When most people think of sexual harassment in the workplace, they imagine a man harassing a woman.  But there are cases where women harass women, men harass men, and women harass men. In fact, the law often prohibits sexual harassment by men or women against people of the same opposite sex.

Sexual harassment occurs when someone engages in unwanted sexual conduct

Sexual harassment occurs when someone engages in unwanted sexual conduct in the workplace that affects you, your job, the work environment, as well as other people in the workplace.

Type of harassment

For example, it may happen that a supervisor or someone in authority over an employee requests or implies an unwanted sexual demand in exchange for something positive at work, such as getting a promotion or not being fired. Meanwhile, a hostile environment can also develop which occurs when the workplace environment becomes intimidating or offensive due to sexual actions and comments. Examples may include sexual jokes and comments,  sexual harassment, lewd comments, degrading images, and / or unwanted sexting.

If a boss has exhibitionist behavior in front of employees, it is harassment

For example, a boss may have an obsession with an employee’s breasts and if she touches them without permission or asks to be shown them, even in a ‘joking’ tone, we are facing sexual harassment. If a boss has an exhibitionist behavior in front of employees, it is also harassment.

Why don’t people report same-sex sexual harassment ?

Most researchers suggest that the actual number of people who have experienced same-sex sexual harassment is likely higher than currently reported. In fact, it is extremely difficult to measure how often it occurs in the workplace because people often never make a complaint. 

Victims of sexual harassment worry that they are somehow guilty

Aside from the fact that it is difficult to report and prove, victims of sexual harassment often worry that they are somehow guilty of the unwanted sexual advances, that is, that they feel bad that they have actually ‘led’ to that happens. Additionally, they worry about what others will think of them if they complain, especially when the harasser is of the same sex. They are often ashamed of what is happening to them.

Another reason for not reporting sexual harassment includes fear of retaliation. Sexual harassment is often ignored or trivialized by management within organizations. Furthermore, when victims say something about the treatment or ask for it to stop, they are often met with hostility and accusations from others. However, experts expect to see an increase in the number of complaints of same-sex sexual harassment as employees gain more power. In general, people are more willing to stand up to others and point out that their civil rights have been violated than before.

Why do people sexually harass others?

Too often when someone is sexually harassed at work, people begin to question the role the victim played in the abuse. But psychologists warn against this view of blaming the victims. Most would say that regardless of the gender and sexual orientation of the perpetrator, sexual harassment is driven by anger and insecurity as much as attraction. 

Sexual harassment has more to do with using a position of power to control and hurt

In fact, most people who sexually harass others, regardless of whether they are male or female, seek to control and dominate others. The bully feels more in control when he has power over another person. Additionally, some stalkers seek to embarrass and humiliate their targets rather than sexually stimulate or flirt with them.

Sexual harassment has more to do with using a position of power to control and hurt another person. Meanwhile, others say that sexual harassment is a form of manipulation in the workplace . It is a way of inadvertently devaluing someone’s work by drawing attention to their sexuality.

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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