Dear Billy T and Somerville News Weekly Speakup Line,
Our local as well as municipal employers her in this very city should hold sexual harassers accountable!
Could you please do an investigative series on sexual harassment stories from victims working for the city? You should!
Maybe this letter to the editor will encourage other victims in Somerville to break their silence and “Speakup!”
“There is not a woman I know,” Driver said, “myself included, who has not experienced verbal abuse and sexual epithets their whole fucking life, right up to being manhandled and having my career threatened several times by men I wouldn’t sleep with.”
Here’s my take on sexual harassment —
As someone who encountered it at the workplace, I’d say it’s one of the most difficult problems to face especially by men in powerful positions.
Again, this is where employers fail because their first consideration is protecting the men in power not the woman who support them or work in the same office. In most cases, the women are wrongfully terminated (they will make up lies to get rid of employees who won’t go along), and faced to pay thousands to pursue legal action if they decide to take that route, but most don’t have $100k+ to spend on their case and why these men will target vulnerable, single women.
Generally, there is a reason why they are targeted and it has nothing to do with sex- it’s all about power and control. If the woman poses a threat, does not go along with the politics or wrong doing, it’s only a matter of time she is discredited out of her job and labeled.
I’ve seen this happen too many times to women. In most cases, they are forced out due to other powers at play, internal conflicts with managers or women sociopaths in power who are envious.
The completion at the workplace can get fierce when bosses pit employees with one another. The media does not report much of what goes on or how it starts from the beginning. What can seem like an innocent friendship at work can become a nightmare of one person unable to handle rejection and the innocent worker who tries to escape them.
Women in power are also to blame for sexual harassment in the workplace. But most men are unwilling to come forward with their stories because society expects men to deal with it on their own.
I was later told that a woman in power was forcing male employees to visit her at her home when her husband was out of town. This is how some bosses control their employees. I was told by a guy at work who refused the invitation. Turns out the person who harassed me was boss of the female harassing male workers.
In this case, she got the boot but many years later. As did the woman I supported who was siding with the male harasser( while using services of female harasser), I was dealing with— all were trying desperately to save their jobs and using employees in anyway they could to supply information. If you didn’t go along, you would get a poor performance review then threatened with “job elimination”.
If these jobs are high profile and political— it’s a hard climb so be prepared to deal with the destruction, fallout and consequences.
When you are dealing with an employer who provides your income, it is very difficult to ignore this problem because you find yourself pretending that it doesn’t bother you. Then you have to deal with the office whores (men and women, but mostly women), who will resent you and consider it wanted attention when it is not.
The only recourse is to get out. Lastly, there is a big difference in leading someone on and telling them to F off. Even when you tell them to F off they won’t go away, sometimes it makes the predator worse. They turn it into a sick game. I do understand why women may try to go along. They are trying to save their jobs — also those who get caught up and hoping if they go along it will stop.
Once you are placed into that situation- it does not matter. Nothing will ever be the same again. Even if you tell them you are involved with someone else, it won’t matter. The woman’s reputation will always cost more. This man has been getting away with it for years. He’s feared due to his position and his connections.
The other issue is when people lie for revenge. I don’t doubt this happens and those who put innocent people through this hell, I’d say some form of punishment needs to be enforced just as upon the sexual harasser.
On some level, I’m also wondering about this becoming an out of control witch hunt to stir up more lawsuits for lawyers and remove targeted employees who refuse to participate in these cesspools.
I assure you, if the victims were allowed to share their stories without the backlash, the public would be shocked at who the sexual harassers are and where these incidents take place.
There’s also go to be an underlying mental illness in most cases of these bullies. Most likely they were abused as children and dealing with deep rooted insecurity issues and rejection. The two I knew, people pretended to like them because otherwise they would get targeted. I rejected both (man and two women), but in the end, I still became unemployed. All I can hope for is karma…. mom always said, “you reap what you sow”.
Not you average Jane Doe of Somerville/Out for Justice