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Ex-TEAM Reader Q&A: Jackie Frey’s TEAM/LIFE Statement

February 1, 2013

Here is another personal story from former TEAM members, Don and Jackie Frey. Read more ex-TEAM member’s stories here.


After being involved with TEAM for over 5 years, (my husband and I both), I am no longer a part of the TEAM Association and/or business. I no longer felt that the business was the business of character and integrity that I had once believed and that it was time to disassociate myself completely.

I feel a personal obligation to share the truth about my feelings towards this organization. I would like to emphasize and stress that these are my personal feelings and I am only speaking on behalf of myself. This is how I feel after being involved for the five years. I feel led to share the truth. My hope is that people considering involvement will be able to make an informed decision. My biggest regret is that I did not realize it sooner and stop the bleeding.

First and foremost, I would like to personally apologize publicly to anyone I approached about TEAM. Please accept my deepest apologies. I have had a chance to review my past actions and have many regrets. I am committed to share the truth now. It has been a very long journey to get to this point. Speaking out is my way of attempting to make restitution for my wrong decision making in the past.

If I contacted you (sometimes more than once possibly) regarding the business opportunity of TEAM or got you involved in the business opportunity of TEAM, I am sorry. I am truly sorry for promoting something that I no longer believe in. I am sincere when I say that truly did believe in what I was doing at the time.

My suggestion to anyone considering involvement is to know what you’re in or getting into to. Do you homework and research. There is SO MUCH MORE to the story than what TEAM people think. I am confident the truth will prevail in the end. I agree with much of what is on Amthrax.

I pray for all of the leaders on the Team that the Lord might bring them to repentance and that they would see they are hurting so many people with their business practices. It’s nothing but a tragedy. All I want to do is be truthful & share my personal experience. So many people have been lied to. It’s just wrong. Not sure how some people can know certain things and still be able to sleep at night.

One really does never know what to believe unless of course you were there to witness it first hand. I can’t speak for anyone or everyone, only myself and my husband and our personal experience with Team/Quixtar/Mona Vie. I truly believe everyone’s intentions start out good and then somehow unfortunately get misguided when $$ is involved. I think there is some serious butt-covering going on.

We loved how we felt when we were first introduced to the TEAM. Soon after getting involved you realize that “something is not right” but you BELIEVE. Those CD’s keep you believing!! It is a cult like atmosphere and I will never be convinced otherwise.

The following statements are in fact truth and what I believe in my heart and soul.

  1. When we were approached about the “TEAM” opportunity in December of 2006, we were NEVER told much of anything about Quixtar except that was who we used for our “shopping hub”. TEAM was the business, not Quixtar. Nothing, Zip, Nada about Quixtar whatsoever.
  2. We seriously got in the business to be able to shop online. We were told the pricing was better than you could get in the store. Sounded good to us, as we were already big online shoppers. Why not buy from ourselves we were told. Made sense to us.
  3. We were in 100% from the time was saw George Guzzardo on the following Saturday night at a Seminar. We so believed in what was told to us. We wanted to make a difference in the world. We wanted to help people.
  4. From 2006 until just last year, we invested (spent) thousands of dollars on our business buying Team tools, going to every Team open meeting and Seminar, buying product(s) from Quixtar, buying product(s) from Mona Vie, buying product(s) from LIFE.
  5. I believe that folks hang on because they feel a loyalty to everyone the “got in”. That’s how we felt. How could we quit on them?
  6. We truly believed 100% that we were going to be THE WALMART OF THE INTERNET. This is what we were told.
  7. To this day I feel really ashamed to have contacted my friends and family offering them something that wasn’t really what we thought it was.
  8. We spent more time building and replacing our business than anything else. It was so tiring. The frustration was overwhelming.
  9. Many many people are spending (“investing”) money that they simply DO NOT have all in the name of TEAM. It’s wrong. Trust be told, how many people are racking up charges on their credit cards. It’s crazy.
  10. New people are clearly being misled about the history of the TEAM. It’s wrong, plain & simple.

Here are just some of the many questions I have:

  1. Where is Pastor Dickie? I have gone looking for his materials only to be given a run around by the TEAM office. Something is not right. I’ve never gotten a straight answer from anyone on why he is gone. Who didn’t love Pastor Dickie? He is such an awesome man.
  2. Why did Chuck Goetschel leave? I loved him too. Where do they go? They just quietly disappear & nobody says a word…………
  3. Mark & Raquel just disappeared too. Now I know why but we sure didn’t at the time.
  4. Why change the Team tools all the time? We spent so much money just trying to keep up all the time. WE BELIEVED! We were suckers and I believe there are many many people just like us. People spending money they don’t have.
  5. I tried many times to get a straight answer on “how the money worked” and “how profit sharing” worked. Never could get anything in writing on what the guidelines were. How are you supposed to know what you’re running for when you can’t be given anything? Something’s not right with that.

I could go on and on but why? I do understand Raquel Peter’s reasoning’s for wanting to tell her story and try and prevent it from happening to other folks. None of us want to admit we made a mistake by getting involved. We are embarrassed & just want it to go away. We are embarrassed that we believed. We are embarrassed that we spent so much money. We are embarrassed that we got our very close friends and family involved. We want our family & friends to forget we even contacted them about it. Nobody wants to really talk about it. Don (my husband) and I are still feeling ashamed of all the money we blew all in the name of TEAM. We were duped and now we understand it but we sure didn’t understand it at the time.

We had our reservations early on but because of the strong relationships with our upline, we held on. Now we know why our tax lady tried to steer us clear and why everybody asked “is that one of those MLM things?” We made a big mistake by believing.

Now we move on to a different chapter of our life and a lot more money in the bank.

Again, my apologies to everyone.

God Bless,
Jackie Frey


Here are some more Ex-TEAM Q&A’s that you may be interested in reading.

142 Comments leave one →
  1. Mary permalink
    February 1, 2013 6:11 am

    Thank you for sharing your story, Jackie!

  2. Mike Bickel permalink
    February 1, 2013 7:02 am

    As a NON-MLM person, I’ve watched many many friends go down the tubes, but the TEAM/LIFE thing was (and is) the worst. Preying on and stalking spiritually vulnerable people, using (tricking) pastors into being the cannon fodder and mis-leaders of the group was a huge escalation in tactics and is totally the fault of Mr. Orrin Woodward along with Chris Brady and many others. This seeking out of vulnerable people along with the normal cult-like atmosphere of a revival is Jimmy Jones material. You end up drinking the Kool Aid because you allow them to tell you to TRUST them and then they also teach you carefully that there are many mis-guided people out there who are losers, who are quitters and they inoculate you against any comments right-thinking people / caring people might make. It’s a cult, for sure, but it’s also illegal.

    MLMs are ONLY legal because there is a product being sold. But when the “product” is mainly “tools” to bring new people into a cult, then it’s not, strictly speaking, a product that is being marketed – it’s a “tool” that helps you recruit and deceive. The RICO act includes “fraud” and, in my opinion, could be used to prosecute any/all MLM leaders as they mislead their current as well as potential new “customers” through deceit. While the “buyer beware” slogan still holds, that is utilized to warn any buyer that they need to do their research before they buy a product or service. But MLMs are not really interested in “selling” a product or a service, but rather are conducting a pyramid scheme when certain alleged “products” change hands, but those “products” are just tools to deceive and the money gained through the sale of those alleged “products” is merely put into a pyramid scheme.

    I think we take this pyramid completely down!

  3. February 1, 2013 10:19 am

    Exactly. I am lobbying everybody who shares this point of view to lodge a complaint with FTC within the next seven days starting today. A barrage of these within a targeted period will make this too hard for them not to pay full attention to. FTC link is at the top of Amthrax site.

  4. February 1, 2013 10:28 am

    Mike thanx for sharing your insightful comments. I will add as follows:
    Products are (IMO petty) incidentals to pernicious MLMs to the point of being a bother for some of these charlatans, was it not for FTC. The real product is the system of tools, majors, etc. Ditching the wampum in favor of the latter though would out right not be legal. So the peddled products, MLM wampum, are cunningly used to obfuscate what’s really taking place with the real/juicy product-system of tools, etc. Consequently, MLM wampum is reduced to self-consumption with negligible or no sales to outsiders. The emphasis is always on recruiting or in MLM sanitized terminology “building a big business.” That therefore proves MLM is not a business. They are a recruitment driven, self-consumption models of criminogenic (thanx David Brear) nature/structures for the evilly instigated & instituted purpose of wealth transfer from unwitting bottom level adherents to charlatans atop the pyramids.

    “MLMs are ONLY legal because there is a product being sold.”

    MLMs only appear to operate legally because,

    I-it’s hard for FTC to prove a product is not being sold to outside consumers and,
    II-DSA lobbyists with bags of $$$ are camped in DC.

  5. Brent Hansen permalink
    February 1, 2013 10:45 am

    Thanks for sharing what has probably caused a lot of personal anguish and despair, but has the power to help another. Glad you are free.

  6. February 1, 2013 4:51 pm

    Thanks Brent. I’m glad to be free!

    There has definitely been some serious head scratching and anguish along the way. Oh well, live and learn. Some good things did come of it. Personal growth for both of us. Some of the information is invaluable. One person, Pastor Robert Dickie Jr. led me further to Christ and for that, I will be eternally grateful. His materials were the best and life changing.

    Also, Chuck Goetschel shared with us at a Seminar once about clarifying where you are, where you are going, and why it matters. I wrote my Life Purpose Statement and what I value most in my life. Learned so much. Chuck Goetschel is a man of character and integrity.

  7. February 1, 2013 5:05 pm

    Jackie,

    Thank you for the courage to share publicly as you did. Yep those CD’s got me too and kept me in. It is only going to get better from here on. Welcome to freedom!

  8. February 1, 2013 8:54 pm

    Oh, good, another TEAMster speaking out, this is very encouraging! I know I used to comment a lot on here but it does get depressing (memories for me) but I wanted to say I truly admire you and Raquel Peters for standing up and speaking the truth – as former leaders. It takes a lot of guts. I have Raquel on my Facebook and she’s a lovely person. I think she left TEAM just before I joined though. I’m trying to remember your name, Jackie, I lasted 7 months, from July or Aug 2008 – Jan or Feb 2009. I know I went to my last TEAM meeting in Jan, and officially quit both MV and TEAM via website in Feb.

  9. Chris permalink
    February 2, 2013 1:05 am

    Thanks for sharing your story.I didn’t hear much about Pastor Dickey, I joined after he left. I did ask my upline however, who is mentoring w/ Orrin. I was told he left because his son was partly.in. charge of the finances and he did some dishonest things. Don’t know the whole story or if it’s true, but that is what I was told. I would also say not to be ashamed, because we ” all fell for it “, smoke and mirrors ” . Myself wanted to believe their.was a group with integrity and honor. It’s too bad many fall for this until their head over heals and find out.some of the sketchy things they do in team. I learned to ” forgive ” myself. All we can do is tell others our story.and hope they open their eyes.

  10. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 2, 2013 4:49 am

    Orrin made millions on his tools for years while in Q and all we heard about was how great Bobbie Dickie was for all those years. Bobbie made everything a LOT easier and better for us on the Team side! There’s no way Bobbie did anything dishonest! In fact I would wager he and other office workers LEFT Team because of the dishonesty going on behind the scenes in the Team!! The slander of the Dickies is SO discusting and we all know it starts from the top and trickles down! When you leave Team they slander you especially if you were a leader or public figure.

  11. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 2, 2013 4:56 am

    Jackie- Thanks for sharing your story! I takes a lot of guts but it is very freeing!
    I am ao glad you saw the light. It can be so hard to realize that what you were led to believe and what was real were two different things. Just remember you were decieved by masters of deception.
    I think your story and bravery will help keep others free!

  12. February 2, 2013 5:46 am

    It’s crazy. Very sad. The truth hurts. The sad part if that now any newbie getting started knows NOTHING about TEAM’s past. Just like when we got started we knew NOTHING about what was really going on behind the scenes with TEAM vs Quixtar. Sick, sad and downright wrong. How will it ever end? How will innocent people be educated about these kinds of things? We need to speak. Even if it hurts or is embarrassing, it’s the only way.

  13. February 2, 2013 6:59 am

    “When will it end…”

    Depends on everyone speaking out lodging a complaint with FTC – top RHS. Please file one if you haven’t done so already. Thank you if you have already. It’s great to have you here sharing as you have.

  14. freedomhaha permalink
    February 2, 2013 7:14 am

    It can also end when the people that have been around for while, but aren’t the RT level see the truth on this blog and leave. It will crush the TEAM (ahem, LIEF) middle class causing it to fall apart.

  15. MemoryLame permalink
    February 2, 2013 8:09 pm

    Raquel,

    I agree with you 100% about the slander of the Dickie family. From everything I’ve seen the whole family is disciplined and consistent in their values and their work ethic.

    Frankly, I do not believe for one second that Orrin Woodward or Chris Brady are doing the work that they promote that others should do consistently.

    Jackie,

    Thank you so much for sharing this. It’s a big deal that you took this step. Very soon, I hope to add our story to this as well.

    Also, I pray for the day that the children and/or spouses of these characters decide to take a stand and share their stories as well.

  16. Chris permalink
    February 3, 2013 1:33 am

    Did anybody see the dateline report on Amway,quixtar on U tube. This was years ago, but I see stunning similarities to team- life today. A must watch for anybody on this site or people who are checking out this site!

  17. February 3, 2013 3:59 am

    MemoryLame:

    It’s very therapeutic and refreshing to take the steps to tell your story. I would encourage others to do the same. It’s an extremely difficult decision to come to but the truth is better than the shame. I feel a huge weight lifted. Even if one person is able to get the information, then it’s worth it.

    More stories need to be told and this website needs to be shared more publicly so people can be educated and decide for themselves if it’s something they want to get involved with.

    If TEAM is all it’s sold out to be then why is there so much baggage and negative surrounding the “business opportunity”? If TEAM was one big happy family and one big great business opportunity, why the negative? I hope people ask themselves this before signing on the line.

  18. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 3, 2013 6:42 am

    Chris- I agree everyone should watch that Dateline interview. I believe Eric Schreibler who wrote Merchants of Deception may be in it. We were always taught in Team that we were different than all the other groups in Quixtar. We built straight down “depth” they built “width”. Orrin at one point disclosed the tool business in his book. We were always told isn’t Orrin so nice for sharing the tool money with us……..We focused on recruiting and they focused on selling products…..We didn’t use lighters in our meetings.. we were Team and we could take our community anywhere….

    Holy cow…how did I believe all this crap.

  19. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 3, 2013 6:46 am

    See the red flag…..we focused on recruiting….and not selling. lol. Can we say pyramid scheme? Of course they gave us mixed measages all the time. We don’t sell anything we buy from ourselves! ! Our supplier LOVES us. Were the fastest growing. Jeez…..I can’t hardly stand to think I repeated all this crap. copy copy copy.

  20. Charline permalink
    February 3, 2013 8:16 am

    Jackie and Raquel. So glad you are talking about this subject. I was involved in Team for 2 years and so glad I am out now. Spent so much money in this business! I remember going to a seminar in Moncton NB were you and spoke.

  21. February 3, 2013 12:36 pm

    Here is the Dateline/Quixtar/Amway video (two parts).

    The members shown in that video were from Britt Worldwide. In related news, Bill Britt passed away at the age of 81 last week.

  22. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 3, 2013 12:44 pm

    Charline- where was the seminar? State of Washington? If you want to chat please friend me on fb.
    I’m really sorry for the losses you incurred. I believed everything they told me and believed I was helping people. I believed what I said at the time and that anyone could do it. Now I realize we were all lied to and passed the lie on. I am so sorry. I cannot financially repay anyone for being a part of this, all I can do is tell the truth of what I eventually figured out. I am glad you found this site!
    I am so proud of Jackie! It takes a lot of guts to come here with your real name. and I’m sure her upline won’t be too happy about it. It’s very hard to do when people you care about are still in and knowing the slander she may endure.

  23. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 3, 2013 12:53 pm

    And lets not forget the risk of being sued. Although they would be fools to sue most people here. I was chosen because I know too much, I was a very public figure in Wisconsin and I sponsored now PC Hawkins. Most everyone reading this or posting here has nothing to worry about. It would be a PR nightmare for them.

  24. February 10, 2013 7:20 pm

    Wow. Nothing of what you wrote is on the mark. I know where Chuck went. He wanted to stick with Randy Haugen and a couple others who wanted to get paid more as speakers, etc. but in Team only current performers are speakers. You have to be a builder to speak. It’s a meritocracy. They who perform shall be recognized. Earning income with LIFE is simple, as was monavie. The comp plans are so great you only don’t earn if you’re not working at building a business. Most who follow the system are profitable within two months. Do the work and you earn.

  25. JOBOutsider permalink
    February 10, 2013 8:33 pm

    @scaseytx: It is simple. Scam some people and take their money. Good work. What is your total net profit from your entire involvement?

  26. MemoryLame permalink
    February 10, 2013 10:20 pm

    Scasey: meritocracy eh? How many plans do you think Orrin and Chris are showing these days? Do you really believe they’re directly sponsoring new people at all, let alone at power player level?

    Orrin told Forbes that the tools business made $40 million a year. If you’ve done the math based on things he has said at seminars, you know Orrin makes at minimum $6 million himself at PC. Assuming all PC’s are paid similarly in this meritocracy, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that conservatively, 85% of that is going to 7 PC couples!

    You’re right about one thing, the income is simple.

    I will be interested to see your answer to JOBS. If you say, “you wouldn’t believe me if I told you!” Or “more than you can imagine” or any other such nonsense besides an actual, hopefully positive number, everyone here will know what you mean. We all have the bills and receipts to prove it.

    I’m not picking on you personally. We aren’t new people you are trying to convince or even loved ones you just really want to inspire with the hope you’ve found. We aren’t here to reject you or make fun of you. We have all simply learned there is much more hope outside the team/life fiasco, than there will ever be throwing more money into their houses, yachts, and hobbies.

    Don’t convince yourself that your paycheck isn’t as big as theirs because you just haven’t done the work yet. Don’t get discouraged that you aren’t a relatable enough leader yet, to have an organization the size of Chris or Orrin. Don’t buy into the guilt trip that they represent all that is good and honorable that is left in this country, or that they are somehow our last great hope. ALL of those sentiments are falsities. Everyone that you buy into will cost you more than you can imagine – more than you can put on paper.

  27. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 11, 2013 12:00 am

    Jackie Frey~

    Thank You for sharing your story, I can relate to everything you have said. I believe from numerous people that I have spoken would say the same. You have certainly hit the mark on many things. So many feel what you do about your experienced.The more stories told on here the more others will feel the courage to tell theirs. I have no doubt your story and contribution will help many, many, others, again thanks for your courage and story!

  28. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 11, 2013 12:01 am

    MemoryLame~

    Great post!

  29. noteam permalink
    February 11, 2013 2:45 am

    scaseytx – If Randy Haugen was really interested in being paid more as a speaker, why did he give up his tool business and plug into the MonaVie MVP training system which is only $14.95 a month with City Seminars for $10 and Regional Seminars for $20?

    How could someone get paid more for speaking when city seminars are only $10 and only held every few months, compared to Teamscam’s monthly seminars that cost $40?

    Also, when Randy did have his tool business before MVP came along, most of Randy’s tools were downloadable for free off his website. Looks like Randy ended up being more interested in truly helping his team than, Orrin who only appears to use his team for his personal profits.

    I’ve never understood how someone could charge the people in their own downline so much to train them to sell their own tools. Very unethical in my opinion.

  30. freedomhaha permalink
    February 11, 2013 4:50 am

    scaseytx- Just curious as to what percentage of your downline is making a profit?

  31. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 11, 2013 4:58 am

    yeah….after expenses!

  32. freedomhaha permalink
    February 11, 2013 9:28 am

    Income- expenses= profit. I had to include that on here because I know that it is not taught on system.

  33. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 11, 2013 9:41 am

    freedomhaha- amen!

  34. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 11, 2013 9:42 am

    Some think $8 is a profit.

  35. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    February 12, 2013 4:41 am

    Was Jackie Frey actually in “LIFE”? (as suggested by the title of this thread)

  36. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 12, 2013 6:49 am

    Age of Wisdom- She was in Team while with Quixtar, through MV and into Life. She is in Hawkins Team. A great lady. She was all in when she was in.

  37. February 12, 2013 6:50 am

    Jackie says that they were approached in December 2006 and were in the business for over five years. LIFE launched in November, 2011, though they started the conversion over to LIFE months earlier. If I’m mistaken, Jackie can clarify.

  38. February 12, 2013 8:15 am

    @ ageofwisdom51…..we registered (i.e. “held out spot”) in the LIFE biz when the TEAM rolled it out.

    We were on system until I just came to the conclusion that I was offically done. It was a seperation process for sure. After a while with MV, things started to go south for us and our belief in building a successful business was not what it had been. Our heart was just not in it any longer after so many ups and downs, lawsuits, etc. We wanted to be the parents that God had intended for us to be. It just wasn’t the same feeling we had when we were believing that the WALMART OF THE INTERNET was still to come. Looking back now, I’m sad that we held on as long as we did.

    I truly hope more people will come out and share their stories. PLEASE folks, muster up the courage and share your story. You may be able to help the new young couple to be able to not get sucked into the hype and spend money they simply don’t have.

    It is also my hope that folks still in the business or considering the business really think long and hard before pulling out their debit and/or credit cards and making a purchase. You can get so “sucked in” so easily. It took a LONG time for us to come to the realization that it’s just not worth it and wasn’t what we thought it was.

    After knowing what I personally know now and being able to speak directly with past leaders, I would NEVER encourage anyone to get involved. I would highly discourage people because your chance of actually making it are slim to none! It just doesn’t make any sense to me for people to have to spend $400-$700 a month in order to “make” $200-$300. That does not make any financial sense.

    I would like to reinterate that I am only speaking on behalf of myself and how I feel. I am not speaking on behalf of anyone else. This is our personal experience and story.

  39. MARC & nancy wolfe permalink
    February 13, 2013 10:04 pm

    thank you so very much.I was sucked in by a distant family member who is very kind & just wants to help me & my family of four girs & a disabled wife who was very concered about how it all worked.she fell into your story,thank God I’m sure by your words you have saved many others,& for that we are very greatful. THANK YOU & GOD BLESS.

  40. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 20, 2013 4:21 pm

    I’m a mom and I need help trying to get my daughter out of team. her personality is changing and all she does is call me judgemental.

  41. freedomhaha permalink
    February 21, 2013 5:18 am

    Concerned Strawberry- You have come to the right place. I remember hearing my family say that my personality was changing, but I was so brainwashed that I actually thought it was a good thing!! Do you have any questions for us? We have experience on this blog from the lowest levels of the TEAM to the highest when it comes to walking way. We will be here to help.

  42. February 21, 2013 7:19 am

    Concerned Strawberry-
    I was involved in Team for 6 years at high levels. My family didn’t know what to do to help. Here’s an article that may help you.
    Feel free to check out other articles on our FB page.

    https://www.facebook.com/lifeteamdestructive/posts/464451126935720

  43. Chris permalink
    February 22, 2013 1:34 am

    Concerned strawberry – I was in at one point and thought the same thing as your daughter. The team knows how to get to your needs and desires. My suggestion is ask her questions of why she got involved and why she thinks the business is such a great opportunity for her. It’s easy to see why people get in team they focus on your dreams, an opportunity to make money, your life will improve and a feeling of belonging in a community and making a difference. This is how I felt at a time. Tell her to ask questions, in time I found the life opportunity to be an endeavor that doesn’t seems to be worth the time and effort. Check more with other people on this site and the stories are very convincing that it’s just not worth it. May your daughter seek out the truth and ask the right questions and make the best decision.

  44. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 22, 2013 4:13 pm

    I am grateful for the above responses. I am a desparate mom not wanting to lose her daughter. I have never blogged before so I hope I do all this right. When I question my daughter she gives me a glassy stare and short responses that are extremely critical. The last two months all my calls to her phone go to voice mail and she chooses when to call me back or if she will call me back. She was quick to call my husband, her father, when she recently needed money again. We keep saying we cannot keep helping her — but, we do not want her out on the streets. She is in her 8th year of teaching, she has a masters degree and she works part-time at a retail store because she never has any money. She is talking about quitting teaching after this year. She is talking about moving out of state. I think she’s trying to become a team leader out of state. All I do is picture in the streets some day with no money and no where to go. I do not sleep and I do not know which way to turn. I will check out the above links — thank you for being there.
    Concerned Strawberry

  45. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 22, 2013 4:59 pm

    What would it take to get my daughter to accept looking at the full picture of what she is doing? What is a turning point for someone so brainwashed? I am so frightened.

  46. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 22, 2013 6:09 pm

    The good news is most people quit eventually. please read the books and steve hasans site.

  47. switch permalink
    February 23, 2013 6:36 am

    Let me get this straight…

    strawberry says-
    “She was quick to call my husband, her father, when she recently needed money again. We keep saying we cannot keep helping her — but, we do not want her out on the streets….”

    …she needed money AGAIN and yet, she continues to ignore you? WOW!

    You’re being too nice. I don’t mean to sound harsh but, YOU, need to put your foot down and tell her that enough is enough. If she’s threatening to quit her job, move out of state, and become a “team leader”, by all means, LET HER TALK THE TALK.

    But I can tell you one thing, if she’s continually coming back to you for money, I highly doubt she’ll be able to afford a U-HAUL for moving.

    Plain and simple, call her bluff.

  48. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 23, 2013 10:24 am

    concerned strawberry~

    I understand your concern, but don’t lose hope, I agree with Raquel and switch (show some tough love and no longer be the bank for her) obviously you wouldn’t let her starve but perhaps have her get to a real financial counselor for help. It is way too sad she is willing to throw her masters degree away because she as 96% and most know it is a way worse odds, of ever making the lifestyle they promote.

    The mass majority will quit on their own (it is a build & replace) because they get frustrated, the odds are stacked against them and they can’t afford to lose, lose, lose money not only in these economic times but any economic times…She will figure out there is little or no ROI in a reasonable amount of time. They may have convinced her it is a 2-5 year program, but who can lose thousands of dollars to find out, and IF ( a big IF) you ever do make money it won’t replace her master degree income in that time frame or more like never.

    There are only 8 people of out some say 20,000 or 30,000 (depends on who is throwing the numbers around) the TOP PC.. people who tout their lifestyles as the rich and infamous and I doubt all 8 even have the money they tout.

    They are very convincing though and sounds like your daughter is desperate. Doesn’t take much ‘convincing’ to people like your daughter who are desperately looking, when chances are if she stuck to a budget (stopped spending) and got some legit financial counseling she could help herself.

    I will tell you from my personal experience I lost way more than I ever gained and not just financially, we made some money but in comparison, lost time, the deception, the betrayal and other things I have found out, woke up and realized since I left, from my view, and beyond a shadow of doubt, it was NOT worth it.

    They will convince others IF you do what they do, (if others really understood what you reall have to “do”, they would choose NOT to) but I will tell you from my experience the time, money, and the effort was not worth it. The value they claim their books, cd’s seminars, majors (you can get in many other places for a lot less).

    You might want to reach out to the Attorney General of your state and/or the FTC.

  49. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 23, 2013 10:28 am

    You can figure those odds of her ever “making it” with the 8 out of 20-30,000! The odds are stacked against everyone.

  50. February 23, 2013 10:37 am

    Well concerned strawberry – you should start by recognizing that you are participating in your daughter’s unwise decisions as an enabler. You are not helping her at all. You and your husband need to discuss this money situation, make a decision and presented a united front, whatever your decision is. Your daughter is playing you in the old game of divide and conquer.

    She is an adult, with a master degree and a career. It’s time to let go. You have done your part and done it well. It is painful to watch people we love do stupid. But stupid is not illegal and some will do stupid-there are those who just have to pee on the electric wire to learn. You can warn them, protect them from it etc but somewhere somehow they will do it. If they are determined to you just might have to let them.

    I am reminded of a story I heard once of a mother who was watching her disabled daughter put on a jersey (a struggle in the friend’s eye). The friend thought to intervene and asked the mom why was she not helping her. The mom answered “I am.” The daughter had progressed to that point where she was actually doing such stuff for herself.

    I recommend you both read the book Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life by Henry Cloud. It’s an extremely fascinating book and will help here. All the best.

  51. February 23, 2013 11:08 am

    Oh BTW if you must help financially make sure your assistance is time bound and attached to a behavior modification. Don’t just hand over cash like you have done prior.

    Either way you make your decision your daughter needs to be sat down by both of you and categorically told 1, she cannot play divide and conquer, 2, the reason/s for or against your help and 3, the attached conditional expectation (if you decide to help.)

    Don’t forget if she takes your help it also gives you the right into her finances. Such as (but not limited to) she needs to present to you her monthly budget, what she will change it next month, etc. The idea is to make her confront reality by making this process uncomfortable to her. It will present a stark reality of how much is sinking into TEAM and how much she is not making in return. It may help to wake her up from TEAM’s kool-aide stupor! Above all financial plans, budgeting and such are adult behaviors anyway.

    Her asking for money from you without a plan to get out of the hole and stay out, needs to be a very uncomfortable process for her deliberately so by your courtesy and there needs to be a deliberately concerted effort to stop that forthwith. Comfort is in being charge of her self and her finances. Tell her point blank her financial plan needs to exclude you and that she is on a timed duration. That’s your plan for her financial plan or lack of one thereof. That your plan is commencing she better get hers together. Tell her (she needs to hear) that you lover her, care for her and you are both doing this out of the abundance of your love for her as your daughter.

  52. February 23, 2013 11:29 am

    Regarding calling her bluff to move to another city, absolutely. You need to convey your love for her and that so long as she is happy with her decisions you as her parents are so as well. You cannot be accused of not being supportive but neither did you commit any $$$ to her “stupid,” if you so think it’s unwise of her to move and she has proved she will not heed your advice not to move. Remember your decision will be standing/fashioned in some way as in the preceding posts. But this here is to show your support. Lack of which her brainwashed, TEAM cult indoctrinated mind could potentially shut you out of her life, as she has already proven she can and will, if she perceives your actions as not supportive of her.

  53. Charline permalink
    February 23, 2013 11:48 am

    @Raquel. I saw Jacquie in Moncton NB Canada. I was under Joce Dion. Everything that is said is so true. I feel bad that some of my friends are still involved.

  54. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 23, 2013 4:40 pm

    Thank you everyone above for all the comments. My husband has stated that (as you are stating above) that we are telling her — we are done; no more money from us. by the way; our monthly bills are tight just like the rest of the world. I would like to kidnap her and keep her home for a weekend and show her this blog and the other information I am obtaining. I do not at this point know how to get her home. I believe if we did this we would have to keep her cell phone away from her. I just want her to take time to think about what we would be telling her. She has a tendency to contact someone named “kevin” anytime she is upset. I think he must be some kind of mentor or something for her in the business.

    She got into it with MonaVie first. She has a married teacher couple who did get her into it. They started with Amway. we kept her out then but the mona vie was very attractive to her as it was at a point in her life when she was trying to loose weight and get healthy. Anyway, these teacher friends recentyl purchased their house (about 10yrs. after the original get rich scheme) and she is now pregnant . My daughter tells me that they have stated after the baby is born she will be able to stay home with the baby. This Kevin is married and his wife gets to stay home with their children. This is a dream of hers to be a stay at home mom — truthfully with how long it took them to get a house I do not see this happening. But, when I pointed this out — that is when I received the glassy eyed angry stare and she told me I was judgemental.

    I admit, I am afraid of losing her and never seeing her again if we push too hard. She really believes these other people. I really believe in these meetings they must tell her to stay away from people who do not believe in team. She went to the past Oct. three day mtg. and again in Jan. these last two have really changed her this past year. It is so awful. She is critical of everyone, but, mostly myself her mother. She really lashes at me — and she has never been a disrespectful daughter before. I just do not know how hard to push.

    I will look into the books recommended above. I feel a strong urgency as April is around the corner and she turns “30” in April. she doesn’t have a boyfriend and desparately wants that. I know she needs to sign her contract in April for the next school year — in case I did not mention she is a teacher. A choral music teacher. she used to love the children and music. she recently told me she doesn’t enjoy singing anymore — that was a month or so ago when she was still talking to me.

    I am so sad and desparate and afraid. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your help. What would happen if I anomonously sent the beginning of this blog to her — the note from Jackie Frey with the 10truths and questions. It should spark something — shouldn’t it? Like I said, I feel time is against me. Everything I note in that Steve Hansen comment is the person has to be willing. How do they get there?

    again, thankyou,
    concerned strawberry (strawberry’s are one of my daughters favorite foods)

  55. MemoryLame permalink
    February 23, 2013 5:13 pm

    Strawberry: I think if you are going to send her anything, start by sending her the link to the bankruptcies of the TEAM leaders. She’ll know who all those guys are. Mark Huber has one of the biggest groups of downline on the entire team. In fact, at least two of the Policy Council (Policy Council consists of the 8 couples making 80%+ of the $, and are considered the “Leaders” of the entire organization) couples, Tim & Amy Marks and Bill & Jackie Lewis are in his downline. The other couples that filed bankruptcy, Joe & Laura Darkangelo (formerly PC members as well) and Chuck & Nancy Cullen are both members of the Mark’s downline (which technically also makes them part of Huber’s.

    The obvious question for any sane person when they see the year of these filings is “why?” If there is so much money to be made, why would these folks be filing bankruptcy?

    The possible answers are clear to me.

    Either A) There really isn’t that much money for “everyone who does the work” – which means the leadership is lying,
    OR B) The money is there, but these people are filing to get out of responsibility that they continue to tell people is what they are all about – which means the leadership is lying.

    Is that the fruit on the tree she wants to earn? I doubt it.

  56. Mike Bickel permalink
    February 23, 2013 5:17 pm

    Dear Concerned Strawberry: This is Mike Bickel. Instead of sending her something anonymously, I would suggest you be up front, loving, caring and concerned. I would write a brief note expressing something short and sweet like this:

    Sweetheart – I know you may not believe this, but we love you with all our heart. We raised you, we loved you, we supported you, we did what any parents would do for you. Please don’t be angry with us for caring about you. Some day you may have a child and maybe you will be in a position where your child gets influenced to do something really bad… really disturbing. Not just a mistake, but something like getting into drugs or being anorexic or cutting themselves. You’ll be beside yourself with fear. You’ll try to help but maybe your child will run away from you… stop speaking to you… and you’ll cry in anguish to the Lord asking for help. Honey… We love you, but you will find out how bad you’ll be hurt and because you have shut off any/all communication with us, you might feel that you are ashamed to have been so manipulated by this cult that you’ll be afraid to call us… ashamed that you were sucked in and afraid and mad at yourself. But when (not if) that happens, you know we will welcome you back and try to help you pick up the pieces and we will NEVER EVER EVER say something like “We told you so” because everybody makes mistakes or gets involved in bad things one time or another. You are our darling and most precious daughter and we cherish every moment we have ever been with you…. every moment except for this one where you have decided to run away from us. But our light will always be on at night and we will run with tears in our eyes if you come home to us for help… because that’s what concerned parents do.

    Mike Bickel

  57. Raquel Peters permalink
    February 23, 2013 7:51 pm

    I would also mention your concern for her personality change and her change in her life long interests. Is there something you can help her figure out? New career? Sense of belonging? It is not normal to have instant friends or to trust what people tell you without proof. Especially when asking her to spend money and time. Ask if she has seen their expenses they claimed on their taxes last year. Explain pay- expenses= profit/spendable income. What do they keep in their pocket?
    Great post Mike!

  58. noteam permalink
    February 23, 2013 9:50 pm

    Concerned Strawberry – our thoughts and prayers are with you. We have seen so many relationships and families destroyed by this group who claims to stand for family, faith, finances, yada yada yada.

    We will be praying for your whole family.

    I would agree with Memory Lane – printout the articles on the bankruptcies fo Darkangelo, Huber, Cullen. Those facts are hard to ignore. Also, printout the court papers showing how Tim Marks was fined for his role in not being truthful and forthcoming regarding his role in annoymous blogging. Printout the articles on the famous “Guru” ballot stuffing and how Orrin & Chris were recently removed from the list because 2,000 votes came from 3 IP addresses.

    We will be praying for you. Please continue to be active in the crusade to get this madness stopped. How many innocent families will continue to be victimized by this scam before it is stopped?

  59. switch permalink
    February 24, 2013 6:51 am

    Glad to hear that it’s officially done, strawberry.

    As a parent, you have EVERY SINGLE RIGHT to sit her down and express your feelings and have a talk. The disrespect she shows for you is absolutely disgusting. As stated, she’s a teacher with her masters degree. She knows damn well what’s going on in the real life and she’s by far, no dummy but this is a CLASSIC example of what the team is capable of doing. (which is down right scary)

    Now, considering you’ve cut the funds, you need to keep the communication open to your ex-husband (whether good or bad) who will continue to get the phone calls from her asking for money to support this ridiculous “plan”. This is about your daughter being sucked into something that pretends to be something that’s not.

  60. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 24, 2013 9:06 am

    To Switch, I am sorry one of my emails caused you to believe my husband is my ex. we have been married for 31yrs. and this daughter I speak of is our oldest. Also, we have not yet had the talk. We need to find the time and way to get her here. My husband works extra over-time when he can and I work a full-time job. He knows this has been a bad week and he knows what is happening; but, sad to say he works a second shift and sometimes a 3rd. I am on a first shift. We have had a couple of phone conversations this past week — not in depth as our work hours are not allowing it; I’ve left him copies of the blog to read.

    To Mike Bickel. could I use some of your words from your blog. It is well written and says it all. Also, I do not know where to print out these court proceedings everyone keeps referring to. Keep in mind — I do not facebook and the multiple computer sites confuse me at times. I am trying to be informative and knowledgeable, but I was not raised on a computer.

    thanks everyone for your help. Please continue to be there for me.

  61. Former Round Table permalink
    February 24, 2013 11:30 am

    Concerned Strawberry, I am so sorry for what you are experiencing. It is truly heart-breaking that this organization that is supposed to be designed to improve eight “F”s, including family, friends, and finances, instead wreaks havoc and destruction without apology. Clearly there is something rotten here.

  62. Mike Bickel permalink
    February 24, 2013 2:35 pm

    To Concerned Strawberry: You can use whatever I write here in any way you see fit to save your relationship. I’ve been in your position so I know that at this time LOVE is the first answer, LOGIC is a distant second because she’s been thoroughly programmed to reject any evidence and programmed to believe that evidence is false, misleading or irrelevant. That’s why she checks with her Team/Life “Mentor” which I would call “Minder” rather than Mentor. Regarding CASE information, I don’t keep track of that and would hope to AMTHRAX might point you to such evidence as may be helpful to you – but from what you described, I don’t think it will work. Perhaps a loving letter inside an envelope signed with love is best at this time. Assuming that this gets her talking to you and caring about you, you can THEN point her to areas of your concern (the real evidence). The REAL issue is, however, that ALL MLMs are really, in part, legal “pyramid schemes”. With AMWAY, they concern themselves with not wanting to have more than 50% of the revenues (individual) from “inside the pyramid” sales. So… they are watching for that. But Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady and others withing the TEAM/LIFE group don’t care about that and most monies made are done by merely causing a person to want to “buy” something they will never end up really “selling” and the money flows up the pyramid and that constitutes a real problem. Even with the old AMWAY system, there were people at the top earning megabucks on what they call “tools” which are allegedly sales tools, videos, and whatever else that they might use to “educate and manage” their down line (ie. underneath me in the pyramid). But the monies always travel up. I’m 66 years old and I’ve seen many of my friends taken in by this BS and fraudulent claims of making money and being independent. I’m sure you will remember the old “chain letter” scheme where you just send money to a few people and put your name on the bottom of the list and then send it out to 10 more people telling them to do the same. That is ILLEGAL because it’s a pyramid scheme. When you add an “alleged” product to the transaction it “can” appear to be legal, but RICO laws prevent fraud and misleading comments. Our government is pretty darned weak on enforcing them and these guys (AMWAY, Monavie, TEAM/LIFE, etc.) all have lawyers whose whole business is to be able to scare the peons into thinking they are breaking the law if they “divulge” anything that goes on behind the scenes. These folks are vulnerable and many times are spiritually subverted (as in Jimmy Jones and David Koresh) who were involved in religious cults to the end that many people who were “programmed” in these cults actually died. With TEAM/LIFE and other MLM-related organizations, people probably won’t die, but they might feel like committing suicide when they realize how they have participated in such shenanigans. None of these products is worth having at the high price a person pays, but the “leaders” all program their downstream to stay loyal. It’s a pity.

  63. February 24, 2013 6:21 pm

    To Concerned Strawberry:
    What a wonderful Mom you are. Your daughter is lucky. Keep loving her just like you are doing. It breaks my heart to read this because I was right where your daughter is. Everyone asks you about the business and to me it seemed like everyone was very critical and negative. My husband & I could not understand why everyone was so negative. We thought we were in control of the business and our finances. Unfortunately it’s a slow bleed that eventually sucks you dry. I pray for your daughter that she will soon come to her senses and realize the truth for what it is. My recommendation to you is DO NOT under any circumstances give her any money, show her all of this information and most importantly, love her up and she will come to realize the truth all on her own.
    God Bless you and your family and GOOD LUCK!

  64. switch permalink
    February 25, 2013 6:52 am

    strawberry-
    ok, my bad on thinking he was your ex. Please ignore.

    31 years of marriage, that’s quite the accomplishment and I applaud you! You should be very proud!

    Your daughter should be doing the same instead of setting her sights on your bank account and lashing out with disrespect. Giving the cold shoulder and ignoring others is a prime example of how they work on team, if you so choose not to support them.

    Of course, team/life could give two $hits about this marriage that’s lasted 31 YEARS…but as long as her daughter is happy and getting the funds, everything should be all fine and dandy…isn’t that right, team? Oh what was that, team….? I’m way off? Then explain to me what kind of behavior strawberry’s daughter is putting on here? Where could she have learned such behavior from?….

  65. Susan Lovelace permalink
    February 25, 2013 9:44 am

    I had those same questions and concerns regarding the Dickie Family so i called them and got the truth! It is all lies and Orrin and Chirs do make them up. They will write false emails and send it down line, They will make agreements, shake hands and turn around and make false statements again. It is absurd that they are leaders! They are not the men they have other promote them to be! The books that are not written by the leaders are great books and i do not have to be apart of Team/Life to make a difference!

  66. Susan Lovelace permalink
    February 25, 2013 10:07 am

    scaseytx PERMALINK
    February 10, 2013 7:20 pm
    Wow. Nothing of what you wrote is on the mark. I know where Chuck went. He wanted to stick with Randy Haugen and a couple others who wanted to get paid more as speakers, etc. but in Team only current performers are speakers. You have to be a builder to speak. It’s a meritocracy. They who perform shall be recognized. Earning income with LIFE is simple, as was monavie. The comp plans are so great you only don’t earn if you’re not working at building a business. Most who follow the system are profitable within two months. Do the work and you earn.

    Susan
    Seriously I ran the roads, went to every meeting qualified for every meeting, ran the board, helped at opens, worked my butt off all the while ignoring my children. I put in over 30 people in this business in 90 days. I NEVER made a profit you do the math, spent over $500 a month for 7 months (re-enrolled in Life after leaving MonaVie when my husband and son were in a fatal car accident, my husband in disabled for life, he could not get out of a bed with out assistance for over 6 months, and my spot WAS NOT HELD) I started over worked my butt off I even ran a few Tuesday meetings by myself. I packed in over 40 people once for a board plan for our upline, I remember sitting in the back room the day I brought one of my children home from being born and Dan Hawking in my dining room. Seriously I did the WORK!!! I opened my home, left my children, my family, my husband home disabled with baby sitters etc…. I NEVER MADE A PROFIT. Did you know a profit is after gas, food, monthly tools, monthly subscriptions, etc? It is total Expenses – total Income. I got my 1099 I made $800.00 in 7 months I left right before the September 2012 Seminar I spent a minimum of $500 a month that equals a minimum of $3500.Expenses. That is what I spent on tools and subscriptions not gas, not food, not sitters just Tools. I had from the previous months over $850.00 in tools on hand when I quit. Like I said NO PROFIT after 2 months working the system and doing all the things recommended by Upline. I even went to the Hawkins NEW house in Whitewater for hitting Power Player!! I would love to see your spread sheet of your true expenses vs your true income!!

    As far as the Haugens and Chuck you should actually call and talk to them. They will not lie, they will tell you why they left. If your info is from other leaders you should ask them if they talked to them or is this what they were told? If it is not first hand then it is probably a lie! I have talked to people who have left, including the Dickies and you are being handed a handful of deception!

    [Editor's note: Added blockquote around quoted passage]

  67. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 25, 2013 12:12 pm

    Susan~

    You are an women of strength, incredible over-comer, you represent a true leader! Thanks for sharing.

    scaseytx~Says:”The comp plans are so great you only don’t earn if you’re not working at building a business. Most who follow the system are profitable within two months. Do the work and you earn.”

    Scaseytx, Please bring that proof that “MOST” are “profitable if they follow the system within 2 months!” You should be willing to back up your claims, and you won’t have a problem if what you say is the truth. Not quite sure how you are going to get the information from every single person who from the start date through 2 months and what their total expenses are and then their “profit” is/was, but we will look forward to it.

    Otherwise, YOU are misrepresenting, deceiving and misleading people, therefore defrauding them with your comment. Is this what you tell people, when you STP? (highly likely). Who told you this?

    Tell me scaseytx, what else do you tell people?

    I believe this would fall under “income claims.” Are you willing to back your claims up for all of us, the AG’s and FTC?

  68. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 25, 2013 3:57 pm

    “It’s a meritocracy.” Hahahahaha, good one! Tell me… How is it on “merit” when MANY leaders lost their entire groups because the merit-measures took their groups and gave them to themselves or others?!!!!

    Another lie, unless…. Meritocracy includes, non-earned> Unfair–>Favoritism!!

    I think scaseytx- meant to say those who are fakers, bought their way their… cheat, fake, or take others ‘performance’… are given teams and call it earned “performance”…get recognized!

    Umm… Will they Deny/lie, people lost their entire groups? Wonder how many could prove otherwise!

  69. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 25, 2013 4:10 pm

    Boy scaseytx statements are just ridden with gems.

    Like this one: “Earning income with LIFE is simple, as was monavie.”

    Hahaha not from my experience, it is a guessing game of HOW you or will you even get paid! It’s simple alright, read the P&P they DECIDED whether you “earn income or NOT”, it’s that simple!

    So, Then WHY?…If it “was” (like how ya use that past-tense) that simple with Monavie why dump MV and keep others from earning that “simple way to earn income”, scaseytx ! Espalin ur’self….What do you mean by “simple?”…Are you trying to imply it is “easy?” Hmm….

  70. noteam permalink
    February 25, 2013 4:22 pm

    I think we need to send scaseytx’s statement in to the FTC and to several AG’s to see what they have to say about such an income claim “most who follow the system are profitable within two months”????!!!?????!!!!!!!! I’d love the FTC to investigate that claim!!!!!!!

  71. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 25, 2013 5:08 pm

    I agree!

  72. concerned strawberry permalink
    February 28, 2013 5:58 pm

    To Jackie, Mike, Switch and others; I thank you for your encouragement and information. I need to let you know that my daughter and I spoke this past week. We spoke about us. We did not mention team or money. We simply spoke about us and I told her about how hurt I was and I did not understand why she was so critical of me. We talked for over an hour and it was a good talk. She is hurting inside and in my heart I believe a lot of it is because she is brainwashed and maybe yet, does not realize it. So, step 1 our conversation. Now, step 2; my husband and I are planning to get her home and have the money talk. He has said and we talked about how we will express to her no more money from us; we will continue to treat her as our daughter and she is welcome home whenever she needs; but, no more money help; she needs to get out of team. My plan is once we get her home and talk I will definetly be showing her this blog and other info about team and the pyramid schemes. I do think another thing that will help keep some self confidence about herself it to make sure to point out to her the vast amount of educated intelligent people who have been scammed. Again, I appreciate this blog and everyone’s support. thanks so much

  73. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 28, 2013 6:30 pm

    concerned strawberry~

    Your daughter is blessed to have you! I am glad you have the opportunity to start to understand her and build from there, sounds like it was a beautiful start.

    Wishing you and your family well.

  74. Freedomhaha permalink
    February 28, 2013 7:34 pm

    Concerned Strawberry- You are right on in trying to show her this information while still trying to keep her self confidence. When I found out the truth about TEAM via this blog I felt like an absolute fool. I had a hard time looking at anyone that I showed the plan too because of how much of an idiot I was for ever believing this. It was only when I started interacting on here that I saw other intelligent people fell for the pyramid scheme. I hated that feeling so much that I stick around to try and help people, or better yet never fall into the trap that I did.

  75. Melanie Morgan permalink
    February 28, 2013 7:59 pm

    Freedomhaha~

    I appreciate you sticking around to help others. I know you are not alone and won’t be alone even when some of us will no longer be here or as long as it takes. There will always be many burnt by this, who will need you and others and who feels the way we all have on here and will give of themselves selflessly to help others~

    Thanks to Amthrax, You, all the rest for being here!

  76. freedomhaha permalink
    March 1, 2013 4:41 am

    Melanie- I hope to see a day where no more people are burned by this.

  77. Mike Bickel permalink
    March 1, 2013 7:35 am

    @freedomhaha – “Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and the day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the Lord Almighty. “Not a root or a branch will be left to them.” (Malachi 4:1). A day will, in fact, come. Just keep praying.

  78. freedomhaha permalink
    March 1, 2013 8:11 am

    Mike- That verse isn’t in the TEAM Bible. Speaking of the TEAM Bible my favorite verse is from Orrin 1:12 “Only those who have millions of dollars can make a positive impact in the world”. Laughable that I ever believed that.

  79. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 1, 2013 1:20 pm

    Again, I am grateful everyone is there. I keep reading this and praying for my daughter and us. I need her to be ok. I really want her to find her dreams. This blog is giving me courage that she will find a way to be herself again someday. thank you. Could you also please explain about some of the previous abbreviations I see? What is MLM? and what is a PC? thanks

  80. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 1, 2013 2:30 pm

    concerned strawberry~

    I am confident that with your love and the fact that most can’t continue to LOSE money, month after month for years; the odds are in your favor your daughter will quit. Once gone, and your continued love and support she will find her way. Hopefully she will do some soul searching and will be a better person because she will certainly learn what NOT to do again. :) My prayers are with you.

    MLM= Multi-level Marketing and many clump that with Direct Selling as meaning the same, Some also try and spruce it up (make it sound trendy) and refer to it as Referral or “Word-of-Mouth” Marketing, but it all means the same to me. IF it isn’t a legit product selling “Direct-Sales” then it is probably more “recruitment” based and that would be the real difference and what I mean when I say MLM.

    PC= Policy Counsel, is a rank or level ‘term’ used for the 7 TOP supposed “leaders” of Team.

    The MLM industry uses basically all the rhetoric and dogma, the slight differences of what I have seen is they use different terms for their ranks but even then they are all very similar, such as “Diamond, Emerald, Sapphire, Platinum, (will refer to rank) then Turbo 10, 12, 25, 50,100 etc refers to the numbers of people.

    Hope that isn’t too confusing.

  81. March 1, 2013 4:35 pm

    @Freedom

    These charlatans need to wind up in the hottest spot in hell, hotter than the hinges on the gates down there.

  82. March 1, 2013 4:41 pm

    @Freedom Said

    “Orrin 1:12 “Only those who have millions of dollars can make a positive impact in the world””

    Now that’s as funny as a flood in a alka seltzer factory! Knocked off my boots, spurs still spinning, and horsie’s all confused!
    Thanx for the laughs!

  83. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 1, 2013 5:25 pm

    ExAmbot~

    Hahahahahahahaha!!

  84. MemoryLame permalink
    March 1, 2013 7:33 pm

    Freedomhaha, LOVE the Orrin verse! That really is the biggest lie that I wish, especially as a Christian, I had never fell for. It’s a shame that there are some things in the tools system that are powerful, truthful principles. HOWEVER, there is so much deception intermingled and derived from ulterior motives that it is sickening.

    It’s like the hand basket to send people to hell in. Luckily, the hand basket has a hole in the bottom where broke people eventually fall out. In some ways the financial ruin is the salvation of so many. Can you imagine the eternal damage these guys would do if people actually DID commonly become wealthy with Orrin and Chris?

    Every time I feel nauseous thinking of the $ and time down the toilet of this scam, I am reminded that God really can use me whether I am wealthy or broke. Frankly, I believe that I was born gifted to speak to people and over the years have been blessed with many fantastic mentors. My family was never rich monetarily and my parents are not well educated, yet they laid a foundation made up of 3 tremendous elements – 1) real work ethic, with no JOB too lofty or low 2) Imagination that allows me to dream, create, and be innovative 3) (and MOST important) Faith enough in the Character of Jesus Christ to believe He loves me just the way I am and is going to continue to grow me.

    With that combination, I believe it is very possible that given the right job opportunity, I might become financially wealthy one day. However, Truth be known when I stand before God, He isn’t going to ask me what I made or kept. He’s going to ask me if I invested my LIFE (the real one), in His work. He will wonder if I cared for the widows and the orphans. Did I clothe the naked? Feed the hungry? Lay hands on the sick? Visit the prisoner and the afflicted? Preach the Gospel? Make Disciples? Care for and honor my parents? Love and forgive my brothers? My enemies?

    In short, He will ask me if I practiced those things that have no price, but cost me everything.

  85. Mike Bickel permalink
    March 2, 2013 6:41 am

    @MemoryLame – This blog makes me realize that I am on the right track in working with you guys because you have just witnessed to your own faith like many many others who are following this blog. I was right in assuming that Orrin and Chris and many others have decided to stalk the faithful, to use their faith and vulnerability (allowing oneself to give themself to the Lord) as a way to deceive them with smooth words and a wily tongue. Preying on the faithful is the MAIN REASON why I am so committed to halt this “False Prophet”, this “Beast” in his 666 tracks! “They flatter with their lips but harbor deception in their hearts.” (Psalm 12:2).

  86. March 2, 2013 10:38 am

    Amen bro, git-r-done fer God!

  87. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 12, 2013 5:01 pm

    HI, Melanie, thank you for your explanation about MLM and PC. I’m still having it rough. Though my daughter has spoken to me again this past time – the conversations are short. when she does telling me whatever she needs to say it’s time for her to go – she has nothing else to tell me. I truly believe she is shutting me out to a point and I am only allowed to speak to her for a short time. She is still talking about quitting her teaching and career and moving out of state. I was hoping her move was so she could start over without team -then she mentioned someone in team. She also shares her resume with her team leader or whatever he is. It frustrates me that she sells such personal information to these head team people. It sounds like team is everywhere and she probably can join with them no matter where she moves. I’m sending her cards, expressing my love; I’m sending pictures in these cards of her and I together when she was a baby and toddler; I’m sending her letters of love and I’m proud of her for who she is (not mentioning team at all). She doesn’t even mention these letters if she receives them or not. I’m still feeling helpless. but, I will continue to fight to get her back. I just need her to see the whole picture of what she is in. I’ve copied parts of this blog; certain stories mentioned above etc. and I am going to be mailing them to her. I decided at this point I need to mail them anonymously as she is still distancing herself from me. This is so painful. I have two friends my age who have lost their children because they passed away. My child is still alive; I refuse to lose her.

    I just needed to talk. thanks

  88. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 12, 2013 7:21 pm

    concerned strawberry~

    Wow I really feel for you, I know this is very painful for you. Stay strong! It is sad to see what you are going through but do not give up.Your patience will pay off, in due time hopefully sooner rather than later her eyes will be opened (because her purse and bank account will continually get drained) she will get frustrated and mostly likely quit, it is really hard to say what it will take, but we can keep praying.

    I think the anonymous idea of sending the information is a good idea, although I doubt she will pay attention to it. They are masters at their ‘crafty’ control, and keep people coming to them with any of their issues rather than going to anyone outside, by sucking every waking moment with meetings etc and repeat over and over the us vs. them.

    She is being trained to not look or listen to anyone ‘outside’ the group, because they are arrogant and think they have all the answers, as you already are seeing she will shut down or spend very little time around anyone outside of the scam, especially if they are not a ‘prospect’ for her or she suspects they don’t “agree” or have challenged her in anyway.

    But try anyway, it won’t hurt to try and could create a crack in those rose colored glasses as long as you can keep yourself anonymous.

    Chances are she will figure out where the letter came from by the postal stamp on the envelope, including your handwriting, but you probably have already thought about that. :)

    There is always someone here for your support, hang in there, keep educating yourself on thought reform, read all you can, keep your chin up and keep praying! You will win in the end! :)

  89. noteam permalink
    March 12, 2013 7:22 pm

    Concerned Strawberry – our thoughts and prayers are with you. Thanks so much for sharing your story. It’s a great reminder to all of us that even thought we are out, we need to remain vigilant about continuing to spread the word about the devastation caused by this organization.

    This is the reason we are on here. There continue to be people who are having their lives torn apart, finances ruined, relationships destroyed and families being broken by this cult-like organization. Sadly, this is happening on a daily basis. The deception of this organization and the destruction it leaves behinds needs to be exposed in order to save thousands of future potential victims.

    Remember – all it takes for evil to triumph is for good men (and women) to do nothing.

  90. Freedomhaha permalink
    March 12, 2013 7:22 pm

    Concerned Strawberry- We are here for you. I will be praying for your situation.

  91. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 12, 2013 7:37 pm

    BTW~ I am amazed at your persistence and display of LOVE for your daughter….with that and a higher power, you have the majority and will not lose! Thank You.

  92. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 13, 2013 3:38 am

    Concerned Strawberry: I’ve walked many long miles/months in your shoes. And finally, we think our grown child has begun to “see the light” about this ridiculous MLM cult-scheme—communication has been very slowly re-established with our almost-40 yr old married child. It was a very painful trek for us because, in our firm stance against this type of “pseudo-business” (grown child tried to drag us into it, so we felt we were entitled to opinions).

    We are from a generation where you don’t coddle your adult children (against your own sense of right/wrong, i.e., walk on eggshells with the “me me me” thirty-something gen), but you try to do the right thing, take an appropriate, non-interferring stand/opinion, and redirect them with love and kindness—but this destructive business had almost immediately inculcated into our own grown child that we were just “J.O.B.rs”, i.e.,losers in life, etc. (just like they do with everyone out there who thinks this kind of business is a sick joke, only meant to line to pockets of the uppermost money-mongers)

    Finally, after 7 months of silence, we got the call…..there was nothing better than to hear “Hi, Mom…..”. Skip all of the mumbo jumbo rhetoric–your child, no matter the age, will some day wake up and realize that his/her parent had their best interests at heart.

    If you had a decent prior parent/child relationship, then your child, no matter their age, will need to reconnect with YOU. My child is a bullhead…if it can happen to us, it can happen to you.

    I hope it’s sooner rather than later, truly do.

  93. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 13, 2013 3:44 am

    Correction from my prior post: was supposed to say: was a very painful trek because it also involved our grandchildren who were withheld from us as a retaliation, i.e., as pawns.

  94. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 13, 2013 4:11 pm

    Melanie, ageofwisdom,freedom,noteam and others thank you for being there. Yes, Melanie I thought of the postmark thing. . . I actually confided in someone where I work and they addressed some envelopes for me. I have taken a few parts of this blog and I think I’ve created a good general overview pieces of situations to send. So, it is typed. I did put a note at the bottom (typed) saying it was being sent by a caring friend. I am going out of town on Friday and will mail it then. I appreciate the encouragement because part of me before reading this tonight wondered if it’s a safe approach. yet, something needs to break; I cannot function as I am. I do keep searching for answers, noting in the comments above what I thought was happening is — I mean the part about how they train her to stay away from people who disagree with what she is doing. I do not mean to go on and on I am so grateful you are there. Truthfully, I noted someone in one the blogs I’ve been reading stated that Oprah Winfrey and Dr. Oz had filed a lawsuit against mona vie. I created a letter to Oprah wondering if she could help communicate with my daughter. I have never sent the letter. I do not want this to be a big TV show. I just thought she would have the resources and maybe ideas on how to show my daughter what really is happening. Again, as ageofwisdom said, I am definetly walking on eggshells when – if I get to – talk to my daughter. I appreciate the prayers and thoughts. thankyou.

  95. MemoryLame permalink
    March 13, 2013 7:19 pm

    Concerned,

    I will be praying for you and your daughter too. Also, I think your ideas of how to reach her are great, and I hope they work. You are obviously very active in your concern for her, and I admire that about you.

    One thing to make you aware, the women – especially the wives of the leaders – in this group are as powerfully manipulative as the men. Teri Brady, for instance gave a talk once where she describes a friend that sent her pages of “negative” that really hurt her feelings, yet years later it turned out that friend also joined the group. These kinds of stories are incredibly impressive on the hearts of new women. I think they are possibly even more influential on women that ARE strong minded or ambitious, ironically.

    It’s a strange dichotomy that they create regarding expectations for women, though. On the one hand married women are taught to “follow the leadership” of their husband, except if he isn’t “building the business” fast enough or not at all. In that case they are to pretend to follow him and not be negative to him, while she should continue to build because “somebody has to lead” (I’m sure Raquel could especially speak to this along with me).

    As for your daughter, it doesn’t sound like she is married – which could be a positive toward her leaving sooner rather than later, if simply for the fact that she won’t have to wait until her desire to leave is in sync with a spouse. As crude as this sounds, in some ways there is not a real place for single women on this “team” from what I saw. Sure, there were single women who built big businesses and married women who built it as singles, but you will rarely IF EVER hear more than a blurb from them at any Major seminar. Most of what you hear of women builders will sound like this – “Raquel built it until her husband saw the error of his ways and decided to lead”, “Carol built it as a single, and now she has a husband that leads”, “Jackie built it, then she found her husband Bill on the Team, and HE led them to Diamond”.

    After a while both publicly and privately, it seemed like the message was that women are valuable only in their capacity to lead until they can get a man to take over that “role.” Sadly, I think they(leadership) know that as low as the percentage is of profit makers, the percentage of women of those profit makers is even less.

    They will never say these things directly, but over time she will begin to get the message.

    This is good news for you in this way:

    When your daughter is around you commit to encouraging her as a woman capable of doing whatever sensible thing she puts her mind to. Let her know she is valuable just for being her. I know you already believe this and tell her, so tell her even more. Right now, she feels like (falsely) this is you against her. When she is absolutely convinced that you are not against her, then the battle of loyalties really becomes between you and them and you will win, because you are the one with the REAL relationship with her.

    Soooo, just keep doing what you’re doing, and don’t quit ;)

  96. March 14, 2013 2:15 pm

    @Wisdom,

    Did you say that your son gave you the call…has he come back home or …? Do you mind to bring me up to to speed? May be I missed an update from you on him. Thanx!

  97. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 14, 2013 3:12 pm

    Exambot: yes, we’ve been contacted by the adult child, and although we refrain (at the moment, at least), from talking about the prior travesty of the indoctrination/ruination of family relationships over the scuz biz, and are keeping the conversation light. Overall, we’re not getting any vibes of continued involvement, i.e., no clipped “business” formal speech out-of-character, no screaming that CDs have to be listened to, etc.,–we even asked acquaintances of their own age if they’d ever been propositioned and all say ‘no’–and one of them worked for the same small employer (who dragged people into it in the first place), sooooo… I’m thinking/hoping it all fell by the wayside. Our grown “child” knew in heart/mind, we would not steer them wrong in common sense….perhaps the initial contact was the initial, unspoken “sorry”–we’ll see. We’ll wait to see if/when it can be talked about. Would love to hear how the bullhead got sucked in, actually…musta been a lot of promised sunshine-up-the-arse, I assume? For the sake of others coming on here, I’d really like to know more specifically what was indoctrinated, promised, etc. (not formally, but behind the scenes). Maybe I can get my hands on the worthless CDs, etc., too, and examine the current content.

  98. March 14, 2013 3:49 pm

    One word – progress!
    I am elated for you & for the entire sane world.

  99. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 14, 2013 4:18 pm

    I agree it might seem a small victory but a victory none the less! Thanks for updating us Wisdom!

  100. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 14, 2013 5:30 pm

    Memory your information about the men and women relationship in the system is extremely frightening to me. Yes, my daughter is single; and now it makes sense to me why she hasn’t been dating — or at least keeping a guy. Again, it seems if a person is not willing to be connected with team she does not keep in touch with them. Yet, I know she desparately wants a husband and family. She claims the women in team do not have to work outside the home once they have children. This has been a driving force for her staying in it (at least I believe this is).

    Wisdom your information sounds like an extremely tough situation also. How can this group be so large and so brainwashing? So many good people taken advantage of? It’s horrible and frightening and it makes me sick thinking about the long fight and tough road still ahead. I need this blog to keep going. thanks

  101. MemoryLame permalink
    March 14, 2013 8:03 pm

    Concerned, I did not mean to scare you. I apologize if I did. My point was simply that single women statistically seemed to quit faster and with less outgoing expense than couples who end up on this insane guilt cycle and unwittingly keep each other trapped. That’s why I believe the leadership keeps their focus SO MUCH on couples “getting it together, together” :)

    It sounds like your daughter may be naive, but not stupid. If that’s the case she will start to notice after a while, how often these “stay at home moms” are out running the roads at night or on the weekends. If they are at home, their husbands are gone. Her single fellows will almost assuredly quit.

    Like I said, keep reassuring her you are her biggest fan. She will soon discover that those “find your dream man here” stories are utter crock.

  102. Mike Bickel permalink
    March 15, 2013 4:35 am

    Concerned Strawberry: I myself have been trying to get Oprah’s attention, but it will be difficult. Your daughter has already been programmed to despise her past and any roots she had. The same programming is done in religious cults, of course. Every single person in the cult must absolutely believe that everything they’ve done in the past (ie. every relationship, every parent, every lesson, every school teacher, etc.) were just wrong because only the TEAM knows the right way. You can see why that type of argument works with religion (ie. turn away from your sins and follow a different way) and religious cults (turn away from your sins and believe in our leader who is better than any “organized” religion) and MLMs (turn away from how the world has kept you as a slave and believe that you CAN be your own boss, be rich and prosper). The TEAM will inoculate the young and naive by telling them EXACTLY what others will say to them – and they must realize that all those people who say that are WRONG. It’s like “calling the shot” and when a concerned parent or a friend tries to reach out and save them, they have been already programmed to reject the concerned and loving advice.

  103. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 17, 2013 1:50 pm

    Mike, Melanie,, Memory; It’s so very obvious to me now, my suspicions are true, why she avoids me, why recently in the last two weeks she did call me once, but, I seem to be allowed no more than 10 to 15min. of her time. She tells me what she has to say and has no other interest in spending any time with me. this is not the daughter I raised and this is not the relationship we have had in the past. I really do not know how many years she has been with team, again she started when it was mona vie and several months after she started is when the weight loss drinks/program was supposed to come out that never seemed to happen. She has been selling her things, including some furniture and is definetly planning to move out of state in a few months. I was hoping she was trying to start over away from team/life but our 15min. phone call we did have she mentioned someone else from team was planning to relocate. I think she’s maybe thinking of becoming a leader in another state. I cannot believe how big this cult group is. It seems to be everywhere- especially after seeing that other blog from a couple in Canada. This is ripping my heart out. I’m fighting a brainwashing cult and it’s all wrong. The fact that they use religion is another way that allows them to confuse and keep hold of my daughter – she is extremely religious. I feel like I have a timeline. I feel like I have to grab back hold of her before June – yet, I know ultimately there will be a long time before she could let go of all that has been put into her head over these years. Even if she manages to realize that this group is not a financial method of growth — she considers so many of these people here friends. I do not blame everyone in it who she considers her friends, they are just as misguided and mislead as she is.

    I did get it Memory that you were not trying to frighten me; but this is ripping out my heart and it is painful to my inner core. She’s planning to flee the state and so I’d like to spend more time with her before she leaves – if it really happens — yet, she doesn’t seem to feel a need to be with me anymore. I’m talking about a daughter who in the past would come home on a whim just to talk; just to take a break; just to be here. That hasn’t happened in years. When I question her about any of these missing family times; there’s never a response, I greatly appreciate the encouragement to keep going. I emailed her to ask if she has been getting my notes/ cards. She responded to my email with a “yes”; that is all. I’ve sent her cards of pictures of her as a little girl; pictures of her and I together; I’m just trying to get her to remember. Pictures of her smiling — I mean really smiling; when she was happy in her heart. Her most recent smiles in I would have to say at least the last two years– well, anytime you see her smile now, there is always a strain behind it, like she’s always being guarded; almost always thinking if she should be doing what she’s doing (or if it’s ok for her to be happy). Difficult to explain.

  104. Mike Bickel permalink
    March 17, 2013 5:19 pm

    Concerned Strawberry: Yes – it tears your heart apart, but, like the story of the Prodigal Son, you’ve got to realize that the father in that story had his heart torn out too. And… when his son went away he probably stood and looked at the horizon for the son’s return and when, many years later, the son returned ready to be a slave for his father, his father was looking for him on the horizon and ran out to him with open arms and before the son could ask for just a lowly job as a farm hand his father wouldn’t hear anything of it but prepared the “fatted calf” and celebrated… which is where the song “Amazing Grace” came from – “… this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.” (Luke 15:32). Concerned Stawberry… YOU will have to patiently await your daughter’s return and remember to never hold anything against her… and prepare the “fatted calf” when she returns with no money and a life ruined and CELEBRATE and laugh and love her with all your heart. But right now… you have to let go.

  105. Freedomhaha permalink
    March 17, 2013 6:11 pm

    Mike- Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are no doubt doing the Lord’s work.

  106. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 19, 2013 7:53 pm

    Mike Bickle-

    Great post!

    Concerned Strawberry~

    I am sorry for the pain you are enduring but I also agree with Mike. Your daughter will eventually realize the ones who really love her and care for her unconditionally she will need when she falls, and she shall return to.

    It is not the Team or anyone on the Team/Lifes agenda to be there for her long term. These guys just don’t have it in them to be that for her, trust me, it is all about the money! She will eventually realize this when she can no longer endure the price for no return she will inevitably pay and when she shows even the slightest of non-conformity, the gap between her upline/others will get bigger and wider. And when she eventually has had enough they will dump her like a piece of trash. This is where she will need you the most!

    I know this doesn’t change your anxiety and suffering you feel at this time. I know you want your daughter back Yesterday! But this lesson for her, she needs to see for herself. But don’t give up hope or stop loving her as you have!There is nothing more powerful than LOVE…hang in there!

  107. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 21, 2013 4:57 pm

    Mike, Melanie, Freedom; thank you for your support and encouragement. I need it. I’ve sent more copies of blogs and I say a prayer as my letters go in the mailbox. If she really reads them I’m sure she’s confused and uncertain. Maybe angry, In a different mailbox I sent more cards of her with pictures of her and myself together when she was little. She did email; she may not be home for Easter or maybe a short time; she’s not sure yet. but, that was a communication. Again, your support is needed. thank you.

  108. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 22, 2013 2:53 am

    @Concerned Strawberry: I read your posts with a knowing nod, because I remember the initial thoughts and feelings of helplessness. One day we had a pleasant family who were all “on the same page”; then, almost overnight, we noticed verbal and non-verbal communication and interaction changes with our grown child who got into this. For us, it all seemed so bizarre and we really didn’t quite understand what was happening yet.

    And then the bomb dropped. I found this site which linked me right to the pyramid perps and started reading the propaganda and hidden messages right out of the big perp’s mouth. In a nutshell, we prepared ourselves.

    In a very short period of time, this grown child of ours seem sucked into a vortex, with the fallout slapping us in the face just after financially helping out that growing family (our grown child will soon be 40). So, our grown child began to “turn” on us, getting critical of strange things like: speaking down to a parent who had graduated a collegiate valedictorian as supposedly having a “mediocre education” and “settling” for life with a “J.O.B.” and not having enough “vision” or guts to join this smarmy scam, among other sundry asinine statements which created extreme anger in us—we, the now-supposedly ignornat jobbers who were actually the financially and supportive fixers of some of their problems in tough times. (To be continued–this site not working properly)

  109. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 22, 2013 3:23 am

    @Concerned Strawberry, continued: I may be quite a bit older than you–not sure, but I come from a generation (wild as we were) at least in the area I grew up in where, no matter what, one does not disrespect parents to that extreme. Wild child that I was in the 60’s, I simply could NOT imagine saying to a father or mother the things that were hurled at us, i.e., the mindless, classless tripe which had been rapidly instilled into our grown child by that smarmy bogus excuse of a business which is geared toward and set up to rob the poor coming in and continuously feed the slime at the top.

    For us, we did not continually “beg” or try to show that we were good parents and now a family torn asunder (we knew that with our grown child, this would instill resentment AND, from what we’d heard, it would almost prove a point about what this cult was teaching–and by that, I mean what was actually coming out of my own child’s mouth as the grown child snidely repeated CD teachings to me one day), or harp that we were good parents because: we KNEW we were!

    We believe we righteously got indignant at the sudden, unexpected disrespect dished out to us when we told this loved to: 1) get help for unacceptable behavior, 2) get educated about the other side, i.e., the members who failed in this business, and 3) our loved one is old enough and smart enough to make amends, but until that realization was reached, we would not continue to put ourselves out there as ridiculed enablers. (Mind you, this all literally had happened to us just within days to weeks of supplying that growing family with thousands of dollars, taking care of their children, and just always being there for them in these tough economic times especially.)

    A very wise elder sibling (she is now pushing age 70) of my own maintained this stance: she said: “your child will come back to you–your child needs YOU, not the other way around.” This elder sibling of mine was absolutely correct. At first we did not think we’d survive the most painful 3/4’s of a year of our lives.

    The happy update: last week we got to hug that grown child for the first time and exchange “I love you’s.” What we DID do for that child was give the grown child an “in”, i.e., a way/reason to contact us because we knew that this person’s embarrassment was extreme. And: so far we’ve avoided slamming out the hated admonition of “I told you so.” So: I’ll say this to you again: we’ve got one of the stubbornest, occasionally-shooting-self-in-foot grown children imaginable….if this “child” can wake up and see the light about this group…honestly, 97% of the rest of them can (I doubt the few financially successful ones will until they go into foreclosure, realizing how much was actually spent, etc.)

    The hardest thing for us through this ordeal was: to make sure we left those walked-on eggshells in the garbage can, because people immersed and drowning in this sea of slime cannot stand the truth, so at first it was difficult because it almost seemed as if you had to condone this crap in order for your own child to continue talking to you–it was a form of enabling if allowed. NO. We are still the senior parents here with parental jobs to do, no matter the age, so the enabling got cut short (within days). If one allows the enabling, you give power to the insanity of what they are doing. Just my humble opinions here after walking through months of lonely darkness…as we emerge as a family back into the daylight….

  110. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 22, 2013 3:50 am

    P.S. to Concerned Strawberry: getting rid of those eggshells and stopping the forms of “pleading” for the grown child to not throw away their loving past/loving parents also contained one “putting our foot down move” that was so very hard to do. It concerned one particular circumstance whre, after getting sucked into a 12 hr babysitting day, we subsequently absolutely refused to do it again when it came to babysitting for our own beloved grandchildren, and that was: if the childcare episode was so that the parent (our grown child) could attend these cult-like meetings, the answer was “no, you’ve been gone all day long; now it’s time to stay home and take care of your children.” Taking this stance caused Chernobyl to happen here, and I do mean a major Chernobyl, with said grown child screaming at us and hanging up like a 15 yr old having a temper tantrum–it was the last time until now that we ever spoke to each other. It was rough living through it and subsequently having our own grandkids used as pawns against us for months on end afterward (i.e., you wouldn’t take care of them when I wanted you to, so now you can’t see them—meaning, you wouldn’t play my way, so I’m gonna take all my dollies and go home childish prat). All I can say is: those looking for some sort of fulfillment by getting into the Life/Team/Training charade have no idea what will be overtly, but even worse covertly instilled into them by this disruptive barnyard of conning snakes. What happened to our family could have fit into ANY book on what happens in cults, it truly could, but thankfully, we believe a positive outcome has begun.

  111. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 22, 2013 4:14 am

    please excuse typos and missing words in my prior three posts…for some reason, this blog page kept jumping around every time I hit the enter button and I could not go back and proofread.

  112. March 22, 2013 8:20 am

    Don’t know what was happening with your problems with the comment system. In the future, you could write your comment in a separate program; then, copy and paste the text into the comment box.

    Thanks for the update on your story. Has your son been able to talk about his experience? Or, is he still in the process of extricating himself from his former group?

  113. concerned strawberry permalink
    March 22, 2013 3:46 pm

    age of wisdom; wow, I’ll be getting back to you there’s a lot there to contemplate; but, I am taking away from it — as myself — you have an adult child who changed and yet, you have a positive end. at this point that gives me hope as many of the others on this blog have; however, living through the daily wondering when will this unfold, how long will it take. I like you, we have a close family; she has siblings she is close to; yet, she no longer can see or hear what members of this family say. I cannot believe how critical she has become. she has been downright rude to me. It’s beyond my understanding why this had to happen. we really need to get rid of this cult. the fact that the group is so large and it is illegal in the states boggles my mind. I thank you too for being there. I will hold your life story in my heart in the fact that you are having a positive end. sometimes at night the tears just don’t stop. take care and thanks again

  114. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 23, 2013 3:18 am

    @concerned strawberry: here’s the thing: down to the deepest technicality, it is not illegal. OW isn’t that stupid–he’s got the shamscam set up so you are an independent contractor, signing your rights away at his whim, and he has it structured so that members can be considered end consumers—that’s the legal technicality that most of us don’t talk frequently about on here. I know they’ve recently made another combination change (i.e., with team and life), but the fact is this: they took actual consumable/renewable products, got rid of them, and managed to legitimize “team tools” finally.

    About the rudeness to you as the parent: that’s because it’s being instilled in them that

    1) this group has all of the answers to life—my grown child actually had the nerve to at first blurt out that they had the answers to the universe (can you imagine what I wanted to say back? :) )

    2) that if you disagree in any form, you’re just part of the “naysayer losers” club–they are actually told to stay away from we negative nellies;

    3) the CDs have the answers and that they have the answers and mentors to guide you, the new member (as if they are qualified! My grown child’s head honcho here in WI is an auto mechanic and his wife was a child care provider….and to give you an example of the kind of teaching he was letting slip through: that idiot was making statements like [paraphrased] “if you don’t get into this business, you might piss yourself and smell of fear, instead of success.”–but it was stated in question format. Literally, I read this on his fB page! Then the thirty-something uneducated boob parroted comments like: poverty ain’t prettyu and will lead the poor to becoming murderers. This yokel had all sorts of stuff he’s since removed since I began screaming about his idiocy and how OW needed to curb this digusting crap. Yeah, and this was the big honcho “PC” or supposed co-founder who my own grown child was bragging about and thought should be emulated!

    4) the answers are on the CDs, and not from their own common sense or knowledge–ergo, any parental wisdom does not exist, even though your grown child knows better. These folks getting into it (not speaking about leadership programs conducted in places of business here) are looking for something—they’re waiting for the Pied Piper to show them the way….and they’re duped by the really slick idea of: God wants them to get what they deserve: to be financially wealthy……this truly is the underlying draw.

    5) The poor rats wanting so desperately to be lead by the Pied Piper of MLM Poop have never really dissected some of those blogs coming out of the filthy end of the Piper’s pipe: I spent months going over things, and realized a lot about the main perp’s personality:

    a) admires military tactics, especially infiltrating and subduing populations;

    b) very far right winger with extreme views who, in a blog, used all of the current slang to besmirch an assistance-receiving mother basically as scum sucking their corporate profits dry, and which is another reason why he backs extremists like DeMille who can’t seem to ever get his supposed “university” accredited and who has a highly criticized “Jeffersonian Method” of home schooling, etc.

    c) there are actually videos out there where these clowns act like they’ve got the answers to ALL of the public school education ills…….but they go even further than that….they get the duped they’ve reeled in to believe that we all got mediocre educations which will make us all slaves—-my! how far we’ve all come since our grandparents were proud to see their own children be able to afford grandchildren’s educations!

    d) The head Pied Pooper actually wants to go back and redo ALL of human history back to Ancient Greece and will take history out of context to prove a point or to try to look like an actual thinking scholar……one incident was particularly titillating where he claimed his father used the “Socratic Method” (which is basically an academic debate method) to raise 5 boys—–are ya kiddin’ me? LOL! No wonder that in that same article (which he later also changed) he claimed his mother would literally beat her head against a wall if she couldn’t accomplish something.

    For months I’d come on here and make cracks about these lunatic teachings….and would see changes being made to blogs or things disappearing……but in the bowels of Amthrax’s site, the comments are all still there and usually, I supplied quotes, too.

    This is what you are up against—inculcation, and the worst part is: if we think we’ve got smart kids, we sit back and go: “how could you fall for this sham?”

  115. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    March 23, 2013 5:07 am

    Another P.S. for concerned strawberry: they’re all looking for something….in our case: my streetsmart/academically smart, but obviously at-least-temporarily-lacking-something in what I call the “moral/ethical department” grown child almost immediately latched onto the idea that in these hard, financially-strapping times, he could draw in others in his “loss of the American dream” cynical state of mind, and make money off of them by being in this tool business. (Where we live, the worst of the 2008-starting recession hit in 2012 with severe devaluations, etc. Example: our modest property dropped over $80k and jobs are almost nil)

    Gotta tell you: that was the day I lost my temper, stood up out of my lawn-chair where we’d been congregated going over the vehicle we, the soon-to-be-dissed parents just purchased for the grown child’s family needs, and stood directly in front of of the grown child, looking down squarely in the eye and said: “WHO are you? I don’t know you anymore! That you are snickering that you’d try to take money out of the mouths of other financially-strapped folks like you leaves me wondering just WHO you are! You’re looking for free money off of the backs of others in your shoes instead of earning it honestly?!”

    Yeah, concerned strawberry, yet the slimeballs have me listed on a wordpress blog site dedicated to myself (and Raquel) as nothing more than just a disgruntled, lonely atheist mommy who has an atheist agenda against them (no, I have an agenda against taking all that could be socially and cohesively good about any particular religion and skewing it enough to believe that ANY deity would condone disintegration of the family or sell worthless, repetitive/repackaged items to unsuspecting masses in an effort to achieve financial wealth for a few, etc.).

    They’ve counted every post each i have made on here; they’ve wondered why I spent so much time researching this so-called Christian group promoting greed and wealth….and never once addressed facts (which came out in different posts of mine) that this was my only child out of 5 who lived or that I, myself had been an unwanted orphan, or raised a Catholic and became a top 100 Jesuit scholar–instead, I am portrayed as a disgruntled, terrible, ignorant atheist who likely got her just desserts. (The entire blog smells of the chief Pied Piper in the first place and the ironic thing is: they commit the VERY “sins” they are suing Raquel over, too.)

    Any bonafide business would NOT have to resort to what they are resorting to on the ‘net, at least not in this fashion. No WONDER the first thing they instill in the unsuspecting sheep: do NOT read the internet; do not read AMTHRAX, etc. Yup, that was one of the FIRST things out of my grown child’s own mouth about this biz after attending a big meeting–it kept him ignorant and in their hold longer than it would have been possible otherwise.

    Honestly, considering that I am an Atheist, I honestly don’t know how this pack of snakes-offering-apples at the top can sleep at night when one looks at all of the outright lies, the horrible financial losses/foreclosures of those who once made a lot of money with them, and the unsavory activities that goes on behind closed doors (back offices), and not allowing people to talk to each other in cross-lines (for fear of the shenanigans being known, I’m sure)……well, all I can say is: do they really believe in their God? Sure doesn’t look like it to me….they’re using their concept of God as the fantastical false label of curing powers on the bottle of snake oil, as they travel the midwest in their wagon of lies.

    The reality for my peace of mind as an almost-63 yr old retiree who spent a lifetime caring for others in life/death situations: I truly believe I possess more morals and honesty in the proverbial little pinky finger than exists in that entire hidden dual-pyramidal scheme inventor, or I would not have reacted to my only child the way I did. I did what any conscientious parent would do at that point in time when hearing something so immoral and unethical come out of their own child’s mouth.

    Be it overt or covert, concerned strawberry: this is what you are up against with a loved one sucked into that vortex (not saying your daughter would have the same immoral/unethical attitude, per se, as ours had as an idea for a short time)…

    but one way or another, filth like this is getting instilled into her, but the internal filth is invisible to the unsuspecting members because it’s temporarily layered with coats of comraderie, “new family”, mentors, supposed sound teachings, a “new way of life”, ideas of mansion wealth like our local WI auto mechanic who’s paying $15k/annum in property taxes off of the backs of the poor slobs coming in….

    until the putrid interior of Team/Life/Team-Training breaks through to the surface, and the poor lower-leg members (and those they left behind but who truly loved them in this world) need to pick up the pieces.

  116. Mike Bickel permalink
    March 23, 2013 1:08 pm

    Concerned Strawberry – Here is a link that might tell you some of the problems with getting someone to care about this terrible situation:
    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-04-16/the-multibillion-dollar-direct-selling-industry-dodges-the-ftc

  117. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 23, 2013 5:55 pm

    Wisdom~ Excellent!

    Mike~ Thanks for that link.

  118. September 17, 2013 9:40 pm

    Concerned Strawberry: How are things going? Just wanted to check in & see how you were doing.

  119. concerned strawberry permalink
    November 21, 2013 8:17 pm

    Hi Jackie, I know it has been awhile. I had to stop blogging as I could not function in my world. I was too focused on concern of my daughter and it just was overwhelming me. Well somewhere around summer she started dating a guy who was on team in another state – and I guess you are not supposed to date from another area team? my daughter through the summer moved out of her apartment to a smaller community for a lower rent apartment; between the move and the guy she dated she really started to change for the good – more like herself; she also started to communicate more with us again –well it happened again; in September she asked to borrow money – she willingly stated she had not given any money to team for 4months she realized . . . she stopped after realized and never finished her sentence. well, we want our daughter to be safe and she needed help with car insurance so she could pay car repairs — anyway; we loaned her some money and I was very clear — I told her ” none of my money is to go team – I will not contribute to a group who takes advantage of so many innocent people” she told me exactly where the money was going and promised nothing was going to team. well, prior to sept. this guy she was dating broke up with her – sort of — he apparently has trouble with committment. my daughter is still hopeful they will date again — yet, she is seemingly doing ok. my husband and I talk wondering if she still is part of team — he says he just doesn’t think she can be because she can’t make her monthly bills. she is working two jobs still but, she has a huge payment each month of a bill which she combined several credit cards on years ago — this particular payment is larger than her rent (my belief is this is a cumulation of probably lots of stuff she put on a credit card for team) — anyway — sorry it’s hard to make a long story short — she is communicating more with the family, she is starting to seem more herself, I know she keeps in touch with some team members (I’m thinking if she really wants out of team it would be hard to keep those friends – yet I know she doesn’t want to give up certain friends — and she should not have to) I’d love to know if she is still with team or not; but, I still feel like I need to tread lightly. another thing she is doing with her move is looking for a different church. it seems a lot of her friends from team are in non-denominational churches. she has always been a strong christian (and I believe that is why team could hold her so tight to) I do not really know anything about the non-denominational but even that she is willing to talk to me about some of the churches she has visited. I’m grateful she is staying christian – a bit disappointed she is switching away from our church – but, grateful she is communicating with me. I thank you for asking how I am. sorry it’s been awhile. it’s still confusing to me and very frightening — but, I keep my own prayers going.

  120. concerned strawberry permalink
    November 21, 2013 8:28 pm

    second note , Jackie, that is one thing I really tried to get across to my daughter — it’s not your friends from team I have a problem with — it is the group and I came right out and told her it’s a pyramid on top a pyramid. I told her I’m not supid I would see her car trunck full of the mona via stuff, and then team books and finally life CD’s. I told her I knew those things costed a lot. by the way == I truly sent her ananomous(spelling?) letters with pieces of this blog and other notes — I really managed to make it anonymous — in my heart I believe they helped make her think – though I will probably never know which is ok – because she could’ve just gotten angry – or she could’ve thrown them out. or they did make a difference. also I’ve noticed she no longer has a car trunck full of stuff — but, she did still have team stuff hung on her bedroom wall in her new apt. (team t-shirt ugh)- yet, I haven’t been there since summer (maybe that is changed also); that’s the other thing. she is looking for a smaller used car which will save on gas. my husband and I never understood why as a single person she needed to buy a used large SUV in the first place — but, again in my mind if she is out of team — she wouldn’t need such a large car to drive everyone everywhere; maybe I’m too hopeful; we’ll see. I still ache for her though; what she really wants is the husband and the house of dreams — and yes, i really want it for her.
    thanks again for asking, concerned strawberry

  121. noteam permalink
    November 21, 2013 8:33 pm

    Concerned Strawberry – Glad to hear your daughter is communicating with you again.

    Unfortunately, regarding the non-denominational churches – this is a big tool of team. They prey on non-denominational churches, especially the ones that teach prosperity religion. For them, such a church is fertile hunting ground for their next victims. They play hard on the ‘faith’ part of the 8-F’s. If there’s a non-denominational church around, I can almost guarantee, there will be Team/Life scamsters trying to figure out a way to be the wolf in that henhouse.

    Keep your ears open. But most importantly, always make sure to let your daughter know you love her no matter what and you will never say “I told you so”. One of the biggest fears most of us had in leaving (and a big reason many of us stayed longer than we should have) is that we had already alienated all are friends & family as a result of TEAM/LIFEscam. So if we left the scam, we would be leaving our only friends we had left (although the scammers were not true friends). We were so afraid of being alone and not welcomed back to our previous friends.

    Make sure she knows you realize it was not her, but her environment and she is always loved and welcomed back without having to ever eat any crow.

  122. Anna permalink
    November 22, 2013 2:28 am

    Noteam, I have to disagree with you on that point. I don’t think non-denominational churches are necessarily a prime target for LIFE. Consider Bob Dickie and Tom Ascol are both hard line Baptist church leaders, and both very Calvinistic in their persuasion. Mormanism seemed to be the second most popular religious group associated with TEAM when we were in – even before Monavie. I do agree that churches in general are a big barrel of fish for them to shoot at though.

    CS – I’m glad your daughter is talking to you again. If I were you I would be careful about asking her if she’s still in. She’s probably more than a little embarrassed by it right now and will come around with a little more time. I will keep your family in my prayers still, but the good news is that people rarely ever go back once they’re out; and I assure you that even if she wouldn’t say it yet (because of guilt, fear, feeling like a failure/quitter/loser, etc), her ‘leaders’ consider her out if she hasn’t paid them any money in 4 months.

    Still, even though she was hurtful to you in the way she handled things before, I can tell you from personal experience that when you’re in TEAM (especially before you go broke), you really think you’ve found a huge answer to prayer, and you feel so charged after very meeting that all you can think of is how you wish the people you really love – that you know love you – could be a part of it with you. Ironically, your daughter probably felt AS desperate to get you to become a member as you did to get her not to be.

  123. concerned strawberry permalink
    November 22, 2013 9:22 pm

    Anna, your comment about my daughter being out if she hasn’t paid in 4months — well, I’d like to cling to that – but, I have to be leary; she also said she went to something with some of her team friends last weekend. she said it was no pay; just bring a dish to pass if you want. my belief is if she went to something like that — those people are not willing to just let her go. I also, remember back when she first started her inviting me to what she called “a get together” at that time. it was still mona vie. I did not want to go — but, I went for her; it made me feel sick; huge house, yet all that was served was water. when on the way home she asked me what I thought — I could hardly talk; I told her going to that made me feel worse about the whole thing; I did not agree with what they were saying and it was not a get together it was a meeting — she said she did not look at it that way and started crying — I knew she really wanted me to be “proud” of her or happy for her. I should’ve pulled her home that night and really had a big talk with her. — but, I was so upset I could not talk it was so obvious to me. the big house (never a get together at her meeger apartment – something I tried to point out to her in later years) I really did not think at that time that it was going to turn into what it did. she has these teacher friends that pulled her into it — they have been in it since amway — they are persistent and a strong hold on her — I commented once that they still were not rich and wow — she then told me I was judgemental. everything sky rocketed after that. I’m still so leary of her future.

  124. Anna permalink
    November 23, 2013 6:40 pm

    CS- if it was truly a no-pay, just bring a dish thing, then it wasn’t a part of the system, I assure you. Also, even though the leadership is messed up, she probably has met some real friends through it all. There are several friends (some still in and some out) that we met through this that have been good for our lives and vice versa. I wouldn’t necessarily believe that just because she still does things with them means she’s still on system.

    As for the teacher friends that were in since Amway. Don’t be surprised if your thoughts on that are not still echoing now years later. One of the things that I noticed after 5 years, was that ALL of our “movin on up-line” seemed to continuously take 2 steps forward and then 3 back financially and otherwise. All the while the Brady’s, Woodward’s, and others put on their show of wealth at every event. That made me frustrated enough, but then seeing the bankruptcy files here of some of the “best” put the nail in the coffin for me being a part.

  125. concerned strawberry permalink
    November 24, 2013 3:43 pm

    Anna – I wish I could get my daughter to be aware of the bankruptcy’s; or maybe she is starting to become more aware of things – but, I would have to believe, very difficult for her to admit to. I truly believe at this point all I can do is continue to pray. Do you know anything about why supposedly dating a person from team through another state is not necessarily ok? I cannot believe a group like that with those type of rules could exist in todays society.

  126. concerned strawberry permalink
    November 24, 2013 3:44 pm

    Anna, sorry I did not finish my thought — how did you becom aware of the bankrupticies?

  127. noteam permalink
    November 24, 2013 4:40 pm

    Strawberry – The bankruptcy links are on this site. Especially telling are the public records of their tax returns showing how little theses leaders actually made compared to what we were led to believe they made and more importantly, the list of debt showing the credit card debt. The Darkangelo one is the best demonstration of what really happens as a result of TEAM/LIFE scam – over $200,000 of unsecured debt.

    Also, in regard to dating. Major crossline problem for these scamsters. Very frowned upon!!!!! Why – because when you are dating them, there is the chance they may start to talk to someone who is not in their line of sponsorship about the fact that they have not made any money and how much everyone is spending on this scam. So many of us thought we were the only ones spending such large amounts of money and that our group was the only one not making money. It blows my mind how strong this mind-control is. But most of us on this site all went through the phase in which we started to doubt there was potential for us, but somehow believed we were the only ones with the terrible financial results.

    They would not want people dating from other groups because the truth may come out.

  128. Anna permalink
    November 24, 2013 4:42 pm

    CS – I found out about the bankruptcies via google search on TEAM after I had been out a while. The guilt trip one feels for leaving lingers for a while, so I even though I knew it was right to leave, I was still second guessing myself.

    In answer to your question about dating someone from another state – it’s not the state they’re worried about. The issue there is that he has a different up line than her that is not in the same leg. Fraternizing with people from different legs is called Cross-lining. This is discouraged since it has a tendency to mess up control of the system of information. Orrin would say “discernment is the enemy of duplication” (Which is ironically un-Biblical).

  129. Chrisxrascal permalink
    November 25, 2013 12:06 am

    What’s going on in ” Team” land??? Does anyone know how the ” Life” business is doing as of recent? I thought they would be close to a ” million” by this time?
    ” Concerned Strawberry ” – They shouldn’t be telling your daughter whom to date? That’s just crazy. To me all they care about is ” the business” and use their self help info to make them feel good about theirselves. As a Christian myself, in hindsight it was disturbing how egotistical some of the top leaders were.

  130. concerned strawberry permalink
    December 1, 2013 7:28 pm

    Hello, I still feel like I am walking on eggshells with my daughter over the subject. If I ask her again if she is giving anymore money to team she may become more closed again. she has friends who are married and expecting a baby – supposedly she will not have to work after the baby is born. also, since the beginning this is the couple whom got my daughter into team and they have been going to buy a house for themselves for years – when I pointed out to my daughter they haven’t boughten their house yet, she determined I was judgemental. well, I try to be open minded and understanding of all peoples differences and she nor anyone else has every accused me of something like that — well, that judgemental incident happened in the Spring of this year – and since then I have had my talks with her — but, she still believes that once this couples baby is born the mother will be able to stay home and not work outside the home. I truly do not get how blinded my daughter still seems — and like I said, it’s hard for me because I do not know how much to ask or hard to press. I sure do appreciate everyone’s responses though. they are not dating anymore but they are keeping in touch — she really wants to be with him; my daughter is a wonderful person — I do not understand why she has to go through all of this; yet, all of what everyone in this blog went through — how sad.

  131. noteam permalink
    December 1, 2013 9:48 pm

    Concerned Strawberry – “judgemental” one of the key phrases team/lifescammers are taught to use, along with “negative”. Anyone who disagrees with them are always said to be judgemental or negative.

    Now when the team/lifescam leaders do anything similar, they are simply giving their opinion or giving your their view. But anyone who says anything which goes against the leader’s philosophy or teachings is said to be judgemental or negative.

    Next time she uses this word, be extremely polite, but let her know that you are simply giving your view or opinion. And just like the Team/Life business believes that ‘input’ and ‘information’ (strong team buzzwords) is important, you feel it is important for her to get ‘information’ from other sources of wisdom before making any decisions.

  132. SpaceHamster permalink
    December 2, 2013 8:36 am

    Hello Concerned Strawberry,

    Some thoughts here.

    Many of us fail to realize we have no control over the decisions of another. We see someone who has different ideas than our own and try to convince them they are wrong. I’m certainly guilty of this. What I try to do is step back and think of it from the other persons perspective. Imagine you found something which changed your perspective on life. You saw the path you were walking and realized it wasn’t where you wanted to go. Team/LIFE sets you off down a whole new path, a path in which you feel your life has more meaning and purpose. You want to share this with those around. Unfortunately when you do you are met with resistance and rejection. How would this make you feel?

    This is something we all learn to accept more and more every day. We have no control over the decisions of another. You can not force your daughter to see what you see in LIFE just as she can not force you to see what she sees

    From what I can tell you and your daughter are still on speaking terms so that’s awesome. Here’s what I recommend you do from here. Use this advice or not, either way is cool with me. :)

    1) Stop providing financial aid. She’s an adult so she doesn’t need her parents to bail her out. It doesn’t matter if she is walking down the path of Team/LIFE or not, she is responsible for her own finances. A better option is to assist in working out a budget. Help her track her income and expenses. Numbers don’t lie.

    2) Don’t attack Team/LIFE. The way I see it, attempting to tell her how bad LIFE is will only close her ears. Introduce her to alternatives. These involve living a lower consumption/efficient lifestyle with saving/investing a good portion of your income. Head off to http://www.duckduckgo.com (may as well avoid the google bubble http://www.searchenginejournal.com/the-google-filter-bubble-and-its-problems/29879/ ;) and search up topics like “financial freedom”, “financial independence”, “budgets”, “personal finance”, “early retirement”, etc.

    Really 1 and 2 go hand in hand. Let LIFE be, that’s her choice and not one you can change. Instead provide her with support in other ways. Work with her to help improve her financial handling, I’m sure she’d like that. Hold off searching up the topics I suggested until you see if your daughter wants help in that manner. By starting that journey at the same place there’s no pressure. The two of you may learn awesome new things at the same time and have fun in the process. :) Of course this is just one suggestion of how to help her, I’m sure there are many other ways you can think of. Who knows, maybe helping her this way may eventually convince her to leave LIFE without any attempt from you to convince her. Even if not, at least you know you are helping her.

  133. Melanie Morgan permalink
    December 2, 2013 7:09 pm

    Concerned Strawberry-

    Sorry to hear your daughters still making you feel you need to walk on eggshells. She is using the manipulative behavior that their “world class training” teaches. Amazing how the followers don’t recognize the PC control the information and feed the info they force through their propaganda machine…but the distractors point everywhere else like the government, media, etc. (irrelevant)…The PC filter everything you read, listen to and people you associate with…the black and white thinking,very closed minded ‘culture’ they indirectly, subtly, and boldly their own feed with the ‘hand picked’ info. and instil this in others.

    They see everyone else as “against them” and thee ‘enemy’ or as a loser, dream stealer, don’t want to better their lives, don’t get it, etc.. who don’t just believe all the propaganda to control the way a person behaves and thinks, they expect and demand 100% blind loyalty and expect others to follow without question.

    They play and repeatedly play on the vulnerabilities of people and is why sadly your daughter got sucked in in the first place. I never heard 1 ‘story’ from any CD or in person that didn’t have at least one if not all 3 of the top reasons people, get recruited into cults.

    Hang in there, change and waking up will be inevitable, with your daughter, sooner or later EVERYONE stops dead in their tracks because all have a line they won’t cross, when they see the one thing that their conscience will not allow them to follow any longer, eventually they will mess up and hit whatever that threshold is for your daughter, she will then wake up and begin to question, doubt, and quit all by herself.

    Don’t give up hope, they aren’t that good.

  134. concerned strawberry permalink
    December 16, 2013 6:07 pm

    thank you very much, Melanie, Space and noteam. I really appreciate your thoughts and suggestions, and support. It sounds like I was right not to press her. It’s interesting the explanation about that word “judgemental” and what you are describing is one of the big differences we’ve seen in her — how she wants to direct a situation or event with the family; she appears to believe her words are the right words and her ways are the right ways — she was never like that before — she used to be more, well “sweet” in her communications and thoughts of others — in retrospect she’s the one who has become somewhat “judgemental”; but, gratefully yes, we are talking – not as openly in the past — but, she seems to be turning more back into herself (little bits at a time).
    thanks again everyone

  135. concerned strawberry permalink
    December 31, 2013 6:44 pm

    Jackie and others: my daughter decided to give me time as a present for Christmas. she could not afford much so she stated overnight after Christmas day to make cut out cookies with me :) — how could anything be more perfect. I do not know for sure if she is out of team or not — but, she is coming back to me. Jackie – it was the beginning of this blog as one of the anonymous pieces of information I sent her oh so long ago. I still think that may have been the beginning of her at least thinking about what she was doing. I sincerely thank you. Happy New Year ot everyone

  136. freedomhaha permalink
    January 4, 2014 7:28 pm

    It is great to see that the work that has been done on this site continues to pay off both financially for people as well as relationally.

  137. concerned strawberry permalink
    July 6, 2014 7:32 am

    I have no idea if anyone still visits – or will see this, but, my daughter has a financial plan to get back on target — working two jobs, calls home more just to talk, is turning more back into herself, is less anxious all the time. . . does not currently have a boyfriend, seems to keep some association with team members as friends – but, she cannot financially be giving any money anymore. I am so grateful this site was here when needed. thank you all; my daughter and i talk at least once a week and she just seems more herself, I still fear those friends from team she keeps in touch with — I fear they will guilt her back in — but, I do not focus on that fear — because on the whole she seems to be putting her life back together.

  138. July 6, 2014 8:17 am

    @concerned strawberry – we’re still here and reading. Thanks for the update. I hope your daughter continues to get back on her feet and that your relationship repairs. Keep us informed!

  139. LionChaser permalink
    July 6, 2014 5:08 pm

    Concerned: that is fantastic! I wouldn’t worry too much about her old friends either. Over time she will watch them bow out too.

  140. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 7, 2014 8:29 am

    Concerned Strawberry~

    Your heart must be full, so happy for you and your daughter! It is stories like yours and others that make it all worth it for me and the reason I have given my time. <3

    Blessings on your relationship as it grows even closer, better & stronger!

    Success!

  141. Vogel permalink
    July 8, 2014 7:14 am

    Concerned Strawberry–That’s great news! I’m so happy for both of you.

    The only real MLM ‘success stories’ are about those who managed to get out.

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