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Hi I'm Melissa Anderson

I survived child abuse. My father is a felon serving two life sentences. I'm a mother, lawyer, author, volunteer. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm a mother, an author, a lawyer, a public speaker, a child abuse survivor and I'm a Mormon. I gave birth to my sixth child three weeks before final exams my first year of law school. I took my Constitutional Law final exam while breastfeeding a newborn baby (not sure that's been done before!) and scored the highest grade in the class. I love learning. I love babies. I love writing.

Why I am a Mormon

My life wasn't always happy. I grew up in an intensely abusive and neglectful home. My father was convicted of 12 counts of child abuse including physical abuse and sexual abuse. He was even convicted of torture. He's now serving two life sentences for the abuse my siblings and I suffered as children. I'm a Mormon because I've seen how terrible life can be. I've seen pain, degradation, misery. I was constantly surrounded by grief and sadness from my earliest remembrances, losing a dear brother and watching my parents harm and demean. I've seen the hurt that comes from debilitating addictions. I wanted a family centered on love and companionship. I wanted to know that I was loved by God. In the church I have found comfort, hope. The knowledge that I will see my brother again and the hope that even people who commit the vilest offences can change and become clean. My life now is unrecognizable to the life I left at eighteen. I have my own children and a loving husband. I've been able to gain an education and I volunteer to help others in the community who are now where I was. I'm a children's book author and my own children know the confidence that comes from being raised in a loving, stable home. I'm a Mormon because I wanted a better life and came to know that despite my circumstances, I can overcome with the help of a loving Father in Heaven.

How I live my faith

I am a Court Appointed Special Advocate, teaching community members about the mindset of abused children and helping the victims of abuse to overcome their circumstances. I also participate in public speaking where I raise awareness about issues that affect the children in our community. I volunteered as a free attorney serving low income clients free of charge in family law matters dealing with abuse and neglect. On Sundays I teach young children in primary and in my own home I focus on creating warmth and kindness for my own children to grow beneath. Of all the things I've done in my life (law school, published books, public speaking engagements) the most amazing work is within my own home where my crazy, beautiful children learn and laugh and sparkle.