The Optician Took My Back-up Glasses

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by emotionallybankrupt, Jul 30, 2010.

  1. emotionallybankrupt

    emotionallybankrupt New Member

    The good news is that I THINK my new glasses are okay.

    But the wicked witch took away my back up lenses and wouldn't give them back. I'm so angry. I explained that they had messed up and thrown away my GOOD old lenses within a few hours after I picked up the new last week, putting me in quite a bind. I had even called within hours after getting the bad set, explaining that I had a problem, and they said they would call back and did not. When I then called the next morning, they said they had already tossed them and it was a lost cause.

    So, I put together a hybrid back-up set to get by until we could get the problem fixed. The guy I talked to that day told me that they would have been GLAD to have given me the old lenses if only I had asked. So...I had no idea what I was stepping into today, when I went to pick up the corrected version.

    I had to leave my glasses with them for a couple hours so that they could switch things out. No problem. I had brought my old SINGLE VISION glasses so I could get around while I waited. Also in my purse was my daughter's glasses, as she was getting replacement lenses as well. Plus my sunglass clips. I felt like a walking optical dispensary myself, and I did not bring with me the defective set. Big problem.

    When I returned for pick-up, I asked for the lenses they took out, and I was told I could not have them. That they would be returning them for some type of "credit." I was stunned. I explained that what they were taking did not even include the defective lense, that instead they were taking the only glasses I could use to read. I told her what the other guy had told me, that keeping old lenses was no problem, and she simply said he was wrong. The guy heard the conversation and slithered away like a worm. Meanwhile, wicked witch dropped my lenses into a ziploc bag and said she would keep them for me. I said, "But you might lose them. The others were thrown away." She wouldn't budge. "I'm NOT going to lose them," she said, in THAT tone, as she walked away. She reminded me of the wicked stepmother in Cinderella...the scene where she smiled and walked away with the key to the locked room, patting her pocket after she dropped the key inside. they are being held as collateral. "WHERE are the other glasses?" she wanted to know. I told her they were at home, that I had no problem with returning them since I couldn't see out of them anyway, and that with all the business I had done with them through the years, I didn't understand why they couldn't trust me to bring them back. "Well, when you bring THOSE back, you can have THESE."

    So...I left. But not before saying that if they lost those lenses, I would raise the biggest stink they had ever seen. What a day. It will cost me a hour's gas and driving time to take those back. It will cost them more than that in lost business.

    Yes, my daughter got her new glasses too. Between the two of us, they sure are losing a lot in order to get useless lenses that "the worm" told me they did not need. Oh...and what about that claim that started it all? That they had thrown away those first lenses? I don't think so.

    Thanks for listening to my rant.
  2. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Oh yeah? Well you need to walk back in there with your German Shepherd and your white red tipped cane and DEMAND your glasses back! Or tell them you'll be obliged to cut your former police officer gone service dog Stevie Wonder loose on the wormy guy , and you'll whip her with yer cane. :cool_dog:
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Who OWNS the business? Write a letter of complaint, explain that you want the lenses back, and a written apology for this witch's rudeness because you are a long time customer who has spent many dollars with them for yourself, your children, etc... and be SURE to let them know that if they do not make this RIGHT (including providing you with a backup pair of glasses for the ones they threw away) that you will tell EVERYONE you know exactly how terrible their service and professionalism have become. Of course you will take your business elsewhere also.

    Do NOT give it to the office person. Make SURE that the OWNER, the optometrist, gets this letter. That they KNOW how angry you are at being treated like a thief (use that word because THAT is what the woman said when she said she will hold the lenses as ransom until you return the others). NO professional optometrist behaves this way with a long term client. For one thing, optometrists usually charge FAR FAR more than other glasses providers. There are times it is worth the money, of course, but there are times it is NOT. In this economy more and more people are turning to internet glasses providers, and competition is fierce.

    The owner of this business cannot afford to treat you this way, or to allow his staff to. It is far cheaper to him to give you a pair of backup glasses free than to get all of the bad word of mouth advertising that you can provide for him if he doesn't make you 1000% happy.

    And if you take the german shephard with you be sure he bites the rude witch a couple of times. Just for me!
  4. emotionallybankrupt

    emotionallybankrupt New Member

    Good humor, and good advice. That's why I come here! Star, I read your response right before bed, and it was better than a sleeping pill! Very hard to laugh like that and be angry at the same time. Not that I'm no longer angry, but I needed to quit feeling it for a while, so I could have a good night's sleep. Actually, that's the best night's sleep I've had in several nights.

    But now it's back to business. I already have the letter written and just have to find out who the owner is. I don't think it's an optometrist, because this is just an optical store. I'm also getting ready to drive out there and pay the ransom on my lenses to I can close this particular chapter. I know I'll feel better when I know I don't have to go out there again.
  5. emotionallybankrupt

    emotionallybankrupt New Member

    Mission accomplished. I paid the ransom on my back-up glasses, explained the WHOLE story to the manager, and watched his face get more and more red the longer I talked. I talked a LONG time, too--in the same public space where I was publicly scolded yesterday. I made clear that all personnel had been very pleasant to work with and was able to give very specific compliments regarding each person...until I got to the witch. So he has got to know that I'm not just the "impossible to please" customer. I explained that I have a big problem with the POLICY of tossing lenses so quickly, before a customer has a chance to know if the new ones are okay, but as far as the PEOPLE are concerned, they have all been extremely nice.

    He assured me that he would handle the situation "appropriately," and I really believe he meant it, because his face reflected genuine anger. I told him I had a complaint letter ready and was just needing the name of the individual to address, and he said that if I went higher up, it would simply come right back to him to handle, and I suspect that since this is a "chain" dispensary he is telling the truth. He said all the personnel there report directly to him. The "witch" is the "retail manager," and so I guess she thought she had ultimate authority. I think she'll find out otherwise when she comes back to work. Today must have been her day off.

    I really think I could have gotten most anything I wanted today. They offered me ALL the lenses that had been made for me, but I told them to just keep the ones I had returned today, because the whole point was that I can't see through them. They offered free replacement nose pieces for ALL the glasses, including easy child's and my Mom's glasses as well. And she has not even made a purchase there! Yes, of course we took advantage of the offer.

    The official story, by the way, is still that old lenses are promptly thrown away. It's simply "company policy" not to allow exchanged lenses to remain with the customer. The "get credit for them" story appears to be the lie. That's no surprise, since only the "witch" told that one.

    No, I didn't take my dogs with me. I dropped them off at the groomer before I went to the store. Where I NEEDED them, though, was in the mall parking lot where the store is located. I've never had an incident before, where a driver was ready to kick my, um, DONKEY, over a parking spot I supposedly took away from her. PLEEEZE! This must be my week for conflict. I'm not going ANYWHERE tomorrow! I'm going to stay home and enjoy READING through my new glasses!
  6. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    THis is rubbish. What would be the reasoning behind this?

    Here, we get our old lenses given to us or, if we choose, the store will keep them in a drawer for us (but probably only for a certain period of time, to make sure the new lenses are OK).

    I would ask what is the reasoning for the disposal of old lenses, especially given the experience you had. Feel free to tell them that this has happened to me twice so far and each time, having the old lenses available made a quick temporary fix a lot easier. mother in law recently had a problem when her frames broke, and needed new glasses urgently. The optician cut down her old lenses to fit a new pair of frames (a temporary fix) which kept her with something to see through until the new prescription they organised for her, arrived. It was good for their business because first, they got paid for the cut-down bodge job, then they got the order for two pairs of glasses as new replacement.

    So it is good for business to do this.

    Insurance issues? Maybe someone is afraid that a person might use the old lenses to jerry-rig together a 'new' pair of specs, which of course will not be good for your vision if they've not been made for those frames. The centre of each lens risks being in the wrong place. But the actual damage from this is nothing actionable, and anyone stupid enough to do this (or desperate enough) is not going to have a leg to stand on, if they try to sue for damaged vision. Because I don't think it CAN damage your vision!

    No, I think this is a case of unthinking procedure to keep the place tidy. I would do a deal while the bloke is being so helpful - insist that FOR YOU, old lenses be kept. Even if they choose to keep them safe themselves, YOU need them kept safe somewhere, in the event there is a problem. At some time in the future when it is clear that your new glasses are fine, then they can ask you for permission to dispose of them.

    Where do they stand on your ordering two pairs of glasses? Or deciding, as I would after this incident, that having a second pair with your current script would be a good idea? Would they confiscate your current pair to ensure you still only have one pair of specs? What if you want a blue pair for day and a red pair with glitter for evening wear?

    In my case there is another scenario where the old lenses were needed and used - I was pregnant, standing naked in my in-law's bathroom over Christmas (about to have a shower) when sis-in-law wanted to use the sink. I got into the shower recess to get my large bulk out of the way and shut the sliding frosted glass door for privacy. husband came in to help me, and offered to take my glasses from me so I could shower. But I had my glasses off (of course!) as I handed them to husband through the almost closed glass door. My specs hit the door, a lens popped out and smashed on the tiles. There I was naked, pregnant, blind and standing barefoot with shattered glass all around.

    After the clean-up (including a careful shower!) husband took me back home and found my old lenses. Meantime he put a piece of cardboard in the empty lens. We took the specs to the optometrist who put the old lens in for me. However, it was too different and it was not good for vision. Better than cardboard, though. I had a new pair of specs two weeks later. But having spare lenses made it possible for me to at least drive legally in the meantime.

    This needs to be resolved. I would also suggest you look around for policy at other opticians.

  7. emotionallybankrupt

    emotionallybankrupt New Member

    Rationale? It involves money but doesn't make much sense to me.

    They distinguish between REPLACED lenses and EXCHANGED lenses. An exchange is at their expense, and their position is that I have no right to keep the old lenses. If I BUY new lenses, though, I can PURCHASE as many sets as I want to. They'll assume I just don't want the old ones unless I ask though. Therefore, what's theirs is theirs and what's mine quickly becomes theirs too. In the garbage.

    From a money angle, I do see the difference, but I don't see how a customer would be getting any benefit from stockpiling lenses, making the company re-do for no good reason. Definitely the company gets no financial benefit from lenses thrown away. So, from my standpoint it's a lose/lose. Yes, they should routinely keep lenses for a while, or else--even better--offer them to the customer. What a great way to keep the place tidy as well as build that customer service relationship! They wouldn't even have to worry about losing/damaging/storing old lenses if they just offered them to the customer, because they would be passing that responsibility to the customer. Seems to me that would save them a lot of trouble without costing them a dime.

    Absolutely right, Marg. Accidents are unpredictlble and as unique as the people. It's really important for someone dependent on glasses to be prepared. I used to be. In recent years, though, my prescription has changed a lot, and between that and trying to wait for insurance benefits to catch up so I could buy a new set for less, I got caught in the crunch.

    Yes, I am going to get a brand new set as soon as I can, and not necessarily from the same store. It's time to shop around. I did some research on my insurance benefits. The eye policy is relatively new, and I learned something helpful. For this policy, I do NOT have to wait a calendar year for benefits to be available. The new year's benefits are available beginning Jan. 1. So what I think I need to do is wait until after the first of the year, go somewhere new, get the eye exam (will be interesting to see if the prescription agrees), and then get new glasses. Then I'll have a "real" back-up as well as a damaged, dog chewed back-up. I won't be in this bind again.

    As for store #1, though? I don't think they'll dare toss any more lenses of mine--ever. If I go back, that is.