Keep your eyes to yourself
September 29, 2010 8:53 AM Subscribe
How do you deal with unwanted staring from men in the workplace?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (52 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
I am a late 20s woman that recently started working for a large company with a male-dominated environment. I have dealt with overt sexual harassment before, but what I am encountering at this particular company is something different.
I am constantly stared at by men. I mean, really seriously ogled. On the elevator, in the hallways, in the cafeteria, everywhere. I have never gotten an inappropriate comment or even so much as a flirtatious smile, but somehow this company seems to have an unwritten rule that as long as you're not actually saying anything inappropriate, feel free to leer away! It makes me incredibly uncomfortable to say the least.
I'm attractive, but not some sort of superhot head-turner. At least I don't think so. I try to dress conservatively, although I do often wear skirts and have long hair and look "traditionally" feminine. And you know, fuck it - I really don't want to have to change any of that just not be leered at.
This is not the sort of thing I would go to HR about, because it might make me seem crazy or paranoid ("Everybody's looking at you.... right...") plus there is really nothing I can do to prove my claim. So what can I do combat this? Should I verbally confront the starers? Ignore? Shoot deadly glares? Try harder to downplay my looks? (As mentioned, I don't think I should have to but am willing to do it if helps resolve the issue.) Do I just have to get over it and accept it? I'm interested to know how other women have handled this situation, although I am a bit nervous discussing the issue with other women at the company, again because I don't want to come across as paranoid or somehow attention-seeking.