When Flirting Crosses The Line: What Men Should Do About Sexual Harassment At The Office

Posted on: 2 June 2016

More often than not, you will hear stories about sexual harassment and the women at the hearts of these stories. However, men are and can be sexually harassed as well. Just like male rape victims, men who are sexually harassed are less likely to come forward and report their harassers. If you are man working in an office with lots of women, and it seems like one woman (or another man) in particular has gone from harmless flirting to something scarier or more threatening, you can (and should!) take action. Here is what you should do if you think you have been the victim of sexual harassment at your office/workplace.

Tell a Direct Supervisor or HR Person

You can speak privately to a direct supervisor behind closed doors, if it makes the situation more comfortable for you. If you are worried about what others in the office might say, ask to meet your supervisor before the start of your shift or just after it. If your supervisor does not handle sexual harassment complaints and refers you to your company's Human Resources (HR) department, or if your boss is actually the harasser, then speak to an HR person about the suspected harassment actions. Whomever you speak to, make sure they are aware of all of the incidents wherein you refused the attention of this other employee so that the situation is well-documented.

Document the Situation Yourself and Keep the Harasser's "Gifts" or "Love Letters"

As uncomfortable as it may seem, you need to document all incidents where your harasser touched you and made you feel uncomfortable, told you dirty jokes, flirted inappropriately, left you gifts, treats, or "love letters" and did anything else that could be considered unprofessional or inappropriate. All of this adds up in the event that you need to file a sexual harassment suit. If the situation really gets out of hand and this person is following you outside of work, involve the police as well, since you may need a restraining order. 

Getting a Restraining Order and Filing a Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Restraining orders and sexual harassment lawsuits should only occur as last resorts to the problem you are facing. Your sexual harassment lawyer will want to know that you exhausted all other avenues of trying to get this person to stop their behavior and leave you alone. When you can show that you have a documented case of constant pursuit and inappropriate behavior, along with all of your rebuttals and refusals to engage this person, and that your employer has done very little to stop the situation, then you have a case that your lawyer can definitely take on.

For a sexual harassment lawyer, contact a law firm such as Campbell, Dille, Barnett & Smith, P.L.L.C.