Monday, February 26, 2018

What Cancelling your Cable Service Can Tell You about Toxic Relationships

I recently cancelled my Spectrum internet service. The nine years I spent with them and the six months after dropping them has taught me a lot about toxic relationships.

Sweet talk means nothing if they don’t back it up.

I had been dealing with Spectrum since they were Time Warner. The “honeymoon phase” is real. However, as I got used to having Spectrum, they would do things out of the blue, like jack up my rate for no good reason. One time, I moved not even two blocks, but that warranted Spectrum to raise the cost of dealing with them by $10, and then the cost went up slightly periodically until I went from a starting cost of $75 to $101 per month! I didn’t even notice the micro-incrementing, and that is what they were counting on.

Gaslighting is a sign.

One time, my service went out, but every time I called customer service, all of a sudden it would work while I was on the phone with them. Then a few days later, it would go out again, and I would call again, and it would magically work again! I finally had them come to my house and fix whatever was wrong, TWICE. It turned out there actually WAS a problem. There was a broken connection outside my house. They charged ME for the issue that was THEIR fault, though.

The breakup.

After 9 years, I was fed up. I called Time Warner (who had changed their name to Spectrum and promised it had changed), and out came all the bargaining. They offered me all the extras: VoIP phone, cable, free HBO, free Showtime, butt stuff, free Starz, all for $29.99 for a whole year! They had been offering to upsell me all this on my already high bill while we were together, and now that I said I was leaving them, they suddenly want to give this all to me with no strings attached? I never even asked for any of this, but now they were desperate! But I didn’t fall for it. I told them to leave me alone, and I would mail them their things.

Making a person drop of YOUR stuff at THEIR house is a goddamn power play.

Spectrum told me that I could not mail their router to them. I HAD to come to their house to give it to them. I didn’t ask for this router. THEY brought it to my house. THEY should take it out of the house. I was courteous enough to offer to mail it to them. That way, we wouldn’t have to see each other, nerves raw from the breakup. Exes who make you go to their house to give them their own stuff are just manipulative.

Don’t call me; I’ll call you.

I thought I was done with spectrum, but then came all the emails and letters, asking me how I’m doing without them, promising me sweet deals if I get back with them, telling me how bad I am fairing without them and their good service. I am not having any of it, though. I didn’t even open their letters after a while, and I had their email filter straight to the trash bin. Then they starting CALLING me. That is when I lost it. I was trying to get ready my daily workout, but Spectrum wanted to hassle me about getting back together.

“How are you doing without us? Who is your new carrier? Are they treating you well? Will you come back to us?”

I am doing fine. Who I am with is none of your business. How they are treating me is none of your business (but they are treating me great). I will NOT come back to you.

“If you come back, we’ll lock you in at $19.99 for the first year! You’ll get internet, voice, cable, HBO, Showtime, FMF threesomes, Cinemax, Starz, AND the NFL package!”

I DON’T WANT YOUR SERVICES. LEAVE ME ALONE. No matter how sweet they sound, I was with Spectrum for 9 years and KNOW how this plays out.

Calling an ex on a number that they never gave is creepy AF.

Finally, I lost it one day when they called me AT MY JOB. They didn’t even say anything different. They offered the HBO, the Showtime, the anal play, the phone, the internet, the Cinemax, all for a low, low price. However, Spectrum called me at my JOB. I never gave them my work number. I don’t like getting personal calls on my office phone. You do NOT mess with my money because you are in your feelings about a breakup that happened 6 months ago.

Acting nice in public is just that: an act.

After calling me on my work phone, after I told them numerous times to lose my contact information, I put them on blast publicly. I went on a tweet storm and detailed every manipulative thing Spectrum did to me while I was with them, and every time they tried to get back with me after I left them. Then they publicly responded to me as if they were surprised that they had done something wrong. Then they finally claimed that they would stop bothering me for good, but it might take them 60 days to do so. We are at Day 30. So far, I’ve only received one piece of mail a day after I went of on them. Perhaps the deluge has stopped. However, I still am worried a Spectrum service rep will be outside my window holding up a boombox playing our song.

Second guessing is okay, but staying firm is important.

A few days ago, I thought that perhaps I was too harsh. What if it turns out I need Spectrum in the future? Was I too cruel? Then while on business travel, a commercial came on the TV at my hotel. It was Spectrum. They were offering high speed internet for $29.99 with no extra obligations or caveats…but under the flashy “$29.99” image, some small print stated, “when bundled with another service”. THAT’S ANOTHER OBLIGATION OR CAVEAT, SPECTRUM! You ain’t shit! I hope nobody falls for your bullshit. I’m glad I dropped you. If you can, don’t deal with Spectrum. Their business model is Thirsty Emotionally Abusive Ex, and they get away with it because they are usually the only game in town.

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