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Home / Relationships

My boss wants to sleep with me 'or else'...

 Photo: Courtesy

I was working an administrator but have now been allocated extra responsibilities following my appointment as a programmes officer in a local NGO. My new role involves a lot of travel outside town many times with my boss. He has already made it clear that he fixed this so he can get opportunities away from the office. This culture is rampant in our organization and the ladies who refuse to play ball are slowly put out of work. I am worried that if I reject his advances there may be consequences. My husband suspects as much and is also somehow insecure about the whole thing. I am caught up in this situation and don’t know what to do. I want to keep my job but I know it will be difficult if I stand my ground. Even my colleagues are worried about me. {Terry}

Your Take:

I was in a similar situation, but I did not do anything about it. I was 22 then but looking back, I wish I told on him because I understand he does this to all the girls who come in for internship. I think I encouraged him by laughing at his crude jokes and never really told him no but now I realise that by keeping quiet and encouraging him, I only deepened the problem for other girls. I wish I spoke out, and hope you will.

{Lillian Mose}

Report this man to the management. Even if they don’t do anything about it, you will have done your part. However, wait until he makes actual advances so you can have evidence otherwise, he can deny all allegations then leave you looking stupid. Also, start looking for another job because men are not comfortable working with women who turn them down.

{Stella Kerubo}

It is better to keep your marriage than to keep your job and live a life of regret in future. Say a big NO to your amorous boss and if you are sacked because of your stand and faith in your husband, the better. The God gave you this job can give you another one.

{Pastor Ben Shikuku}

You seem to know well what you want and this is what matters most. Your family ought to come first. Handle this carefully. It’s better to be jobless. You could contract a disease from him, then what? His advances are only persistent because you are welcoming them. If you want it all, then you will lose the little you have. Remind him that you were once jobless and that you don’t fear losing your job because you can always get another.

{Ouma Ragumo}

This is not the only place you can work. You and your workmates know that it will wreck your marriage and you are not about to stop. Being that it is common practice does not make it less immoral! If you are ready to sacrifice your marriage and put your health at risk, go ahead. Say a firm no to him and carry on with your duties and this man will respect you for the rest of his life even if he were to fire you.

{Tasma Charles}

I have been in such a situation but thank God I fought it. Stand firm and let him know you love and care for your family. Don’t allow him to misuse you like he does other women. If he fires you then go in peace without looking back and believe me, you will get another job.

{Fred Jasenge}

Counselor’s Take:

Terry, you have done a good thing to speak out about this. Many people (both men and women) who are put in similar positions choose to remain silent then suffer for long  but the end result is the same.

What you are being subjected to is sexual harassment. It is common especially in organizations that let it thrive more so when they do not have policies and procedures of addressing such sensitive issues.

This is the case for your organization since it is actually an accepted practice. This is why your colleagues are worried about you. They know that the variable here is not if but when this is going to start happening.

But this does not make it an acceptable practice. The problem with such matters is that very few victims are willing to stand up and expose the villain, but you can. You don't have to conform to other people's standards and especially where those standards are mediocre. When you work in several organizations, you get to see your fair share of things.

On one hand, I know several married women and men who have been caught in compromising situations in the office some of who lost their jobs or got warning letters over similar incidences. On the other hand, I know many single ladies and gentlemen who have actually stood their ground and now work comfortably. It is your call.

You see, people always handle you based on how you handle yourself, then based on how you let them handle you. Those who end up losing their jobs are actually the ones who give in to the sexual advances of their seniors.

After some time it starts getting in the way of work and they suspect you may talk someday so they search every corner for a reason to recommend your exit from the company. This is also because men will always want to take on new challenges like the newly-employed receptionist or the gorgeous intern so you will be standing in the way of this.

Stand your ground and if you have to get some leverage. Leverage is something you can use to stop him right in his tracks. Keep a record of any suggestive text messages or get a way of recording an incident. This can either be forwarded to the right office or kept as leverage to keep him off. Remember, it is not how he treats you but how you let him treat you. {Taurus}

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