“I applied to attend the Younique Foundation retreat…I really wish I didn’t.”

Last night, I had a conversation with one of my Y-spies that left me with significant food for thought. She is relatively new to the anti-MLM movement – still an “active” Younique presenter, but with absolutely no intentions of carrying on.

In her first month of being a presenter, she applied to attend the Younique Foundation‘s “Haven Retreat” for childhood sexual abuse survivors. What she told me shook me to my core, and reaffirmed my views of this so-called sham (readCharity or Travesty? Let’s look at the facts…for my collaboration article with Maz Carrah).

My Y-spy spoke to me with such dignity and strength, that I felt so angry at how she was treated. Why do huns hero-worship this disgusting excuse for a charity? She has asked to remain anonymous throughout this piece, but her voice deserves to be heard loud and clear.

UPDATE: 7th Dec 17 – Since posting Albie’s opinion piece, I was met with an accusation that my blog will “discourage women from getting the healing that they deserve.” This statement is a ridiculous pile of steaming offal. I find it so ridiculous, that I have started a global directory of Genuine Charities for Sexual Abuse Survivors, showing alternative closer-to-home organisations in all countries where Younique operates. I am hoping my international followers will help me add information to this over time.

I will now hand over to “Albie“, and let her tell you her experience in her own words. 

[Albie:] Thanks, Elle.

Like Elle said above, a month after joining Younique (and before I discovered her #Poonique tale) I decided to apply to the Younique Foundation’s “Haven Retreat”. Why? I was sexually abused for about ten years of my childhood, by my stepdad.

Being abused had a huge impact on me, and still does – its going to stick with me for the rest of my life.

I never really had a childhood – I was in a constant fight-or-flight mode, 24/7. I don’t speak to my Mom because she knew about the sexual abuse going on, but just looked the other way.

I’ve been on psychiatric meds since I was 14 years old, and in therapy on-and-off for about the same amount of time. I have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), agoraphobia, major depressive disorder (MDD), every kind of anxiety there is.

I am a constant work in progress, and will be for the rest of my life.

I still to this day am in fight-or-flight mode about 75% of the time, which causes me to never have any energy, or willingness to do anything.

So, I checked out the Younique Foundation’s website, and it seemed legit – it didn’t raise any red flags for me. Although…I always found it odd that Derek Maxfield (Younique co-founder) just basically picked sexual abuse as his charity, having never been sexually abused.

[Elle:] Sorry to cut in, Albie – in respect of your comment above, it is said that Derek’s sister and Younique co-founder, Melanie Huscroft, was unfortunately sexually abused as a young girl. I knew that this claim had been alluded to by uplines in Facebook groups (when I was a presenter), so I thought I’d take a look for further verification on this.

I found a Yellow Status presenter’s blog called Let’s Get FabuLASH (which hasn’t been updated since October 2015), that had this information:

Younique Foundation
[Source:] Let’s Get FabuLASH – Younique is more than JUST makeup and skin care!
“…You may not know, but Derek’s sister (our other Co-Founder, Melanie Huscroft) was sexually assaulted as a young girl, so this Foundation really means a lot to our Co-Founders…”

As mentioned in my “Charity or Travesty” collaboration article, the “charity” is founded by Derek and his wife Shelaine Maxfield, as seen in the Our Story section of the website.

derek shelaine
Derek & Shelaine Maxfield [source: defendinnocence.org]
[Albie:] Thanks for the info, Elle. I wonder, as a fellow survivor, why doesn’t Melanie play a bigger role in the foundation? She seems silenced in pretty much everything, but that’s a story  for another day.

Well, anyways – I decided to apply to attend the Younique Foundation’s Haven Retreat – according to their website, there are four steps. Let’s take a look at what they are:

Step 1 – Enter your online application request.  You will receive a confirmation page indicating that we have received your request. 

The first step in the application process is to submit a request for an application to apply to the Retreat. Hmm. I submitted my request, and anxiously waited.

the haven retreat
The Haven Retreat [source: http://youniquefoundation.org]
A week went by and I heard nothing. I decided to email them and asked what the status of my application was. They didn’t reply. Two days later, I decided to give them a call (I was already feeling pretty nervous about the whole thing). A lady answered:

Me: Hello, I submitted a request for an application over a week ago, and was wondering about the status of my request. I’m not sure how long it takes, but its been over a week.

YF-Lady: Oh, we usually email an application on the same day, but we’ve been pretty behind. Whats your name, I can pull up your request right now.

Me: My name is Albie O’Kayhun.

YF-Lady: Okay…I just sent you over an application now.

So, that took me to the next step:

Step 2 – Once we receive your request, we will send you a secure link to fill out the application form.  This application form will come via email within 3 business days, please look for the email no-reply@simplepractice.com. If you do not receive it within 3 business days, please notify us at participant@youniquefoundation.org.

I filled out the application; it asked things like….

What medications are you on?
Have you been diagnosed with mental disorders?

It asked other related questions, but as it was done via secure link, I can’t remember them in their entirety…its kinda fuzzy. 

Anyway, that took me to the next step.

Step 3 – After receiving the application, you may receive an email from The Younique Foundation staff to schedule a phone call appointment with one of our clinicians.

A few days later they called me to set up a date for a phone interview with one of their “clinicians”, and said it should take 15-30 minutes. They said they “were extremely booked up” and set my appointment for December (this year, 2017).

About a month later, and after some research, I decided something was definitely fishy about this charity, and after talking with my husband, he agreed with me. So, I emailed the Foundation telling them I wish to cancel, because I found some things out about the charity that I didn’t like.

They emailed me back saying:

Younique Foundation email

“…Thank you for your email regarding attending The Haven Retreat. We are sorry to learn you will not interested in attending The Haven Retreat at this time, but we understand. If you would like to reapply at a later date you are always welcome

At least I was off the hook, or so I thought. A month later, I got an email from the Younique Foundation reminding me of my phone appointment for tomorrow!
Apparently, they never cancelled my appointment. Shit, what should I do?

After some deliberation, I decided to just roll with the punches or whatever. I thought maybe I can get some Y-spy info out of them, in the hope it will help others. A few minutes later I was hit with this overwhelming panic attack.

I guess this was having a bigger impact on me then I realised. I took a
benzo (anxiety med) and fell asleep pretty early, around 7pm.

When I woke up, I was unsure if i was going to answer the Foundation’s call or not. I thought about it all morning, and kept going back and forth.

When my phone rang though, I decided to answer it. Here is how my conversation with “Doris” went:

Doris
: Hi, my name is Doris, and I’m going to be interviewing you today.

Me: Sure…

 

Doris: Okay, we’re gonna go over your application. Are you still on Adderall, propranolol, Cymbalta, Abilify, Lexapro, lamotrigine, Klonopin, or Wellbutrin?

Me: I’m not on propranolol anymore, i was on it for my essential tremor (ET), but my doctor switched me to a new medication called Primidone.

When Doris was reeling off the medications, she just couldn’t pronounce “propranolol”. I was sitting there, rolling my eyes thinking, “This bitch. Some ‘clinician’ she is, if she can’t even pronounce a medication that’s prescribed a lot for social anxiety. Is she even an actual licensed clinician??”
 


Doris
: Okay, Albie, I’m going to ask you some more questions.

I immediately noticed that Doris was asking me her questions in a very specific way. She was asking each question in a manner that almost seemed like she was trying to disqualify me from the Retreat!

My instinct kicked in – if i answered “yes” to just ONE question, I just knew she would disqualify me. So I thought, “I’ll play your damn game, betch…”
 

Betch Please

This is when things started to get interesting.

Doris
: In your application you mentioned that you get mood swings. When you have one of your mood swings, do you become manic?

Me: No, I do not become manic, nor have I ever been manic.

 

Doris: How do you act then? What do you do?

Me: When I have a mood swing, I’ll be having a ‘perfectly fine day’ or an ‘okay day’, and then I get one of my mood swings – my mood dips down, and I become depressed.

 

Doris: Do you have night terrors or nightmares? Because for 4 days/nights you’ll be sharing a room with one other person.

Me: I have nightmares.

 

Doris: How do you react? Do you get violent?

Me: No, I don’t get violent. I don’t usually wake up, I just recall them in the morning. When my nightmares do wake me up, I don’t really react, I just go back to sleep.

 

Doris: Do you ever disassociate? For example, others describe it as their brain leaving their body and watching things from outside your body. Others lose blocks of time. Others end up in the middle of Target having no idea how they got there. Others become violent and lash out. Does that happen to you?

Me: Yes I disassociate, it feels like my brain leaves my body, and I’m watching everything around me from the outside. I don’t end up in Target, or lose time, and I’ve never become violent.

 

Doris: How do you react then?

Me: It feels like my brain shuts down, and I cant do anything. I cant function in society, or carry on a conversation…I just shut down.

 

Doris: How do you handle it? How do you get yourself to come back from it?

Me: I shut down, and go someplace where I can be alone for a while. I don’t really get myself to ‘come back from it’, I just wait it out quietly.

 

Doris: When was the last time you had a disassociation episode?

Me: Probably about a year, as I’ve improved a lot in the past year. At Thanksgiving this year, for the first time in years, I didn’t disassociate or have a panic attack, it was a big deal.

 

Doris: Oh wow, that is great.


From the lack of warmth in her voice, Doris was totally being fake – she didn’t care at all.
 


Doris
: Are you currently suicidal?

Me
: No, I’m on so many medications, there’s no way I ever could be (LOL)

Doris
: Have you ever been suicidal, tried to commit suicide, or been to a mental institution?

Me
: No, no, and no.
 


Yes, you read that correctly – she used that extremely archaic and unpleasant term.
 


Doris
: How do you think you would do in a group setting? Because there will be at least 11 other ladies there.

Me
: Well, I do have social anxiety disorder.

Doris
: And how would that cause you to act/react?

Me
: I become withdrawn, but eventually warm up.

Doris
: Do you have any current health problems?

Me
: no

Doris
: Do you drink or take drugs?

Me
: No.
 


Doris then asked if I had any questions of my own, and said the intake team “would be in touch with me in a day or so“. She also said they are “booked through to June 2018, and are not yet booking people until July 2018“.

So, that would eventually take me to the final step of this application process…I was waiting for Doris’ ‘approval’:

Step 4
 
– Upon approval from the clinician, we will offer retreat dates to schedule. We are usually able to schedule you to attend The Haven Retreat within 180 days.

You know where they can shove their approval. I felt like I was being judged hardcore –  Doris did not come off as a caring, thoughtful clinician, like they’re supposed to be.

Every question she asked it felt like she was trying to disqualify me from the program.
 


I couldn’t believe what I had just experienced.

So what can I surmise from this? Basically, in order to attend the Haven Retreat, you need to be completely recovered, have no ‘issues’ whatsoever, and have never made a mistake in your past such as trying to commit suicide. You also cant wake up in the middle of the night from a nightmare crying.

What in the fucking fuck is this horse shit?

As long as you don’t have a single flaw, welcome to the Haven Retreat. Maybe it was just bad luck that someone like Doris phoned me, maybe there’s other survivors out there who had a more pleasant phonecall than I did. Either way, that was my experience, and it fucking stinks.

I follow a lot of anti-MLM instagram accounts, and saw
this review of the Younique Foundation recently posted by another Y-spy of Elle’s, ApportionedMembrane. It really resonated with me, after sending my thoughts to Elle… 


“…I know it is difficult to apply to this program and think something good might happen…I applied to the retreat thinking [..] I would find people who understand what I was going through. I was rejected because of being honest about my struggles. I felt I was judged on those labels unfairly. On paper, I look like a nightmare because of all the diagnosis and labels I have been given. I am so much more than these labels…I am still working to get out of the darkness sexual abuse has caused me…”
 

Those were the exact same vibes I was getting from Doris…she was judging my ‘labels’ too.
“…I was met with the same judgement I have found for most of my life when people are afraid of the real consequences of abuse. If you don’t present yourself like Oprah and have real struggles, this place is not for you…”

Its just shit. As Elle and Maz have pointed out, the funds this charity pulls in could be distributed to so many genuine organisations for sexual abuse survivors, across the world…but no, it ends up in this shit parade.

This was very emotionally taxing for me, for now, I need to rest. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this.

[Elle:] Albie, I would like to offer my sincere thanks to you, for sharing your experience. I know nothing can excuse these terrible things, and the way the ‘clinician’ deemed it appropriate to speak to you, but I hope that your words will offer help and hope to others in your position.

Stay strong.
 

Stay Strong

 

What’s next for Elle Beau?

On reflection, I do feel that I would like to rewrite my Poonique story into a proper novella – whether its an ebook, or if I find someone who would put me in print.  The main reason being, I missed out “the smaller stuff” for the purpose of keeping the reader interested and driving the tale forward.  When I wrote this blog, I wanted to mainly focus on the dodgy tactics I experienced, but on reflection I would like to talk more in-depth about everything I can remember.  

I would like to rewrite my tale with the spreadsheet as more of a prominent reference point – it will also help me recall things in chronological order (i.e. when certain monthly kudos were released, little paltry orders etc).  Mia is still lurking in some of the training groups, and is finding me screenshots to illustrate certain chapters.  So, as well as writing anti-MLM articles, I will be working on producing a full, comprehensive story in the interim.  I hope to set up a Kickstarter for this once I have an idea of costings.

If you like the anti-MLM aims I am working towards, please consider supporting me via Patreon.  Anything is gratefully received.

Stay subscribed for upcoming anti-MLM news and articles, and of course the ever-popular #ShitHunsSay screenshots.

Don’t forget to join the MLM fight on social media – if you’re on Twitter, please give @ElleBeauBlog a follow (and help me get the #Poonique hashtag trending again!).  Alternatively, join in the discussion with Elle Beau, the Anti-Blogger on Facebook.  I am also on Instagram now – look for @ellebeaublog!

Please, also check out the good work of the people of Bot WatchJuice Plus/MLM Lies Exposed and Timeless Vie.  They work tirelessly to expose the truth and lies of the MLM industry, so anyone considering this line of work can make a fair, informed decision .  In fact, I now have a Recommended Reading page for Anti-MLM writers and interesting lifestyle bloggers I think you will enjoy, such as Chammy in Real Life and my first Patreon, @yourolly.

For something a little different to pyramid schemes, I would also recommend a look at what Bad Psychics are up to.  Award-winning and seen-on-TV, they have worked to expose false claims made by psychics, mediums and the paranormal since 2003.

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86 comments

  1. Okay, I can deal with their shitty sales pitches, the FB hawking and all that jazz somehow but this is just sickening! What is the point of a charity if not to help their target group???

    Liked by 2 people

      • I feel so heartbroken they think it’s okay to do this to someone who is obviously traumatized. Please pass on my best wishes to Albie. Perhaps she should look into some of the legitimate charities out there for actual proper support. I do hope she can find the support she needs!

        Liked by 1 person

    • As a survivor and someone who actually attended the retreat, this is by far nothing like my experience. I sent in my application and I followed up on ut, but they were also building a new facility. I never had a phone interview, but I know why they do them. They need to be sure that people are stable on their meds and are not a risk of danger to themselves or others because you share bedrooms. If you are unable to share a room they can make other arrangements. They bent over backwards to take care of all the women who attended and it was a lifechanging experience. To have not attended and rip the foundation apart is just ridiculous and a shame. I hope you find the healing you need, but the retreat was great.

      Like

      • Everyone is entitled to their own opinion-including Albie. The fact that you didn’t have a phone interview as it is part of the application process leads me to believe you have a connection to the Maxfield’s, are a presenter, or a hun-bot. How dare you judge my experience. No ONE person will have the same experience. You are ridiculous and a shame. The mormon’s i mean the “volunteers” bent over backwards to take care of the women? Your standards must be pretty low then. My psychologist, psychiatrist, nor my med’s judge me in any sort of way, and i definitely don’t have to meet any standards. I’m glad you enjoyed your spa weekend. I however can afford a spa weekend, and have had a few. Have a great whatever, and kindly fuck off elsewhere. 🙂

        Like

      • This was exactly my experience though I attended before they were in major construction on their own facility.

        Being able to attend was a gift.

        Like

      • Everyone does have their own story and own experience . I also didn’t have a phone my interview and was told ( in writing, it may or may not be needed). Other than buying makeup, maybe 3 times? I have no connection to the company.

        I hope that more resources become available for women who need assistnce in their communities and in ways that help them best, the unavailability of mental health services and programs nationwide is a travesty and improvement in that area will benefit all of us.

        This is not a judgmental or argumentative post. I am posting my exerience and truth.

        Like

  2. So as a licensed therapist, I can tell you intake workers are typically not licensed….they are only there to ask the questions not exactly do anything like you were expecting. All questions seemed pretty standard for an intake screening process. It Sounds like you were resistant from the get go so it probably wasn’t the best treatment for you. Hope you found what you were looking for. Also, I’ve had a client go there and it did take 6 months….which I thought is understandable actually. They had a great experience and found it helpful in her healing process.

    Like

    • I’d like to add that this “the brand is faultless, you must be doing it wrong” mindset is so typical of brainwashed mlmers, no sympathy for a woman who is obviously traumatised and further upset by her experiences, anyone who understands mental health will know she will already be endlessly picking fault at herself. Instead of taking the criticism on board, feeding it back to the “charity”, all you presenters want to do is slash and burn *any* opposition to the mythology of your precious brand. Even when it’s the vulnerable people you are supposed to be championing. Can you not see the hypocrisy in that, or is your climb up the greasy mlm pole that important to you, you’d rather blame an abuse victim for being upset?

      Liked by 2 people

    • To second @labyrinthina, how disappointing to see that as a licensed therapist you have decided to brand Albie as “resistant from the get go”. As I have said to a comment further below, it took a lot for Albie to put her thoughts down. She usually gets in touch with me on a daily basis, but I haven’t heard from her today so no doubt this has all taken it out of her. Hopefully she will feel up to addressing all of your comments soon.

      Like

    • “So as a licensed Therapist”. Seriously? You’re a fucking therapist? Hold on, someone hand this fucking waste of a therapist a mic so we can hear all about how “experienced” she is.
      For being a “therapist”, you sure lack sympathy. Do you even have any clients? Because if you did have clients you wouldn’t go this route. No, you would see with all your years of experience how fucking brave it was for Albie to apply to this retreat, and how after her experience she had she’s probably an emotional mess, and very likely blaming herself.
      But instead you choose to call her, “resistant”.
      So here’s my analysis on you bitch:
      YOURE NOT A FUCKING THERAPIST.
      GTFO with your hatred, victim blaming, lies about being a therapist, etc.
      You know what you are? You’re a fucking PRESENTER. So go try and ruin someone else’s life. We will not let you touch Albie.
      And remember, you’re a total boss babe. 😉

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Get a life! Find something better to write about!! I have been to the retreat and it is truly amazing! Derek and Melanie are truly some of the best people I have ever met in my life!

    Like

    • Hello Alicia, how fantastic to hear that the retreat was “truly amazing” for you. As I have said to the other commenter, perhaps you would like to provide an alternative viewpoint of your experience, just to provide a bit of balance of course. I mean, it is always important to show both sides of the coin. 😉

      Liked by 3 people

  4. I’ve been to Haven retreat with the Younique Foundation and it’s an amazing healing place. I find your blog very sad as it will undoubtedly discourage other women from getting healing that they deserve.

    Like

    • Hello there. I’m glad that you had a wonderful experience with the Younique Foundation. Perhaps you would like to provide your account, to give a more balanced view?

      As for discouraging other women? No… I’d disagree. I’d say that it will actually point them in the direction of genuine charities for sexual abuse survivors, you know, ones actually trained to give them the help and care they deserve.

      Liked by 3 people

      • I don’t think it’s allropriate to ask a woman about specifics regarding her experience at a retreat for sexual abuse healing.. a little too pushy for this topic.

        Like

      • Nice spelling. If you’re so offended by this post and these comments, then fucking leave. Christ.

        Like

  5. Are there any actual stories of people attending the retreat? It sounds like they want you to feel discouraged and uninterested. Sounds like a nonexistant program to me.

    Liked by 3 people

      • Nobody wants to give you details of their personal experiences in regards to there therapy.. WEIRD..

        Like

      • For goodness sake, Elizabeth. 🤦🏼‍♀️Why on earth would I want deeply personal experiences? Albie came here and wrote a guest post by request, and provided information as to how she formed her opinion. Now, people have the right to come and defend the retreat if they so wish, but remember, this is an anti-MLM site. People saying how “wonderful” it is, with little substance, doesn’t really give a good counter argument, does it. “WEIRD”

        Like

  6. I’m so glad I read this! I could not shake the fact that it just seemed so easy. Easy? Hell no. If you don’t meet the amount they set up you get your little office shut down. And social media is flooded with hostess parties etc. I think it’s crap, and I can get just as good make up or better at the local drug store. If it’s to good to be true, it is! Do you have any more articles about this?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. As a woman who attended the Havem retreat in May of 2016 let me say your negativity towards a program you have never experienced is sickening.
    The haven retreat was the first time since the childhood trauma and abuse, that i felt truely like I understood what my mind and my body experianced. After years and years of every therapy known.. I still didn’t understand the emotions.. the anger.. the hatred i had for not only.my abusers but myself. The Haven retreat taught me soooo much. The love and support i recieved from the counselors as well ss my new found warrior sisters was amazing. I never felt so understood.. so safe and today.. so FREE.
    I learned how to bring myself out of my meltdowns. I learned how to recenter myself when i disassociated. I also learned that sometimes it was ok to not be ok!
    They ask questions that may feel like they are judging you, but in reality they are asking these questions as to know how to help. Also to possibly know which roomie to room u with… there are methods to their questions.
    Derek and Shelan came to the retreat on our last day and spent time with us. Took time to explain the reason the retreat was started. The most amazing story and love from them possible.
    If you are seeking understanding, help, and to find others who can help aide in your journey the Haven retreat is a must. Not to mention they make u feel like royalty from thw moment u step foot into the retreat til the moment u leave… what survivor doesn’t want to feel like royalty in the process

    Like

    • Hello Eva – I am glad that the Retreat was able to accommodate what you needed in order to heal. However, I find your response to Albie’s opinion – who is a survivor just like you – sickening. I don’t think Albie has seen any of the responses to her article yet, but I am sure she will be devastated by some of these attitudes. On the flip side, she will no doubt be encouraged by the words of support that have flooded in for her.

      I always believe in allowing both sides of the coin, so if you wish to provide a counter-article of your own opinion and experience of this Retreat, and what it did for you as a survivor, then we’ll be happy to accommodate.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I am really blown away about how many times I see you badgering women to share their personal experiences of their therapy..

        Like

      • I am really blown away by how you seem to think I want “deeply personal experiences”. 🤦🏼‍♀️Why on earth would I want someone to tell me such a thing? Albie came here (anonymously) and wrote a guest post by request, and provided information as to how she formed her opinion. Now, people have the right to come and defend the retreat if they so wish, but remember, this is an anti-MLM site. People saying how “wonderful” it is, with little substance, doesn’t really give a good counter argument, does it.

        Like

    • “Amazing” “feel like royalty” ” taugh me soooo much”
      Can you actually describe what when on at this retreat, instead of saying a whole lot of nothing?

      Liked by 2 people

      • I’m hoping someone will actually come forward to produce a viable counter-article, and assure us that the Younique Foundation is actually a wonderful thing… Still waiting, though. 🤔

        Like

    • Did you read the article? Because the woman in question attempted to go to the retreat but the coldness of the lady who interviewed her completely put her off. I wouldn’t want to go either if someone involved in it was rude to me too. I mean we’re talking about sexual abuse survivors here and people should be compassionate, not short and disinterested.

      Liked by 3 people

    • How could you do all that in 4 days? Ending meltdowns and dissociation. That takes work. Plus working on all those emotional issues like anger. What do they do, seriously, that is a miracle in 4 days?

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m glad to hear that some people have found help through this retreat. But my experience of accessing counselling and the associated questions could not be more different. I spoke with professionals (and they were ALL qualified professionals) who asked questions in a caring and sensitive manner, who explained the ‘list’ they had to go through and listened and adapted their responses accordingly.
    There are organisations out there, beyond this one, who offer all-round, continuing care, guidance and counselling. Organisations who fully utilize donations and public funding. Who’ll help any abuse survivors, not just a select few, or at least refer and signpost to appropriate help. They also do far more, with far less funding (at least by the maths some Younique presenters throw around).

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Nice exposé of this sham of a charity. Defenders of the Younique Foundation, do tell us about Derek walking on water and how this is like no other charity in the world for helping victims of abuse.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. http://www.give.org/charity-reviews/national/human-services/younique-foundation-in-lehi-ut-44098
    This is the BBB approved listing for the y foundation as a charity. I also have personally attended. They do not turn you away based on a rough history but they will if you are a violent person as you are around other women who have also experienced a similar trauma. It os a wonderful place for healing and was more effecfive than the many years of outpaitent therapy I have been through.

    Like

    • BBB ratings are bought, not earned. Please don’t try to say otherwise, I worked for the 2nd largest security corporation in the world and we bought our rating, as well as our BBB accreditation. Maybe at one time it was legit but isn’t now and hasn’t been in over ten years.

      Furthermore, to the person who said they’re a therapist please prove it. The Younique Foundation is a scam and any licensed therapist will tell you that. In fact, any LMHC, psychologist, psychiatrist etc would never direct any of their patients to go there. Can anyone give us a list of licensed doctors/professionals/staff that work there and can prove their credentials? Real accounts from actual people with proof of the visit, whether that proof be from insurance or otherwise? Actual EID number? Anything? I’ll wait.

      Stop with the bullshit, you just look ignorant at this point. Shill the garbage makeup all you want, but fucking with trauma victims psyches are above most of your paygrades and education level (see: none) not to mention disgusting. There’s a reason most MLMs like Younique and the like target the demographic they do ash opposed to those with higher levels of education. It’s easier for them to drink the koolaid, I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Look- you haven’t attended the retreat j have a sample size of 30 women who would agree that the retreat helped them. The company didn’t need to set up a foundation and they didn’t need to offer anything. I do agree BBB doesn’t mean shit. But yes the clinicians that work for the foundation are acredited

        Like

  11. I have to roll my eyes at the skepticism that the author of this blog and her defenders have given to those that have attended the retreat. I also have attended the retreat and witnessed amazing transformations both with my fellow attendees and within myself. You keep fishing for a “counter article”, but by this request do not understand what this entails to a survivor, and not just a bitter skeptic. The intake questions seem personal, but are the same for everyone, in order to ensure the safety of the participants. Sometimes when entering a group therapy environment, one has to realize it isn’t always about the individual, but about the safety of the group. One that is suicidal, addicted, violent, or unstable has no place at a mountain retreat.
    I personally met the best therapist ever, who immediately saw through my facade and broke barriers I had in place for over 35 years. I found peace, friendships, and a renewed sense of hope that years of therapy had not provided me previously. The intense inpatient setting, away from modern distractions, in a beautiful setting with every other need taken care of, allowed for us to truly focus on healing. We attended both individual and group sessions throughout as well as education classes about trauma. We had restorative exercise sessions (Muay Thai and Yoga) that helped us channel our emotions. It should be noted that half of the 24 participants at the retreat I attended were NOT affiliated with Younique, but rather members of the community referred from outside agencies.
    My advice? Please don’t make this into a smarmy sort of thing…because it was quite the opposite. We were cared for from the moment we arrived until the time we left. We were given follow-up care and counselors contacted us every few months and at the one-year mark. The counselors my insurance paid for were never that thorough or caring.
    I guess you got your facts and counterpoint. I’m sure I’ll get trashed, as it seems de rigeur here. But I feel confident my point has been made and hope there are some that see this and are not discouraged.

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    • Hello Jenn. Thank you for sharing your experience here. As I’ve said to other defenders of the article, it’s great that you had a wonderful time at the Retreat. I hope that it didn’t cost you too much in travel costs to get there. 😔
      However, my advice? Not to “roll your eyes” at people like Albie, myself and all the others you think are “trashing” in response. Everyone has their own demons, never assume the reasons why they are all so passionate about this subject.
      I hope there are some that see this, and really start questioning this Retreat before they spend hundreds on attending. We have produced a global resource directory of genuine charities for sexual abuse survivors, which I hope will be of use to them – especially when they don’t involve having to get to Utah. Therapy is certainly not a “one size fits all”, but the particular Younique Presenters who keep mentioning the Retreat in their sales patter need to stop marketing it as a miracle. Yes, screenshots can be provided, they’re all over social media.
      Again, thank you for sharing your experiences, Jenn. I do hope that the approach at the Retreat continues to work for your healing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I seriously keep ready Jenns post and then yours and am truly upset to see you PUSH people to share their personal therapy experiences.. and then if they don’t, you discredit there statement all together. Nobody has to open up to some stranger on the net to prove a point. Please consider what you are asking.

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      • Again, as reiterated in earlier comments, Albie came here (anonymously) and wrote a guest post by request, and provided information as to how she formed her opinion. Now, people have the right to come and defend the retreat if they so wish, but remember, this is an anti-MLM site. People saying how “wonderful” it is, with little substance, doesn’t really give a good counter argument, does it. No one here wants to put a survivor in a position that would cause them upset, nor do we want to know who their are or what their dewy personal story is – please consider that.

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      • I haven’t been yet but everything I’ve received has specifically stated that therapy is limited because they don’t want to bring up issues that people may not have a support system in place to manage when they go home.

        That said, based on the schedule I have there are schedule group therapy sessions.

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      • Seriously? The therapy is limited? What a load of shit. What’s the point then? Why even have group therapy or one on one if they don’t want to bring up issues…sounds legit. Riiiiiiiight.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Some of these comments are just sad. There’s a way to defend the retreat without attacking the validity of a fellow survivor’s experience. I initially wanted to lash out against them but instead I will just say that, from one survivor to another, I genuinely hope Albie gets the help that she needs and doesn’t take these judgments to heart ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  13. All I can add is that I have at least as complicated history as the original poster, but they didn’t have an issue with any of it because it was outside of the 3 month window they were looking at.

    I’m talking 4 hospitalizations, none within the last 2 years and a suicide attempt in my 20’s, I’m in my 40’s and I was able to book as early as April.

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  14. The BBB is not an official agency or related to the government in any way, it is a private organization that makes over $200 million per year selling A ratings through “memberships” and making a handful of people very wealthy with $300-$700k annual “salaries”. Please do not quote the BBB as any sort of reliable authority.
    Sources:
    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/business-bureau-best-ratings-money-buy/story?id=12123843
    http://business.time.com/2013/03/19/why-the-better-business-bureau-should-give-itself-a-bad-grade/
    http://money.cnn.com/2015/09/30/news/better-business-bureau/index.html
    http://money.cnn.com/2015/09/30/news/better-business-bureau-millions/index.html

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Thanks for the “warm” welcome. I’ve got no skin in the game since I’ve not even been yet so to snap at me wasn’t very nice. I wasn’t judgmental of anyone else’s experiences and I can only comment on what I have experienced. Next time I’ll keep my mouth shut.

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      • My concern isn’t about you attending-well, wait it is but…..
        The retreat claims to pretty much cure these very damaged women in 4 days. Yet, the therapy is limited? Because these women may not have a support system in place. Wether or not they limit the therapy these women’s emotions are going to be wide open and vulnerable, much like a raw fish. Either way these said women will go home needing a support system. So why does the foundation limit so much, doesn’t that raise red flags for you? Shouldn’t the retreat be these women’s support system after they go home?

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      • Like I said, I haven’t attend the retreat yet so all I was doing was sharing the information I’ve been provided but clearly you are experts in domestic violence, sexual abuse and treatment of survivors, along with financial accountants who understand better how the foundation should be using its funds.

        Thanks for being consider about ONE survivor. And not for the entire group of survivors your speaking to. That kinda says a lot about your purpose . I’m no better or worse of than Albie but you’ve decided that I deserve backlash and she didn’t. Isn’t there something wrong with that?

        I can’t defend a program I haven’t attend yet. But you have no problem being jerks to me because of what? I’m both a sexual assault, rape, domestic abuse survivor. You decried Albie’s treatment. But you went ahead and personally attacked me. Pot meet kettles.

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      • Don’t blame anyone else, blame me. It was all me. I don’t speak from everyone else. I’m sorry I spoke to you like I did, you didn’t deserve that. I get very defensive when it comes to talking about the Younique Foundation, but that doesn’t excuse how I treated you.

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  16. Having just left the retreat, I can pretty confidently say that the retreat met all of the attendees expectations in my groups and more. They not only provided in person opportunities to learn tools and education related to trauma but there are follow up opportunities for additional educational opportunities and referrals to local resources.

    You picked on the foundations use of the word broken, all of us who attended resonated with that word before we even got their and the activity that you so harshly called out, because you’re likely not a trauma victim, of breaking and repairing a bowl with gold colored glue was profoundly impactful. If I were to have paid for something equivalent it would have cost me $5k at minimum. They provided and thought of everything and more in making sure we were all comfortable and got the most out of the experience. And as for the screening I can confirm that many of us were not perfectly healed and many were and are active cutters, recovering addicts, women who have attempted suicide and have had hospitalizations. None of us were perfect but we all forged strong bonds and plan on staying in contact for ever. This retreat made a big difference for me and everyone else I became close with.

    So please don’t judge a treatment / retreat experience for trauma victims unless you are trained to do so. You don’t understand what trauma victims need or what our reactions are like. What makes you cringe, makes us feel free and normal and gives us hope. Additionally, the foundation has established a very solid program so to accuse them of reinventing the wheel is to excuse every other treatment facility and hospital of doing the same which is non sensical. It’s their foundation, they get to choose how to use the funds to help survivors and they have had input and advisors that are highly regarded in the field. And to complain they don’t cover air date or hold it in 13 locations is just stupid as is chastising them for naming the foundation the way they have. Leave them to do the good work they are doing. And do not attack me.

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    • Randi, as I have said to you before, please stop with the “you are obviously not” assumptions. You don’t know what I’ve been through, what Albie has been through, what MLM Police has been through…heck, none of us do.

      I am not going to stop you from defending the retreat, and I hope you continue to find peace and healing. However, in the same breath, you will not stop us from exposing the evident malpractices that other articles and writers have unearthed. Go well, and I’m sure we’ll hear from you again soon.

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  17. Albie, you might want to look into EMDR therapy, it is tailor made for your traumatic history.
    It’s totally changed my life.
    I’m sorry the Foundation sucked.

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  18. CN: detailed discussion of the nature of suicidal thoughts
    “never made a mistake in your past such as trying to commit suicide”
    I’d put ‘mistake’ in inverted commas – attempting suicide isn’t a mistake, it’s often the result of desperation and unbearable mental pain, where there’s no relief and ‘getting help’ hasn’t actually helped. As I’m sure many others know, sometimes mental illness can get so bad that you don’t feel like you have a choice of whether to keep living or not. Access to the clear-thinking, rational part of your brain is shut off. I don’t think it’s right in that situation to suggest shame or guilt by using the word ‘mistake’.
    I also think the phrase ‘commit suicide’ is as unpleasant and archaic as ‘mental institution’ – it’s a hangover from when suicide was criminalised, and to keep the ‘commit’ part perpetuates the stigma. A more neutral way to talk about it is by using phrases like ‘died by suicide’ or ‘took their own life’.
    I think the language we use to talk about this subject is super important. Thanks for taking the time to read this.

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  19. It’s most likely not personal can you imagine what type of “healing retreat” for people with sensitive issues like sexual abuse would be if someone there was violent trying to kill themselves or harm others having sexual abuse victims trying to rest and heal and wake up to someone having loud upsetting nightmares I have diagnosed ptsd Nightmares i even get SSI for it and personally any of the above said behaviors trigger my ptsd so if your that not trying to sound harsh but unstable at that point than a nice little relaxing retreat probably isn’t the right place for you you probably need to be in a behavior center or an emergency room I’m a survivor as well of alot of things I would never want to take anything away from a victims respect their story their healing process anything and my sister had it way worse I can kind of relate but not fully but if your that far down you need a different type of help than a younique retreat and it’s honestly probably a huge liability what if someone who was suicidal in the past goes there and kills themselves God forbid can u see the lawsuits that would come in just a tip as victims we are so use to being victims sometimes that’s the only perspective we have try looking at things a different way and I can totally relate to uncaring medical professionals unfortunately that’s everywhere my mom is a medical doctor and was very abusive to the point we went to Foster Care hope I don’t sound to harsh just throwing in my two cents I hope to God you ladies and men that were abused and myself find peace in this life and the next God bless us all with the knowledge wisdom and ability to do so also I get messages all the time from younique presenters I copy paste the wikepedia link that explains why mlm is such a failure and just block I even got suckered into white level presenting stupid me but got out of it quickly thanks for the blog very interesting as well

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  20. I applied at about the same time as is discussed in the article, and many of the things that you described did happen (the process had several steps, I had to wait about a month for my phone interview, the schedule is full until the last half of the year…), but I have certainly noT had the same feelings. It’s true that being vulnerable and factual about my mental health and coping techniques is anxiety provoking… but that doesn’t mean I fault the organization for wanting an objective view of my stability. Creating therapeutic groups is tricky business, and I applaud them for taking into consideration the real risks and limitations of group work. Some individuals need more intensive one-on-one therapy before entering group work. If a participant hasn’t worked intensely on their own, or has mental health symptoms that are untreated, the experience could easily become retraumatizing for the participant (aNd everyone else attending).
    Also, I’ve put some time in researching the foundation, and I don’t see how you could in good conscience call them an MLM. First off their a 501 C3 (non profit). They spend $2,225,353 (of a $3,253,696 expense budget) on therapeutic programs. $348,355 is spent on adminstrative costs. That’s an excellent ratio for a charity organization. You can find that all in tax forms online (I use Foundation Finder usually)- but here’s an easy way to view the financials: http://www.give.org/charity-reviews/national/human-services/younique-foundation-in-lehi-ut-44098
    In short, I’m sorry that you had feelings about their process. I understand publicly announcing that you felt uncomfortable during the intake process. I appreciate knowing that before I attend the retreat… and the verdict is still out on how I will actually feel about my time there. But making accusations about their charitable standing without mentioning their non profit status or researching their financials is irresponsible and leads to the spread of misinformation.

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  21. Hello! I am going I am going in July. I have been treated truly respectfully and amazing with great communication. I know they have to be careful liability wise because it’s not a medical facility so they have to make sure people are in the right place of healing and all the women are safe. A friend of mine has attended and it has changed her life. I WILL be giving an update after I go but I feel like you seem to be pushing for more info from some of the women who have commented about their experience being very positive. It is a private and intimate matter and all I might be able to say is that it was a possitive or negative experience and I would think that would be respected. I am so sorry you didn’t feel like you were treated well. I wish there were more options for everybody at different stages of healing. Thank you for sharing your experience though. It’s also intimidating as a survivor to have to put so much personal info on here to make a comment. I think it may discourage people from putting much of their experience on here.

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    • Thank you for sharing, Elizabeth. As owner of this website, I have no interest in using the details you needed to input in order to write a comment. You have every right to share your thoughts freely, in the same way that Albie came forth and shared her personal experience.

      As I’ve said, I hope that the Retreat happens to help you in your healing process. However, the main purpose of this guest post was for Albie to share her opinion, especially in comparison to how she saw Younique Presenters paint an idyllic portrait of the Retreat.

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  22. Let’s see if I can leave some more detail without being badgered for more of MY private experience.. I applied for the retreat about a year ago and got an email back right away and then got the phone interviews within a week. The lady I spoke with was amazing and sweet. They sent me available dates THAT week but then I got nervous and backed out, as I hadn’t been totally honest with my husband about how bad my abuse was due to shame and embarrassment so I didn’t want him to know i was interred in going. I have been becoming more and more self destructive this last year and he has actually been critical of my actions.. basically drinking like a bottle of wine a night several nights a week, not sleeping at all, being angry and irritable with my children, house, spouse, life, etc.. so on Tuesday of this week I just burst. I told my spouse everything and told him i wanted to go. I called the number I was given in my initial emails and told them the run down and am now on a wait list to attend in July but confirmed to go in aug if i don’t get in in July. They have been totally supportive and I have experienced great respect and wonderful timely comminication. I have had tree calls with them and 6 emails regarding my schedules and their availability. There is an hour long group therapy session a day, yoga and medication type classes every evening, classes regarding tools to deal with resoetivie sleep and managing anxiety.. I am not saying it is for everybody but my person friend attended last month and she feels like she has hope for the first time sense her abuse. I will NOT be pushed to provide more info on the retreat to you guys.. as it’s obviusly a private matter but i will be willing to provide the daily schedule when i return. I actually already feel understood with just the communications I have had this week and they sent me a work book and ebook to read before i attent and then will give me physical copies when I attend.

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    • To repeat earlier responses: Albie came here and wrote a guest post by request, and provided information as to how she formed her opinion. Now, people have the right to come and defend the retreat if they so wish, but remember, this is an anti-MLM site. People saying how “wonderful” it is, with little substance, doesn’t really give a good counter argument, does it.

      No one here is pushing for your personal information, in the same way that no one wants to “badger” you for your personal experiences. Albie shared hers with us, but that was her choice and decision as a survivor. All we can say is that we hope the Retreat is of benefit to you, and aids you in your healing process. Of course, it is your right to provide your counter opinion to Albie, and we will readily listen to that.

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  23. I really wish these comments wouldn’t get so heated. The retreat was so helpful for me and the group of women I attended with. It may not be right for everyone but the hatred here sucks regardless of who it’s being directed at.

    I get the MLM hatred and even possibly the concern of how presenters “sold” products with the hook of donations to the foundation though I have not personally experienced anything that seems out of line but the actual retreats and support I received has been fantastic and even months later I keep referring back to material I learned to help me through things have come up.

    There is help out there for you, lregarxless if it’s this retreat or not.

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  24. I attended the Haven Retreat in June of last year. I do not sell Younique products, and I never have. I can honestly tell you that this retreat was the beginning of my healing. During the application process, they do ask a lot of questions. Once you are there, you understand why. I can assure you, these questions are a must for the approval process as they do not want to cause more stress/anxiety/depression. You MUST be ready to start your healing process, and not dependent on certain types of medications. After I applied, I did not hear from anyone for a year. They really are busy, as they serve hundreds of survivors per year. The house is only so big and can only hold so many people at a time so the wait list can be long. IT WAS TOTALLY WORTH THE WAIT. Please don’t be so judgmental. This is an amazing opportunity and I would highly recommend it.

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  25. WOW. The gaslighting in some of these comments is UNREAL.

    “Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation that seeks to sow seeds of doubt in a targeted individual or in members of a targeted group, making them question their own memory, perception, and sanity. Using persistent denial, misdirection, contradiction, and lying, it attempts to destabilize the victim and delegitimize the victim’s belief.”

    How dare ANY of you try to minimize ANYONE’S experiences and feelings about this retreat. It’s not up to you to decide how someone else feels and criticize them for it.

    MLMs – always empowering women to GASLIGHT one another. 🤬

    Liked by 1 person

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