I’m mad as hell and don’t know what to do about it. I’m thinking far too much about it and want to put the whole situation away. Perhaps you can help me.
Normally, I take the heated issues that take up too much brain span and put them away to consider when I’m not so angry. But this one has me wrapped up in too much rage to tuck away.
This is what happened:
When my mother in law died over two years ago, she left a considerable amount of jewelry for my two daughters. The actual broaches, rings or bracelets were far too elaborate for the girls to wear, yet they wanted to take some of the beautiful gems out of the settings and make pieces they could wear. The price of gold is higher than it ever has been and it’s a good time to sell the settings for cash that both girls could use.
So what do daughters do when they don’t know how to get this done? They ask their mothers. By this time in life, we moms think we know the trustworthy jewelers in the areas who will examine the jewels and exchange them for the appropriate amount of cash.
At least that’s what I thought. But in recent years, I’ve learned that I’m far too trustworthy and have found this out the hard way. But jewelers? I thought a jeweler in our area was honest. After all, she was a woman close in age to me, of the same ethnicity and very kind.
Wrong. But I learned one thing only. I cannot trust just anyone because they look like they can be believed; I have to examine people more carefully as she appeared to be doing when she looked at the girl’s gifts.
There were twelve pieces in all of rings, bracelets, necklaces, broaches and pendants. They were all lovely in their own way, if heavy, ornamental jewelry is your taste. But even the jeweler said that these heavily weighted items were far too much for my dainty girls to wear.
So one by one she checked out the weight of the gold, the inlayed jewels and the composition of each piece. To me, it looked as though she was doing a thoroughly professional job of discerning fourteen carat gold from the eighteen carat, the white gold from the platinum and the value of the stones. After all, I watched her carefully.
After this concentrated examination, she woefully told me that what appeared to be eighteen carat white gold was really stainless steel, although stamped as gold, and a brilliant diamond had a large black spot of carbon in it. Funny--I never noticed that.
My older daughter who is far savvier than I am told the woman that she needed a second opinion and quickly scooped up the jewels to be put back in their silk storage container.
We both walked out sad and discouraged, not ever considering that my wise mother in law would have never been ripped off to that extent, and the perhaps this woman was wrong or even worse--shifty. But instead of worrying, we went to another jeweler in the area to whom I foolishly sold some gold before it went to the heights it currently has reached. The fact I sold before the market soared was not their fault. They gave me fair prices. The least we could do with our jewels of uncertain worth was to let them see them.
Once inside the second store, we were taken to the back for privacy and careful examination, once the jeweler saw the amount of items. He didn’t want the other customers to see these pieces and wonder about them.
Then he offered us seats next to him at his bench where he worked and studied the value of the jewels. With each piece, he explained the era in which it was created, the amount of gold—fourteen or eighteen—and the approximate value of the stones. And the diamond appraised as worthless did not have any inclusions, called black spots by the other jeweler and ended up being worth $2800 alone.
My daughter and I had to force our mouths from dropping open as we heard the sizeable amount of value creep up with every piece. By the end of the examination, we learned that the jewelry without his own percentage of worth was more than four thousand dollars than the first jeweler told us!
You might find it difficult to understand that I was not overjoyed by the worth of the precious gold and jewels; I was sick over the fact that we could have been ripped off by someone that deceitful.
But there I go once more—an innocent among wolves. Fortunately, my daughters have their father’s savvy and concentrated ability to know what they see and hear before they make decisions.
They collected the money that was worthy of their jewelry and celebrated with lunch together. I sat and mourned for my stupidity.
You’d think I don’t have a problem with this since it worked out well in the end, but what I feel is shock and disgust that someone I knew and thought I could trust could try to rip off my daughters this way. It’s weighing on me and I’m not sure how I’m going to handle it, but she must know that the girls got the proper amount of money for their jewels and she was exposed for her dishonesty.
I’ve learned over the years never to put my wrath in writing because it can come back to haunt you, but I must tell her in some manner that I am sickened by her behavior.
As of this moment, I’m still trying to figure out what to do. Clearly, I will tell everyone I know in town that this woman is slick and wholly untrustworthy. I will also continue to do business with the second store that did the right thing by my children. But does anyone who is reading this have any idea as to how to directly handle this woman and make me feel less scorned?