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M&S staff inappropriate about my post pregnancy size

(86 Posts)
Onthebuses Fri 19-Jul-13 21:59:05

Looking for new summer clothes in branch of m&s, carrying my 10 week old son, hot and uncomfortable as still having to wear pregnancy clothes as last summers clothes don't fit. I ask a sales person where the shorts are, she explains they are now selling autumn clothes, adds there are a few shorts left over the other side of the store

Then touches my hip and says but I don't think they would be in your size!!!

Taken aback I leave the store and email a letter of complaint for a) inappropriate touching and b) her making a snide judgement about my size

V standard response from complaints/brush off.

Not on??

Viviennemary Fri 19-Jul-13 22:16:01

I don't think it was appropriate from a salesperson. But she thought she was probably just saving you time saying there were none left in your size. Just forget about it.

PosyNarker Fri 19-Jul-13 22:19:02

Hard to say - as others say, it could just be that they old had much smaller / larger sizes left. Can't really complain unless you asked her what she meant.

Then again it wouldn't surprise me if they were being rude knowing M&S. Wouldn't be the first time I've experienced then being less than tactful (In my case if someone of 5' says she's a size 10 but looks a little chubby, don't bring a 12 and a 14, but no 10, when asked for a size. Chances are the short arse in question, wearing an M&S dress, knows her dress size... hmm. and wishes she was still that dress size )

Fakebook Fri 19-Jul-13 22:19:42

Wth? You've had a baby. You're probably larger than your normal size. We all get fat during pregnancy and after labour. Why did you get so offended? I would've laughed and gone and looked anyway. I think you need a chill pill:

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Fri 19-Jul-13 22:20:31

I do think that the OP is justified in feeling affronted. Personal space is approx a meter in western society- and unless someone is asked to come closer it is impolite to prod any part of a stranger. Especially someone who has recently given birth.

It's taken me months to let my DH come near to my saggy post baby body!!

Complain away OP.

celestialbows Fri 19-Jul-13 22:20:43

Some people just want to argue for the sake of it. The sales assistant was being unreasonable without a doubt. There is never any justification for making a personal comment or touching a customer whether it was meant in a friendly way or not. The shorts might have been for someone else so she made a judgement and touching you is bang out of order.
And posters who say she might lose her job? She won't! How ridiculous, m&s won't even discuss it with her unless she'd been accused of something really serious.

scarlettanager Fri 19-Jul-13 22:21:27


cafecito Fri 19-Jul-13 22:22:24

You'd be surprised how many times people comment on my size in a consumer interaction - it's not nice. I'm not even fat, I'm at the upper end of a 'healthy' BMI, but I used to be very small. I was very upset the first time but the subsequent times, I chalked it up to just being how some people speak and deal with their own friends and families. Inappropriate, yes, especially when 'you've gained weight. too much weight' or 'your face is bigger it doesn't suit you' are used in a dialogue with a customer, but I just find it amusing now as it's clearly okay in their heads forthem to say it, iyswim.

She might have been trying to help.

As for the shorts - only a size 8 left in gap today *sob

EeyoreIsh Fri 19-Jul-13 22:23:10

I would have been offended OP, it's not appropriate to touch. It's also not ok to make judgements about size unless she had made it clear there were only a few sizes left.


MalcolmTuckersMum Fri 19-Jul-13 22:23:15

So if she'd merely directed you to the shorts department and you'd found they were all size 8 would you have assumed her to have been a snidey pisstaking passive aggressive inappropriate toucher? Jesus. Who'd work in retail huh?

Fakebook Fri 19-Jul-13 22:24:01

I've found M&S staff in every shop all across the country really friendly and chatty. It was probably friendly banter that's been blown out of proportion.

WorraLiberty Fri 19-Jul-13 22:24:27

I think you're projecting massively OP

Fair enough you might not be happy with all the changes your body has gone through...but the world isn't going to re-adjust itself until you gain your confidence back.

Imagine working in a shop and having to tread on egg shells with every single person you come into contact with?

Sunnysummer Fri 19-Jul-13 22:25:10

I hope that she said this with pantomime dame levels of rudeness and smirking, because otherwise she may well have been trying to be helpful (and even saying that you are too small for the sizes left!), and you have potentially put her job at risk.

Having a new baby is exhausting and enough to make all of us oversensitive. Sounds like you may have been at least a bit U.

WorraLiberty Fri 19-Jul-13 22:26:06

It's also not ok to make judgements about size unless she had made it clear there were only a few sizes left.

Are you serious?

She sells clothes to members of the public who come in all sizes

Not only is it ok to judge their sizes, it's part of her job!

K8Middleton Fri 19-Jul-13 22:28:52

Unless you know what size they have left I don't think you can be offended.

There's another thread running at the moment where many, many posters are lamenting M&S only having size 20/22 left in stock. Maybe they've been to your store?

Yabu but at 10 weeks after birth I was too smile

PerchedOnMyPeddleStool Fri 19-Jul-13 22:30:05

Sorry you feel bad about yourself OP. That lady wasn't unreasonable though, you are to be honest.
You've just had a baby, you're being sensitive.

EeyoreIsh Fri 19-Jul-13 22:38:53

Shop staff rarely get my sizing right because I'm tall and like to wear clothes slightly loose. My personal opinion is that I would have been upset in that situation too.

Great for others if they are tougher of skin. A more polite approach would have been to said there were only limited sizes left.

Incidentally, I worked in a shop for years, and I think it's part of the job to be tactful.

WorraLiberty Fri 19-Jul-13 22:40:54

She was tactful imo

But no shop assistant can account for the hidden insecurities of every single shopper they come into contact with.

I understand the OP isn't happy with her size/body change

But that's for her to deal with

Sending the email was out of order imo.

sazzle82 Fri 19-Jul-13 22:44:25

I understand why you were annoyed, she possibly could have explained it better, eg we've only got a certain size left...

Although I must admit m&s is the only shop I've ever had my size commented on. I was looking for a specific push up bra in a G cup and was told they didn't do them in that size as they didn't think you would want to make yourself look bigger if you were that size. I took it that she meant they assume big busted women want minimiser bras, but if I'd been feeling crappy I could have taken it as her calling me fat. So I think part of it is how you are already feeling when people say things like this iyswim.

redwellybluewelly Fri 19-Jul-13 22:47:36

I'm six weeks post CS and today I too was on the hunt for something, anything, summery to wear. I failed. Miserably.

On that basis YANBU. Its bloody miserable in this heat especially when youve a vomiting baby and you have nothing which fits at all

Onthebuses Fri 19-Jul-13 22:48:59

I'm just really surprised by others experiences, I've never had M&S down as being sizeist and I always thought they were pretty good at customer service.

And I'd say the sales person in questions job is safe. I was too sleep deprived to have got her name.

giveitago Fri 19-Jul-13 22:51:11

"V standard response from complaints/brush off"

So what was that response?

Technotropic Fri 19-Jul-13 22:54:48

I was in House of Fraser not so long ago and was browsing when the assistant came over to me and said that none of the range I was looking at would fit me. "They're cut a little wider so will be of no for you".

I'm very slim.

Sometimes shop staff are just trying to be helpful.

As for touching I like people being tactile. To me it creates warmth but realise some don't like it at all.

K8Middleton Fri 19-Jul-13 22:58:10

But op how do you know they only had smaller sizes than your size left? And that she was being disparaging about your size rather than just informing you that the small selection they have left from an initial range size 6-22 is now only sizes 6, 16, 18, 20, 22 and she has estimated your size is not one of those [sizes plucked at random out of my head], because that would takes ages to say and she just wants to save you a trip across the store.

AmyFarrahFowlerCooper Fri 19-Jul-13 22:58:14

YANBU. Would OP be unreasonable about that if it was a man that had touched her hip? I would be annoyed at that too.

MsJupiterJones Fri 19-Jul-13 22:58:53

Can't believe people think you are being oversensitive. Lots of people esp women esp esp post pregnancy women are sensitive about their size and shape. You just don't make jokes, ask about losing baby weight, ask if someone is pregnant, touch/squeeze/cuddle them or otherwise draw attention to something they may be self conscious about.

I work in customer service and I'm the first to say if people are being unreasonable in their demands from staff. You are definitely NBU. Hope the message was passed on (nicely) to the staff member in question.

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