December 6, 2021
I am thankful that we are all equal in Al‑Anon. I am Hispanic, and I attended a mostly white school. I had trouble adjusting and making friends. I remember being called “Taco Bell” in the classroom. I also remember admiring a cheerleader who was very popular. I so wanted to be her. When my family moved from San Diego to Arizona, I even changed my name to hers, going by “Marty” instead of Margo.
I also remember standing up to some boys in the lunch line who were making fun of a boy with disabilities. What they were doing was not nice or fair. I suppose a desire for equality has always sparked a nerve in me. In my family, I never really felt equal to my sister. She was the light-complexioned one, the cuter one, the more liked one, the quiet and reserved one. I was the curious one, the rebellious one, the creative one.
Being accepted as equal in Al‑Anon felt warm, loving, and safe. Al‑Anon meetings didn’t feel like a competition or like I had to prove myself to anyone. I could just be me. I was acknowledged, loved, and understood. No one made fun of anyone else for not being able to read words correctly or rejected them because they didn’t wear the right clothes, walk the right way, or show up on time. Being accepted and welcomed into Al‑Anon with open arms was a gift from God.
By Margo R., California
The Forum, December 2021
Reprinted with permission of The Forum, Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA.