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Keep Your Hands Off

By Barrington H. Brennen, May 9, 2009


Last week I exposed the truth about marital rape. However, many men are still perturbed with my view that a husband can rape his wife. They say, "Thatís impossible. A woman must never refuse her husband sexually." Isnít that sad! These extremely traditional, rigid, and misguided men are allowing their false theology and traditional family teaching to blur their objective thinking. They are reducing their wives to sex machines.


The truth is that many of these men have been taught to use women to satisfy their sexual urges. "Thatís what they are for," they exclaim. They were not taught to honor and cherish women in the fullest sense. Many men do appear to be respectful, kind, and gentle to their partners but when the urge to have sex takes over, they act like bulls or dogs in heat.

This could explain why there is so much sexual harassment in the workplace. These men are very often the ones who cannot keep their hands off women. They lean on them, touch their hips and breasts, put their arms around their waists, and even try to kiss them. Letís not leave out the women who also try to seduce men on the job. Sexual misconduct is becoming more and more prevalent.



Some are just plain ignorant about what constitutes sexual harassment while many others are just acting foolishly with persons of the complementary sex in the work place. Hence, let me define sexual harassment in a simple way.  Sexual harassment is: Unsolicited physical contact and advances toward someone.  A demand or request for sexual favors; Sexually-colored remarks with colleagues on the job; Showing pornography; and any other unwelcomed physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct of a sexual nature. Interestingly, the victim could be the person harassed as well as anyone affected by the offensive conduct. Has your boss ever stopped by and rubbed your shoulders while he "checked out the work you were doing?Ē Or does your co-worker  constantly stop by to flirt with you? A comment like, "Wow, you have sexy hips" can be sexual harassment



The universal statistics are alarming. Here they are: 31% of the female workers claim to have been harassed at work. 7% of the male workers claim to have been harassed at work, 62% of targets took no action. 100% of women claim the harasser was a man. 59% of men claim the harasser was a woman. 41% of men claim the harasser was another man. In The Bahamas more and more persons are reporting sexual harassment. The statistics are embarrassing and frightening. It is time that we take a serious look at a program that educates and trains both men and women about respectful behavior towards each another.



People in the work place can set boundaries to reduce sexual harassment. Here are some suggestions: Avoid meeting privately after hours or over lunch; Avoid sending personal E-mail and fax notes to co-workers; Avoid lingering glances or touches, even a good morning hug; Shake hands only; Avoid texting a co-worker with whom you do not have an intimate relationship;  and avoid fantasies about co-workers.


Next week I will explore more on sexual harassment in the workplace. Barrington Brennen is a marriage and family therapist. Send you comments or questions to question@coralwave.com, or call 1242 323 8772 or visit www.soencouragement.org






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