You are missing a VERY important point here: MLMs know how to deceive and mislead a lot of people. It’s not based on being damaged, need to see a counselor, being ignorant, or anything else. They know how to play to your strengths and desires, like any good succubus or incubus.
They know how to lie with sincerity.
And yes, once they get a person in, they are quite capable of damaging their self esteem and taking control of that person in an abusive relationship — which is what it is, an abusive relationship.
As for those of us who have been in, it’s not a matter of saying, “Okay, I was damaged and this is what to deal with,” it’s a matter of saying, “I wasn’t damaged, I walked in and fell for it. I have to deal with that.” And people here are doing that.
If you want to truly understand MLMs you’ll first have to come to terms with the point that it is not a psychological wound that lets them control people, it’s that these groups know how to fool and control people that are doing quite well.
If you insist on denying that, you will never truly understand MLMs or what is going on here.
Oh, and since you’re so fond of metaphors and comparisons, what you are doing is tantamount to saying to a woman, “The whole reason you were raped is because you’re damaged, not because of anything else. It’s your fault you’re a victim.”
See? Anyone can use a metaphor to their own purpose or do the substitution trick you played and make their point. The difference is, in this case, you are talking to people that have been violated and behaving like the statement in the last paragraph.