Amway: The Untold Story

Your Comments, Part 55

Here are some of the responses I've received to the information on this page. I've left them as is, except for a) removing the names to protect privacy, and b) reformatting them to fit the screen better.

This is a long file…I suggest downloading it to your computer and reading it off-line.

My thanks to everyone who took the time to contribute their opinions.

[NOTE: Some of these messages contain offensive language]

Just heard that Amway is suing P&G for $30 million. Understand that you are being paid by P&G to maintain this & other previous sites. Please comment. I ran into your previous site about a year ago. It was amazing to me that an individual would spend all that time maintaining a website and answering e-mail just because he believed that people needed to know the truth!! Now we know don't we Sidney. Your other site was shut down based on untruths you were spreading. I find all the e-mail supporting your point of view are from poor unsuspecting victims as a result your failure to tell them the TRUTH. You are paid by P&G, an Amway competitors. Put this on your webpage.

I find your comments based around Amway as a Company very amusing, but unfortunately very missinformed, I myself am an Amway Distributor and very proud to be involved in a business partnership with such a fine company, I have also used the optional training tools i.e. tapes and books and business seminars to help me build my business, and have found them not only to help with the business, but also my other business's.

Some colleages of mine have also benefited hugely financially not only within the Amway business but also using the same principles that are taught with other enterprises.

Your pages that refer to people that have wasted their money with the tapes and books etc, as far as I can gather obviously from their attitude is that they did not read or listen or actually SHOW THE PLAN at all or very little during their involvement, so they flunked the course. Maybe they flunked at other things too, but do they ever look to themselves to put the blame? Do we condemn colleges or universities if all the candidates don't make it 100%?

 You can sum Amway up in two little words… "AMWAY SUCKS". As for their rabid distributor networks, if they are considered "legal" they must be riding a fine line between legal and illegal. If the courts label them as "legal" they are most certainly in my opinion, morally and ethically, around the level of sewer slime! I am trying to get a refund for the Network 21 "TOOLS", and am getting a bit of a runaround. The excuse I am getting is that the Shrink wrap in no longer on the cassetts and books. My upline direct distributor is an RCMP (Federal Police) officer, something like your FBI or CIA. Hope he doesn't put a warrent out for my arrest! haha. Will see what they come back with as an excuse to not take their crap back! Will let you know if I have to end up suing them!

What does Amway tell its distributors about their own tax return. every year they show a ton of expenses and no income resulting in a huge loss of their schedule c tax return.

Today, October 22, 1998, there appeared in the Grand Rapids ( MI ) Press, an un-biased account of the existence of your web site and a relatively neutral account of the P-G vs. Amway court matter. You may not appreciate this statement fully, but to we who have grown up with the Amway Corporation in the Grand Rapids area, this is unusual. The Press has, in the past, shown great support for local business and the impact on the people in this area. They do have a tendency toward conservative ' Don't rock the boat.' politics, and are definately pro-Amway. This article is at least un-biased, and at best, novel in it's approach to describing what you do here and how Procter-Gamble is the latest opponent of the Amway legal teams.Heck, the Press even posted your web site URL.

I have been to several Amway recruitment get-togethers over the years, but refused to swallow the ' Circle of Friends' speeches and all the guff about how anyone who dedicates a few hours weekly to Amway, can work up the ladder ( Pyramid), adding multi-layers of 'Friends' until eventually reaching the life of ease. The last of these meetings was conducted by a husband-wife duo who were Double-Diamonds in the organization. I have heard similar 'pitches' from magazine salesmen, and telephone solicitors and did'nt fall for them either. I find it hard to beleive that Amway, with the relatively high start up costs, with the philosophy that all the work for these double-diamonds was being done by regular people like you and I yet all the responsibility for sales, delivery, maintaining records, setting up 'cold' calls, plus the full thrust of Amways Legal Branch to deal with in case of any errors: I find it difficult to believe that any reasonable person would become a part of this scheme. It is a shame that there are so many gullible people out there who do.

Hey, keep up the faith. I believe that the American public will someday wise up and toss Amway out the collective door. The truly sad thing about all this is that so many hard-working, and normally responsible people, will lose further billions and billions of dollars to the 'boys' at Amway before this ever happens.

Thank you for listening.

Just stumbled across your site. I was in the business for about a year or so, about 5 or 6 years ago. Mine is the typical story. An old friend looked me up, he was all agog about a fantastic business opportunity.... I ended up in the Yager line of sponsorship. I nearly got sucked in. What saved me was my shock and dismay when I went to a big function. I think I went to a family reunion. Anyway, the hallelulia come to Jesus stuff really bothered me, (a lot!). When those jokers would ask me about religion I'd tell them I was an "original Christian." None of them knew that meant I was raised a Catholic.

Besides the religious aspect of this revival-style meeting, the political overtones were definitely Republican and very right-wing. I am neither of these. Needless to say I was very uncomfortable at this event. I decided right then that this was not the group for me. I stuck it out for a couple more months, even going to the big annual hoo-rah (Free Enterprise? something like that) This was just like family reunion, but squared. I got out and I stayed out. This may be for some folks; but not for this northeastern, independent, Catholic man.

Keep the faith Sid. People out here in the real world need your site. Who knows, with internet access, maybe more people will hear the truth and act on it before they get hurt. Shalom! P.S. please keep my e-mail handle confidential.

Sydney - THANK YOU FOR HELPING PEOPLE SEE THE LIGHT! After 2 years in the business our friends finally realized that it was just a pipe dream (they approached us about Amway in 1996 but we declined because as financial professionals we are not allowed to pursue other lines). Our friends "showed the plan" to virtually everybody, recruited a bunch of people (at least 20), and reached 2,500 points. BUT, they now realize that ignoring their 2 beautiful kids, giving up their real life ambitions and alienating most of their friends and family was NOT WORTH IT AT ALL (we were probably the only friends that supported them!) Their obsession with being "Diamonds" was like an UNHEALTHY ADDICTION - nothing less. THEY FORGOT THAT THERE IS A WONDERFUL LIFE OUTSIDE OF AMWAY AND THAT THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE LIVE JUST FINE WITHOUT IT, ALTHOUGH AMWAY MAKES YOU BELIEVE OTHERWISE. They confessed that they always secretely doubted the business but didn't have the courage to speak-up because they were afraid to feel like they were stupid. We believe that Amway people skillfully master the "guilt" strategy (sort of like your parents used on you) to make people dependent on them. We are so glad that our friends are "NORMAL" again - we can actually carry on an intelligent conversation without their references to "Interactive Distribution" as the remedy to the world's problems! We now laugh that while they were in Amway, they became very unrelatable to most people, and saw the world as "winners" and "losers" (although their books teach them people skills - what a contradiction!). Incidently, they saw an immediate improvement in their finances after leaving Amway, because they now had the "disposable income" that they preached about but spent on Amway. Most importantly, they now can enjoy life's beauty without sacrificing their souls!

I have really enjoyed "surfing" your web site this morning. I'm currently printing off a great deal the information so that I can read it later. Keep up the good work.

Dear Friend,

Some of my fellow 'cult' (tongue in cheek) members told me of you web page. I found it very interesting but not really anything new other than the details of the law suites since I had never read the actual text of any of the suites.

I've been acquainted with Amway since 1975 when a church friend asked if he could show me the plan. I consented and started a long acquaintance with Amway and a multitude of its distributors.

I have been 'in' and 'out' several times only due to my lack of discipline or direction. I can say that I have never been let down by either Amway or any of its distributors (with one exception -- a Diamond who sponsored me and then broke contact after I moved out of state).

It seems that most of your concerns are with the system. I have long been an admirer of motivational speakers & speeches. I am personally convinced that each of us is hounded daily by a lot of negative things (people & circumstances). At the very least, all this motivational stuff (whether the 'System' or Zig Ziglar) has given me far more than it ever costed me. When my wife of 18 years left me & our four kids, it was these 'positive' voices that helped me keep my thinking clear and led me back to the good situation I have today.

As to the money made by the 'System', I think that what these people offer is worth every penny I spend, whether I build a business or not. You see, these books tapes & seminars do for me what I did for me the first few months after my divorce. I stood in front of the mirror every day and made positive, self-talk statements to myself. Was I faking? It sure felt like it. But that didn't matter. All that mattered was that it could possibly be true. If it wasn't; if I was really a miserable jerk, then that would come out in the wash. I it was true, then I would survive emotionally, raise my four children the best I could and one day meet a wonderful lady (which I did).

From my perspective, the biggest reason that most people don't make it in the Amway world is because they listen to the negative voices (maybe like yours? Sorry, but I do not want to offend, but by any definition, your reports are negative). These voices bring the back to the reality of their every day lives. They do literally lose the dreams that the business creates.

False hope? Maybe, maybe not. Most families in America would love to have an extra $2-300 a month. Many work a lot of hard hours for less and feel good about it. If Amway offers a way to make some money & feel good about yourself, then at the very least, they have given a little happiness.

If someone makes a lot of money from my happiness, then that makes it even better. I wish I could produce an idea like that. They aren't taking advantage of me, they are offering me something I don't have -- the ability to motivate myself (& others) every day.

I know we say the tapes & such are optional and then make them feel like they won't survive without them. If you study the numbers though, that is a reality. Self fulfilling prophecy -- don't know. At the very least, it is true.

After over 20 years, I am finally relaxing and having fun with my business. If someone says no, I say, "OK" and ask them if they want to buy my goods (retail). If they say yes, I do all I can to motivate them.

If I could make a suggestion, you might do well to spend this web time/space in motivating people to just be wide eyed and believe in themselves. Sometimes it's OK to make a decision from the heart rather than the head.

Proud of who/what I am, An Amway Distributor


A photographer for the Grand Rapids Press called me yesterday because he was trying to get the freelancer's photo of you that ran in The Advocate (he didn't get it).

Anyway, it prompted me to look up the story that ran today in the Grand Rapids paper. I'm sure Mike Mohr genuinely feels sorry for poor, naive you to be so misused by evil conglomerate P&G. I bet you never even realized they were controlling your website all along. Perhaps P&G cast some satanic type of spell upon you so you would not recognize that you were just their puppet and they were actually pulling the strings. Truly diabolical.

But seriously, I can't believe Amway filed suit against P&G claiming that P&G is behind your website. The websites and P&G's suit must be doing some real damage for Amway to go to this extreme.

Isn't there such a thing as sanctions for frivolous lawsuits?

Dear Sidney Schwartz,

I would like to start off by commenting on your web page. It seems you have put a lot of time and effort to present a well organized web page that is both professional and easily navigated. Both the structure and quality of the materials presented speak highly of your commitment and dedication to speaking and backing up your facts and ideas about the Amway company. You seemed to have researched your facts completely and with an objective view-point which lends a great deal of creditability and reassurance to them. I have yet to read through the large about of data you present to me and the rest of the general public but I plan on revisiting your site in the near future to complete my reading. If you have not guessed yet I am an active distributor and I would like to thank you for providing me with an objective view point on my business. I am glad someone has taken the time and effort to present these facts and I hope you continue to update and revise your web page when new information is optaned. I do not plan on quitting the Amway company in light of information do to one thing: money. What I hope to gain through Amway is money to use as capital for other business ventures. I do not plan on staying active in the company after I reach Diamond (If I make it that far), but I plan on putting my best effort to make some money in a low capital proven business. I would appreciate any comments or suggestions from you that you think I should knew about for I respect your web site and the information it provides. One thing I recommend is you look into the AOL business for they seem to be the next biggest con and your research skills and web presentation skills would be well received in finding faults with AOL. I hope you continue to prosper in what ever business you are in and I hope to hear from you soon.

P.S. please pardon my poor grammer and bad spelling, english was never a strong suit for me in school.

i became amway dist. in1981 what a mistake .now im in * this is a company the really take care of people and no hype.keep at the good work

 I just sent the following message to some guy in the UK, then I read about your site, so I wanted to send it to you with a few added thoughts.
 It's been a long time, but it started when my parents got roped into the scam.  They invited me and all my sisters to "network", as they called it then, to suck people in.  They said it was a big money making opportunity but would not explain anything else.  They said I had to attend a meeting.  Three of my sisters just said no, but I went to a meeting to appease my parents.  The person in charge of the meeting explained how you had to get 7 people to join under you to go to the next level.  He said you did not have to be a salesperson because the products sell themselves, and all I had to do was get people to come to meetings, and he or someone like him would sell the company.  People all around me were joining, but I did not want to join.  I know I am not a salesperson, which you really have to be to get people to join, and I also felt these people were using unethical techniques to get people to join.  I felt my own parents had lied to me by not telling me it was Amway in the first place.  While we were still at the meeting, my own parents pressured me to join.  They told me I would be stupid if I did not join.  I gave in just to get them off my back.  It cost me 99 American dollars at the time, about ten to fifteen years ago.  That got me a bucket of products which I never used and I didn't even like.  I called my sisters to tell them what happened.  I got the nerve to call my parents and tell them what I thought, and to let them know they had hurt me.  This was the one good thing that happened, because since then I have been able to stand up to my parents.  I never went to any more meetings.  I discouraged anyone who ever mentioned the possibility of joining Amway.  When it came time for me to renew a year later, I just dropped out.  So, it only cost me 99 dollars and a few hours of my time, but I have no respect for the company or their products, and I hope you manage to discourage others from wasting their time and money.
 Because of some of the comments I read on the UK site and on your site, I wanted to add that the meeting I went to reminded me of a religious gathering with cultish overtones.  Some anti-Amway people mentioned that Amway seemed to support Right-wing conservative religious views, which may be true, but I consider myself a very conservative and Christian person.  Amway distributors do not tell the whole truth when inviting people to network.  In effect, they lie.  This is not a Christian thing to do.  One final note - it took my folks a couple of years, but they finally admitted they made a big mistake by joining Amway and they are out of it now.  Thanks for keeping people informed.  Too bad the internet wasn't around when I got roped in.  Good luck.

Dear Mr. Schwartz,

I would appreciate if you posted my observations of your web page, my recent decision to join Amway and my own opinion.

To begin with, your readers and visitors, I must say there appears to be a thread of similar situations from their BUSINESS experiences as Amway distributers. These range from quiet dissatisfaction to raging lawsuits over failed investments in their BUSINESS'.

I would like to express that the world is made up of DECEPTION and LIARS. This is not specific to the Amway Corporation or to various downline groups. ALL industries from traditional commercial to "direct selling" to religious organizations to non profits have these same problems. Even now the OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT is involved in DECEPTION.

What does this mean? Well First I appoligize to anyone who lost their savings in either an Amway or other type of business venture. I do not intend to offend. My point is "buyer beware". As discerning adults past the incubatic age of 18 years we in this GREAT LAND are on own.

Whenever we are presented with an opportunity that involves a decision to "change our lifestyle" I strongly suggest to coin a phase borrowed by Amway distributers and every one in the world of PROFESSIONAL SALES to "check it out".

Hard earned dollars are very tough to replace. I know I've been in business commercially from a start up company with zero sales and ALL MY CAPITAL going fast while building a new business, to the ever slow process of establishing positive cashflow from a much needed services company. After 3 years of hard work 90 hours a week. I decided to resign and sell my company and resume a normal 8 to 5 job. A great learning experience of the AMERICAN DREAM. That was 10 years ago, today I am a successful General Manger of a multimillion dollar corporation. Making a six figure income, owning a home, cars, teenagers and 2 infants now. Married to the same wonderful wife all those years.

As a businessman (is that what I am) my wife and I as having "MADE IT" in AMERICA, unlike many hard working people we have a nice life, money in the bank, retirement and positive net worth.

However, we are EMBRACING the AMWAY DREAM! Why because this is a BUSINESS. This involves PEOPLE. This opportunity will allow my family to attain through hard work, yes hard work, no money for maybe 12 to 18 months. Yes, investing SEVERAL THOUSANDS OF $$$ in a new business.

This is no "get rich quick scheme" never has it been. Selling ice cream in summer or umbrellas in winter can be, however, not this slow going people dependent frustrating process. That's what all dedicated individuals pursuing the AMERICAN DREAM know.

To have a legal multi product home based business that using standard business techniques to succeed, while only giving up 10 hours a week, operate from your garage and home office. Well Mr. Schwartz this is novel. Yes, only 10 hours a week. MEETINGS ARE OPTIONAL. Why? I will build my business in my group my way.

Oh, and the tapes. I ordered all I thought I needed. My Direct Distributer has NEVER attempted to instruct me to SOT or other tapes. THIS IS VOLUNTARY! READ THE PAPERWORK!

I am not one to shy away from a confrontation obviously. I beleive in this COUNTRY. I beleive in FREE ENTERPRISE! I am proud to live in this time and to have my FREEDOM. YES I AM A VETERAN OF THE ARMED FORCES. Yes, I do believe in our rights to the 2nd Admendment.

That's why I asked you to post this open dialog on your very valuable page. You are operating a necessary service. I applaud your time committment and efforts. I only wished your readers to experience what I'm sure is the type of experience not often expressed.

PS, My wife and I plan to be Direct distributers by late next year and our wish is to help others acheive this same accomplishment honestly and ethically.

You know, its really a shame, I was in for a year, I followed the system, spent too much money on motivational materiel that would not be necessary if Amway had better products and prices. I went in with my eyes wide open, I heard what everyone was saying, but I so badly needed something more out of life. I got suckered into the tapes, books, and meetings everyweek. I totally understand why people call it a cult, They lift you so high with praise and hope, while filling your mind of what Amway failure would feel like. You're almost brainwashed to keep trying, that would be OK if you did not need to invest in that system. The tapes books and stories were not a total waste, I took what I learned and started my own business, that I have been running successfully for over 3 years. Like I was saying earlier , if you could get a better deal on the all the products that Amway distributors have access to, I would give them my loyal business, and I would not need the rah rah tapes to get anyone else excited about it. The business is really a good Idea, too bad Dexter and his cronies exploited it for their own personal profit.
P.S. To any one new: these people will not like, love,or respect you if you leave, they think you are a loser and keep their distance, so you "won't steal their dreams" It can work if you can lie to someone, then teach them to lie, and so on and so on.

My own personal experiences with the group I was involved with in Amway was and is still frightening to me. I used to think that no one could fool me, or pull the wool over my eyes, but after leaving that Group of distributors, the truth hit me hard. I left after about 7 months in, and started to realize that there were only a few people making any profit at all, or at least in my group. My advice for anyone in Amway is to read everything, both positive and negative about the business, and you'll see what is there. Do not take a distributor's word for anything. Make sure you read all material before joining. Below I am listing the process in which I was recruited. Please read carefully.

-Got a call from a friend, who I was working with on starting a restaurant business with to listen to a business plan he thought was going to make him rich -went to a meeting, where a school teacher(someone I assumed intelligent) was speaking, he was a direct, and he pretty much hooked me in right there.

-started going to meetings every Tuesday night and hearing the same old story over and over as if that school teacher was a robot or something -was pressured(not forced) into buying tapes, books, etc… from the upline to better myself and improve my business.. they pretty much said that if I didn't get these materials, I wouldn't be successful(not exactly, but very round-about) -went to functions and saw some "rich" people I thought were christians and wanted to do the will of God -got to sit with diamonds and emeralds, etc… and started feeling like someone special, which is what my upline told me, although I hadn't sponsored anyone, and I'd been in for 3-4 months by now -went hungry for most of the nights, and then went to a restaurant where they talked for 2-3 hours, while my mind was so weak I didn't think I'd make it home -started getting the feeling that something was wrong, because they told me that if I were to quit being involved for a week or two, that I'd lose interest in Amway. Well, I did quit for a week or two and lost interest. Funny thing is, I still believe in Christ, I still wanna serve God, but I know that I don't have to be jobless, rich, and an Amway distributor to do that -after quitting Amway, I will admit that I felt guilty and dirty.. and my self esteem was very low I felt as if God had left me, and he had, the God of Amway, a false God -according to the upline I had, and other distributors, if anyone rejects Amway, they need to be "postured", put in their place, because their obviously stupid for not joining

My advice to any Amway distributor who challenges my words is this.. Christ came before Amway. You don't have to quit your job to be "free", only know the truth, and that doesn't come from slandering people. If any of you think your going to slander me with verbal abuse or physical harm, then think again, I have friends in high places and will take affirmative action if necessary.

We were recently introduced to the Britt Worldwide - 'Amway' business plan and were considering signing on as distributors. Luckily, we have access to the internet!! Unfortunately, the Amway distributors etc. are very well versed and know how to excite even the most unexcitable. We were almost sold on the idea until we found your web site. Although we did have some doubts, every time we went to a meeting they were quickly dispersed through the images of wealth, time and low effort. Also, our questions were never directly answered. We even brought a list of them with us to one such meeting, and only the favorable questions were answered -- and even then the questions were side stepped into a monologue on the wonders of Amway. Anyways, we don't want to go into great depth about our experiences with Amway, we just wanted to say THANK YOU FOR SAVING US TIME AND MONEY!!

…Oh, and one more thing…for all the other respondants… I feel that anyone who can criticize this web-site so freely, may need to re-evaluate their investigative thinking. Ask a member of your up-line to review this web-site with you before you sign anything. If he/she can successfully refute the information herein - Good Luck to You.

Dear Mr. Schwartz:

I just discovered your site this morning and I wanted to thank you for putting this together. A few years ago, I was approached by several people whom I thought were just being friendly but turned out were "Amway" fiends. I felt betrayed and hurt, because, I already had a job and was looking to meet people and not join some fanatical cult. I have since grown to distrust strangers who seem "unusually" friendly to me. People generally don't act that friendly towards another person unless they want something.

I am glad to see that I am not only the only one out there with "anti-Amway" sentiments.

Keep up the good work!

I am NOT an Amway distributor and am not thinking of becoming one. However, I know what they do and I think it is an OUTSTANDING opportunity for people who are not already financially independent. If I were not already reaping the benefits of my own success, I would become a distributor at the drop of a hat. Furthermore, it seems painfully obvious by the content of your site that you are either employed by Proctor & Gamble, or, at the very least, are somewhat affiliated with them.

It is a sad day in America when a company the size of P&G has to squander it's money to employ a person of your defamatory nature. Let's get to the questions:

*Why in the world would you paint such a poor picture of a company trying to help other Americans help themselves?

*If you are not affiliated with P&G, who wronged you in order to dedicate so much time bad mouthing a VERY effective business opportunity and a company with such outstanding morals and values?

*If this is such a terrible opportunity, what do you have that is better to offer the millions of people who need the benefits of owning and operating their own business without investing vast amounts of money?

Please answer, I'm dying to hear your response....

Mr. Schwartz I don't think I have to go too much in detail about my own Amway nightmare! At one time, I am coninced, it was a basic good ol' cottage operation, but it has now become a den of conceit, bigotry, elitism and flat out old fashioned "I got mine, and if you join me, you'll give me more!" operations. From the "Scripted" phone calls to friends who smell the Amway scam trough the phone, to the "Empty your house and put our stuff in" orders, it is somewhat like cultism. (Socialogically anyway) I know, it is my job to know what is a cult and not…

Surround yourself with our product, only listen to our tapes, go to our sessions and it will enthuse and inspire you. I found prejiduce for the most part at one California meeting. Prejiduce of people who cannot con their friends and others into buying items and signing onboard this massive marketing scam. I know, there are people who claim "It is so good" and "Don't quench the dream!" but my reply is, don't quench the truth! If Amway is so good, let it stand on it's own! Go out and proclaim Amway from the roof tops! why don't they? Simple, a large body of people can see the deception, A small body or even a financially hurting couple are easy prey! And as for the people who claim Freedom to make money, to live an Amway dream! Right! the old Amscam saying! "Make it if you can, and if you can't, look like you are!" I can name 13 different classified cults who teach the exact same thing!

I sat in a session as the Diamonds and otehrs talked about their last foray into Rodeo Drive. A camera followed them, and "Oh look, a $2500.00 Skirt ($15.00 at the cloting outlet) Why did they do this? In my estimation, to grow envious people, who dream of making it rich, and the majority who fall along the way and are trampled by those coming behind them, who will eventually fall themselves. I am the last to dash a persons dream on the rocks, believe me, I have them of my own. But when you become a slogan spouting, lie concocting, tape eating, program spewing zombie of Amway (And network 21) then people have to slap you around to get you straight!

More to come!

I used to work for a guy who was into Amway. Everything in the store was Amway; tissues, coffee, Band-Aids, that damn Glister gum, ad nauseum. He tried to get all of us into it, and he would run his shtick to the clients. He lost a lot of clients for doing that, and it never even occurred to him that they were dying as he spoke. When he would talk to them, they looked as if they wanted to hang themselves. Maybe Amway sells rope......? Also, if one of us had a problem, either personally or professionally, he would not give us personalized, heartfelt, understanding advice. He was only capable of spitting out rhetoric, the slogans that they repeat to themselves to make them think everything's OK. This used to be a man who was a lot of fun to be around. This was a "cool boss", he'd go out for drinks with us, etc.Now, he's turned into a dogma-reciting robot. Forget about the crazy sense of humor he had, it's gone. Ah, he also spouts a lot of hardcore Christian philosophies. He started becoming very judgemental of others. Sometimes I did think he gave me good advice, there's nothing wrong with having a 'can do' attitude, but when I saw another site that listed all of Amway's catch phrases and other argot, I realized I wasn't getting personalized, caring advice, I just felt greasy and somewhat violated.

Mr. Schwartz,

I have a friend who is a direct involved with a diamond in the World Wide Dream Builders organization. He told me last week that the talk from the big dogs in "the biz" is that Amway is going to dissolve next year and reopen as a "internet mall". The idea was to be a network server to hundreds of companies and sell the Amway product line in one of the internet mall stores. The were going to do this under a new name and supposably get away from the "Amway stigma", and some lawsuits I would guess.

Any comments would be appreciated.

Hi There, I read with interest the latest in law suits from Texas. We were involved with the groups in question and when I read the Musgrave law suit I am disturbed. We knew of the monies being taken as early as 1996 when we questioned some rumors that we had heard. At this present time we are fighting with upline over refund on tools. It seems to me that people have their own versions of the truth and the higher up you go in pin levels the more vague those truths become. Please feel free to give my email to anyone who is experiencing difficulties and would like someone to listen and perhaps help them through. After visiting your sight we went to our upline and told them some of the things we read were the same things we had been questioning. We were told not to read the wed and to discourage anyone else from reading it. We figured if the web was lies then why the concerns. We ar so grateful to you and we have been told that you were payed by P&G still I think we can safely assume that there is too much information for everyone except emeralds diamonds etc. to be the only ones with the truth. Once you start questioning you are totally cut off from information. As a lowly silver I caused enough problems that don Wilson, Randy Haughen and John Sims know who I am. There is so much that could have been good here but there is no trust as far as I am concerned.

Interestingly enough, we are told not to look at the sights but the upline obviously does as they are extrmely familiar with them

Anyway, thank you for your tenacity in keeping on. Please do not give up there are too many people who need you.

Hi there to anybody that reads this message

I am a 21yo male from Australia who has been a distributor for about 10 months. Currently i am a university student about to finish a degree in business management. I see Amway as an alternative and supplement to a career. The business and marketing plan is logical and being a logical person I saw a lot of sense in it.

First things first, I will have to say this. I am biased towards AMWAY, no i correct myself towards MY small business. After doing a business plan for an actual business (an internet cafe) which would have cost around AUS$80k-100k with the owner only taking home a salary of $25000 a year compared to my Amway business which cost $100 (KIT) plus tools (tapes, books and functions) probably up to $1000+ with a potential income $30000+ is neglegable to the internet cafe business

After reading many of the comments and countless pages of information contained within this web site i have to question many of the negative comments towards AMWAY. Albeit an educated analysis. Topics i would like to cover are -Cults -Brainwashing -Tools -the percentage of people who make it to the top

>From the various descriptions of the make up of a cult and comparing that to AMWAY i find that they are very different. Fair enough there is a certain amount of pressure to conform to certain practices of conducting business, however when compared to other organisations, what is the first thing a new employee or member is groomed to do, alas adopt the organisational culture. This is mainly done through initial training workshops (classes), literature on the organisation (training manual, workplace health and safety procedures and even employee contracts) and social interaction with current employees. Well low and behold for all the average and normal workers out there, breaking news for you, YOU ARE PART OF A CULT, but thats all right your next door neighbour is part of one too.

As for the christian preaching stuff, people have a choice to listen to that stuff, i myself choose not to. In the times that i have been to functions with church services "fellowship" on the sunday i dont go, therefore i dont have to listen to it. It is as simple as that. I am a christian, yet i do not like church. I did go once (the first time i went to a major function) where there was a minister doing the evangelistic born again christian preaching of "send your $100 dollars now and i will forgive you sermon" (dont take that literally, that is just the view i have of evangelists and born again christians), something that i dont like and against compared to the traditional churches. Therefore the point i am trying to make is i was not and still not forced to listen to christian preachings, to those people that are coerced and "supposedly forced" i must say that you have a weak mind, it wouldnt matter if it was christian or ring a ring a rosies, by the sounds of it you would believe and follow anything aynway.

Brainwashing I can understand why people view (although narrow it is) that AMWAY brainwashes people, however what is brainwashing. Are we not as a western society drummed with brainwashing statements everyday of our lives. Most of us know it as Advertising. How much junk is portrayed and spoon fed to us each day on tv, radio and in the print on to buy this product or to buy that product, to support this service or that service. Yet it is an accepted part of living, how meaningless our lives have become. Also as i have found during my university studies, there is a lot of pressure on the young and older people today in getting a job. Through the 4 years of my studies all i keep hearing is when i graduate i want this job or that job. The whole of the degree that i am doing is geared towards that job in that career. There seems to be no initiative to become entrepreneurs or go out alone and achieve something. To me being bombarded with the constant drone of get a job is brainwashing. I think it should be known that there are other ways of having an income than just getting a job. Whether that be AMWAY or any other sort of MLM organisation, or simply owning a small business. Whatever turns you on, getting a job is not the be all and end all to making money. Another point of brainwashing is the fact that most people believe you have to retire at the age 55-65 after working 35-45 years. How much advertising and endorsement from various sources (government, business and society in general) does this have. I have seen my parents do this, with both now having medical problems in their early 60's, therefore not leaving them that much time to enjoy their retirement. Also with my parents generation, from what i have determined is that they worked towards the pension (social security). To me that is not what i want to do (mainly by the time i am their age there wont be a pension). To me working towards government support is a wasted life (i am not saying that my parents have had a wasted life) you work all your life and still you are under the control of a higher authority, to me that is not a retirement. I ask you all out there that isnt logical, work in a job under someone/thing then retire to the control of someone/thing. Albeit the life of a plebian (which in the current scheme of things most of the working population is heading for or is currently undertaking). The rise to mediocraty by individuals with the subsequent fall of society.

Tools As with any business learning tools are essential to the establishment and continuation of any business. How i know, mainly from asking former employers and during my studies.

Tapes: These contain stories and teaching techniques of how to conduct my business, i will admit some tapes i dont relate to and sometimes find boring (namely the american speakers, nothing personal against americans, it is just their accent i cant handle). Other than that i find that a message that i can not get in a function might be more clearly given in a tape (vice versa). However as was written in Business Review Weekly on the 6th April 1998 (reputable business journal/magazine) it stipulates that every business needs to stimualte and motivate their workforce. Many organisations motivate their employees with cash incentives however as studies have showed this only motivates people to a limited extent and tends to lose its appeal after a certain time. (That is why Frederick Taylor's Scientific Management Principles are on the way out and have been for the last 20 years). Associated AMWAY organisations such as IDA and Network21 motivate their workforce through the stories and business building techniques through people who are successful in the business.

Books: The books are for personal development, although i find it hard to find the time to read due to study commitments (which involves a lot of reading) they are quite enlightening. It is interesting to find many authors of the books that are included in the books of the month, I come across in my studies, eg Stephen Covey "Principle Centred Leadership" and Kenneth Blanchard "Gung Ho". I find more than just references to them within my studies, they are very much the new wave of organisational training across the western world in Total Quality Management and teams approach to organisational structure. Therefore, from my analysis, what AMWAY has been doing for the last 27 years in Australia and 40 years in the US is slowly catching on in the Australian and world corporate scene on a large scale in the last 10 years. I think that is something in itself, to say the least AMWAY was and still is a few decades ahead of the rest. The books are not associated with AMWAY, but on new business concepts as well as relationships with people in general sometimes with a focus on partner relationships (eg Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus). Even if i dont get anything out of a book that i paid for, they usually are a good read anyway. I will ask a question here, What was the message or purposeful meaning you got last time you read a fictional novel, romance story or even a newspaper article? (Remember the old adage, "Dont always believe what you read in the paper")

Functions: Okay i was overwhelmed with the excitement and the energy that are associated with an AMWAY function, however the first few times i went to these functions i was like what the hell is "WRONG" with these people, this is supposed to be a business function. But from what i gathered is that these things are fun, what is wrong with having fun. To all the cronies out there that say they brainwash at these functions i think that they take them too seriously, fair enough you listen to the people tell their story, but most importantly (to me at least) they tell techniques and ways they used to build their business, which i find very useful and interesting. Sometimes when i am down from stress due to other areas of my life, after coming away from a function (whether for business or personal reasons) i am usually rejuvinated or perked up without any artifical stimulant. Also if you sat in a university lecture, you wish you were at an AMWAY function.

Percentage of people reaching the top This will only be short. Question: What is the chance that the organisation that you work for (and provided that you havent reached it already or a family member of the owners), that you will become CEO or a member of the board of directors? (you know the people who make policy and you hardly ever see or know who they are) What is the chance of an organisation like MacDonalds for you to go from kitchenhand to CEO in 5 Years (to hell with it 15 years)? I guarantee that there is hardly a chance in hell for you to do that, So my only comment here is WAKE UP to those people that dont believe they can make a 6 figure income in 5 years through their "Franchise" (Distributorship) of the AMWAY organisation.

Well thanks for letting me put my view across, I hope you paste it to your web site and someone reads it. Dont forget please leave my email address displayed so i can get some feedback from those that do read it.

I am curios to to find out what is meant by "cult". Do you own your own business? Or are you an employee? I am curios to see why you are crusading against the Amway corporation. There are thousands of dishonest MLM & Pyramid Schemes and if you take the time to check the newspaper you'll see that the lawsuits against the Amway corporation are mainly from Proctor and Gamble and the majority of the suits have been dismissed. I know there are dishonest people in the world and unfortunately they have the ability to start an Amway business or any business. I see you have been giving a great deal of time and energy to try and discredit such an oppertunity for someone to get ahead in life financially. I ask you, what has made you so angry(for a lack of words).

Thank You for taking the time to read this email

Dear Mr. Schwartz, How are you doing? Thank you for your site. It will be a good source of information about the Amway business. Please feel free to open the file attached.

The Diamonds can make money if and only if A new person wants to be successful in the Amway business and The person buys the books, tapes and the tickets of the seminars and rallies and The person shows the plan to the others. The above are what I think when I checked the cost of the tapes and observed the reactions of my uplines after I told them the thing I found. Hi! My name is *. I have been an Amway distributor in Hong Kong since Dec. 1994. And I am in a group that is plugged into the system of Yager and Britt. You can have a look here: "". In Hong Kong we are not the only Yager group. You can find IDA from Austria also.

I have dream and I am willing to do everything I can do to make my dream come true. Therefore when I came across this Interactive Distribution business opportunity I felt excited. Showing the plan and using the Amway are no trouble to me. I thought everything I done in this business can be accumulated whatever and whenever I done right or wrong. I believed the person to whom I shown the plan will be sponsored by me in future. Therefore going diamond can be assured. All my uplines always reinforce us to be a go-getter (15 Show The Plans + 100PV every month) and to be a ‘diamond today’ (listen to 1 roll of tape/SOT in every morning; read the Book of the Month 15min every day; meet 2 new friends).

I have been a go-getter since Oct 1996 and personally sponsored more than 50 persons. The total number of people in my business network is over 100. Besides going diamond everyday is no difficult to me. I have been thinking that I can become a new Diamond within 5 more years hard work (if the dream is big enough the facts don’t count!).

Since I was a new member in the business (system or Amway?), I was told to STP and to be a 100% devoted product-user (of course ‘the 10 customers rule’ is ignored since the very 1st day I signed up). My upline told me that is what the “Yager system” suggested to build the Amway Business. Any question which I asked and which my upline can’t answer is considered to be not following ‘the system’ and also deedifying all the uplines. It seemed to me that upline is controlling the system that ALL the things my upline said are ABSOLUTEDLY right and I have no authority to have a final check (even though it is my BUSINESS). In a free society, such behavior is unbelievable.

However I choose to build the Interactive Distribution because of my BIG dreams. ‘If the dream is big enough the facts don’t count!’ my upline Diamond and my upline always repeat such sentence. In 1994~1995, my upline was selling HK$15.00(~US$2.00)/tape to us. And the number of the tape was limited to 25~30. We were told to listen to the same tape again and again until we become the Diamonds (of course please don’t question if this truth or not). In 1996~1997, my upline raised the price to HK$20.00(~US$3.00)/tape (33.3% increased much higher than the inflation in Hong Kong but please don’t challenge the uplines’ system! alright?). This year 1998, because our upline Emerald really wants to plug into the IDA and Britt system more deeply, he asks all of his downlines including me to place orders for SOT (standing order tapes) of both systems.

Every week we will receive one tape or two from both system and the selling price of the tape is HK$45.00(~US$6.50). Because I am a go-getter my upline suggests me to order double for preparing of the ‘explosion’ in the business. Therefore the weekly investment of the tape system is expected at least HK$90.00(US$13.00). Our upline Emerald always emphasize that it is worth to invest in the tape because if one sentence or two in the weekly SOT can help you to go diamond and the true value of the tape will be worth more that HK$45.00. However both of us including my upline and my upline Emerald don’t know how many tapes we should buy and listen in order to make us really go diamond. In other word, investing in SOT is of no limit. Maybe for the rest of our life!

In July 1998, I asked 2 cassette tape manufacturers to give me a quotation for production of the tape same as SOT (60min or 90min and with transparent plastics packing). It is a common fact that the production cost in Hong Kong is very high compared with that in China. Both of the cassette tape manufactures give me a quotation far more cheaper than the price of SOT which my upline is selling to us. In short, Please note I personally no relationship with those cassette tape manufactures. I just give a call and ask for the quotations. If you want to have a look of the background of AV Promotions Ltd., you can visit here:

In the tapes or in different rally, those Diamonds repeat again and again that they are very EXCITED to be here and be very glad to talk before us. The Diamonds always tell us they want to S-H-A-R-E their stories and teach us something that can help us to go diamond but what if something that are different from the instructions of your upline please just follow the upline’s teaching. (By the way, my coach upline is not a Diamond and he tells me to listen to the Diamonds before the rally begins. However the diamonds just suggest us listen and follow the uplines. In other word, there is no need to have the Diamonds come to Hong Kong, no need to pay for the ticket of the rally! Therefore just listen to the uplines.) Do you know the meaning of “S-H-A-R-I-N-G”? My native language is not English but I know the difference between sharing and selling. I think what they are doing is selling and not sharing.

I remember the day that I told my upline DD about what I know about the tape system. My upline confessed that he does make some money in the tape system but the amount is very LITTLE. And he also seemed to a little bit nervous when he confesses to me. Maybe he felt guilty for cheating the downlines for a long period of time. Maybe he is afraid of me telling the truth to all the people. Soon after that my upline called our common Emerald upline for help. Maybe the Emerald is much more sophisticated and trained that he tells placidly me that he doesn’t make any profit in the tape system, not even a single dollar. (Sounds like Mr. Bill Clinton) He also said that the price that he buys the tape is the same price that he sells the tape. When I gave him much more data that I have found, the Emerald just reacted the same as the magician when his little tricky is exposed. The Emerald reacted angry and asked me to consult to the upline more. I asked them why don’t they tell all the new people in the OPEN meeting that the income in the system besides Amway’s products. Both of them didn’t know how to answer my question. Maybe this is no need to answer! Therefore today I can induce that the higher pin level in the SYSTEM, the lower is their moral standard, the likely they becoming professional liars.

Thank you for this web so that more and more people can have a real look of the Amway business or whichever they call (such as Interactive Distribution, International Marketing…). I have dreams and now I am doing everything that I can do to make my dreams come true instead of ‘going diamond’ and selling the tapes, books and functions FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!

HELLO,AS AN AMWAY DISTRIBUTOR WITH LESS THAn two years in.i must congratulate you on your close-mindedness.the buisness tools are fantastic.if anyone is concerned about being brainwashed,they only need to ewatch yv,or listen to the radio for five minutes.i have not made any real money in this buisness yet.but i have become very wealthy due to the friendships,that my wife and i have developed.i have been accused of being in a cult because of my religous belief,and it was not by anyone in amway.there is money to be made but you must see past your own nose.turn off the tv and open your mind. god bless and have a good life. joe


I read an article in The Grand Rapids Press (MI) and decided to check out your site. I haven't yet read everything you offer, but enough to know I've found a kindred soul.

Here are a couple of things you may not have known about AMWAY, Grand Rapids and Ada, MI and the involvement of the State of Michigan through the intercession of Gov. John Engler. Engler dimantled Michigan's labor department and created the Jobs Commission to handle the department's work. He then ordered the Jobs Commission to contribute over a half'-million of taxpayer dollars to AMWAY for that company to use to pay for its indoctrination course for workers. Engler's rationale was that the AMWAY philosophy and its Protestant work ethic are good things for employees to learn. At the same time, Engler dismantled what had been the state's unemployment service and let his minions farm out the work to preferred firms (big contributors to the Republican Party), which charge a fee for helping the unemployed find work. He also enacted new rules that make it harder for the unemployed to receive benefits when they're laid off.

AMWAY founders Richard DeVos and Jay Van Andel are billionaire arch-conservatives who bankroll groups that preach creationism and public funding of private and parochial schools. Recently, Van Andel gave $20,000,000 to a Grand Rapids religious college(tax deductible, of course) and both the founders have institutions and buildings around Grand Rapids named for them.

Governor Engler gutted the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) and issued new orders to the remaining staff to go easy on corporate violations of safety and health standards, with AMWAY taken off the list of egregious violators. AMWAY has for years polluted the Grand River and the soil in Ada, MI, and now has what was once one of the country's best EPA's off its back.

Not everyone in this area of Michigan is pleased with AMWAY. Workers in its plants are exploited while Engler's cronies get tax dollars for hiring "disadvantaged" workers. The list of valid complaints about AMWAY would fill several books.

If you wish further information or verification please contact me.

Hi Sydney:

The secret I refer to above is my knowledge of the truth about the big A, thanks to your website and its links. Believe it or not, I'm actually going to one of my upline's meetings tonight, after avoiding them for a few months under the explanation that I'm simply "taking a hiatus." I really was, for awhile (after spending six months eating, sleeping and breathing the business - and not sponsoring a soul, and losing hundreds of dollars I didn't have on the tools.)

I really did still believe in it for awhile; I just needed to catch my breath and recuperate from the frustration. I also needed to focus my time on finding a better "J.O.B." - because even though I am a very high achiever in journalism, my first job out of college only covers about 60 percent of my bills. That's what drew me into Amway - but after several months, I realized that I needed to pay my bills - and after six months (when they tell you you'll be direct with the amount of effort I put in) I saw that I was much worse off than I was before. I had every intention of going back, knowing the "it's not a get-rich-quick scheme" argument. I just needed to find a better Plan A so I could support both my regular bills and Plan B.

Meanwhile, I couldn't deny the suspicious gut feeling I had had for awhile, but of course always denied because it's "stinking thinking." Every specific question I had upline ALWAYS had an answer to - it's amazing how they can "prove" you're saving money, even when I couldn't ignore that buying wholesale was costing me an average of 40 percent more than the competing retail. The business was always right, even when it defied common sense and math.

I discovered your website when I was job-hunting on the Baton Rouge advocate's website, and saw their investigative series about Amway. That pointed me to your site. I was hooked for a few months, stunned by the facts that confirmed my gut-level discomfort, especially about the system and the profits. It took me a very long time to digest, and I'm still working on it.

Here's the problem: I haven't confronted my upline about it yet. I've kept totally silent to everyone - it's so humiliating. I think sometimes there's still that Ambot buried deep-down, wondering "what if it's all lies?" Then, of course, I could never tell my friends and family such sacrilege; only propaganda, and sometimes blatant lies! I know exactly what my upline will say, too: the usual. You (and me, too) are broke, negative, dream-stealing losers, and I was foolish to let a naysayer subject me to negative information. How do I ever expect to go anywhere in life? Anyone who could possibly criticize or fail at this business has something fundamentally wrong with them.

Here's the most difficult problem: my immediate sponsor is my aunt (though she's not at all one of the pushy ones). She's been in it for nearly three years and is hardly making anything, though she's sponsored a few. I'm convinced she doesn't know the truth; she's as much in the dark as I was. She's a rational person (an engineer) and I'd like to think she'd be so if I told her. But she's got the Ambotism of "no, I'm not seeing any success now, but I absolutely will if I stay. I suspect she has doubts about that alone, very deep down, all scams aside. But since I'm her downline, she will NEVER be honest with me about the A issue; all I get is propaganda. And if I tried to tell her the truth, even give her Probandt's website, I think she'll probably employ the usual upline tactics for defectors. She's family, for crying out loud - and I hate for this wall to be between us. I'm also terrified of rocking the boat and my secret being spilled into the whole upline. I think I'm staying in the "closet" now because it is safe. I don't want to hurt my aunt or be responsible for "stealing her dreams."

Last, I must admit, there is one other innocuous reason why I'm choosing to renew my distributorship this year. I have to say that I do love many of the products and enjoy their home delivery, although I refuse to buy anything that is ridiculously overpriced. That rules out a lot, unfortunately.

There's another reason, actually. My upline and crossline have been like family for several months, and I know that once the secret's out I'll be disowned. I'm not so nieve that I didn't realize some degree of an ulterior ulterior motive from the beginning( it comes with MLM territory), but I was in to stay so that didn't matter. But once my hiatus started, they practically dropped out of my life except to tell me when functions were, of course. I now know that, even though there may well have been some genuine feeling that developed between us, they would have no use for me without a profit potential. I'd be a bad influence on them. To tell them what I know, too (instead of just quitting), would essentially be blasphemous to their God. (Deny it as they might, it's the truth.) That would be the end of it.

Thanks for letting me vent, and explain my unusual closet situation. I know what I need to do eventually (unless I stay in year after year just to buy some products.) I'm just so scared to take that step, especially with my family involved. Do you have any suggestions for me? I'm dreading this.

Thanks again. Off I go to see some "circles" - the first time since I learned the truth. This is going to look, and feel, very interesting.

P.S. Thanks for all your work - you are helping a lot of people. So, I guess I'm trying to stay in the "comfort zone," (haha)

Hi,  I am an Amway Distributor who is on her way out.  I was a Direct Distributor for four (4) years, and involved for seven.  The devastation to my personal life was unbelievable.  My husband originally found it intriguing and I liked the products.  After seven years of hard work, and trying to clone myself into an "suitable" Amway Wife, my husband left me and moved abruptly out of state.  We have since divorced.  I believe he had a nervous breakdown from the pressure in the business, the upline's cult like behavior towards us, and the constant rejection from people we would show the business to.  We sponsored some very nice people along the way, but the intelligent one's never remained in, even though they always liked us personally.  They detested the World Wide Dreambuilder ideology.  Our neighbor's though grew to hate us and our weekly evening rally--I mean, houseplans, at our home.  The excitement and loudness along with the weekly product pickup traffic/circulation impacts probably did them in too!

To the Upline, my husband was what was known as a "haas" or as a trusty "lieutenant" in WWDB.  He was available for anything to help the Upline.  He left me and the children alone so often to go meet with them, or to go and strategize with the downline and upline.  I went to everything just to spend time with him--sometimes under threat of pending Divorce if " I did not get with the program…".  I made myself get on the team to the best of my ability, so that I could keep him happy.  He ultimately broke down when he realized that we just weren't going to go Ruby after three of our time goals never were met.  He would not listen to my words of encouragement.  He felt like a complete failure.  They had convinced him that his good job (which really was good) was sour and keeping him from reaching his potential:  Give them 8 to 5 p.m., but from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. is when real success is built!   He left the business in my hands, but I fell apart when he left me.  I loved him so much.  He stopped knowing right from wrong, good from evil.  I tried to keep things together, but it did not work.  My Upline basically commandeered my entire group from me.  The so-called "real men" in the Upline treated me like I was a scarlet letter woman because my "perfect" Amway man left me.  They missed him and tried to get him to come back and build the business.  They did not care about our marriage.  They finally told me to Divorce him and since he wouldn't work the business anymore, that I should do it and start going to functions again.  All I wanted was my husband to come back and we could start over together, and just use the Amway thing as a learning experience.  The minuscule amount of personal problems were not even looked at by anyone.  I begged for help in getting counseling for us together…they just wanted to make sure that there were no losses downline.  When I did not "get with the program" and I was emotionally so hurt that I tried so hard, and my life was basically over with my husband, they started considering me a threat to the WWDB system, and a smoking gun.  I had been involved in direct conversations with Emeralds and Diamonds…We had been in the inner sanctum.  I know about the tapes and the books, and the functions, and the motivational profits.  They used to entice my husband with what would be coming our way if we kept close with them.  I questioned it from the beginning and maintained that wrong is wrong--just because people aren't found out or tested in court doesn't make them right.  I complained to my husband, and Upline previously and they always had answers that would either shut me up, intimidate me, or sometimes make sense.  The Upline ostracized me immediately when they realized that my husband was gone, and that I did not want to teach or be such a proponent of the mind control and motivational profits.  These people are very tight with money and they make so much off of the people in their groups…if you count the motivational sales, the PV/BV from Amway, the personal servitude most loyal distributors provide, some even doing housecleaning and errands for the Upline, and the purchase of items that Upline sell occasionally....this is an underground money making machine.

The Upline took my entire product inventory and promised to return the money as it sold to me; they made me pay for personal expenses that they said they were incurring in operating my business; they would not let my downline talk to me--they treated them very poorly if they tried to talk with me; they acted like I had gone crazy, and that my husband was always out of control and they should stop knowing either of us--we were now considered dangerous to the harmony in the group that we built; they reduced my bonus check to basically $100 - $200 a month and then stopped paying me.  I wrote Amway to file complaint, but Amway was more on side of Upline than mine…they said I sounded like I wasn't Edifying the Upline…but if I continued to document they would review the material I sent.  They stonewalled me so I finally gave up.  The business is filled with lies and deception…in meetings they say, you will always have this income if you build it, it is residual in nature.  It is better than money in the bank, you have weaved yourself into the lives of people and helping others first!  They did, help themselves to what work my husband and I had done.  And I could go on and on about "no shows" empty house plans, driving the miles, long distance sponsoring, etc. etc.  We made some decent money at the Direct level, but with functions, tools, and expenses that Directs have to pay for under "verbal agreements" we were not making very much at all.  The Directs usually didn't get the access we had to the Upline, but on the surface we seemed just their type.  They never would listen to us, either of us.  My husband just thought that these guys were sincerely wanting to help him.  He was lost quite early in the business to their Propaganda.  I have had to seek serious psychological counseling because I realized that I was in a cult and that no one, not even my family truly knew the extent.  My family tried to support us by buying products and being positive.  When I lost my husband I thought I would die--I hadn't done anything wrong.  He started acting like a nut at the end....going into rages, and wanting to blame me.  I always told him that being a Direct was really an achievement and we should be proud. We held it together for along time and did genuinely care about our group…we did not have to be insincere money grubbers and scammers like the Upline…we could make it work our way.  Inside he knew what really was happening, he lost control of himself.  He has written me lately and told me he still hates the Upline--they hurt him and his psyche so much but he is going to forget about it too.  He signed the business over to me right away and was sad that it didn't work out financially for me.  I had quit my career from pressure by the Upline and him, and I had to go back to work even though I had become a nervous wreck.

On top of everything else, my Upline just used more manipulation of me to sign the whole business over to him…for no money.  He started withholding my measly bonus check and being a bigger jerk than before…so I finally just said "uncle" and am walking away.  The aggravation and pain they cause you is not worth any price.  I am sad that this happened to me.  I thank God though that I am alive and can start over.  There were some positive things I learned and in some ways invaluable lessons in life.

I was reading your website and thought you might be interested in my story.  Plus I just checked the web page for ABN and it turns out that the lawsuits that were filed in Houston have been forced to go through arbitration not jury trial....this is similar to HMO's that require you to arbitrate instead of sue when you sign up.  This is good in some ways because it keeps costs down…but does anyone really understand this when they sign up for health insurance from work?  Or do they understand this when they sign up for an Amway distributorship?  No.

I know this is long message, and I could go on and on.  But I really just wanted to let you know that I exist and this is a real account of what has happened to me.  And the attached article is right off of the ABN page....congratulating themselves for hiding the truth about their sick motivational groups once again.   I will also note that Distributor Relations told me that the motivational groups are "separate" from Amway Corp.  I informed them that that would never hold up in court scrutiny because they are really one in the same.   The motivation is only geared toward building the Business.  They even say they do not sell tapes that are from outside sources…only Qualified Emeralds or Diamonds may cut a tape for sale.  THe teaching is supposed to be superior because it is first hand knowledge of Amway Business building and not other types of business.  Also WWDB would not exist without Amway and it is very clear to me that the groups are so powerful in the mind control and recruitment that Amway could not exist how they are today at current and projected profits if Motivational groups like WWDB did not exist.  The ADA Board is made up of big pins in these groups…not regular distributors…who are they kidding?  Only themselves and probably not even that…this is like the Party Line: " We are separate and therefore not responsible...."  Its too bad because the Amway concept could work well and alot of the products are good quality.  They just ruin a good thing because they are unwilling to compete on the market place grocery store shelf…they want their niche and they want to keep it because of money.

Thanks again

By the way I am not officially out yet.  I am attempting to recoup some of my losses.  By the first of the year it should be over with.

My Upline Diamond is the Infamous * from San Bernardino, California Fame.  He was a local boy done good who worked at his daddy's mobile home dealer ship…after a bout with the music industry, he settled into selling mobile homes, until in the 70's he found hope in some soap and gave up his ugly ways to sell, Amway, the "American Dream," and Salvation to thousands.  He is a hero to many but a loser to me. My upline Emerald is a gentleman named * --whose claim to fame he says is that he filed a huge bankruptcy in California in the 80's.  He found a "new attitude" and a fresh start in Amway, as he "sailed out of this country with his wifey to avoid all his problems, but listened to a Jim Head tape, and turned that boat around so he could get involved in Amway--he knew it would change his life and make him rich."  Have you ever watched a DIAMOND CHIPS tape
I threw mine out, but they are the best entertainment value going…better than Springer.

* says, "Give America a fishing pole, a fishing pole! a fishing pole!!!!   Not a fish… A fishing Pole.....or Jack * …"When Jack goes down, Jack gets up, and he keeps getting up, and he gets up one more time.......because J.  A.   C.  K   is NOT GOING DOWN......!!!!"  Good Stuff when you are in the whirlwind....horribly sick when you are not.

Bye for now....DD's on the S....T List