Dear T@rget

This open letter is crafted from the less than ideal customer service experience I had a few weeks back with T@rget. Rather than give you the play-by-play of the day, I will share my complaint letter, which has not actually been sent, but most likely should be. And should they try to find me on the web, I’ve stealthily disguised their name with a little @. Sneaky, isn’t it?


Dear T@rget:

I like you; I really do, and I thoroughly consider you the lesser of all evils, hands down. Your stackable coupon policy helps me snag great deals and your dollar spot makes me smile. I do, however, have one qualm: Your Return Policy. Let’s get real here, T@rget. Sometimes, folks lose the receipt. It is by its nature a tiny little piece of paper, just like lots of other tiny little pieces of paper, thus living a nondescript life. That is not truly where my issue resides, for despite the two babies I call my own, and a husband that has childlike qualities at times, I typically manage to keep a receipt, when there is actually one to keep. What then is the rub? Your registry return policy. Because when I create a gift registry for my coming baby, I hope for the best: a gift receipt and no duplicate purchases. That, my friend, would be a perfect world. We do, however, live in a fallen world, so not every T@rget shopper completes the transaction and gift-giving as flawlessly as your store encourages.  Admittedly, in rare instances, we registry creators choose a gift that did not meet our expectations or fit the appropriate space, especially since the item might have been selected on-line, without a proper viewing. It would make sense then that you would honor me, the registrant, by choosing to bring business your way through my registry, not to mention respect my gift giver by taking back said item. Now, I am not expecting you to be like the mega-aisles-of-smiles-superstore that shall not be named and take back everything. That would be simply preposterous. Yet, when the large, unopened box I bring in has your red logo all over it, you can rest assured that it is from your company. And when I go to print off my “gift-registry log” that is oh so important for gift returning, it miffs me tremendously that you have deleted it, and not just my log, but my entire registry. I understand that you consider my event date to be past the very sacred and irrevocable 90 days, but how do you, oh keeper of baby registries, know exactly when my child passed through the birth canal and officially entered into this world? Were you there? Because I certainly did not see you, and had you been there, I just might have requested a popcorn combo for $1.50 to help me pass the time. Also, as I kindly reminded your “I only speak barely audible broken English” customer service associate on the phone, due dates are guesstimates, not facts. My baby was not born on his due date, thank you very much. He was born over a week after. Therefore, the event date, as you like to call it, was not the date of the birth, so in the world of law and birth certificates, I was still within the 90 days. And not to be ugly about it, but the Feds have more power in my mind than your red shirted associates. I am still sticking with my plan that I discussed with you to tell all future registrants to choose a due date that is months away from the actual anticipated date in order to leave more time for returns. Because, let’s be honest here, the first thing on a woman’s mind after pushing a baby out of her vagina is not to go straight home and measure the space opening at the bottom of her stairs to make sure the baby gate is going to fit, especially a baby gate that had not yet been shipped to her house. I’m just saying. It’s not priority number one. Call me crazy if you must, but for some reason this new little life takes precedence. Although this occurrence has tainted our relationship, I know we can move past this, for I have already given you more of my family’s hard earned money since this incident. I, however, will remember. The scars are deep, old friend, and the reminders are constant…..because a perfectly crafted, mint, new in box baby gate still sits in my garage, haunting and mocking me upon each and every entrance into my house.

Yours truly,

A Chagrined T@rget Shopper


15 thoughts on “Dear T@rget

  1. I know….they are awfull at returns at Target. They give you the hardest time when trying to return something off your registry. I tried to return something that was bought off mine, but when I pulled my list off their computer it wasn’t on there. I just think that is crazy when I looked on line at my registry a few days previous and there it was. That is how I knew I was even going to get the gift in the first place. I think you should send it to them.

  2. Oh girl… I had this experience with a car seat…. a car seat! I was not a happy camper!! Lets just say that I am sure they still remember me when I come in the store just about every other day! :) It wasn’t my proudest moment! :)

  3. Summer i’m so sorry this happened to you :(

    is your gate too wide or too narrow? Maybe you can find someone who has a similar need (Baby gate) who has a space that yours would fit and they like it and before they purchase it maybe they could purchase one that would fit your space and you could swap :)

    Seems complicated i know :/

    • My opening is just awkward. None of the 4 points of contact for the baby gate are the same level. Between the skinny part of the banister, the baseboard, the wall, and the slender part of the banister, plus the turn right at the bottom, it is just awful to try and fit it. I thought the adjustable nature of this one gate would work, but it turns out it was still going to be too short with the full extension :O/

  4. This letter needs to be sent. These Target folks are in Minneapolis where we work hard just to heat our homes. They are most likely Norwegian or Sweds and genetically they are practical and “nice”. Besides that, they might really like a well written and clever letter that points to change or at least an exception. No, they certainly are not LL Bean.

  5. You forgot to add “BTW I teach English literature” if they didn’t already read that b/w the lines.
    My advice : grin and bear it and shop on….b/c you are spending eternity w/ the Lord Almighty :)
    BTW I’m an optimist;D but it is very true and very exciting AND much better to dwell on what is good, true, noble … (you know the verse )Phil 4:8 then Target shinanigans. Right?!
    Lastly, how are you doing now post baby?

  6. Raun hates Target because they always charge us twice for things or they won’t take it back. The first time, we returned a pink Bumbo. The box said it was a different color and we got it as a shower gift. We asked if we could switch to a different color and they said it would cost us extra. That miffed Raun, so he called the main guy to complain. After 30 minutes on the phone arguing, he got back 2 $5 checks. It pleased him. I still like it, but not for the returns. You should definitely send the letter.

    • Megan:
      I fought it long enough, like Raun, that they said I could return it. Turns out, I could return it at about 1/4 the price because it had conveniently been put on clearance. As I worked my way up the complaint ladder, I got a super-high-up worker who gave me a code for the associate within the store to input to override the computer system. Somehow, again conveniently, the code did not work and customer service was busy when they called back. I was so frustrated at that point, I said to just forget it and I took my gate back home. What I really want to know is how Raun got two $5 checks! He must be Superman to have that type of power. :O)

  7. Oh, your poor thing (my aunt would say that then pat your hand)! I lose my receipt by the time I get to the door. That happened one Christmas and they were checking all the baskets. Luckily, the check out lady remembered me! Geesh!

    Do they have verbal porn in their check out aisles, too? If so, we can include them on my list to call and return check out aisles to g-rated family pay center venues!

    P.S. You did such a great job, I wanted to call and complain for you! I hope some man got the letter first! LOL

  8. Sum you need to send that puppy in! SO funny, but SO true! I had a fairly good experience returning stuff after our wedding, but I had been warned (I think by you in fact) about their return policy. I think they have one of the most annoying return policies ever, but I do agree that they are the lesser of all evils and I will continue to shop there!

  9. Can I tell you that I had a very similar experience with my wedding registry. It forever made Bed, Bath and Beyond seem the go to place for wedding registries.

    I actually banned Target for 6 whole months. It was hard.

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