Is this considered harrassment?
October 26, 2013 12:41pm CST
I got a new job last Fall and a few weeks into the job, a guy started talking to me. He approached me, asked me to go for coffee with him and be friends. We started hanging out and going for coffee at lunch and became (so I thought) good friends. After a few months of hanging out, he says he is interested in me and wants to take me on a date. A few more weeks passes and still no date. I start feeling suspicious of this guy (who, by the way told me from the start that he was single, lived alone and had no kids) and start digging and doing research. He told the name of his ex-girlfriend who he said he dumped because she was a lazy slob who refused to work and she had moved out the previous summer. Well, to make a long story short, I discover that he is still with her, he has a step-daughter and they all live together and have been together for 7 years. And to add insult to injury, she was pregnant while he was hanging out with me and telling me he is interested. I confronted him with this information and instead of providing and explanation or giving an apology, he just blocked me on social networking and on his phone, told me I was crazy, told me to stop contacting him, etc.....I never did anything to this guy....he lied, lead me on and made the rest of my time at that job a living hell. I am now concerned that he is spreading rumors about me and telling people that I am crazy, etc so that his girlfriend and friends and out coworkers will discredit me and think I am a home wrecker when he is the one who came to me! This has caused me a lot of stress, my time was wasted, I have lost even more trust in men, I feel disgusted with myself for having this done to me again (this is not the first time a man has told me he is single but ends up being married) not to mention that I felt uncomfortable going to work everyday because he was there. Its coming up time again to be rehired at that office for the fall and I am worried that I will not get called back because of what he did and how bad it made me look and If I do get called back, Im afraid he will be working there too and I will have to be uncomfortable at work everyday. Would any of you consider this workplace harassment? If it had happened outside of work, it would bother me but not as much...my workplace is supposed to be a safe place for me to go and make an honest living, not a place that makes me miserable and uncomfortable. Should I report what he did? Should I tell my supervisor? Should I tell his wife? This is causing me so much stress and I know I don't deserve it! and I know I didn't do anything wrong but I am paying for what he did and that is not fair! Why are so many people like this. People need to learn that it is NOT ok to treat good people like crap!
1 person likes this
• Cambridge, England
26 Oct 13
You are being harassed, even though you may have agreed to this person's advances in the first place (to a certain extent). Yes, you should tell your supervisor and, if necessary, report it officially in writing to the highest authority in your company as soon as possible and BEFORE your review/rehiring. This is primarily job-related, so you shouldn't need to involve yourself with his 'ex'-GF/wife and, in fact, you should not do so. It is very likely that you are not this person's first 'victim'. If anyone has complained in the past, that will corroborate your story.
3 people like this
• United States
27 Oct 13
Hi Sounds like trouble for sure. It has been my experience over the years that people in the workplace can have underhanded intentions. It doesn't matter if you do anything wrong or not. My experienced advice is to focus on one thing. Doing your job. As I have told several employees previously. No matter how friendly any of them are, you keep in mind that the very ones that try to get closest to you, may be your worst enemy soon. There's usually small groups that stay together no matter how large or small the company is. All of this does not go unnoticed by supervisors, and managers. Believe me, there's already been plenty of talk about you, and probably everyone else there at one time or another. Do not make waves, as it will appear that you are trying to head off something that has already started. If you have further problems that are inappropriate, then discuss it with H.R., or the correct place in that company to document the behavior. They are well aware of all employee situations, from long term ones and newer employees. Do not think anyone can be trusted. Look at everything generically. Apply yourself to do your job. Cross training if it's required, meetings, or anything else that you should be doing so you get decent reviews, and perhaps advance someday. This is provided you plan to stand up tall and perform your duties to earn your pay. If you are already planning to quit, and run off to another job. I say be prepared! There's more of the same waiting for you almost wherever you go. Oh, it may be different somehow, but the problems are always going to come. Make your friends somewhere else. You do realize that his advances were not only false, but wrong to do in the workplace. And, by participating, you also were not acting as a top employee should. They pay you to do your job. Do it. Don't get personal, or take anything personal. Don't ask, or take advice about matters like this from other co-workers Be professional at all times, it will pay off eventually. I am truly sorry to hear you have been placed in such a terrible situation. I wish you the best. Take a pat on the back, and take care.
28 Oct 13
Actually, Johnny, I did not go along with any advances....he approached me for coffee which is something that everyone does AS FRIENDS with cowoerkers...he expressed to be friends and than LATER made advances....what I was going along with from teh start was coffee and friendship...not a relationship other than that....just thought I should clarify that for you....
• Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
27 Oct 13
No, you are not being harassed. Just go about your business, and--if rumors about you come up--tell the gossiping blabbers that it's 'just some people's imagination' ... say something like, "That's a rumor started by one of my coworkers who allowed me to think he was single. When I found out he wasn't, I told him what I found out. And we no longer speak to each other. I thought it would just die out, and had almost forgotten it until you reminded me just now.
• Sumter, South Carolina
27 Oct 13
@Angemac23: Well in a sense, it is sort of harassment; but at this point more of embarrassment. For it to be classified as harassment you would need more ground to establishing how you are indeed being harassed, for now predominantly it would be your word against his without documentation to prove harassment. However, I would report it to your claims dept at the job where they can make a file of it.. as deemed to possibly open a case towards the accusations. I wouldn't permit you to approach the wife for that could possibly make matters worst; and show your trying to cover yourself. I would however start documenting as he approaches you, his demeanor(awkward change of his behavior), etc, that where you have proof. The company itself can't dismiss you for possible rehire especially if they have no valid proof on you from him to instantiate cause for you not to be rehired. By any reason, they do, you can file a compliant with your local LLR Board there. ANOTHER NOTE: How you be merging with these boys is unknown too. I wouldn't be so hard on yourself either Ange; for you can't control the mindset, actions of others. Hey if there are many people who like to have a standby lady when their house blows off the roof, primarily by their lack to being a man... instead acting like a boy. Insecurity plays a major part with some. They(meaning: male and female), have a wonderful spouse.. but can't identify who their with, what they have, for they don't know who they are as a person. So it's like spreading germs; transferring their insecurity into your life. Long message short.... Ange, if you know beyond doubt your not initiating any wrongful vibes, then just continue being you; for "men" aren't as what you were/are being exposed too. Men know how to treat a lady.. boys however don't. Age doesn't make the man or female... character does. Knowing who you are is the first step to defining you!