By Yetunde Arebi
Sexual harassment is no
longer a myth in our society. From the offices to schools and even social andÂ religious places, it is the same story. Often times, victims only end up being victimised again as they end up being blamed They must have done something to warrant such harassment. What could this be? How does one shake off a sexual harassment?
What happens after an harassment has successfully taken place? With these questions in mind, we asked a few respondents who all claimed to have fallen victims of sexual harassment, how it happened and what they did afterwards.
As usual, we are expecting you to send in your contributions on this issue. We will also be glad if you can share a true life experience of you or someone you know along with your contribution. Our mailing addresses remain: The Human Angle, Vanguard, P.M.B. 1007, Apapa, Lagos. Or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Susan,22,an undergraduate, tells a vivid story of sexual harassment of students by lectures in one of the nationâ€™s institutions of higher learning with a personal experience.Â Her story continues today. Happy reading!
As soon as the first few hiccups sounded, he just told me to forget about it as my tears would not change the situation. I should just respect myself and get it over with. He even told me that I should pray that he should not enjoy it, as that is the only way he would not come at me again. And so, that was how Moses, a self acclaimed religious zealot, social critic, and advocate of accountability and good governance, had his way with me.
I laid there like a log, and he kept hissing and jerking at my legs, instructing that I should move along with him. I just continued crying and remained as stiff as I could muster the energy. The man was not only dirty in character, he was dirty physically.
His vest was discoloured, I doubt if it could ever be washed to get back its original white colour again. The same went for his pants, he had tangled hair on his chest and body and he stank of sweat. But I could not complain, he was not my boyfriend.
I could now see a clearer picture of the man I was dealing with. He has a very big complex, he knew he was no good and most girls would not want him for himself. He was just using the powers within his means to get what he wanted.
And suddenly, I realised that I was not afraid of him any longer, that I could even be rude to him if I felt like it and there was nothing he could do about it, I was however grateful that he bothered to use a condom, because if he had not, I would not have been able to ask him to at the time. And with his dirty appearance, one can only wonder what I could be risking my life over.
I did not say anything to him, 1 just took my clothes, went to clean myself and waited for him to dismiss me. When he did, I did not bid him goodbye, I just walked out. I next saw him in class. I was wearing one of the blouses heâ€™d earlier criticised, but he did not say anything, after all, heâ€™d already had his fun at my expense. I was to later discover that I was not the only victim in the same class.
It is on record now that he has had his way with two other girls, all of them heavily built (busty) like me. I guess that is the attraction, it had nothing to do with our style of dressing. He likes girls with large breasts and that is all.Â I have since summoned up courage to tell a few friends, at least, so they will know who he really is and perhaps, pass the word around.
It has worked because many now know he can only bark, he does not have the capability of bitting anyone. Even those who have failed his course are bluffing him, they have vowed to deal with him soon. If he is watching his back, no one knows yet. But Iâ€™m sure he is already feeling the vibes all around him.
Daniel, 27 Administrative Personnel,
The issue of sexual harassment is not a new one to the ears, it is a thing that has been in existence in our society since ages past, despite the fact that we try to sweep it under the carpet. My case is not quite different from those of others, its just that I am a guy and lot of people feel it is quite unusual My name is Daniel, a 27 year old. I am very handsome and well cultured and goal driven. My sexual harassment began when I got employed in the firm I did my youth service.
As I did brilliantly well at any job, within a few months I was promoted and transferred to a new branch as the administrative personnel. My new boss in this branch happened to be a woman of repute, married with two kids and between the ages of 38 and 40.
The two kids, I heard, were studying abroad. Despite the fact that she had kids, she was still a beauty to behold. To crown it all, she was very disciplined and hard working, I found out later that she was an interesting person to work with. Initially, she kept according me compliments even for the most insignificant achievement I made, then I felt she was just being appreciative but I was wrong because I found out pretty soon what she was up to.
She never failed to shower me with gifts whenever she happened to go on any of her numerous trips, This gift issue I resented so much, inside of me; but courtesy demands I accept them. And when ever I received such gifts, I didnâ€™t fail to thank her. In her own words, she would say â€œnever mind, itâ€™s the little I can do for a handsome and hard working guy.â€
Things continued like this until she felt I wasnâ€™t noticing her disguised techniques enough. Barely few months after I started working under her, she made bold her passes. Her actions really irritated me because as a Christian and a child of God, I felt it was improper for a married woman to be involved in such acts. And so, not only did I become uncomfortable with her attitude, she made the office unconducive for me to work.
Before now, I had heard rumours concerning her exploits with young men, and I did my best to be carful. So I guarded against being a prey to her whenever the time arose. I prayed also and believed God was in control.
In everything she did, I found solace in God and when she realized I was not interested in her, she seriously waged war against me. Indeed, things were really not easy as she made my life miserable and my office work suffered greatly. This gave her the opportunity she has been seeking to query my office and she made good her case. It got to the extent that
I was almost fired, but thank God, He intervened and I was given a second chance.Â And indeed, God did it for me, He fought the battles of my life and gave me victory and in due season, she was transferred to the main branch. And I now have my peace.