"What makes Network Marketing good?" #1. Terry’s story.

Flexibility. E.g., A chance missed for a newly discarded gal of 63, whose story follows below, to have built up something for herself, from home. But it’s never too late…


“I was stunned and devastated when, on our 40th wedding anniversary, my husband presented me with a divorce.”

In a wonderful piece entitled Paradise Lost (Domestic Division) (NY Times Jan 1, 2006) Terry Martin Hekker describes how her entire belief system came undone on that day. It was particularly embarrassing and shocking to her because, it so
happened that 25 years ago, she wrote an Op-Ed article for the same paper, on the satisfaction of being a full-time housewife. She was convinced that homemaking and raising her children was the most challenging and rewarding job she could ever want.

She had written that she came from a “long line of women, most more Edith Bunker than Betty Friedan, who never knew they were unfulfilled…they took pride in a clean, comfortable home and satisfaction in serving a good meal because no one had explained that the only work worth doing is that for which you were paid.”

In subsequent years she lectured across the U.S., appeared on the “Today” show and told her story of why she thought her choice was a valid one. But that was back then.

Today, she writes that after talking to a few other discarded wives after long years of marriage, that “we had a lot in common with our outdated kitchen appliances. Like them, we were serviceable, low maintenance, front loading, self-cleaning and (relatively) frost free. Also, like them we had warranties that had run out. Our husbands sought sleeker models with features we lacked who could execute tasks we’d either never learned or couldn’t perform without laughing.”

“Like most loyal wives of our generation, we’d contemplated eventual widowhood, but never thought we’d end up divorced.”

And she adds, “And divorced doesn’t begin to describe the pain of this process. ‘Cancelled’ is more like it. It began with my credit cards, then my health insurance and checkbook, until, finally, like a used postage stamp, I felt cancelled, too.”

And the injustice she felt?

“He got to take his girlfriend to Cancun, while I got to sell my engagement ring to pay the roofer. When I filed my first nonjoint tax return, it triggered the shocking notification that I had become eligible for food stamps.”

She notes that she got alimony but that the amount was less than she was used to getting for household expenses, and that she had to use that money to pay bills.

Bills “I’d never seen before: mortgage, taxes, insurance and car payments. And that princely sum was awarded for only four years, the judge suggesting that I go for job training when I turned 67.”

“Not only was I unprepared for divorce itself, I was utterly lacking in skills to deal with the brutal aftermath.”

Today, she writes, that she worries and wonders about the young mothers of today, “educated, employed, self-sufficient” who drop out of the work force when they have children. “Maybe they’ll be fine.” But “The fragility of modern marriage suggests that at least half of them may not be.”

Back to the question: What makes Network Marketing good?

#1: Flexibility. In case.

Post script to Terry’s story.

If she had it to do over again, Terry writes:

“I’d still marry the man I married and have my children…they are my treasure…But I would have used the years after my youngest started school to further my education. I could have amassed two doctorates using the time and energy I gave to charitable and community causes and been better able to support myself.”

However, what if she had known about a good company with a good product line she used and loved herself? With the flexibility of time and income of NM, Terry could also have maybe amassed 50 or 100 customers every year for those 20 years. And be earning a bit from all of them over that time, and today.

What if she had taken those 5-10 hours a week, for 20 years, and maybe got 100 customers per year? That’d have resulted in 2000 customers after the 20 years she describes.

A $5/mo profit on each one today would be a good sum to have coming in each month, wouldn’t it?

Flexibility. To build something part time from home when you’re lucky enough to be supported by a mate during those years, or you have another job. After all, it’s not just being “discarded” that the income will come in handy, but also if the mate remains and needs your help. Or if you just want to take a year off.

That, in my opion, might be a better option for many women than a couple of doctorates which, by themselves guarantee no income. Customers and a few resellers, however, represent regular monthly income.

Do you know someone like Terry? There are ways to do things with this business, yes even now, at 63. And what about all those younger women still raising their family, or contemplating having one? Have you asked them what THEY are you doing NOW, for themselves, to plan for their “what if”? Show them Terry’s story. They probably have their own from THEIR families.

After all, most discarded but loyal wives had no clue that shock was coming, especially after all those years. That’s a pretty big and well defined audience, think, ladies?

Next: What makes Network Marketing good? #2. Guess. 🙂

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About the author

Kim Klaver


  • I just joined a NWM company and today I found this blog and particularly, this post.

    I am in shock, it never crossed my mind that there are women facing this horrible situation. I myself, joined my company because I know that my marriage will end soon and I will need another income to support me and the kids.

    Reading this post, I just realized another reason to share my opportunity with other women even when they seem they are OK and they don’t need the money now, we never know about tomorrow…

    Take Care,

  • It is good to have a back-up plan, especially to get one established when you don’t need one. Not only in the event that you lose your job, but in this case, when you lose your spouse.

    I know of two friends in their late 40’s whose husbands left them for younger women. Both were stay-at-home moms; it’s like the rug was pulled out from under them and I don’t think either saw it coming. Neither has tried network marketing, but I have spoken to two both about my business.

    It’s important to have something to call your own. I started my business because I’ve been laid off twice since 1992, and fortunately, I have a supportive spouse. I hope Terry starts her own network marketing business and finds success and satisfaction.

  • I (a man) have been married for a long time and over the years seen many women such as this lady left in the lurch. Those of us in NM actually do a disservice in not sharing the opportunity of a safety net to not only homemakers, but both men and women in the over 45 age range. We are all vulnerable in this day and time to be “left” not only in marriange but in employment. Loyality is becoming subservant to “what have you done for me today”.

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