@catlettsl, you may want to try other variations of length and width to get your size dialed in, as a full size up from "snug" does sound excessive (12.5D? 13C? 12E?). and "snug" is usually a good benchmark to hit. but iirc forefoot tightness can be attributed to length depending on the last because if the ball of your foot is extended along the length axis relative to the last's shape, it would manifest itself as lateral tightness. so i don't think that apparent contradiction is necessarily a red flag (going up in length to resolve width).
i've had an AE SA screw up my sizing in the 5 last before so i'm a little less inclined to believe them without testing all alternatives, although if you aggregated the opinions on this thread they would trust the SA in all but the rarest cases