am i being sexually harrassed or just flirted with?? I dont know!

(18 Posts)
karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 15:41:16

Me: five years with my OH, in our early 40's happy most of the time.
I just started working at a company as a volunteer around three months ago. From the outset it was obvious my direct supervisor and I have some kind of chemistry, basically a lot of banter which is sometimes flirtatious but was harmless. This person is like this with everyone young old, etc it's a very friendly laid back office. About a month ago , he came to my office to say goodbye before leaving for the day, I was seated, him standing as he said goodbye he kissed me on top of my head. I thought it a bit odd but laughed it off. The next day he did it again. And the next. I couldn't decide in my head if I felt violated or like the attention??! Anyway, the other night was our first works party at which he told me he likes me, thinks I am very sexy etc, again couldnt decide if flattered or violated..he asked me to take his number but I didnt. Today at work, it was a bit awkward to start but then banter started flowing again. Whispering to me I'm sexy and even secretly touched my hair. As I left he gave me a note with his number on in front of everyone under the guise of me letting him know when I could work next week. My friends think I am giving him mixed messages by having banter with him, he knows I have a partner and I can't decide whether I am actually attracted to him or it's just the attention from the boss thing. I don't know if he's behaving inappropriately even but I tend to feel he would get into trouble if those above knew. I don't feel intimidated just confused!

Madlizzy Fri 15-Aug-14 15:48:30

Yes, he's being inappropriate and you're not discouraging him. You need to takea step back and tell him that you're not available.

DoItTooJulia Fri 15-Aug-14 15:49:49

I don't think it is what a usually happens in a workplace.

It all sounds a bit weird. Does your oh know or are you keeping all of this from him. If you haven't told him, I think you know that it's not ok.

I wouldn't continue to volunteer there if I was you. Put your goodwill and energy elsewhere.

Whether or not it's harassment? I'm inclined to say it is inappropriate. You're allowed friendly banter without it being seen as a come on.

ThePrisonerOfAzkaban Fri 15-Aug-14 15:55:49

Tell him no, if it continues its harassment. Or you start shagging him

LadyLemongrab Fri 15-Aug-14 15:56:06

Do you have to be either 'flattered or violated'?
Seems a rather passive stance either way.
How about he's a smarmy git and you are lapping it up? (If that's what you are doing)
Or he's a smarmy git and you are uncomfortable and don't know how to deal with it?

You need to decide what you genuinely feel about this situation because that's what will dictate how you should respond.

If he believes you want to start some sort of affair with him then his behaviour is fairly standard I'd assume.

If he does not believe you want any such thing then he is a creep.

Context. You need to decide what the context is here and behave accordingly (including a word with HR if necessary).

My own opinion, just based on the details in you op (which I understand may not be a clear picture) is that he's a creep but genuinely thinks his advances are welcome and you get off on the attention so don't want to cut that off by making it clear you don't want to shag him. Which makes you both rather seedy and pathetic.

lottieandmia Fri 15-Aug-14 15:57:08

You shouldn't be encouraging him to do this if you don't want to destroy your current relationship.

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 15:59:47

My OH knows because the first time it happened it was so random I told him about it straight away as in 'can you believe this?' He's not overly jealous so I wasn't worried about his reactionhe was just a bit confused like me. I love that we have the banter and as I say I personally don't feel intimidated or bothered by it per se (which is the bit that confuses me really) I tend to feel if he really was after me he wouldn't be that obvious if that makes sense but maybe he really is just that brazen. And yes, I do like being told I look sexy who doesnt and he's not lechy just complimentary - so you see why I'm confused..

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 16:01:47

If he was lecherous with it I would totally understand him being considered a creep.

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 16:03:07

I agree with you and I don't want to, I really don't. But attention is so addictive is it not :-(

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 16:04:57

DoItTooJulia , I love working there and just fit in, everyone is lovely

LadyLemongrab Fri 15-Aug-14 16:08:21

No. It's really not.
Sexual attention from someone you're sexually attracted to and when you're both on the same page is fab, but from Dave in Accounts? Just because he does it with everyone? Nah.

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 16:46:57

Yeh I know what you mean, I don't mean he does that with everyone (to my knowledge!) Just that he is friendly with everyone, well everyone is with everyone its a great place. I almost want to ask someone but only been there a few months so no strong confidences yet. Whether I am sexually attracted to him or not I don't know that's the weird bit.

Merinda Fri 15-Aug-14 16:53:16

It does sound creepy and inappropriate.

antimatter Fri 15-Aug-14 16:59:56

You said you were flirting with him and you are asking if his actions are indeed rooted in flirting?

Just stop by. Ask him for a quiet word and say that you are feeling uncomfortable and tell him to stop.

IMHO and I know I am in minority I dislike "flirting" in the office/at work.
Work is not for socialising/flirting because everyone has different understanding where boundaries should be drawn.
Not worth the hassle.

PuppyMonkey Fri 15-Aug-14 17:01:29

Well, IMHO constantly telling someone how sexy you think they are is not so much banter as trying to pull . confused

sebsmummy1 Fri 15-Aug-14 17:07:17

I think this is potentially dangerous because I don't think you fancy him but enjoy and are flattered by him fancying you. So you are being flirtatious but I don't think you actually want to go anywhere with this, if you did you wouldn't have told your partner.

Problem is the deeper you get into this with your boss you have no way of telling how far he wants to take it. He may not want to take no for an answer in the next works party for example and before you know it you will be accused of being a 'prick tease' or 'asking for it'.

In your situation I would be knocking the banter on the head or volunteering elsewhere.

karma124 Fri 15-Aug-14 17:31:42

I hear you.

DoItTooJulia Fri 15-Aug-14 17:45:14

I think you've got it bad! smile

I think you need to tread cautiously. If you want to avoid disruption to your life you'd move on. Don't be fooled by the thrill.

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