A woman who suffered a miscarriage was forced to reopen those traumatic wounds all over again, at Babies “R” Us in Waterbury.
Jessica Huchko, of Watertown, said she and her husband were excited to welcome a baby boy into their family of three girls.
She went to Babies “R” Us to prepare for the special addition.
“We pretty much had everything, but with car seats and strollers, you have to update them every five years,” Huchko said.
But then a miscarriage happened, and devastated the entire family to the point where they couldn’t bear to look at some of the reminders of what should have been.
“Every time I would see them, I would either get mad or upset. I needed them out of the house,” Huchko said.
So she went to return items that kept bringing those bad memories back, and she said she left the Babies “R” Us in tears.
She said both items were still in the box, untouched, but she didn’t have a receipt.
“I assumed, why would I save them? I just threw it out,” Huchko said.
She did have the debit card she used as well as her store loyalty card.
“I guess I didn’t give her a good enough answer, so she asked, ‘why are you returning this?’ And it triggered something inside of me, that a tear just rolled down my face and I had to just say, ‘my son passed away and I can’t use them’,” Huchko said.
A manager got involved and the humiliation grew. The items couldn’t be found in the system.
When the manager got involved, Huchko had to explain what happened.
The manager was able to track down the car seat, but Huchko said she was only able to get about half the price back.
The double stroller wasn’t turning up in the system, leading the manager to allegedly offer pennies for her $179 purchase.
“She turned around and said, ‘it’s coming up as two cents.” I said, ‘so you’re offering me two cents for a double stroller’,” Huchko said. “It was worse than a slap in the face. Now, I have to try and control myself while there’s a huge line forming behind me.”
With no resolution, she reached out to Eyewitness News and to Babies “R” Us, and on Monday she said the manager at the Waterbury store vowed to make things right.
“He offered to give me the remainder balance of what I was owed,” Huchko said.
Babies “R” Us said it reached out to Huchko and was working to issue a refund.
“We are deeply sorry for her experience in our store, and more importantly for her loss. The store leadership has provided coaching to the team members to help ensure similar situations are handled with more care in the future,” Babies “R” Us said in a statement on Monday.
While Huchko may never get over the pain of losing a child, she is looking to change policy, putting a more tender touch to the family retailer.
“Someone in my place, returning a product because of a loss of a child. There is no policy, no employee training,” Huchko said.