Since most of my editing has been either on abortion-related articles or on pages that grew out of that (related to medicine), I think it makes sense to edit anonymously. In line with WP:OUTING, please do not attempt to determine my true identity. I have a second account under my true name that is compliant with WP:VALIDALT, that is, I use it only to edit articles that are directly related to my profession, and there will never be an overlap with the topics that I edit as User:NightHeron.
In view of the hostility often encountered when editing controversial pages, I think that anonymous editing in these circumstances makes sense. Aside from the expected challenges editing abortion-related articles, as a newcomer I've been surprised by the extent of negative conduct toward newcomers by veteran editors, even administrators. A thick skin is definitely necessary in order to edit Wikipedia. Unfortunately, many newcomers are likely to react to such treatment by just going away and letting their account become inactive. I mentioned this in the comments to a WP:Signpost article (vol. 14, no. 5) on systemic bias. I wrote that perhaps the failure of Wikipedia to control such conduct (often in the form of insults and accusations of bad faith) is partly responsible for the high attrition and underrepresentation of women editors and editors from the Global South.
On the positive side, most veteran editors and administrators are truly helpful to newcomers. In my opinion it would be nice if new editors were given a convenient forum to write reviews or ratings of how veteran editors are treating them. Veteran editors who get a certain number of very positive reviews could then get a ribbon or barnstar, whereas those who get repeated negative reviews could get some kind of sanction.
(January 2020 update.) In 2018 I went through a process on AN/I that was truly abusive. I was subjected to ridicule and obscenities, and then t-banned for 6 months. This all grew out of my attempt, when I was a very new editor, to improve articles related to alternative medicine. I am personally a skeptic of almost all forms of alternative medicine, and Edzard Ernst and Marcia Angell are among the medical writers whom I admire most. However, certain experienced editors who see themselves as warriors against "lunatic charlatans" (Jimmy Wales' expression for alt-medists) accused me of bad faith, of shilling for alt-med, and of being disruptive, and they eventually got me banned. After I returned to editing in late 2018, I again encountered hostility when I made an edit relating to herbal abortifacients. One of my sources, the eminent historian of pharmacology John M. Riddle, was trashed on the fringe page and his books were labeled as fringe. (His books, published by Harvard University Press, argue that folk knowledge about herbal abortifacients was widespread throughout history, and that herbal abortifacients were used effectively by many women.) At that point I largely left Wikipedia editing for a while. A few months later I returned, gingerly at first, having realized that if I self-banned from any editing related in any way to herbal or alternative medicine, I could probably avoid the abuse and cyberbullying that I had encountered in 2018. So I have avoided that topic entirely.
I have been editing in areas that interest me where I believe that I can contribute to improving articles, for example, Abortion, Catholic Church and abortion, White privilege, Male privilege, and Climate crisis. Most of these topics are contested, and debates on the talk pages have sometimes been heated. However, I have never encountered abuse, obscenities, or threats of banning from editors who disagree with me. On the contrary, they have shown good faith and have by and large assumed good faith on my part as well. I have found the discussions and debates to be interesting and worthwhile, whether or not they ended with a consensus that I agreed with.
Just as many cities are full of pleasant places to walk around -- provided one avoids certain bad neighborhoods -- similarly I've come to realize that editing Wikipedia can be worthwhile and stimulating, provided that one avoids "bad neighborhoods," such as the alt-med topic.
Finally, a brief example of the advantage of anonymity. I recently participated in discussions on Talk:White privilege. After I reverted two instances of vandalism to that page that threatened violence against editors, within minutes obviously the same vandal (operating from multiple fake accounts) went to my user-page to insert similar vandalism there. (This was Martin Luther King Day, which seems to have become a favorite time for white supremacists and gun enthusiasts in the US to hold rallies and threaten violence.) All the accounts were immediately blocked, and the threatening edit to my user-page was removed from public view. I was impressed with how quickly this was taken care of. But I am glad that this white supremacist extremist does not know my true identity. NightHeron (talk) 03:00, 21 January 2020 (UTC)