Hundreds of medicinal cannabis advocates have been told to reconsider their submissions to parliament on a government bill that could widen access to the drug.
They've divulged illegal drug use and cultivation, and even serious mental health problems including past suicide attempts.
But now the Health Select Committee is offering them the chance to change their submissions before they're made public.
"We [had] quite a few submitters disclose they were using cannabis," said Labour MP and Health Select Committee chair Louisa Wall.
On the advice of parliament's Clerk, the committee told 224 of the more than 2,000 submitters that because of what they'd shared they could withdraw, amend, or anonymise their submissions, or leave them unchanged.
1NEWS has been told many people who use cannabis therapeutically were too scared to make a submission and tell their story about how ill-gotten cannabis had improved their lives.
The Drug Foundation's executive director said getting a note back from the committee was "kind of a bit scary".
"You're admitting to breaking the law or you're admitting to these other things," he said. "It's made people really nervous and wonder should they in fact keep their submission involved in this process."
The note sent out last week said: "In terms of criminal liability ... submissions are protected by parliamentary privilege".
But because the submissions would be published permanently to parliament's website, where they'd be searchable by name, that privilege would "not prevent an investigation taking place independently".
"We did want to highlight that the process is incredibly public, and that [submitters] did have to make some decisions about what they'd chosen to disclose," Miss Wall said.
She conceded parliamentary staff could have made it clearer that people could submit anonymously from the beginning, but emphasised the action the committee had now taken was to protect submitters.
That said, not everyone's been deterred.
One woman told 1 NEWS she started giving her adult son cannabis five years ago to manage his epilepsy, autism, and severe self harming behaviours.
She said her son was now much better. However, she also said she's always scared the police will knock down her door because of the drugs. She wants MPs to know her story, and is keeping her submission as it is.
"If they are prepared to go on record, in defiance of the law, then they should do that as well and highlight the silliness around our current law," Mr Bell said.
Individuals have until the middle of next week to withdraw or amend their submissions.