Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Social ScienceGender Studies · 10 years ago

Women don’t think twice about reporting a male co-worker for harassment, so why should I feel bad about it?

Six months ago, I began working at this job. From the beginning, I had a lot of problems with this woman. She would always call me a f@g, and tell me to tell everyone I’m gay. She would always say to everyone since I was 28, single, with no girlfriend I had to be a f@ggot.

I bought this book about handling such situations, and I did what I read. I began recording in writing everything that she said, along with the date, and time she said. I also began recording her comments at lunch with a microcassette recorder. Eventually, I went to Human Resources, and reported her, and threaten to sue the company for never having done anything to resolve this situation for never doing anything despite everyone in the office being aware of the situation, and despite me previously having asked my supervisor to help me out with this situation.

They fired her from the company, I was glad. But now no one is talking to me, they all look at me like I’m the bad guy. I don’t understand why I am the bad guy. No one ever said anything when she was harassing me, I don’t see why I should feel bad for doing what I did.

Women never think twice about reporting a male co-worker who is constantly calling them names in front of everyone. Why should I feel bad about reporting her?

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  • 10 years ago
    Best answer

    No, you're not the bad guy, but you do mention some assumptions you've made about other people's feelings & attitudes. The first one is "Women don't think twice about reporting..." How do you know that? You don't. It would be just as likely that many women find it as difficult as you, thinking not just twice but perhaps several times a day for a year or more.

    Later, you claim to know why no one is talking to you & what they're thinking. You could be right, but it could be that they're uncomfortable & don't feel they're close enough to you to discuss the situation with you. I'm not familiar with your workplace, but I do hope you find a way to put this to rest. It could take a long time, maybe confiding in a co--worker what a difficult situation it was.

    It is indeed horrible when people aren't talking to you. Let's just hope they're working off some of your bad karma for you & that eventually it will all fade away & be forgotten. Be a part of things by your presence & participation in such things as pot luck parties. At the same time, don't force your way into other people's conversations. Just cool your heels & work hard. You might mention to the supervisor how awful it feels, but how happy you've always been with the job. It might be good to do that before your annual evaluation.

    Good luck! If nothing else, maybe eventually you'll leave with a level feeling behind you, with no one saying anything bad in the end & barely remembering the situation. When you look for future jobs, don't drag this situation out. It had to be dealt with, & it's regrettable but that's the end.

  • 10 years ago

    You shouldn't feel bad about it. If it was a reverse case the same reaction might take place. Especially if the offender was liked by some. After all the harasser lost her job. She deserved to but, those not dealing with the harassment may not see it as so bad (of course because they were not the victim). I would just do my job the best I could and give them time to sort it out. She may had preformed her job well or was just liked as I mentioned. Often times people overlook flaws of others if they have something to gain or if they like the better side of the person. You were right in doing what you did. Under such circumstances things could escalate to where someone actually gets hurt. You did her a favor and maybe next time she will think twice about her actions.

  • Erin
    Lv 7
    10 years ago

    The unfortunate thing is it's common for a victim of a crime to receive the blame. And it's difficult to stop it. You did the right thing. Don't feel bad about what you did. And remember, the people you work with are not your friends. If they now consider you to be the bad guy, let them. Just remain professional in the workplace and they'll eventually realize they were wrong in placing the blame on you.

    I speak from personal experience. I was blacklisted not only by my coworkers, but management and HR as well. My crime? Reporting an assault. Yes, that's right. A coworker got angry with me and punched me while we were still in the office, on the clock. There were no witnesses, yet I was the one with the mark on my face. She was fired and I was blamed. I was written up by management and HR and my next review and raise were greatly effected because I reported the assault. My only mistake in this situation was being compassionate toward the person who assaulted me. She was a friend and I knew she had a lot of problems. I wanted her to get help, not fired. My company could have suspended her until she had gotten the mental health she needed. It's been done before for other people. Had I reported this incident to the police instead of showing compassion, I would not have received a write-up by my manager nor had my review and raise affected. So, I know what it's like to be blamed for doing the right thing.

  • 10 years ago

    You shouldn't feel bad about it at all. What she did was clearly workplace bullying/sexual harassment; just because the perpetrator is a woman does not make it acceptable or in any way palatable.

    You did the right thing in recording her behavior and reporting it. Your supervisor has culpability in this as well if you reported it earlier and nothing was done. Ignoring reports of sexual harassment is illegal as well.

    Unfortunately, and stupidly, there is a stigma attached to men who report woman for sexual harassment. Ironically, the common view is that all men must 'want it' -- the sexual attention. However, ask people if a woman should have to tolerate unwanted attention and the answer is a resounding and deafening no! The assumption, about men who report, is that they are 'wimps' or 'less masculine' for doing so. But that is utter garbage.

    Good for you.

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  • Renee
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Your co workers are probably afraid of you. They will settle down with time. You were brave to do that. I wish I had your courage to report people at work. I didn't want to go through what you did, I just wanted away from them.

  • 10 years ago

    You were being harassed and you did what you had to do to stop it. Good for you. Don't feel bad. I reported a guy once and I got the cold shoulder for a while. People just don't like telling but when they are the one being treated bad they will tell too.

  • 10 years ago

    Woman cannot harass men because of the power differential between men and women. You see, women are members of the oppressed class and men are members of the oppressing class.

    "All sex, even consensual sex between a married couple, is an act of violence perpetrated against a woman."

    Catherine MacKinnon, inventor of the sexual harassment paradigm

  • 10 years ago

    You did the right thing! She was overboard. In this case it'll probably take time for your co-workers to get over this because she was there longer, thus able to create relationships with them, which you weren't able to have because she always downed you.

    Just be really friendly and let them know that you're willing to be friendly.

  • 10 years ago

    You shouldn't! All that was completely out of line, and she deserved to be fired.

    But to be honest, if you were a female who got the well-liked male boss fired, the reaction wouldn't be different.

  • 10 years ago

    I think the main reason why they are not talking to you, is because they were probably friends with her, and as such it could also be the reason why they never stood up to you when she was bullying you.

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