Why Anonymity Sucks: An Anonymous Perspective
No One Can Pronounce Anonymity
It’s f**king impossible to say. No one ever says anonymity right in meetings! Ammanitiittty? Anomaniny? We’ve all tried and failed. Yeah, admit it, you have, too.
Even now, as I’m writing, spellcheck keeps putting the little red line below that stupid word. Oh, wait, it just shot a popup saying, “Stop, you obviously can’t spell. Just stop!”
Before I get into a bunch of other reasons, I want you to know that my number one, absolute, biggest reason for hating annonimity (f**k, did it again) is grammar and pronunciation.
Anonymity Kills People
Okay, moving on, anonymity sucks because it kills people. Yep, I said it – anonymity kills people. I’m sure you’re asking yourself, “What’s this crazy person mean?” Well, I’m happy to tell you.
Bill W. and Dr. Bob founded AA and it worked very well. It worked extremely well, in fact. AA isn’t a cure for alcoholism, it’s better than a cure. It changes lives. It changed my life.
I’m a much better person for having found AA. Think about it, if I’d just stopped drinking and never came into recovery, I’d just be a basic b***h from upstate New York.
Today, I’m a mature, honest woman. I lead by example. AA made me who I am, yet it remains anonymous! My life was flipped and turned upside down! My disease is in remission, yet no one is supposed to know how that happened. Are you kidding me?!
“This just in to NBC Nightly News. Two men in Ohio cured cancer. We can’t tell you how they did it, because they’re calling it Cancer Anonymous. For more info on how to save your life from cancer, find someone who used to have cancer and ask how you can get involved with Cancer Anonymous. You better hurry though, cancer kills fast.”
How f**king stupid does that sound?
Bill W. famously quipped that if he could change anything in the Big Book, he’d change the line, “Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path” to “NEVER have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path.”
If AA works so goddamn awesome, why’d you make it anonymous, Bill? Why’d you make it so hard to find? If we applied this anonymity clause to cancer, the government would swoop in and stop it right away!
Now, I’m not saying we should put up giant billboards saying “AA SAVED MY LIFE.” No, I’m saying put up giant billboards saying “AA SAVED MY LIFE, NEXT MEETING IN FIVE MILES ON THE LEFT, ADMISSION IS FREE.” Tell me that wouldn’t work! You can’t, because it totally would work!
Anonymity Breeds Hypocrisy
AA members are fond of saying we’re only as sick as our secrets. Still, AA wants us to keep our recovery a secret! AA wants me to keep my biggest accomplishment, the thing that saved my life, a secret?! Yeah, right, I’ll get right on that.
If I’m only as sick as my secrets, well, I guess I’m sick right now. Well, if I’m sick right now, I don’t want to be well! The last three and a half years have blown my mind. I wish I could tell you more, but you know, anonymity. Plus, I’m pretty sure Dr. Bob would haunt me in my sleep.
Anonymity Hides Our Success Rate
Know how many people have achieved and stayed sober through AA? No, you don’t? Me neither. Not one single person can find an accurate number or statistic, because of motherf**king anonymity!
Have you ever seen those Passages Malibu commercials? Yeah, we all have. That guy Pax says, “This is not a twelve-step program. This works.” Well, Pax is wrong. Still, we can’t offer evidence to prove him wrong! Know why?, because anonymity has handcuffed our statistics!
Those people who scream and cry that AA doesn’t work haven’t worked the steps. Those quiet people in the back of the room, who say nothing about how well AA works, they’ve worked the steps. So, they remain silent and others die.
Look, I get it, anonymity was important and crucial. In today’s culture, though? In today’s culture, anonymity hurts way more people than it helps.
AA shouldn’t charge money or have spokespeople. It should get out from the shadows, though! It should make itself more available to those who need it. It should let people know that it works 100% of the time, if you follow the steps.
The only way, in my humble opinion, to accomplish this is by getting rid of anonymity.