Regardless of our fellowship, we respect the anonymity of others. Many people would not come to meetings if this weren’t the case. They want to keep their membership in the fellowship on a need to know basis. For them, public knowledge of their membership in the fellowship might jeopardize their career, personal relationships or standing in the community.
On the other hand, many of us are not concerned with others finding out about our alcohol, drug or food addiction. In fact, at times we are quite open about it. The majority of us break our anonymity when we feel that it might benefit someone who is not yet in our program. We “try to carry the message” to others who are still sick and suffering.
This is a wonderful service that is being performed when we do so. There is one proviso however. Once we have broken our anonymity, we have become a public representative of AA, NA, OA or any other fellowship we belong to. As such, our behavior and actions must reflect the highest ideals of the program. If we identify ourselves as being a program person and then act inappropriately, the repercussions can be quite serious. It might delay or even prevent someone from entering the fellowship. This can be a life or death decision which we have influenced.
Personal Reflection: Am I a good advertisement for my fellowship?