Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Amway Cult Warning Signs

I was trying to find a web site that might help spouses, family, and friends of Amway cult followers.

The Cult Information Center is a British group but they provide a page that has links to groups worldwide that assist people in dealing with cult exit strategies and help for families. http://www.cultinformation.org.uk/help.html

While I was there I clicked on a link for the Cult Clinic and Hotline. They’re in New York and run by the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Service but they’re non denominational and offer assistance to anyone in the United States who requires their help.

  1. Has there been strong pressure for me to join or to stay?
  2. Am I being pressured to recruit others?
  3. Are my doubts and questions discouraged, avoided, or even forbidden?
  4. If I’m critical of the group, am I told there’s something wrong with me?
  5. Do I not have an opportunity to verify information provided by the group?
  6. Am I expected to reveal fears and secrets?
  7. Does the group’s leadership dictate how I should act, think, or feel?
  8. Do I not get enough sleep now or have enough time to devote to outside pursuits and responsibilities?
  9. Am I made to feel fear or guilt when I don’t do exactly as my leader or elders in the group told me?
  10. Have I lost my old friends?
  11. Have I missed important family occasions because I was encouraged to be with fellow group members instead or given an urgent task to complete?
  12. Is there a belief that the leader has special powers?
  13. Have I been promised things by the group that have yet to materialize?
  14. Was I told that joining this group was my only path to happiness, peace, God, or even prosperity?

Wow! Talk about summarizing our Amway experience!

Here’s my answers:
  1. The pressure was on to join. “Now is the time to sign up with Amway. Its about to explode on the Internet. You want to get in now.” Seeing as how we’d already tried Amway once before and I wasn’t interested in losing money again I suggested to Ambot that we wait and see how his friend Captain Fuck Up made out. If that fuck up was doing good after a few months then that might be proof to me that things are different in Amway. Ambot was mad. He’d already been sneaking around meeting the cult leaders and had all the canned responses. We were going to miss out BIG if we didn’t sign up now and get in while the getting in was good. After a few months the pressure was on to stay. “You can’t quit now. Not when success is right around the corner and you’re about to go really BIG!”
  2. Ha ha! That goes without saying. That’s what Amway is about. Recruiting other IBO’s and tricking suckers into going to Amway meetings.
  3. Absolutely! “Never question upline!”
  4. That’s another big yes. “Don’t speak negative!” unless of course you're an unchristian, negative dream stealer who is a loser with a J.O.B. and worse than that a broke loser!
  5. “Don’t search on the Internet. Its full of lies and you can’t believe anything you read there.”
  6. Yes. Your upline wants to know EVERYTHING so they can use it against you later on.
  7. Another big yes! You’re told to dress in business attire, drive high end vehicles, carry cell phones, do whatever it takes to project a successful image. Fake it till you make it!
  8. Sleep! Ha! “You’ll have time to sleep when you’re dead!” Amway meetings start at 8pm. Then there are meetings after the meeting. You’ll be lucky to get to bed by 1am but usually later than that. Forget about anything else in your life that doesn’t have anything to do with Amway.
  9. Oh yes! You must ask upline’s permission before doing anything! If you don’t you will be the subject of ranting and raging at the next Amway meeting. Plus you’ll be harassed with phone calls, text messages, and emails criticizing you for doing your own thing. The Amway cult leader is a person to be worshipped and feared.
  10. Yes, your old friends don’t want nothing to do with you anymore because you’re prospecting them to come to Amway meetings, sign up as an IBO, or buy overpriced Amway shit. They’ll avoid you like the plague!
  11. Family occasions? Forget about them if there’s an Amway meeting scheduled or someone upline wants you to drop everything and kiss their ass.
  12. Yes. Upline were displayed as having these magical powers to be successful in Amway and if you spent time with them and learned from them and duplicated them you would have these secret magic powers too.
  13. Ha, ha. Makes me laugh again! Another big yes. Amway is full of promises (broken ones) and dreams (shattered ones).
  14. Yes. We were going to have Amway residual income rolling in for the rest of our lives. And if that didn’t happen we were going to be nicer people!


  1. Spot on! It sounds just like Amway and WWDB. The problem is that when you are active, oftentimes you don't see that you got sucked into a cult like organization. It was the submission thing that started to get me thinking what the hell is with these guys.

  2. Joecool - you and I both know its dead on and is referring to Amway and WWDB. Now all thats left to do is for some brainwashed ambots to show up here and deny they're being brainwashed into a cult!

  3. Part of mind control is making the brainwashed think that all the things the cult leaders are "advising" them to do is THEIR idea and decision. They dangle carrots in front of them, both of phony promises of good things if they are "worthy" enough to earn them, as well as emotional carrots of "love" and "acceptance" for following instructions unquestioningly. The brainwashed are convinced that the goal set is easily obtainable, and if they don't get it as promised, it is THEIR fault for not being worthy enough. No matter how screwed up their finances and lives become chasing the pipe dream, they defend their cult leaders vehemently. I've seen the brainwashed claim that regardless of their lack of success and destitution, they feel they are "better" people because of the experience.

    They say that the ultimate con men are the ones that not only screw someone over, but get them to thank them for it afterward.


  4. Dave - I had a good response and then my Internet went out and then came back! Anyone want to guess who my server is! Ha!

    The Amway cult leaders don't say "worthy" they say "you haven't earned the privilege". That might be to meet someone higher up in Amway but it could also mean quitting your job, taking time out of your day to go to the gym, watching TV, or doing something else instead of attending an Amway meeting.

    It is always the IBO's fault they didn't succeed. They didn't try hard enough, they weren't CORE, they didn't exactly duplicate their upline, etc.

    It is never the fault of a system that was designed for failure.

    Our Platinum would rant and scold you one minute and the next minute say "but we still love you".

    Sick son of a bitch. He's absolutely the type that wants you to thank him for screwing you over.

  5. Amway bristles at the "cult" comparison, but as you note in your article, the signs of a cult read as a virtual check list of how Amway sucks people in.

    I had two cousins in Canada who each got sucked into whacko cult religions (and not the same one, oddly enough). The comparisons to Amway were eerily striking. First the initial contact and starting a quick and close friendship, the "excited" joy (and ego boosting) to tell them that God had chosen them as a select few, and to come to meetings (indoctrination) to learn more. Like Amway, they are vague and deceptive in the beginning as to what it all will entail (the "reeling in" stage I call it as they have to be careful not to scare them away while they still have the ability to think). The flock "lovebombs" them to make them feel special and selected. Then the standard brainwashing techniques of long meetings and seminars with little food or water, constant hammering of the mind to shatter any individual thought or ability to question or doubt, demanding more and more of their time to be devoted only to their group "message" and then the bleeding of their finances. One of my cousins I know was expected to give the cult 40% of all his earnings. His wife was left to work two jobs and beg grandparents to watch kids and provide food and clothing. The brainwashed loses all perspective of this being wrong. The cult works hard to cultivate an attitude of the "chosen one" having to prove their faith to God, and all friends and family not involved in the cult are to be ignored and shunned as "the devil speaks through them, trying to make you stumble on your journey to heaven. They are all going to burn in hell." He actually said outright to his parents, wife and small children that they were going to hell. Nice, huh? And all the hardships he put himself and family through were just "part of the journey to heaven". And the elders at the church were completely infallible. They knew what was best. Everyone outside of their circle were "evil" because they were not "one of them". ...

  6. ...The only reason that hardcore Amway followers don't see that cult comparison is because they have been sucked in to where they no longer have the ability to think rationally and logically. I see them post defenses on anti-Amway blogs where they parrot things they have heard in the tapes and seminars and you can tell it's all the cliches and hard to follow "logic" they were taught of why they are not a cult and are a legitimate business model. They try to make comparisons to Coca Cola or IBM, but it makes no sense as their employees don't go into debt for years while "working" for them. They point out Amway as being "debt free" as proof it works, but don't see how it's all the individual distributors who are up to their necks in debt while the company upline always gets THEIR money. I saw one write comparing the rise of Abraham Lincoln to an Amway distributor! lol "Fore score and seven tubes of Glister ago..."
    I'm sure you get plenty of mindless defenders writing to you asking why you hate success so much or must have too much time on your hands to pursue such negative dream stealing. They laugh at you being a slave to your "j.o.b." and never going to get anywhere, regardless of the fact odds are you have a better car, house and income then they do. And they usually end it by boasting they'll toast you from the beaches of Tahiti by next year. Of course, that "Diamond" day never comes, but they will never stop the "dream" that it is only a month or so away. Dreams are nice. But they have to be based somewhat in reality. Heck, I dream of one day growing feathers and flying through the sky, but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for it to happen anytime soon. And since less than 2% of anyone in Amway really "makes it", they probably shouldn't hold their breath either.
    P.S. Sorry for how long my rants can be.

  7. No problem on the rants. Mine are much longer!

    I doubt that Amway the company started out thinking they were destined to become a cult. They can thank their overzealous lines of sponsorship and the leaders and their training for that tag.

    That said - Amway the company does not do their part to clean up their act.

    Love bombing did not work on me. I'm too suspicious of people who are very obviously fakey nicey nicey and want to hug and smooch people they've just met. Now if I was 18 and lived in a co-ed dorm at university that might be kind of fun! Amway and other cult followers go overboard. Extreme love bombing!

    I'm sure my former upline have long ago tagged me as evil!

    I don't get too many mindless defenders showing up here. When they do I usually feature a blog post about them! The bloggers who are more focused on showing Amway as a bad business opportunity tend to get those cult followers. The weirdest one of course is from Scarborough Canada - maybe your cousin??? - and shows up on Joecool's blog. He's come here a few times but not recently. Responding to someone cursing out their former upline isn't as much fun as threatening a blogger who dissects the Amway opportunity I guess.

    They can laugh at me and my J.O.B. all they want. I'd like to see any one of them prove that I actually have a job and work outside of my home.

    This is my entertainment. I can always make time to entertain myself between doing the laundry and the gardening!

  8. Are one of the links to the upper right Joecool's blog?

  9. Yes - Joecool writes a few blogs Amway The Dream or the Scheme and The Truth about the Amway Global Opportunity and another one about his WWDB experiences. I don't have the link but he will on one of his other pages.

    There are some Amway lovers who think Joecool writes every anti-Amway blog out there including this one.


Comments are moderated but we publish just about everything. Even brainwashed ambots who show up here to accuse us of not trying hard enough and that we are lazy, quitters, negative, unchristian dreamstealers. Like we haven’t heard that Amspeak abuse from the assholes in our upline!

If your comment didn’t get published it could be one of these reasons:
1. Is it the weekend? We don’t moderate comments on weekends. Maybe not every day during the week either. Patience.
2. Racist/bigoted comments? Take that shit somewhere else.
3. Naming names? Public figures like politicians and actors and people known in Amway are probably OK – the owners, Diamonds with CDs or who speak at functions, people in Amway’s publicity department who write press releases and blogs. Its humiliating for people to admit their association with Amway so respect their privacy if they’re not out there telling everyone about the love of their life.
4. Gossip that serves no purpose. There are other places to dish about what Diamonds are having affairs or guessing why they’re getting divorced. If you absolutely must share that here – don’t name names. I get too many nosy ambots searching for this. Lets not help them find this shit.
5. Posting something creepy anonymously and we can’t track your location because you’re on a mobile device or using hide my ass or some other proxy. I attracted an obsessed fan and one of my blog administrators attracted a cyberstalker. Lets keep it safe for everyone. Anonymous is OK. Creepy anonymous and hiding – go fuck yourselves!
6. Posting something that serves no purpose other than to cause fighting.
7. Posting bullshit Amway propaganda. We might publish that comment to make fun of you. Otherwise take your agenda somewhere else. Not interested.
8. Notice how this blog is written in English? That's our language so keep your comments in English too. If you leave a comment written in another language then we either have to use Google translate to put it into English so everyone can understand what you wrote or we can hit the Delete button. Guess which one is easier for us to do?
9. We suspect you're a troublemaking Amway asshole.
10. Your comment got caught in the spam filter. Gets checked occasionally. We’ll get to you eventually and approve it as long as it really isn’t spam.