A Letter to Home Depot

Dear Home Depot,

Women fix things too – lots of things!  Women need to purchase supplies to fix said things! And surprisingly, yes, sometimes even women need help finding those items in your cavernous stores.

And what spurred my need to tell you this?  Because apparently the associates in one of your Fresno stores have not been made aware of this.

I went into your store looking for weatherproofing tape for my greenhouse.  Could I get anyone to help me?  Hell no!  I approached approximately 6 different associates, in an effort to ask where I might locate this tape, and not one single person was willing to take the time to show me.  One group of associates I approached (there were 3 of them) were all “helping” a group of burly, tool-belt wearing contractors, but from my untrained eye, it appeared they were just chatting.  I asked one of the associates at the periphery of this gaggle of men, if he could point me in the general direction – he waved me off, pointing to the contractors, indicating he was helping them.

I approached another associate – he was walking towards me, and didn’t even stop to see what I needed.  He just flew past – saying “Helping someone else” over his left shoulder as he walked by.

I came upon a female associate, and I thought, oh, a comrade in arms – she will help me.  But she was young, with lash extensions, and annoyingly straightened hair, and fake fingernails that didn’t even match.  She couldn’t stop either, apparently she was concerned my middle-aged frumpy, tired look – might rub off on her.  I am entitled to be tired – I have been fixing things my whole life.

I finally Googled Nashua Weatherproofing tape, and was able to locate which Aisle and Bin the tape was kept.  What the heck Home Depot?  I didn’t accidentally stumble to Home Depot thinking it was a crafting store! And even if I did, I expect some modicum of decency and respect from your associates!

I also had to search for a saw, appropriate for cutting irrigation piping, and to do so, I was forced to enter the Sanctuary of Testosterone – the power tool section.  Here I was completely and so blatantly ignored.  The same group of contractors that I had previously encountered, were now standing in this section guffawing and scratching themselves, and the associates were drawn to them, like flies to a rotting piece of meat.

I was squatting down in the saw section, and another associate came by, putting back rejected items, I attempted to ask him a question, but he too flew by.

In a fit of rage, I was seeing red by this time (I had red hair before it all went white), my blood was boiling – I went to the checkout counter.  The nicest young lady, who was scanning my items, made the mistake of asking me if I had found everything I needed.  And I said “Yes – thanks to Google and my perseverance – certainly not because of your sexist sales associates!”  Slightly stunned by this gush of animosity, she sweetly said – “Would you like to speak to our manager?”  “I most certainly would!” I replied.

About 2 minutes later – the store manger arrived.  He was completely unhelpful, and tried to appear empathetic and understanding, but it was quite apparent he thought I was some raging, menopausal woman – who was pissed that her husband had sent her to Home Depot for supplies – so he could fix things.

This incident happened about 2 weeks ago.  I have been fuming about it ever since.  I am boycotting Home Depot – I will never step foot in you store again (even though the store is very close to my home).  I will make the trek to Lowe’s, where I have not encountered such blatant sexism, but that may be because I have not encountered a sales associate – they are truly a rare animal at Lowe’s.

I think I will just go back to Ace Hardware – we have one down the street.  There is a sales associate in Ace Hardware – she is so helpful and knowledgeable.  Granted Ace Hardware is a little more expensive, but they are so much more helpful, polite and are genuinely welcoming.  They have grasped the concept that women fix things!

Home Depot – you have a real problem.  I know for a fact this type of behavior is not unique to just the Fresno store – my mother has encountered the same types of attitudes at the Home Depot in her little town in Indiana.

I expect you to do something about this.

I expect a response, with a plan, a sincere plan, on how you intend to fix this!

A former customer,

SD Gates

7 replies »

  1. Smashing girl! So glad you did not stand for this kind of abuse. A well written letter too that explained exactly what your issue was and I loved your comment about contractors standing about scratching themselves! Well done and well said.


    • Thanks, my friend – for the support!!! Hope all is well with you!! So nice to hear from you! I haven’t had anything to blog about – until now. It is nice to be back. Will come visit!


  2. Oh, I have never had that experience. I will say, I was trying to buy a flashlight for the youngest and actually called a family member who worked for Home Depot in another state. We found the flashlight, not in outdoor or lighting, where we looked. It was in hardware. Family member actually looked to make sure the toolbox we were really wanting was in the store. We were helped by an associate. I am sorry you had that experience, I never had trouble as long as I saw an orange apron.

    Liked by 1 person

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