Is it Still Sexual Harassment if it is From a Family Member?
Sexual harassment lawyers will tell you that sexual harassment is any unwanted sexual behavior. It can come from anyone…a boss, a neighbor, a friend, a family member. Whether it is touching, flirting, inappropriate jokes or comments of a sexual nature —it is sexual harassment.
When this type of behavior comes from a family member, often the family member will describe it as “teasing.”But don’t be made to feel guilty about not liking the unwanted sexual behavior or comments directed toward you. Or that you understand that it is more than teasing.
Sexual harassment lawyers will tell you that the “teasing”can quite easily cross a line into sexual harassment territory. No one should have to deal with this type of harassment.
When you are experiencing unwanted behavior or comments, here is some advice from sexual harassment lawyers:
- Tell The Harasser(s) to Stop — The first thing you should always try to do if you are experiencing any type of sexual harassment, is to indicate that you do not like the behavior and would like for it to stop.
Sexual harassment lawyers says you should indicate that you would like the harassment to stop as soon as you experience it, preferably indicating your wishes in front of witnesses. It is also advised not to try to laugh off the harassment. Don’t smile or give the harasser any indication that you are taking their behavior as a joke.
- Keep Records — Another tip from sexual harassment lawyers is to keep a written record of all sexual harassment incidents. Every time you experience the harassment, you should write the date, time and a full description of what happened.
You should also include the names of the people who might have witnessed you being sexually harassed. In addition, record your response to the harassment and how you indicated that you wanted the harasser to stop. The written records will also validate your own self-doubt about the situation that could creep up. If you begin to doubt that you are being sexually harassed, you can review your own records to remember what has happened to you and the effects it has had on your life.
- Report The Harassment — Sexual harassment lawyers will tell you that if you have asked the harasser to stop the harassment but the behavior has not come to an end, it is time to report the behavior to an authority.
If the sexual harassment is happening at work, report it to a boss or to human resources. If the sexual harassment is happening at school, report it to the proper authority. If the harassment is coming from a family member, it is important to report the behavior to someone you love and trust.
The most important thing to remember when you are experiencing sexual harassment is that you don’t have to be isolated and alone any longer. Sexual harassment can be embarrassing. It can make you feel ashamed. But it doesn’t have to.
Contact a sexual harassment lawyer if you require any legal help in your specific situation. Don’t wait until you feel depressed and anxious about your situation. Don’t let yourself get to the point where you feel unsafe. Call someone today.