I Hate Shopping

by Jane Hart, Blogger for a Day

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I’m not sure when it occurred to me that I hate shopping, but I know it had something to do with having children. From my teens to my twenties, I actually enjoyed clothes shopping. It was an event I could do with my girlfriends. We would try on clothes and give (mostly) honest opinions about the outfits.

I am now responsible for many household purchases, including food, home décor, and electronics. All of this shopping saps my energy, and I’m too exhausted to shop for clothes for myself. Or the kids. I loved shopping for them when they were younger. They would wear anything I picked out. Now that they have minds of their own and I am the parent of a preteen, it’s not so easy. Said preteen does not like anything I choose and must scour the mall before making a decision on even one single article of clothing. Back to school shopping was not without its drama. The three of us (me, older daughter and younger daughter) traipsed around the mall one hot August morning. None of the shirts in her favorite store came even close to meeting the dress code requirement (4-finger-width shoulder straps and must actually conceal what’s under the shirt) so on we went to the next store (my choice). The shirts all had a design on the front or a pithy saying – which is passē once you turn 11.

So when the time comes to buy clothes for myself, I have neither the time nor the patience to get the job done. Is it any wonder, then, that I buy my clothes at Costco? It’s quick, easy and mostly painless since I don’t have to try anything on after sampling the artichoke dip, the power bars and the new salsa they’re selling. Well, it always seems like a great idea until I have to stand in the mile-long return line because the jeans made me feel like a sausage squeezed into its casing.

Uh oh! I mentioned the four letter word – jeans. Okay, so it’s five letters, but I believe every woman out there knows about the dreaded jeans shopping. I feel like a foreigner in the jeans section. Boot cut, slim cut, low rise, flare, skinny jeans, jeggings. What does this all mean and why can’t I find a pair of jeans that fit? After I had children, my body shape changed and buying jeans became a much bigger chore than before children. I am essentially the same weight and I haven’t grown taller, yet I still cannot find jeans that fit and don’t have my underwear hanging out the back. Who came up with low rise anyway? I have owned bikini underwear with a higher rise than some of the jeans I’ve tried on.

Sizing for women after children should follow an algorithm, like Garanimals for adults. Plug in the size you were before children into the computer, your present weight, and height and how you like to feel in your jeans (sexy, somewhat comfortable, glamorous, fun loving) and the computer spits out the perfect choice for you.

So, after Christmas, I’ll be the one cursing in the return line at Costco hoping my one good pair of jeans will survive the 4007th washing. It’s only six months until swimsuit season, I should start looking for one now. Shopping for a bathing suit must be easier than finding the perfect jeans, right?

About Jane Hart: When she’s not shopping for ill-fitting jeans or working at her job as a physical therapist, Jane can be found leading Girl Scout expeditions while eating chocolate and reading the New York Times.


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