No, actually, I don’t have to buy your stuff

16 Dec


Lately, I’ve been seeing posts on Facebook about how if you’re a good friend, you’ll buy stuff from your friends. You know, stuff like leggings, nail wraps, eyelash extensions, bags, jewelry, make up, candles, things that are so much better than candles, stuff, stuff, and stuff.

Facebook is good for those personal guilt trips – “Why not help out a mom who’s just trying to give her family a better life? And you get awesome stuff to boot! Including a bag to hold your boots!”

Listen – I get it. I want to help out a friend too. And I have.

But I don’t HAVE to buy your stuff.

Not buying your stuff doesn’t mean I’m a bad friend. It just means that your stuff isn’t for me, or I’m on a budget, or I’m trying to reduce the amount of stuff I bring into my home.

And let’s be fair – if I started shopping off my friends list of people who sell stuff, I’d need to start selling the stuff I bought, because I’d be broke. When 57 of your friends jump on the latest sell-from-home craze, you just can’t buy from everyone.

Before you say I’m exaggerating, it’s happened to me. One person started selling…we’ll call them Bamjerry items. “Join my team!” she cried out. I blinked and suddenly twelve people on my friend list were selling Bamjerry. I blinked again and that number had doubled and I was added to 4 groups and 5 parties. It became cult-like. “You should join! You should buy! These are the greatest things ever!”

I refused.


I had to start hiding people in my feed because my timeline was chock full of awkward photos of “Bamicures”.

Then I watched it all fall apart, and the friend group that all got into said Bamjerry stuff implode upon itself. Friendships were harmed, or even ended. All in the name of trying to sell nail wraps.

I finally did relent and bought some to help a friend out. She truly did need a hand, and I was willing to sacrifice my nails and my Bamjerry Boycott for the greater good. I bought a few nail wraps.

The first set went on fine, but took me 45 minutes to do, and then by the end of the week I realized I hated prints on my nails and took them off. A few weeks later, I got bored and tried a second set, which slid off my nails the next day as I was showering. A few more weeks went by, and I tried a third set. I actually liked them. They were subtle but sparkly. They lasted the two full weeks as promised. And they peeled the top layer of my nail off when I took them off as directed. Took me eight weeks to grow out the damage, and when I wrote about it on Facebook, I was told by several friends/Bamjerry dealers that I must have done something wrong, and I should try THIS – THIS required more monetary investments.

I didn’t want to try anything. I was done. Over it. Two years later and I still have three sheets of these nail wraps tucked in the back of a cabinet because dammit, I spent that much money on them, and can’t just throw them away, but don’t want to risk my poor nails being peeled to shreds.

And I vowed after that to only buy what I wanted to actually buy – not to buy to “help a friend out”.

The thing is – good friends understand this. I have friends who sell stuff. They know I know where to find them if I’m inclined to buy their brand of skin care or legging. They ask if you want to be added to their group, they don’t add me without my consent. They don’t see me as some sort of traitor for not buying their wax pot or toenail rescue. And that’s how it should be. If I opened up a yarn shop, would I expect every friend to come in and buy yarn? No. Because not everyone needs yarn, even if I think they’re weird for not wanting yarn and I love yarn to death and can’t get enough yarn myself – I understand that not everyone covets yarn like me, and not buying my yarn shouldn’t end a friendship. Because there shouldn’t be a price on a friendship. Ever.

No, I refuse to be guilt tripped into buying someone’s wares just because they’re selling it. Life is too short for that sort of nonsense.





12 Responses to “No, actually, I don’t have to buy your stuff”

  1. Ruth December 16, 2016 at 10:27 pm #

    Aww, Phoebe, I have this bridge that you want to buy.

  2. belasbrightideas December 16, 2016 at 11:01 pm #

    Network marketing is the fastest way to lose every friend you ever had. Unless they are way codependent.

    Good post.

  3. Renee Anne December 16, 2016 at 11:17 pm #

    Do you have a moment? I’d love to sell you this soapbox I’ve never had the nerve to use…..

    But seriously, ALL OF THIS! So many of my friends are doing it and they switch from company to company, all based on the latest craze. For awhile it was 31 Bags, which were quite lovely (but it’s like project bags – you only need so many)…and Scentsy and It Works and now it’s Lularoe (or whatever it’s called) and something else. I’m so over it.

  4. craftmanicmommy December 17, 2016 at 9:27 am #

    I swore I wouldn’t get into a home sale business…and then it happened. Lasted about a year and a half and several hundreds of $$$ of inventory in the aftermath. I loathe the way the trainers of these companies play on people’s friendships all in the name of sales. I am much happier with my own handmade business and my friends are more apt to buy it because it really does help me and not multimillionaire companies.

  5. TheChattyIntrovert December 17, 2016 at 3:30 pm #

    Hells yes–You said it! That’s one thing I’m glad for when it comes to the small bunch of friends on my Facebook. I don’t have anybody trying to sell me crap except my best friend/pseudo sister trying to sell nice jewelry. I’m not a jewelry person, though, and she knows that, so she doesn’t push me–she just advertises. But I’ll pass a link on if somebody’s trying to get good ideas for gifts or something (and they’re willing to take it–I don’t flood inboxes if I can help it, dammit).

    It’s the online version of the kids’ school fundraisers. If one person brings in a form to work from their kids’ fundraiser, you have to get from everybody all of a sudden or feelings get hurt. I hate that crap.

  6. Joyce Belfort December 17, 2016 at 6:31 pm #

    It is just so awkward. It’s one of the reason why I hardly log into the feed. It’s full of adverts.

  7. theramblingsofaprimrose December 19, 2016 at 12:29 am #

    All of this! Today I was expected to attend 7 tupperware parties. 3 online, 4 not. I don’t have a big need for tupperware I definitely don’t need 7 people’s worth of the damn stuff. But everyone gets their panties in a twist if you don’t do it all. Last week I did attend a tea party (cos damn I love me some tea) but that doesn’t automatically mean I’m gonna be buying tupperware a week later. But it’s a big freaking deal if you say you don’t need that right now. I don’t have unlimited funds to buy something from everyone I know, so I have to choose the things I actually want lest I end up on an episode of hoarders being buried alive by face cream and lip gloss.

  8. maggiesimplelife December 19, 2016 at 1:22 am #

    Hmm…No one actually ask me this. But seriously, if my friends have financial problem, I don’t mind to lend them a bit or support them in other way. But this is forceful! Why I have to buy something you don’t even want!?
    But anyway, if they want to end friendship because of this, I think they can’t be called friend.

  9. Emily Crutcher December 19, 2016 at 7:50 pm #

    It’s rare I find a writer I relate to so much! I totally agree.. and most of the crazes they jump on are absolute rubbish. Juice plus being the brilliant example.

    Emily x

  10. iamsuigenerisblog December 22, 2016 at 7:31 pm #

    Literally made my night, this post,thank you for this.

  11. darrickzn December 23, 2016 at 5:20 pm #

    I completely understand how you feel I get the same thing on my Facebook page and now I have been spending way to much money on junk I don’t even opinion they should not even put these adds on our Facebook page it’s not good for some like me I have a hard time saying no to anyone I can’t even get off the phone with a sales person taking donations and I don’t really have the money I totally agree 100% with what you are saying. Deana Zimmerman

  12. darrickzn December 23, 2016 at 5:21 pm #

    Oops I thought that this was addressed to me I am darrick Zimmermans wife

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