I’ve been thinking about anonymity and all the different meanings it has had for me over the years in AA. At first, all it meant was that no one would know I was in AA, therefore an alcoholic. I was fearful about judgment and the stigma I attached, thinking it meant I was weak and/or defective.
After making amends and telling people I was in AA, I lost most of that fear. I have never has anything negative happen because someone knew I was a sober alcoholic.
In meetings and with sponsors I began to see anonymity in a different way. It had more to do with humility and my growing love for AA. I wanted to adhere to the traditions and respect the idea of being anonymous at any public level. I am not much of a social media person, but I think it is an area where many people question the bounds of being an anonymous member of AA.
Today anonymity means that I don’t disclose my membership in AA in any public way. I was on a vacation in Italy last month and the wine flowed. I was careful about alcohol (it was in desserts) and some people noticed that I didn’t drink. I’m careful in those situations because I’m never sure if it makes people uncomfortable. When I do disclose it, it’s always fine, but I hesitate to be totally transparent.
I wonder how others understand anonymity and how/when to share being in AA with strangers, in social media, in various groups, etc.