Why are members anonymous?

Within the Fellowship, anonymity means that whatever we share with another OA member will be held in respect and confidence. What we hear at meetings should remain there. Anonymity assures us that only we, as individual OA members, have the right to make our membership known within our community. This offers each of us freedom of expression and safeguards us from gossip.

Another aspect of anonymity is that we are all equal in the Fellowship. Whether we are newcomers or seasoned long-timers, and regardless of our outside status, we have no stars or VIPs. We come together simply as compulsive overeaters, practicing “principles before personalities.”

Anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, television and other public media of communication means that we never allow our faces or last names to be used once we identify ourselves as OA members. This protects both the individual and the Fellowship. It avoids the risk of jealousy among members and competition for publicity and financial rewards. For the fellowship it makes sure that one member’s personal recovery or relapse is not linked to OA’s success or failure.