The Choice of Near-Anonymity

I’m struggling with anonymity today. I’ve written previously that I’ve chosen to remain generally anonymous on the blog as well as through my Twitter feed in an effort to avoid causing any hurt towards some others. While the name I use here is a part of my real name, it isn’t what I go by in the real world and I want so desperately to share that and more with all of the fine people I’ve been connecting with in these new spaces. I didn’t expect to find such a supportive and truly amazing group of folks in this social media recovery space, and I am thankful for every single one of you. I’ve always been active on social media, but never in this way and it’s making me crazy not to just put myself all out there.  In some ways, I feel like I’m letting you down by holding this part of me back.

My choice to stay somewhat anonymous isn’t about me not wanting people to know my struggles or my problem with alcohol, not at all. In fact, I sincerely feel the need to own and share my story. What I’m concerned about is not just hurting a couple of people, but I’ll admit that I also still have a deep seated fear of my ex-husband. I haven’t gone into much detail yet in terms of that part of my life, but when I do, I can’t say that I trust what his reaction would be if he came across it.  Perhaps I’ll get past all of this one day, and if so, then I’m sure next I’ll worry about how people will take my name change or how on earth I’ll ever integrate my social media accounts.  It seems almost silly to think about that now when there are far more serious things to be concerned about in life, like staying sober.

I simply wanted to put this message out to any of you who do follow me so that you know where I stand on the issue. If I’m going to continue to write freely then I will need to continue down the incognito path for a while. But, if we develop a connection and you feel inclined to ask me what people call me in the real world – ask away. I just might tell you.

Author: Tracie

I'm a 40-something woman & chronic blogger who also happens to be an adult child of an alcoholic, former Jehovah’s Witness, and abuse survivor. I’m fortunate to be where I am today; although I’m still figuring it all out, it’s finally time I owned my truth. Newly sober as of 2.20.18 Follow me on my new site: http://www.thetruthofbeingus.com

11 thoughts

  1. I have the same struggle and don’t intertwine any of my social media with this blog. I also haven’t been writing on my blog as much as I would like and haven’t shared as much as you have. I’ve been told often that I should write a book about my f’d up life. Maybe I should start by writing about it on my blog. Baby steps…I know how hard it is so I appreciate what you have shared so far.
    Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I share the exact same sentiments and reasons for blogging. Over the years folks have said I need to write my stories, blogging seemed the best route for that. Thanks for your comment and appreciation. 💜

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  2. I’ve never thought for one second that anything you share is any less authentic because your name or personal info isn’t attached.. quite the opposite, in fact. It takes courage to share the things we do in blogging, as they are such personal pieces of you. As the above poster said, baby steps… and we’re with you along the way XO

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I write under Untipsy Teacher, but everyone knows who I am no. I came out on FB last year, and told everyone about my blog. All my family and friends knew before that. I told them right away, so I’d have some readers.
    But, there are things I wish I could write about, and I choose not to, because I know they would hurt people I love too much. So, I made a choice. I am happy I made the choice.
    Small steps, and see how comfortable you are.
    xo
    Wendy

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Wendy. I tried to choose not to write about certain things in the past and it left me feeling held back and stifled, which is what led me to this space to begin with. I am happy with this current choice, but am starting to accept (with the help of fine people such as yourself) that it could ultimately evolve into something completely different. I suppose it’s one day at a time with this as it is with sobriety.

      Have a beautiful day, my friend.

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  4. I think most sober bloggers and those who struggle with deep personal battles / struggles tend to go anonymous at first. I did. Then at some point there is a shift – many (not all) decide that we feel more comfortable in our skin and we put in a big toe in the water and start to wade into semi-anonymity. Then again, some of us jump in and leave anonymity. And it’s totally personal. You also have some concerns for safety, etc. that you need to weigh, which is understandable.

    Everyone has their comfort level, and they are to be respected.

    One thing that *did* come from me coming out, so to speak, is that I had a lot of people share their stories of people they knew (or themselves) who suffered from alcoholism. I had an ex-boss ask me for help. I have had people I hadn’t heard from in years come to me asking for advice for loved ones. When my book came out in November, that was it – my neighbours and everyone else knew. And I was okay with that. They have been nothing but supportive and even emotional. It’s been great.

    But again, it took me time. And I have different circumstances – some will stay anonymous and that’s totally groovy! We help by sharing our stories – doesn’t have to be the whole package! I will never know some of the people who helped me early on, when I started blogging years ago, but I remember what they said or wrote. That’s the impact we have!

    Thanks for sharing
    Paul
    (aka Nacho Ricardo on Twitter)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment, Paul. (Nice to *meet* Nacho Ricardo) I don’t know which direction I will ultimately go with this blog, it’s brought up some interesting thoughts, for sure. I do plan to tell my ‘real life’ social network about my sobriety – and I have some thoughts on how I intend to do that from a larger scale, but it doesn’t involve this particular blog – at least not quite yet. I appreciate your reassurance about my decision to stay anonymous and I have a sneaking suspicion that one day I will let all of that go. I just have two big hurdles to get over, one involves my mother and the other is the safety issue. I’m not even positive if the safety issue is really justified, I think it’s the years of mind games still wreaking havoc on me – but I believe I will get past that eventually.

      Thank you for sharing, it’s nice to know you and follow you. I had not idea you had written a book – that is so brave and I now look forward to checking it out and getting to know more about you.

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  5. I know the feeling. I share my struggles and stories with friends in fb land and Twitter that’s fine. Some know who I am on here, but the reason id not want to share it all is bc I don’t want certain ppl stumbling on my blog and reading part of what I say bc a lot of my struggles, had to do with them! That’s basically it, other than that, I love sharing it all with everyone. If it can help someone else with their drinking (and it has), then it makes it all worth it. Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi, Anne. I’m on a break from Twitter but will be back very soon and I look forward to connecting. And I am a fellow North Carolinian! Welcome! At any rate: I started as totally anonymous and gradually let more information about me become known. I’m “HD” on Twitter (an actual nickname for me) but at this point everyone with whom i interact known my real name. Point being, I guess, that I know where you are coming from. The recoveryposse on Twitter is awesome! Take care

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, HD! Thank you so much for your comment – it is a pleasure to meet you and another North Carolinian! Thank you so much for stopping by and reading and commenting, I genuinely appreciate your note and support, and you are so right about recoveryposse – incredible people.

      Liked by 1 person

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