People often view workplace sexual harassment as inappropriate touching. While this form of harassment does unfortunately occur, it's only one issue that people will sometimes encounter at work. If you encounter something at work that has a sexual vibe and it doesn't feel right to you, you can often end the issue by confronting the person or reporting him or her. Should these approaches not make a difference, or if you're too scared to proceed in this manner, you can contact a sexual harassment attorney to explain what you're going through and discuss whether legal action against your employer may be warranted. One form of subtle sexual harassment is rumor-spreading, which can occur in these ways.
Rumors About Your Sexuality
In today's world, people are more accepting of those who have different types of sexuality. However, this isn't always the case, and some workplaces can be hostile as a result. Regardless of what your sexuality is, you don't deserve others to be spreading rumors about it. A common rumor that you might experience is hearing murmurs that you're homosexual. Whether you are or not is no one's business and, because it doesn't remotely impact the work that you do, shouldn't come up in discussion at work — especially as a rumor.
Rumors About Your Sex Life
People can also spread hurtful rumors about your sex life, including ones that are completely made up. A common type of workplace sex life rumor is for a colleague to suggest that you got ahead in your career by engaging in some manner of sexual relationship with your boss. Such a rumor can not only be hurtful to you, but it may also affect your career. For example, if it's so pervasive that people across your office begin to believe it to be true, you might get fewer opportunities at work as a result.
Rumors About Your Gender Identity
People can also spread rumors about your gender identity, perhaps making jokes that you were born the opposite gender from what you currently appear to be now. In today's climate, this is another unacceptable type of discussion to have in the workplace, especially when it's behind your back and at your expense. As with other forms of rumor-spreading, the gender with which you identify is immaterial to how people should treat you and talk about you. If you've experienced any of these rumor-spreading situations, a sexual harassment attorney can help you.