Date: August 19, 2005 10:38AM
Below are my comments, the first in twenty years, about my experience in Amway. I'd forgotten how deep, and terribly hurtful the experience was...thanks for letting me vent. Before I go any further, I have to say a word against the anti-Semitic comments posted on this bulletin board that I read earlier. There is no place for hate, whoever wrote them should get a life.
OK, here's my Amway story.
I was a distributor in the early 80's, achieving the level of Silver Producer. Before I joined I was young, wounded, lonely and intelligent - a perfect candidate for Amway. I found instant family, instant love - I married my 'upline' - her friend, a director of a model agency with the looks to go with it, introduced me to my equally beautiful wife and the Amway business. The first meeting I attended was given by a very dynamic guy of about 21 who was on fire for the business. And there were more than three or four really pretty and single women there too. I joined. Three and one half years later I was emotionally and financially exhausted, angry and deeply frustrated. To top it all off, I was devasted by a whirlwind romance with my upline that had led to an ill thought out, naive marriage that lasted only 16 months.
My wife, a brilliant sales person, a great people person who worked Amway hard, who gave it her all and who deserved much better financial reward than what she got, was eventually brought to her knees in hysterical sobs by the Amway business -
That day, 'late' in our marriage, she sobbed hysterically because for about the eighth week in a row, a different one of our downline had bounced a check, causing a series of bounced checks, runs to the bank, frantic calls to upline. 'Don't cash our check! Don't cash our check! Oh shit, you cashed our check! What do we do now? Call downline, tell them we will be there to pick up the cash, that's CASH, OK? They better have the cash. Do they have the cash? Yes? Yes? good. No? Oh shit. Yes? they have the cash. Drive across Toronto to pick up the cash. Run to the bank. Think positive! Think positive! This is not happening! Dexter Yager didn't talk about this! Am I negative? No! Shit! Put in a tape. I'm a winner! I'm a winner! I AM A WINNER! Christ I almost missed that red light......Each week we would make it work. Each week something wouldn't quite work, but we made it work. In the fall of 1982 we worked nearly around the clock to 'break Silver' one weekend. I can't remember how much that was now, but for a couple broke kids it was a lot of selling and a lot of downline and a lot of everybody's money except Amways. They always got the money. We were $100 down many weeks because of it (in 1984, when we were 25 yr old newly weds - with a baby - [forgot to tell you about that part,] - $100 was a lot of money) OK. so we made it work 1, 2, 3, 4 weeks like that, 1 , 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 11, 12 months like that, pushing it hard, being positive, going to meetings, putting out fires, that bounced but it was OK. So and so downline is a winner, is a winner! A little bounced check isn't going change that! Going to local rallies, 1, 2, 3, 4 weekends...what's that? Columbus Ohio? A rally? Must go to that? Yes I'm positive! Yes I'm a winner! Yes I'm going! ....later we would be broke again from going. And the books, and the tapes, all of which had to be paid for....1, 2, 3 years like that...the worst kind of frustration...and suddenly realizing that we had married for the wrong reasons. I was married to the wrong person. A stranger, who I didn't even love. We had married because all we'd been listening to for a couple of years solid was how great marriage is, how Amway makes marriages work...all the while paying whatever we had left to drive to Columbus Ohio to hear these upline fat cats talk about how they went direct in 3 months and were diamonds when they 'decided' to do it. We hadn't 'gone diamond' because we hadn't 'decided' to do it....God that was frustrating. It made us lonely. The lonliness was a little less in each others arms for a while. Those lying, manipulating bastards at Amway. This is the first time I've ever written about this hurtful, devastating waste of some of the best years of my life...God that fucking hurts...Amway has a lot to answer for. It is a business from hell.