Many have documented the widespread use of Facebook while intoxicated, but those who make New Year’s resolutions to sober up go uncounted.
A submenu in timeline provides a convenient way to commemorate recovery from addiction,especially when the privacy settings are rigged to limit visibility to likeminded folks.
The international organization with the greatest success in helping people overcome addictions has “a tradition of anonymity at the level of press, radio and film.”
That policy has had individual members of Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step recovery groups guessing about what to do with respect to Facebook, especially given the widespread misunderstanding of the privacy settings on the site.
These organizations refrain from maintaining official pages and groups on the site, but individual members tend to post status updates about recovery milestones.
Now the new timeline profile includes a simple way to mark one’s sobriety date, which recovering alcoholics and addicts often regard as a second birthday.
Privacy settings can limit visibility of this life event so as to respect anonymity — while Facebook’s smart lists don’t detect whether friends are members of 12-step organizations, one can manually configure a list consisting of contacts from just such a group.
To post a sobriety date, head for the area where you input a status update on a profile page, then click on the third link to the right, labeled “life event.”
That pulls down a menu from which you’ll want to select “health and wellness.”
Clicking on that pulls out another set of options to the right.
They include “overcame an illness” and “quit a habit,” which could function as ways to commemorate a recovery milestone if you don’t mind having either of those labels.
To use your own words to describe your milestone, such as “sobriety date,” click on “other life event.”
The set of fields that come up include date, name of the event, location and “who with.”
Most importantly, the bottom right-hand corner of the data entry area includes a link for limiting visibility to friends or a subset of friends — here’s where you can opt to have only people in recovery be able to see the milestone.