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Ask Scary Mommy: My Friend Won’t Stop Annoying Me With MLM Sh*t

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Ask Scary Mommy is Scary Mommy’s advice column, where our team of “experts” answers all the questions you have about life, love, body image, friends, parenting, and anything else that’s confusing you.

Do you have a friend who has fallen under the spell of an MLM pyramid? Are you sick of dodging requests to buy this or try that? Are you running out of excuses to get out of another virtual party (i.e. sales pitch)? We’ve got some solutions.

Have your own questions? Email advice@scarymommy.com

Dear Scary Mommy,

I have a friend who won’t stop sending me messages to buy crap from her latest MLM hustle. I don’t need more bags. I hate scented candles. And I barely have time to wash my face at night, let alone try whatever 5-step regimen she’s promising will make me look 10 years younger. How can I decline without offending her or ruining our friendship?

Ah… the dreaded MLM pitch. I decided long ago that life is short, I’ve only got so many fucks to give, and MLM bullshit cannot be one of them. I don’t want to spend the few minutes I have to procrastinate or doomscroll on Facebook dodging shady-ass sales pitches that slide into my DMs. I don’t feel guilty about it, and neither should you.

There are a couple of ways to handle the situation depending on the kind of friend this person is. Are they someone who’s trying to sell you shit on Facebook even though you haven’t exchanged actual words since you both graduated from high school? Are they one of those moms who will smile and wave but then talk shit about you behind your back at the next PTA meeting or purposely exclude you from Moms’ Nights Out? If so, good riddance. This is just the excuse you need to unfriend, unfollow, and cut that toxic bullshit out of your life.

If, on the other hand, this is a friend you want to keep around – and I’m guessing that because you said that you don’t want to “ruin the friendship,” that it is – then there are a couple of responses.

First, you could take the brutally honest approach and say something like this:

“No, I will not attend your sketchy ass ‘party’ which is really just a pyramid scheme designed by the patriarchy to keep women held hostage to capitalist bullshit and insecurities that we’ll never be enough unless we have this trendy bag or that skin-tightening cream or whatever other product toxic capitalism has created to make women feel like that we aren’t good enough just as we are and that we constantly need to be hustling up the ladder and trying to out-compete each other because if we’re busy starving ourselves and slathering on face cream and selling leggings then we’re too tired to take a look around and realize that these MLM schemes were never about empowerment and freedom but about constraints and restrictions and it’s time that we rise up against this patriarchal bullshit and say ENOUGH – I do not need your purse or essential oils or wrinkle cream or cheap-ass necklace to be powerful and worthy because I am a freaking force and so are you.”

Or you could just say, “No thanks.”

Either way.

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