Target Sucks - We Hate Target and We Know We're Not Alone.

June 25, 2015 - targetran

I’ve become suicidal again since I’ve worked here

I know from the title of this post that this may seem overdramatic, but hear me out. I’ve been a cashier at the Target my store for two months now. This is my very first job ever. Prior to getting this job, I was in a very bad place due to unsuccessful job hunting, school stress, mental illness, and many other things. Things had started looking up eventually, and by the time that HR called me for my interview, I had recovered quite a bit from the rut I was in, and it got even better after I got hired. I had been job hunting for over a year and now my very first official place of employment was going to be at a store that I had respected greatly as a guest, and I wanted to make sure that I try my hardest to be the best I can be at my first job.

On my first day of work, I immediately hit it off with one of the other teenagers that was hired the same day as me, and I was on cloud nine throughout the whole day. The second day of work came around, and that’s where things began getting a little fuzzy. They had scheduled me in the middle of the day, but they never taught me how to clock in or where the office was or anything. I had to have one of the team members working at the guest service desk help me out with something so simple. After I was clocked in, I was assigned to shadow one of the experienced cashiers. The cashier I was assigned to was very condescending the whole time and rolled her eyes at me to the guests whenever I would make a mistake. I guess the scenario sounds a lot more petty and whiny when I type it out, but being judged and being humiliated in front of others is something I dread greatly due to my social anxiety.

The next several shifts weren’t too bad. A few annoyances and mistakes here and there, redcard coachings, but I survived. About a month ago, I bagged this woman’s groceries and she was yelling at me about god knows what and she was calling me stupid and all that, and lucky me, my automatic response to people yelling at me is to cry, so… I cried. Hard. Even after trying desperately to not cry, I still cried like a baby in front of a huge line of guests, and I went through several transactions refusing to make eye contact with any of the guests because I was unable to compose myself. I cried throughout my entire lunch break out of feeling crippling humiliation from crying in front of a bunch of people at work. After lunch a GSTL saw that my eyes were red and pulled me into one of the office rooms and asked me what’s wrong, and I told her the situation and she gave me this huge spiel about how some guests are just plain bullies and you shouldn’t let them get under your skin because everyone who works at Target sees I’m doing great at my job, even if the guests don’t seem to see that. Her speech made me feel better, but the memory of making an absolute pathetic fool of myself in front of guests still haunts me everyday.

Eventually, the very small annoyances of my job piled up on me. Last week, I was on my way to work and was thinking about all these little annoyances – being coached about redcards even though I’m trying my best to get guests to sign up for them even with my severe social anxiety, being asked constantly by small children (and even some rude adults) if I’m a boy or a girl (I forgot to mention that I’m transsexual, female-to-male, but I’m not out as trans at work out of fear of backlash and it’s very obvious that I’m biologically female as I’m only 18 and cannot afford hormone replacement therapy or sex reassignment surgery, and my voice, hair, body, etc is very feminine), trying my hardest to push through my anxiety to vibe with each guest only to be met with harsh words from TLs and GSTLs about how I need to work harder at vibing with guests, feeling like I’m a useless team member because I can’t properly vibe with guests or get redcards, and thinking about all this just made me fall into a huge mental breakdown. I walked into the store crying and shaking violently. I went into the family bathroom and sat on the floor trying to ride out the attack and compose myself a little with no luck. When it was almost time for my shift, I got myself out of the bathroom and into the office and clocked in, then I just kind of walked around the office not knowing what to do because my mind was racing terribly and I knew that I had to go out to the checklanes but I would be useless in this state. The same GSTL from last time came out from an office and saw me and asked what was wrong, and I tried to speak but my mind was racing too badly to speak coherently. She pulled me into a smaller office room and tried getting an answer out of me there but to no avail, and eventually she asked me, “Do you need to go home?” and I nodded my head and she said, “Okay, just take all the time that you need and clock out. I hope you feel better.” and I spent an entire 45 minutes in the office room by myself crying intensely and feeling ashamed that I let work upset me so badly that I couldn’t function properly enough to even work. I clocked out after composing myself a little bit and getting myself out of the office room I was in, and I walked out of the store and sat on the bench outside for another 45 minutes, exhausted from the breakdown I just had, and began wondering how I’ll ever succeed in adult life if a simple summer job to save up for college this fall makes me unable to function properly. I started thinking about just how bad it would be to end my life and leave any chances of my adult life turning to shit behind me and everyone else.

I’ve fallen into a pretty harsh depression since that day. I no longer try asking for redcards because I don’t have the physical or mental energy to psych myself up for the anxiety that comes with talking to strangers. A few days ago, I was working at the register and when it started getting slow in the store, the GSTL who had been helping me get through my mental health bullshit this past month turned off my lane light and asked me to step aside for a minute to talk to her. She asked me if I was okay and I said kind of, and she paused for a second and said, “Listen, I know you’ve been off these past couple days, but you still have to vibe with the guests and try to get each and every one of the to sign up for a redcard no matter what kind of mood you’re in. Our goal for today is 12 redcards and we’re only at 3 today so we need you to put a smile on your face and get those redcards, alright?” Maybe I’m interpreting this situation wrong, but this kind of hurt me a bit. I thought that she genuinely cared about me and ¬†how I was doing with my mental health, but the only thing she actually cared about were those damn redcards.

After that whole situation, I felt numb, I guess, and still feel that way right now. I feel no emotions towards going to work, which is different from my usual fighting back tears on my way there. I feel absolutely empty no matter what I do during my days off work. I have no hope at all that I will ever be able to afford the procedures I need to make me feel comfortable in my own skin as a man since I can’t handle a near-minimum wage job like this, and I also have no doubt in my mind that my life from this point on will be absolutely shitty since I’m going off to college in two months but I can’t handle my mental illnesses at a part-time job over the summer. I’m very frightened to see how worse my mental health gets while living on my own, away from home, while still most likely partaking in a job like this.

I know this is extremely long. I’m sorry about that. But if anyone bothered to stick around to read until the end, then thank you for listening and letting me vent to you.


Employee Experience


  • writteninreverse says:

    While I can't understand all of the things that you are going through, I can agree that Target has made me slip deeper into my own depression... because I'm unable to have a set schedule, I'm staying up later and later each night, barely sleeping and getting more and more stressed and depressed. I've started going back to thoughts of self-harm which is absolute shit and I know I shouldn't go there. I've broken down crying multiple times because of all the shit that goes on at the store and the way that management treats us.

    I know it's not exactly the same but I hope in some way it makes you feel a little bit better because others are going through the same type of situations.

  • TargetSucks says:

    None of you should be feeling this way. Call a lawyer, call a doctor, call the local labor board. Get the fuck out of target! Your health is not worth compromising for a stupid redcard!

    • BarbinNC says:

      Please, please, please get out of that shit hole! It is not worth ruining your mental or physical health. I have a trans son who went through a depression before coming out to me, and we were able to get him on anti-depressants, which helped tremendously. Maybe you can get on a medical policy through your parents or a bare minimum policy of your own so you can see a doctor and get on some anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medications. YOU DESERVE TO BE HAPPY! Keep trying, don't give up. Your time will come, where you will be able to be happy in your own skin - you need to believe that. I'll keep you in my thoughts.

      • targetran says:

        Thank you. Your kind words mean a lot to me.
        I've actually been on antidepressants for four years now. They seem to only help minimally. Like today I was supposed to have a four-hour shift, but I called in sick because I don't have the physical or mental energy to go to that hell hole, let alone even getting out of my bed. It's been a super long battle but I still haven't recovered at all.

        • TargetSucks says:

          You could probably go on disability if you need to. But whatever you do, treat yourself better than working there. You deserve better than that.

        • BarbinNC says:

          Try some therapy- that also seemed to help my husband a lot, who was depressed because of work, an injury and childhood sexual abuse. I just can't stress how much I want you to keep on trying... even though I don't know you, you feel like one of my children, since our family has been through this.

  • InfinityForever says:

    I guess I'm sort of lucky there, the Target I work at is okay with my being transgender (male to female) since there is an openly trans-man (female to male if not obvious) that works there but some guests still use female pronouns when around him and I understand the pain. He's finally going by his chosen name now though and happens to usually be the 'Operator' when I am working (though of course there are others). He knows about my being the reverse of sorts, so he and I are on a friendly basis but I can't really say we're friends cause I'm sure he's just being polite to me. However being trans I know can't be easy, I was working at a McDonalds before when a video leaked of a trans being beaten up in one and I was so scared. I only came out at work (not home which is VERY unaccepting) when I learned of the trans-man whom I'm obviously going to leave anonymous here for his safety along with my own.

    I'm sorry your training experience was bad, mine was....okay, but I had an experience where I started to go into anaphylactic shock at work (due to a severe allergy to alcohol that touched my skin) and got yelled at by the L.O.D. because I was inconveniencing her by leaving early to go to the hospital. So...yeah Target in general just puts up a nice face to guests but it's just utter shit. I was surprised when I had some guests who claim to love Target and all I think is: "You wouldn't if you worked here."

  • kremdelakrem says:

    if it helps, i've cried at target. i've cried on the floor, i've cried in front of managers about being bullied at the job, and i've even left randomly during my shift to cry because the coworkers treat me so badly. so do not feel bad for crying at a job that like this. you have every right to be upset when someone you thought who cared so much about you just says shit like "lmao yeeeep we need more redcards so put a smile on your face". if she knows you were having problems and she genuinely cared, she would NOT have said that.

    that's not fair and if your depression is coming back, put in your two weeks and get the hell out of there. i'm trans as well and i know what it's like to be misgendered and have depression along with it and it's not a healthy place for you - get out of there. if she only cares about redcards, then she's a fake loser who was only helping to benefit her. get out of there while you can. ): </3

  • Ihatetargealotmore says:

    I'm seriously like on he same boat


Leave a Reply