Sunday, January 18, 2009

Oh My, Don't CRY!

I have a problem with returns. Like a serious problem. It is such an issue in fact, that if it was left up to me I would honestly never return anything. I somehow feel guilty about it and always end up rambling into some long explanation that goes something like this:

Clerk: Is there something wrong with the product?

Me: No! The product is perfect! I mean, not that I used it...because clearly the tags are on it. It just wasn't for me...but I am sure someone else will like it! It's just I thought it was different when I bought it...and then I decided I didn't really need it...not that it is like, BAD or's actually really nice and anybody would be CRAZY not to want it...except me, because I just...don't...right....*fades away as I notice clerks eyes have totally glossed over with lack of interest in my rant*

Clerk: *waits a couple seconds to be sure I am done being an idiot. eye roll* here is your money

Me: *takes cash and runs. Ashamed of inability to shut my mouth*

So that's how it typically goes. My worst fear is that someone somewhere will question my need to return. They will call me a bad person who can't make up my mind and tell me I CANNOT have my money back. This has never actually happened, but it is a fear of mine. It is not a fear of my sisters. She can return anything. ANYTHING I tell you. She will walk out of a store with her money, a coupon for more free stuff, and the managers home phone number to call if she has questions. She isn't rude, she just seems confident and isn't afraid to ask. I am terrified to ask.

So, why am I telling you all of this. Well, I needed to explain that I am a very timid returner before I confess that I made a sales clerk basically cry today. YES. I did. Me. Not my sister. She was there, but it was all me. Let me explain. I bought this pair of jeans at Motherhood. I loved them. Me and these jeans have been total BFF's since I got them around Christmas. The problem is that when I washed them, the elastic band it the waist started to unravel. When I washed them again it totally pulled out and started to shred. I just wanted to trade in the defective pair for the EXACT same pair that was not defective. I brought my sister for back up, but I didn't think it would be that bad. Here is how the conversation went:

Clerk: Can I help you?

Me: Yes, I just need to exchange these jeans. See here how they are defective? Sorry about that fuzz on them...I wore them and didn't wash them again because I didn't want to deal with the shredding *decided to stop talking and not keep going until the eye glaze* Anyway, they are clearly Motherhood *laugh at the obviousness of it all* and I just want to do an even exchange.

Clerk: Do you have your receipt?

Me: No...When I bought them you all said they could only be returned for ten days even with the tags. After I wore them and liked them I threw it away....I just want to exchange.

Clerk: Let me make a call...*comes back after call* I can't do anything. There is no way for me to know how many times these have been worn or how old they are.

Me: Really?? I mean, they are TOTALLY your brand and they are CLEARLY defective! I am not asking for CASH, I just want to get another pair!

Clerk: *Voice shaking BADLY* I am really sorry! I am just a clerk and I don't have the ability to do anything *voice cracks* If you come back when a manager is here *eyes look nearly ready to brim over with tears* they might be able to help you *voice cracks again*

Me in my head: OH MY GOD SHE IS GOING TO CRY! I have made the poor girl CRY! I am NEVER returning ANYTHING EVER AGAIN!

Me to clerk: It's fine *big comforting smile* I will just come back *warm wave as I back away from counter and run out the door*.

I get outside and Boo says, "Dude, she was seriously about to CRY!" I was filled with remorse. I considered going back in to apologize, but being an emotional crier myself, I know that if I brought up the near tears it would most likely only push her over the edge and she would break down into sobs. I did learn one thing from the experience besides that I hate returns. Apparently, when I am about to cry, and I feel those emotions welling up and I totally keep my shit together and don't cry, that the person I am talking to still TOTALLY knows I was on the brink of tears. I am not fooling anybody because when you are about to cry, it is almost worse than crying. It is written all over your face! And the person will stare at you in horror waiting for that tear to fall. It was a shock really. I think I am holding it together quite often. Apparently I am not fooling anybody...

Now I gotta go back and deal with these stupid jeans again. Lets hope the manager is not an emotional crier as well...I will just have to give up and buy a new pair. I really can't take this...


  1. I had to laugh - this weekend a couple of women came into the TIC asking for a refund on a ticket because one of them had gone on the tour and one hadn't... but they had no receipt and no ticket. I couldn't, in good conscience, authorise the refund without either but felt sorry for them so tried calling the tour company and finding my manager. In the end the tours manager (different set of tours though) authorised it but when I spoke to my manager later she said she would have said no... I never really thought about how difficult it is to give refunds when I used to moan about people making a fuss... doesn't mean I won't still make a fuss about being given a refund lol I just might not make any clerks cry hehe

    BTW I totally agreee on you wanting a refund - things should NOT fall apart like that :o) And yeah - I do the "don't cry. don't cry" thing and have realised that just because people don't say anything doesn't mean they haven't noticed just that they don't want to be the person to push me over the edge and have to deal with the horror of tears hehe

  2. yes, this is so totally me as well. I've probably returned less than 10 items in my lifetime, and each time I feel like I might be arrested at the counter by the Return Police. lol.

  3. I really do not have a problem with taking stuff back. I guess because my Mom has always made me run in and return stuff for her. I have had to take back some pretty crazy things for her.

    It is so funny I read your post today. We bought a dog kennel for our dog to sleep in. Well guess what it was way too small. My husband took it apart and went to box it up. He was trying so hard to get the box closed all nice. He had clear tape but that ran out. I told him "just get the duck tape" It does not have to be all pretty we are just taking it back. Guess who went in the store to take this back. I did. The only problem I had was lifting the huge box out to give it to her. My husband was waiting in the car.

    It is totally okay to feel the way you do. I think you did the right thing with the jeans and you were very nice to the lady.

  4. Don't cry you just got an award. Come by my page to get it.

  5. Just how many old do they think...this pair of jeans have been worn by a skinny little prego woman...geez...a pregnancy is only 9 months...You are only half way through...and you didn't start out the pregnancy wearing maternity pants...They couldn't have been worn that long...DEFECTIVE...doesn't require a receipt...all they have to do is replace them and send the defective pair back to the company and get credit for it. Doesn't everything in life have to be so difficult? Sarah, darling, I'm ready to go in there and set it straight!

  6. ah geesh... i hate that too. i have had a few occasions when the clerk would question whether i have opened the item. which i did not. that's why i'm returning them because it look like it has been used... :P

    i wonder why it's so hard for just an even exchange? it's not like you're looking for a refund.

  7. Are you kidding? Returning items and getting:
    A: A new version of old item
    B: A gift card burning holes in my pocket
    C: Heaven help me = CASH
    is one of the GREATEST euphoric moments I get.....ever!?!?!

    How do you not share this?

  8. Okay, I've been lurking at your blog for awhile but this post is bringing me out, it might be one of my favorite blog posts ever! I think I would do every single thing you did, down to the "laugh at the obviousness of it all"! Thanks for the giggles today.

  9. Ugh.....MOtherhood is the WORST about returns