additional coaching information and a free ebook titled “5 Ways to Love Yourself Courageously Enough to Walk Away” are available on her website

Aug 29, 2018

My guest, Christen Sacco, is a shining beacon of Light for women treading the darker paths of Life.  She is proof positive that we can make different choices, that we do create our realities and when we decide we deserve better, our lives will change.

At 20 years old she had quit college because she was pregnant.  With a 5 month old infant, feeling like she had no marketable skills, and her abuser telling her there was no chance she could make it on her own (and that no one would want her with a young baby in tow), she struck out on her own.

Christen worked full time, went back to college to earn a business degree and was an active, loving, caring Mom to her son.  It wasn’t easy.  She says, “If I can do this, anyone can!  Don’t give up!”

Fifteen years later, Christen is a motivator, writing a book about domestic abuse and actively speaking out to bring the epidemic of domestic abuse from of the dark crevices of silence onto center stage.

She can be followed on Instagram (Christen Sacco), through her blog at, and on Facebook (Christen Starr Sacco).

Aug 15, 2018

Oh, how often I thought that, while living in abuse; “I am never going to be good enough!”

Gia is open, honest, raw and descriptive of her abuser’s behavior toward her.  She is the same about her actions, doing everything she could not to incite his anger, fury, dangerous actions toward her.  Walking on eggshells.  Living in fear.

She tells us how she tried so hard to love him enough, to not say things that would make him angry, to be home immediately after work, to leave work when he demanded she do so.  

She describes his unreasonable accusations, how he threatened a friend with a gun, how she finally realized she could not live that way any longer.

Then she encountered a judge who would not allow mention of domestic abuse.  The judge refused any evidence or police reports and gave their child’s abusive Dad equal shared custody, without supervision.

Gia’s is a horrific, and not uncommon, story.  Listen to this strong woman’s description of her life in abuse, and how she is now creating a safe place to share her story…to speak her Truth!

If you have questions or would like to host Gia on your podcast, she can be reached at

Aug 8, 2018

Mother, wife, family law attorney, business owner, woman rights advocate and philanthropist are a few of the hats Rania Arwani wears.

Her goal is to educate women in abusive relationships to identify the signs of abuse and motivate them to speak up for themselves and their children.

Rania has domestic abuse in her past; tragic, violent abuse.  She endured a long and costly battle for custody of her children and embraced her Mission to become an attorney and help other women the way here attorneys helped her.  With her family in Dubai, Rania entered law school in Florida, a single mother of two young children. Thankfully her sister was able to come stay with Rania in the States, but those were stressful, difficult, traumatic years.  Her dedication paid off.

This episode is the first time Rania has spoken her Truth publicly.  I am proud that she chose Surviving Abuse Podcast for this special occasion!

After listening to this podcast, you may contact Rania Arwani through her web site, or call her office at 407-254-0060.  If you are looking for legal assistance in divorce or child custody issues, Rania’s website offers a free 15-minute consultation.

Aug 1, 2018

A Hijackal® is a person who hijacks relationships, for their own purposes, while scavenging them for power, status, and control.

Hijackals® make you question your sanity and constantly second-guess yourself.  That’s their game … and they are very good at it!  They play to win … at any cost.

Sound familiar?  Of course!

My guest is Dr. Rhoberta Shaler and she coined the word Hijackal®.  Her Mission is helping people identify emotional abuse and learn that there is a safer, saner, better world available. Dr. Shaler discusses the fact that there are reasons we are attracted to, and are attractive to, abusers and that there is choice involved in embracing our freedom from their control.

Listen to this fascinating discussion about Hijackals® ; who they are and what’s really going on in the crazy-making relationships in your life.

Learn more about Dr. Rhoberta Shaler at  Her YouTube channel is For Relationship Help and her podcasts on iTunes and all the other popular podcast channels are Emotional Savvy and Save Your Sanity.  On her web site you can access her online television show, Emotional Savvy, and subscribe to her newsletter.  When you’re ready, Dr Shaler is available for online counseling, around the world!

Jul 25, 2018

People often see the victim of narcissistic abuse as “crazy” and full of fear and doubt.  The narcissist shows up cool, calm and collected.  Right?

Why is that?

Because the narcissist has the ability to make their victims responsible for any and every negative thing.  Even things they make up…using our words!  They convince us we are crazy.  They convince us we are the abusers!  They separate realities and stay calm, while the light us on fire.

You are not, and were not, crazy.  You were abused.

Now it’s our choice to change our perspective, to accept that building our own safe, happy and authentic live is OUR responsibility.  The abuse was real.  We did not deserve it.  We did not ask for it or enjoy it.  Now it’s our choice to use that experience to grow, and to help ourselves and others heal.  

Jul 18, 2018

There are two statements I make that some people take personally…statements that they feel are demeaning and insensitive to women who have live in domestic abuse.

I disagree.

The statements are:  “If we don’t change, nothing changes” and “When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.”  A third one attracted the ire of a couple of my community members, too: “You don’t attract who you want.  You attract who you are.”

Each of those statements addresses victims of domestic abuse.  The people who attack those statements feel that they are blaming victims, saying they are responsible for being in abusive situations, want to be abuse, or somehow deserving.

Absolutely Not!

I use my own experience in this podcast to explain my position and opinion.  Like most victims of domestic abuse, I was conditioned as a kid to accept negative behavior by males as acceptable, OK, my lot in life.  Not because an adult was abusive.  Because my brothers were dyslexic and were allowed to behave unacceptably.  My sisters and I were taught to accept the boy’s negative behavior.  That led to abusive marriages…for me and every one of my sisters.

Sound far fetched to you?  Listen and tell me what you think.

I am Mickie Zada, the CEO of Surviving Abuse Network.  Please check out my web site at

Jul 11, 2018

For 22 years, Chandra Bachu knew what it was like to live in domestic abuse. She tried to escape; staying in shelters three different times, but without money saved, she returned home….to daily abuse.

She said, “I was looking for my way out and didn’t get it.  I gave up and stayed because I wanted my kids to sleep on a bed, go to school, and we would not have to fear for our lives, because it would be worse if we left.”

After many years volunteering with Cynthia Pinkney Ministries, she now spends her time helping to give families a new beginning through her organization: A Red Rose Foundation, Inc.

Certainly a like-minded woman, she is quoted online saying
“I believe nothing happens by coincidence.  Taking a mess and turning it into a message is what life is about. Giving a mom hope for a new beginning can impact the rest of her life and her children.  Environment changes people. Our goal is changing the next generation by helping mom; we are creating a new life for these kids,” 

Learn more about Chandra Bachu and her organization, A Red Rose Foundation, Inc. at


Jul 4, 2018


You are creating your own reality…so am I!  How do we do that?  We gather information, embrace what resonates with us and apply that lesson to our lives.

No one has your exact experience.  No one lived the exact same abuse that you did.  No one stayed for the same reasons you did…and no one left for the same reasons, either.

Many, many women have lived in abuse.  Many, many women have chosen to create wonderful, safe and healthy lives after leaving abuse. Listen to them, ask questions, learn what they have to teach…and know that your Path will be different.

Why?  Nobody else’s footsteps lead exactly where you’re going!

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