Endigar 827

From Courage to Change of April 03;

Many of us resisted coming to Al-Anon because we didn’t want anyone to know about our problems. We feared that our boss or our friends would find out, or that it would get back to the alcoholic.

These fears accompanied me to my first Al-Anon meeting. To my horror, just as I sat down one of my neighbors walked into the room and sat down across from me. What could I do now? Run?

In the midst of my panic, I noticed a sign on the table that said, “Whom you see here, what you hear here, when you leave here, let it stay here.” And on the wall I saw a banner with the Traditions, one of which said that anonymity is Al-Anon’s spiritual foundation! I stayed for the meeting, but I still worried.

My neighbor never said a word to anyone. In time I began to trust that it was safe to get the help I so desperately needed, because the only one who would ever mention my membership in Al-Anon was me. To this day, I am confident that my anonymity was and always will be proacted, and my gratitude is beyond measure.

Today’s Reminder

Unless I protect the anonymity of all members, Al-Anon will not be a safe place for any of us.

“Our free expression–so important to our recovery–rests on our sense of security, knowing that what we share at our meetings will be held in strict confidence.” ~ Al-Anon Spoken Here

 

END OF QUOTE—————————————

Protective anonymity allowed me to enter the rooms of 12 Step recovery free from the ignorant judgment of “normal” people. How do I explain addiction with its direct and indirect impact to the non-afflicted, when I am struggling to understand it myself? Protective anonymity bought me time to expand my small windows of sanity into a productive embrace of life.

Then that protection turned into a foundation of personal transformation. This was the development of spiritual anonymity. For me, the spiritual skill of stepping away from the obsessive need to control the world around me and to trust others to the work of their own Higher Power has been the foundation of confidence through serenity.

It is an ongoing process.

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