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Shopper Leaves People Divided After Back-Tracking On Paying Stranger's Grocery Bill

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Shopper Leaves People Divided After Back-Tracking On Paying Stranger's Grocery Bill

A kind stranger is asking if they were in the wrong after revoking their offer to cover a stranger's groceries when it looked like she was in need.

The mum was at the till next to the stranger when her card got declined, and so they took pity and offered to help.

But they had to revoke their offer soon afterwards, and now they're asking Reddit users if they're wrong for doing so.

The individual - who does not identify themselves - wrote: "I was in line at the grocery store on my lunch break with a couple of coworkers.

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The woman went off to pick up more groceries (Credit: Shutterstock)
The woman went off to pick up more groceries (Credit: Shutterstock)

"The woman in front of me at the checkout, baby in tow, came up short on her bill. I was happy to cover the extra because we’ve all been through tough times. 

"She was super appreciative and I was happy to do it. Then she said ‘Oh actually, can I just get one more thing? I hadn’t because I didn’t know if I could cover what’s in my cart but -‘ and I told her no problem."

The Reddit user explained that they weren't concerned about the extra item, seeing as most of the mum's cart was "staple items like oatmeal and baby food". 

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"I figured she was getting some eggs or something," they wrote - but when they saw what she returned with, they weren't having any of it.

The woman picked up a fancy bottle of wine (Credit: Reddit)
The woman picked up a fancy bottle of wine (Credit: Reddit)

"She came back with a fairly expensive bottle of wine and a prime rib," the Reddit user wrote. "I declined to pay for that and said if she wanted a basic staple I was happy to pay rot hat.

"She got upset saying I had bait and switched her. But the line had to keep moving so she checked out without those items and that was that. 

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"Once the situation was over, my coworkers said they thought I was wrong to make the offer and not follow through. Because it wasn’t my place to judge what she was getting, once I’d offered it, I’d offered it. 

"Now I’m conflicted. Did I do the wrong thing by telling her what she could and couldn’t buy?"

Under the Reddit post, the reaction was pretty unanimous - and the opinion was drastically different from that of the Reddit user's colleagues.

"You offered to cover the shortfall of existing items, not to sponsor a luxury meal on top of the shortfall," one person reassured in the comments.

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The shopper wanted a luxurious meal (Credit: Shutterstock)
The shopper wanted a luxurious meal (Credit: Shutterstock)

As another wrote: "This is like hearing a friend say they'll buy the next round of drinks and you ask for some 70 year aged wine. There are obvious limits to what you can reasonably expect someone to cover when they say they'll pay."

"Kindness is not weakness and she learned that to her cost," said a third.

Another penned: "Formula, diapers, milk, eggs, bread... seemingly basic things we feel compassion for others not being able to have. Prime Rib and Veuve Cliquot are NOT among those things. For someone to abuse your kindness by trying to purchase luxuries with your money is ridiculous and I don't know how your coworkers could stand by this woman. Find some new work friends".

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We agree. If you ask us, babyfood and nappies are one thing, but a free slap up meal is another.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: Life, Real Life, Shopping

Joanna Freedman
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