Melissa Etheridge Says Music Helped Her Cope with Son's Death: 'It's Got Me Through Everything'

"There's something about singing, something about opening the soul, it's got me through everything," the Grammy Award-winning singer told Good Morning America

Melissa Etheridge
Melissa Etheridge and Beckett. Photo: Melissa Etheridge and Beckett

Melissa Etheridge is sharing how music has been her guiding light since her son Beckett's death from an overdose in May.

In her first live television interview since losing her son two months ago, Etheridge, 59, spoke to Robin Roberts on Good Morning America about how she has coped with the heartbreaking loss.

"Time does heal. It's only been a couple of months, but I've been very busy and made myself very busy," the Grammy Award-winning singer shared. "You go one day at a time. You get through the grief and you get to the healing."

Etheridge also discussed how music has helped her to heal, revealing, "There's something about singing, something about opening the soul, it's got me through everything. So many people throughout my life said, 'Your music got me through this, your music got me through that.' And I now am using my music to get me through this."


The songstress noted one track in particular that has helped amid her heartbreak, a song that she wrote after her father died back in the '90s titled, "Talking to My Angel."

"That was about connecting to those who have passed to the non-physical," Etheridge said. "I've been talking to my angel and he says that it's all right. It's a way of self-soothing that I can draw on."

Etheridge has also launched Etheridge TV, a program that features live concerts and "chat shows" from her own home garage studio.

"It's a way to connect to people. It's, of course, healing for me -- but mostly to connect with my fans," she said. "Because all over, we are isolated and it's starting to get hard on us. It's one thing that I think contributed to Beckett's passing that he had nowhere to go. He couldn't get on his skateboard and go to the skateboard park. There are people who are still suffering and I want to give them relief in this crazy world that we are in right now."

Melissa Ethridge
Melissa Ethridge and son Beckett. Peter Brooker/Shutterstock

On May 13, Etheridge revealed on social media that her 21-year-old son had died from opioid addiction when she shared the news in an emotional Twitter post.

Now the "Come to My Window" crooner also revealed that she "can't help to feel responsible" for her son — who was first introduced to painkillers after he broke his ankle during a snowboarding incident — but notes that she did "everything she can."

"As a parent, you know your children have their own lives and make their own choices -- but you just can't help to feel responsible, of course, for them," she said. "When you see one start to struggle, you go through so many things. You go through the, 'What can I do to help them?' You go through the, 'Wait, I'm doing too much, I don't want to enable this.' They need to find themselves, they need to fall to get back up."

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Etheridge is also ready to bring awareness to the dangers of drug use and addiction and honor her son and his life by helping to fund research programs through the Etheridge Foundation.

"I'm very intense about raising funds for research into what we can do with this disease," Etheridge said. "This scourge that takes so many of our young people every day."

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact the SAMHSA substance abuse helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

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