A woman has praised a Starbucks barista for coming to her rescue while being harassed by a male customer whose refusal to leave her alone made her anxious.
Avery Spencer, 23, was working at one of the coffee chain’s locations in Orem, Utah, on Tuesday when a stranger sat next to her and wouldn’t stop talking to her, causing her to film the awkward interaction.
In the video shared on her @greenybeany420 TikTok account, she looked visibly tense as she tried to brush away the man who spoke to her. Just then, Starbucks sports director Tiffany LeMair Clark, 34, came over to check on her and refill her drink.
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Bullied: Avery Spencer, 23, was working at one of the coffee chain’s locations in Orem, Utah, on Tuesday when a stranger sat down next to her and wouldn’t stop talking
Help: In the video shared on TikTok, she looked visibly tense as she tried to brush the man away. Then Starbucks Shift Chief Tiffany LeMair Clark, 34, came by to check on her
The footage then cut to Avery who told what had just happened while she was safely in her car in her parking lot.
“This man sits down next to me and he won’t leave me alone,” she said. “I’ve made it abundantly clear that I don’t want to talk. I call my husband six times. I tell him I’m working on something very time-sensitive, and I don’t have time to talk. He won’t leave me alone.’
Avery, who didn’t know Tiffany’s name at the time, noted that as soon as the man started to make her feel uncomfortable, a “super attentive” Starbucks employee walked up to her and offered to refill her drink.
“As she goes down to pick up my empty cup, she leans down and whispers and says, ‘We’ve had a problem with this guy. If he makes you uncomfortable, let us know,'” she explained. .
“She’s actually letting me know that they’re going to be watching me, and that they know this guy is harassing me, which was already so reassuring to hear.”
Not only: Avery, who didn’t know Tiffany’s name at first, said it was “so comforting” to know the employee was watching her
Avery began recording the interaction as Tiffany refilled her drink, and the video showed the Starbucks employee doing her best to stay near her, even offering to refill her water bottle.
The TikToker said she was grateful that the barista was there for her, and recalled being harassed a number of times in a coffee shop and denied support.
She eventually decided to leave because she was almost done with work and was feeling “anxious,” but she was full of praise for the Starbucks team who offered to remove the man from the property.
“They were just so observant,” she said toward the end of the video. “They were just there right away and helpful and I’m just grateful to them for that. So thanks to those baristas.’
Avery’s TikTok has been viewed 1.4 million times and has received more than 1,000 likes. Many commentators said they were glad she was safe and shared their own stories of bullying.
Struggle: Avery explained in a series of follow-up videos that she has “terrible fear” and tried to “must gather the courage” to tell the man to leave her alone when the worker intervened
Support System: A number of viewers shared their support for Avery in the comments, including Tiffany
However, there were those who chided her for not yelling or being more direct, with one person pointing out that she never specifically told the man that he was making her uncomfortable.
Avery explained in a series of follow-up videos that she has “terrible fear” and that she was trying to “must gather the courage” to tell the man to leave her alone when the employee intervened.
A number of TikTok users came to her aid, with many pointing out that being aggressive or arguing with men can make situations like this worse.
After Tiffany reached out to her in the comments and explained that she was the one who helped her, Avery shared her TikTok handle, telling her nearly 100,000 followers to “give her some hype.”
Tiffany posted her own TikTok video about the man, explaining that she was already on edge when he came in for harassing the venue’s baristas.
“I’ve been working for the past seven days and I’ve seen him almost every day,” she said.
Hero: Tiffany later shared her own TikTok video about the incident, saying she wanted Avery to know she was ‘not alone’
Praise: Avery was among those who responded to the comments thanking her for the way she handled the situation
According to Tiffany, they’ve had customers harassing the baristas in the past, but they usually walked away as soon as they realized the staff were busy and unable to talk.
‘This gentleman in question didn’t. He obviously couldn’t read that he was making my staff uncomfortable,” she said, noting that he harassed both the female and male employees at the site.
Tiffany said she struggles with panic attacks, anxiety and depression herself, so she was quick to notice Avery’s body language as he spoke to her.
“I just wanted her to know that she was being supported, that she wasn’t alone, that she wasn’t alone,” she said. “Because so many people feel that way, and I didn’t want her to feel alone.”
Tiffany ended the video by saying that the incidents have been reported but that the police were not involved. She and another employee personally escorted him out of the building.
“I’m glad she felt safe,” she said of Avery.