(This post is directed toward the individual’s personal anonymity, not groups.)
The reason for an individual in recovery to remain anonymous is not to keep their identity hidden from those inside recovery, but to keep the outside world unaware of their need for recovery. Some reasons are legitimate.
Keeping your identity hidden in recovery is important to some. For me personally, I would have went on national TV and admitted I was a drunk. I wanted to be free from the daily insanity that enslaved me. I didn’t care who knew I was attending AA. Everyone knew I drank, I didn’t hide it. People like me don’t care if others know they drink. They do care that people find out they need help from too much drinking, too weak to stop on their own. Pride keeps many chained on their tumble to the bottom.
Anonymity can keep our ability to help others confined within our particular circle of influence. We may help people in meetings we attend. That is great. But if your best friend’s child has an addiction, we can easily turn a deaf ear to their desperation, fearing everyone finding out that they are in recovery. So do you let their child die in their addiction? Do you offer help?
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a candle and hide it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matt. 5:14-16 ESV
All of us in recovery, whether you consider yourself recovered or in recovery, have been given great light. Should we conceal it? There are individuals that must do so. But from personal experience, and from other’s experiences, we regularly receive opportunities to help the addicted find the light, and get on the path to life, not death.
What will people think? That concern has led many to an untimely spot in the cemetery. I once talked to a woman whose daughter was attending AA. Drinking was killing her. The woman actually told me she talked her daughter out of attending, fearing what people may think. Wow.
“The fear of man brings a snare. But whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.” Prov.29:25 NKJV
You are one of nearly seven billion people on the Earth. Don’t feel you are a unique person, unlike the rest, you aren’t. Your being honest carries much more weight than quietly getting free and being so self-diluted of your popularity that you let someone lose everything or die to keep the reputation you think you have intact. You don’t have to blab to everyone. Just don’t let opportunity to give help pass you by.
Would you be willing to tell your deepest, darkest secret; if you knew someone’s life may be saved?
Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all.