When you go to work, all you want to do is complete your project and get on with your life. Unfortunately, you may have to deal with a creepy colleague or a boss who makes your skin crawl. But you may just try to ignore it because no one is touching you inappropriately or requesting sexual favors from you.
Sexual harassment at work is not always obvious. Sometimes, it is subtle. Here are some red flags that you may be the victim of a hostile work environment due to repeating instances of subtle harassment.
1. You deal with sexual behavior that makes you uneasy
Maybe your colleague is not groping you or asking you to undress, but he or she may be doing the following:
- Stands too close to you
- Stares at you for a long period of time
- Comments on your body
- Talks about sexual experiences
- Asks you about your romantic history
According to the New York Post, feeling uncomfortable is enough to let you know that you are experiencing sexual harassment. Trust your gut.
2. You cannot make it stop
Perhaps you make attempts to make those types of behaviors stop. Maybe you try walking away, changing the subject of conversation or telling the person you have a partner. But despite your efforts, your colleague or superior is not stopping such actions. If these behaviors are persistent and serious, you may be working in an unlawful environment.
3. You do not feel comfortable reporting it
If you lack information on how to file a complaint within your workplace or fear that people will not believe you, your workplace may be fostering an environment that lets harassment go on without remedy. You should feel confident in your right to report behavior that makes you uncomfortable.
These are three warning signs that you may be the victim of subtle harassment at work. Even if you are not ready to file a lawsuit, you should talk to an attorney about your situation to figure out what is going on.