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Unfiltered Story #100549

| Unfiltered | November 20, 2017

(The retail store I work at has a bunch of different departments. This includes Ground-Floor Fitting Rooms (women only, sometimes young children and teenage girls) and First-Floor Fitting Rooms (Men & Children). We can bend some of the rules we have, but there are no men allowed in the Ground-Floor Fitting Rooms and no women in the First-Floor Fitting Rooms – this is a concrete rule. I originally worked on the First-Floor Fitting Rooms and we often got women wanting to try on up here, only for us to tell them they needed to go downstairs. Many were fine with this, we got a few who wandered off muttering angrily but these two I dealt with took the cake…)

Woman 1: *walking up with a basket full of clothes, reaching inside* I just need to try this on…
Me: I’m sorry, the women’s fitting room is downstairs.
Woman 1: Really?
Me: Yes.
Woman 1: It’s not busy, can’t you let me in quick?
Me: I’m sorry no.
Woman 1: Not even to the Girls? *points at the ‘Girls’ sign for the child’s section*
Me: I’m sorry no.
Woman 1: Oh but I’ve left something in the Exchanges and I don’t want to have to go down and back up again…
Me: I’m sorry I can’t let you in.
Woman 1: Are you sure?
Me: *baffled at her tenacity* Yes, I’m sorry.
Woman 1: Oh, well I’ll just go find a manager and ask them…
(At this point she walks off towards the tills, leaving me alone and I think to myself “Well they’ll say the same but I hope that they don’t just give in.” A minute later she comes back with a colleague, who I must add is not a Manager or Supervisor.)
Colleague: *indicating the customer* She said there’s a problem.
Me: No, I’ve told her that she needs to go downstairs to try on some clothes. That’s all.
Woman 1: *starting to sound a little patronising* Well, I’m sure your manager will let me in.

(She leaves again, with my colleague who just looks baffled. She later came back to not only congratulate me for sticking to my guns, but to tell me that the ‘manager’ she eventually found was my favourite (male) Supervisor who framed it to her in the words “How would you feel if I asked to try something on downstairs in the Women’s?” and then re-told her to go downstairs when she predictably reacted with horror at the thought)


(This one takes place on a very busy day, and I was the only one at the Fitting Room at the time. There was a small queue behind this woman. Note that our store has an internal phone system between departments.)

Woman 2: I just need to try something on.
Me: I’m sorry ma’am, the woman’s Fitting Room is downstairs.
Woman 2: Oh I know, but the people in Refunds and Exchanges sent me over here. *shows me a blouse* I need to see if this fits before I can exchange it you see.
Me: *confused because although it sounds reasonable I’m doubtful Refunds would do this* Okay… just let me check that first and then we can let you go.
(I reach for the phone and she begins to look angry.)
Woman 2: You don’t need to do that! Just let me in!
(I ignore her and dial the code for Refunds. She stands there looking annoyed as someone answers.)
Me: Hi, this is first-floor fitting rooms. Did anyone send a woman over just now to try something on so she can exchange it?
Colleague in Refunds: Not me, let me ask the others… *mutters* No, no one has. We only send a man over.
Me: Okay. *puts my hand over the receiver, talking to the woman* Ma’am did you have someone else go in and ask for you?
Woman 2: *now very annoyed* No, I just don’t want to go downstairs and come back up again!
(At this point some of the other customers behind her are beginning to shift angrily, so I make a decision.)
Me: If you’d be alright waiting, I’ll just clear the queue behind you and we can sort… *I trail off as she storms off, obviously annoyed that I’d caught her out but still wouldn’t let her in. I get back on the phone.*
Colleague in Refunds: Are you still there? If she has a problem with it, tell her to come over here and we’ll tell her.
Me: No need, she’s left. Thanks for your help.

(The kicker is that our store doesn’t have stairs – only a lift and an escalator!)

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