Kim’s Story: Sexual Harassment

Kim’s Story: Sexual Harassment

My name is Kim, I made a complaint about a co-worker that started to harass me at the work place. We started off as
friends but later discovered that he made a career out of sleeping with women on the job
plus he was married. Of course, I wanted my distance afterwards and wanted to keep it
professional only. He continue to try to convince me to have a sexual relationship with him
and second guess my values and beliefs. He didnt stop so I was forced to report the situation
to the manager. They say report sexual harassment but what they dont tell you is once it is
reported, you will be retaliated against and eventually let go. The job was high on male favortism
and bonding therefore I was in the path of the tornado. The manager started calling me back and
forth into the office accusing me of violating company procedures and stealing sales from my coworker.
ALthough, I worked part-time and made more money then the full time people, this was the case.
It didnt matter that I was the top performer there, I made a complaint against one of their friends.
Shortly afterwards, the manager started altering my work and other men joined in on harassing me.
I was hauled into the office with three other angry men all siting around me with hostile faces waiting
to tear me to peices. I was ganged up on, scolded, brainwashed to believed that I was causing all this
trouble. At one point, I started to beleive that I was. I started double and triple checking my work
just to be sure. I was a nervous wreck! I asked to be transferred to another location but my manager
gave me two write ups all in one day to put me in disciplinary action blocking me. It escalated to the
point where I felt physically threatened as i was being ganged up on and attacked in the managers
office. I begged HR to help me but they told me because of the write-ups that I had to wait it out
until the disciplinary action was lifted. Next thing you know, the devil helpers started attacking
my customers and interfering with me completing the sale. The manager would stalk me throughout
the sale floor reminding me of my discipline action and that one more and I would mean
termination. I was repeated to me on a daily basis. It was like he got his kicks off of it. I continue to
report everything to HR but after a while, they started to sound like the men that were harassing
me. They too started putting words into my mouth and convincing me that I admitted to
breaking rules. What? I contacted them on a hotline because I was in so much distress. It was like
being humiliated! The next thing you know, not only was my troubles the man who started it all,
but now I am harassed by three of them. They would signal each other on the floor when I
had customers, setting the situation up for me to be hauled back into the office. It was awful!
They had to have know they were hurting me. There were many times I fled the office in tears
panicking. You see, I have a disability to its not easy for me to quit and start another job. I have
limitations which is why I stayed there for nine months and took it. I was hoping things would die
down and my transfer would be granted. Being attractive in the work place is like a curse. You are
punished with sexually orientated inappropriateness on the job. The manager restricted my
dress attire to all suits and no dresses or boots. Why? Everyone else is wearing what they want.
Why must I alter my appearance to accommodate men that are out of control.? Why is it my
fault? Unfortunately, I lost that battle and was eventually terminated. HR had no intentions on
transferring me. The manager was successful in altering my work to get me fired. It didnt matter
that I reported the incident before and predicted how it would happen. It was all a set up.
I know I should had left but Its not easy for me to find work under my circumstance. Looking
back on it all, I was soooo scared. I had a right to earn a living and I had a right to prosper doing
it. They didnt want me there period! But, it didnt end there. One of the men continue to call me
on the phone and send text messages. He would call me and hold the phone in silence. It wasnt
enough that I was fired. After all that, I tried to start another job a few months later. During
orientation, they spoke about sexual harassment and what to do. The next day in training, I
had a full blown panic attack. How embarrassing was that? I broke down crying uncontrollably
and couldnt stop. I had to excuse myself and never returned. It was the first time I realized
I needed help. I cried for a full week. Unfortunately, my sister has to help me pay bills and take
care of things. I ended up on a psychiatric medication to keep me from drifting into a deep
depression. I gained twenty pounds which I didnt need, and is working on trying to restore
myself back to who I once was. I am in no shape to go back to work no time soon, but I am
learning to take one day at a time. It is so hard to do that when you are worried about money,
Yes, I am angry when I think about the ordeal and I have violent thoughts. God said, “let
vengeance be mine”., so I put the thoughts behind me and go on. Sometimes it is a cold world
out here. How could these men constantly hurt me over and over again? I had dreams for
weeks after I was let go about angry men chasing me. Its every where I go. If you are attractive,
thats a problem.! Men are out of control in the work force. Its like you get no peace on the job.
I know there are many other who are going through the same thing. What are we suppose to
do? Anyway, I just needed to share this with someone.

Author

WYR

WYR

When You're Ready.org is a community for survivors of sexual violence to share their stories.

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