My Wife Is Addicted to Mary Kay

Perhaps my story will help other ladies out there. This is a true story in which I am still living but trying to put closure to a situation that has been absolutely terrible because of my hopefully soon ex-wife’s addiction to Mary Kay.

After our first child was born, my wife decided that doing nails was not good enough so she wanted to start a business. She had me listen to an Amway presentation and I told her immediately that if the focus is on recruiting and not selling products to make money- this is a pyramid scheme and no way would I get involved in this. Then came Mary Kay Cosmetics.

I didn’t listen to this sales pitch by her director but my soon ex-wife stated you make money by selling the product and recruiting was just a small part of the business. She signed up as a consultant and off she went. She was receiving all of these accolades. I remember when she would come home from her director’s meeting and say Oh Look! I did so great this week that I won this Mary Kay pencil! I thought, What!? You are excited over a pencil? Pencils don’t pay bills. Show me the money.

Then it was the race to become a director. I’d see unopened boxes of product in the house and knew something was immediately wrong and knew she is buying her way to this position. If a woman has low self esteem- that is the prime target for a Mary Kay recruiter. My soon to be ex fell for their trap. The sun rose and set on her. They made such a big deal out of her at awards ceremonies. She was the example to live by.

But it was all lies.

Now the home phone is ringing off the hook because the credit card companies are calling looking for their money. I remember saying, who keeps calling? Her reply was oh, telemarketers and I’d say “we are on the do not call list, they shouldn’t be calling here.” I never used to answer the phone because it was never for me. Now I started answering and now I knew there were debt problems. I now saw more credit card statements in the mail. I would take them and open them up to see what was going on. My best estimate was over $35,000.

But to her and her friends, she was a successful Mary Kay consultant. She was and currently is living the life of lies. I would hear her deceive people. She even stole thousands of dollars from the children’s bank accounts in order to try and pay these bills off. When confronted on this, I was the jerk. I was not a supportive husband.

Well to make a very long story short, I did offer to get her out of debt and here was the deal. You get out of Mary Kay and I help pay the debt off. But if you don’t quit Mary Kay, you will have to do it on your own.

Guess what she picked? Yep- Mary Kay. She picked Mary Kay because now she has to save face. She recruited all of her friends to be consultants and now how would that look if she recruited them and then quit herself? She had everyone believing how successful she was and how much money she made. All lies.

So what happened next? I stuck around because I had small children but once they became a bit older, I had to get out. Thank goodness I have been very smart with my job and my finances. I am in the process of a divorce and am willing to pay child support because my kids deserve it. I can’t believe the very successful Mary Kay consultant (not a director anymore but the phone message still says she is and her business cards also) wants me to pay her maintenance. Why? She has this wonderful business where she is just making money hand over fist.

I remember when a family friend lost her job due to her employer going out of business. She was a professional woman who had a good job but my future ex said “I’m going to have to call XXXX. I need to give her the Mary Kay opportunity.” What a joke, I said. She wants a job making a salary, with health insurance benefits, and a pension plan or 401k plan. She is in her own world and there is no hope for her.

So yes all, you are getting a very abridged version of my life with a Mary Kay business that failed miserably from the word go. Do not put your family through this hell. I’ve lived this and would not wish it upon my worst enemy. The major debt was accrued over 10 years ago and believe me, it is still there. I have closets full of Mary Kay products. Some have expiration dates on them and are expired for years. Mary Kay is an addiction for many.


  1. “Family second” seems accurate. The question is, what/who is first? It appears your soon-to-be ex-wife put herself and Mary Kay in the place of God.

  2. My heart breaks for you. If there is any solace, you are not alone. MK has destroyed numerous marriages; look at the numbers of NSDs who have been married, divorced, married, divorced — over and over again.
    Someone a while ago once equated gambling addictions to MK/MLMs. They aren’t wrong. Your soon-to-be ex-spouse will have to hit absolute rock bottom before she realizes she has an addiction. MK is her dopamine rush, and while she continues to hang around her dealers and pushers, she will continue her downward spiral.

  3. That is so heartbreaking. And so common in MK and all MLM. Lost everything but probably still wants to do DIQ again.

  4. Mary Kay actively coaches their consultants about how to lie to their spouses and actively hide purchases. I believe they call it the “husband unawareness program”.

  5. Sorry to hear about your experience. You are not alone. This came between me and my husband and we have a strong marriage. I understand how hard this is.

    There’s a plan to teach women how to dupe their husbands. Maybe we can have an article all about this but here is some of what I heard and saw.
    Starts from coming into MK and using multiple credit cards to pay for personal orders, then the starter kit with the “ husband unawareness plan”
    Multiple Credit cards for inventory can be used and open another credit card. “You know you’ll sell this.”
    Linking meetings with personal attention. “Go to a meeting and come home and take care of your husband in bed.”
    Not telling him about the negative classes and situations. “Complain up.” Tell your director if you have a $0 class. She would say “the next one will be great.”
    Frying an onion in a pot so he thinks there’s a delicious dinner being made.
    If your husband is against you, he’s bad. “He doesn’t understand now but he will when he gets to retire early.”

    Mary Kay comes in between couples so they get more orders. They triangulate the couple and turn them against each other. They have more control over a mk consultant if the husband is controlled also. Husbands are invited to special events. The directors talk about the money they make so he gets sucked in. He’s layered to fall under the spell. He even gets to go to seminar and play golf there. He gets to go on the top director trips.

    But, when the money doesn’t come in as promised, it’s a difficult situation. Debt accumulation and problems within the mariage get worse. This is good for MK because they have more control. It makes the consultants more dependent on MK.

    Mk gives the illusion that these are friends for life. Didn’t really happen. In fact, just the opposite when I left. They don’t talk to previous consultants. “They didn’t see the vision. They gave up. The worst thing you can do in MK is to quit.” This is all part of the mind control brainwashing. Everyone stays and makes money. This is not true but that’s the story being sold. It’s a house of cards and all comes down when you realize that it’s all an illusion. “Fake it like you made it.” But all of it is fake.

    I sold a lot over the years I was in MK. But I ordered more. I got sucked in. They have decades of experience in perfecting the con. They are brilliant in knowing what buttons to press with the MK consultants/customers. They teach about different personalities and what they need to become motivated and it’s used against everyone involved.

    Manipulation is rampant in MK to the customers, consultants and directors.

  6. I was thousands of dollars in debt, I jeopardized my marriage for a bunch of women that kept telling me I was destined to be a director. All the while my director was lining her pockets with my stupidity. If anyone in MK is reading this, please don’t do what I did, don’t go for the cheap prizes, don’t go to every event, those will nickel and dime you to death. Be realistic about this business, it’s a pyramid scheme.


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