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, “What 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 protected, 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 we share at our meetings will be held in strict confidence”
I decided to do a re-start on my day. I was starting off on my negative attitude side and that’s not where I want my heart to be. Though I may be heart-broken, I can take the time to put a smile on my face, to try to smile and have a laugh.I can take some time to care for myself. And part of caring for myself is my hard work on Step 4.
In Step Four we realize there are areas of our lives that need attention. We also realize that we cannot see all those areas. Denial has kept us blinded to the dirt in our corners. Low self-esteem has kept us ignorant about the beauty and worth of our lives. In this step, our Higher Power comes to us as a caring friend. God opens our eyes to the weaknesses in our lives that need changing and helps us to build on our strengths.