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Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:25 PM

 

Got a question. What do you consider to be "out of bounds" when it comes to male - female contact?

I mean, what would be crossing a line that you feel should never be crossed? In the business world, I have always cringed when I would see a guy walk up behind a woman and start rubbing her shoulders. I've seen the looks on the faces of the women, and I'm pretty sure they felt like they were being invaded. I've seen hugs last more than a couple of seconds where the female has pretty much dropped their arms and released their return hug. I've seen guys walk up beside a woman, put his arm around her and then draw himself close and rub her opposite arm up and down for more than a few seconds. Just are just a few. When I have seen these things it bothers me. I wouldn't want a guy to be doing that to my mother, sisters, wife, and now my grand kids. How the hell anybody thinks these types of behaviors are okay is beyond me. Then make make excuses for it, or to blame the females, makes me extremely angry.

What the hell have we become?

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Reply Got a question. What do you consider to be "out of bounds" when it comes to male - female contact? (Original post)
tonyt53 Nov 2017 OP
rzemanfl Nov 2017 #1
marybourg Nov 2017 #2
delisen Nov 2017 #3
DetlefK Nov 2017 #4
greymattermom Nov 2017 #5
underpants Nov 2017 #6
OnDoutside Nov 2017 #8
LineLineLineReply +
underpants Nov 2017 #12
exboyfil Nov 2017 #7
RexCasual Nov 2017 #15
exboyfil Nov 2017 #19
RexCasual Nov 2017 #25
LanternWaste Nov 2017 #33
FarCenter Nov 2017 #9
zipplewrath Nov 2017 #26
procon Nov 2017 #10
Aristus Nov 2017 #11
nolabear Nov 2017 #13
HipChick Nov 2017 #14
nolabear Nov 2017 #16
HipChick Nov 2017 #18
nolabear Nov 2017 #22
mcar Nov 2017 #32
crazycatlady Nov 2017 #17
BannonsLiver Nov 2017 #20
Blue_true Nov 2017 #21
moriah Nov 2017 #23
gratuitous Nov 2017 #24
TNLib Nov 2017 #27
Pathwalker Nov 2017 #28
MineralMan Nov 2017 #29
LanternWaste Nov 2017 #30
Mr. Ected Nov 2017 #31

Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:27 PM

1. Anything over the flak jacket. n/t

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:28 PM

2. Become?

This is different from "before"?

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:28 PM

3. Remember GW Bush rubbing Merkel's shoulder

and her reaction?

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:30 PM

4. What the fuck? Anything more than hand-to-hand contact does not belong in the workplace.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:30 PM

5. I don't like any touching or moving too close to me

My department chair years ago used to do the hand on shoulder thing and I hated it. I thought it was a dominance move though, not sexual.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:30 PM

6. Keep your hands to yourself

and keep your mouth shut

Other than that, especially in the workplace, you better be damned sure you are reading the signs right. Frankly even for people that are clearly dating the workplace is just that. No PDA. For married couples a kiss is okay but only in the right places at work. Be discreet.

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Response to underpants (Reply #6)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:34 PM

8. Keep your underpants on lads !

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Response to OnDoutside (Reply #8)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:42 PM

12. +

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:32 PM

7. I always keep a zone around me

and will move away to avoid any physical contact (example was with a woman coworker as we were doing a plant tour). I can't imagine touching a coworker with anything more than a handshake. Even moving close to look at a monitor is uncomfortable.

Women must always initiate hugs. Actually the same rule applies to my daughters. I take more liberties with my wife. She doesn't seem to mind.

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Response to exboyfil (Reply #7)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:53 PM

15. "Women must always initiate hugs."

Hmmm. . .

Why should women be able to initiate hugs, but not men? Sounds inherently sexist to me. If the notion of no-hug initiation is good for the gander, it should also apply to the goose, no? Just food for thought

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Response to RexCasual (Reply #15)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:02 PM

19. That is me

Yes maybe it is sexist but that is how I feel about the situation for myself. Both my younger daughter and a family friend have been startled when I initiated hugs. I am not going to let that happen again.

My wife's last class reunion. One of her female classmates initiated a sustained hug (she was drunk). I was incredibly uncomfortable. I am never around drinkers.

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Response to exboyfil (Reply #19)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:23 PM

25. Actually, I agree with you. . .

Your advice is sound, but in this day and age, even the notion of being a 'gentleman' can be considered sexist. It's just so confusing sometimes.

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Response to RexCasual (Reply #25)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 03:11 PM

33. That's a very convenient excuse

"It's just so confusing sometimes..."

That's a very convenient excuse that loses all its pretense of worth when we realize to simply apply both respect and rational thought.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:38 PM

9. Handshakes, unavoidable contact in a packed elevator, rubbing elbows while moving furniture, ...

 

Nothing else.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #9)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 02:14 PM

26. Unintentional

Absolutely one of the worst professional moments. I was in a room where to leave, you had to push a button that was about chest height. There was a light switch opposite, so you turned off the light, turned and pushed the button and exited. You can guess what happened. Woman, about my age, was following me out. I didn't notice as I turned towards the light switch that she pass behind me. I turned to push the button and my hand went full on right on her right breast. I'm talking full pressure contact, centered on my palm. I recoiled in horror. Started apologizing PROFUSELY. She let me sweat for about 5 seconds and then just started laughing hysterically. Finally she admitted that she was as surprised as I was, but the look on my face was just too funny. She also knew that it was truly "accidental".

As we were walking away, she did tease me and say "Really, a look of horror? It was that bad? I thought you were suppose to enjoy that?". I just responded with "I ain't goin' there".

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:39 PM

10. Men should treat women coworkers the same as they would other men.

Just shake hands, there is no need for any other physical contact. PERIOD! Don't embrace, touch, hold, pat, or rub against anyone in the workplace, male or female, just keep an extended personal space between each other.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:41 PM

11. Any kind of physical contact.

I try to maintain a perimeter of at least a foot in the sometimes close-quarters of a medical clinic. I don't know that I've ever touched any of the female medical assistants working with me.

We all respect each other, and I wouldn't give that up, or have them lose their confidence in me, for some tawdry groping.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:47 PM

13. Dont do anything to a woman you wouldnt do to a man.

In the workplace all you have to ask yourself is “if a male coworker did this to me would I feel uncomfortable or embarrassed?” If the answer is yes, don’t do it.

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Response to nolabear (Reply #13)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:49 PM

14. Exactly... I am fairly well endowned..

I had a boss, who would always try to hug me...It was his way, of getting a free, cop feel of my my boobs

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Response to HipChick (Reply #14)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:54 PM

16. Me too. The nuzzle, the back rub, the suggestive comment...

I honestly think sometimes men don’t understand that they’re not being flattering, that it throws us into a state of having no idea how to respond because being irritated takes them aback and not being irritated encourages them. And then there are the assholes like your boss. And too many of mine. My breasts are not your business, period!

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Response to nolabear (Reply #16)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:59 PM

18. Exactly...I always dressed down too..

To avoid having to say "My Boobs are up here"..

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Response to HipChick (Reply #18)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:07 PM

22. I wonder where we go from here. How do we heal the past?

I wish men who had done some of the less aggressive, somewhat clueless things would come out and talk seriously about the difficulty in wanting to flirt and not knowing how to proceed. The question in the OP is a good one and I give a lot of credit to anyone who admits to not knowing what is intimidating and discomfiting. The horn dogs? Hopefully they’ll begin to realize this isn’t safe behavior any more.

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Response to nolabear (Reply #13)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 03:08 PM

32. Just so

That simple.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 12:59 PM

17. In a business world-- anything more than shaking hands

In fact I don't want to be touched by ANYONE that is not my SO. I even hate it when people are standing too close to me when in the supermarket checkout line.

THere are a few situations where close contact is inevitable (ie on a NYC subway) and I accept it. But in general do not touch someone who is not your SO.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:02 PM

20. No physical contact whatsoever.

That's really the only way to be safe. I don't even shake hands unless it is extended first.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:04 PM

21. My take.

Touching a woman anywhere on her body without her expressed permission.

Saying stuff of a sexual nature to her if it does not involve her actively involved and approving.

Leering at her body or face.

Spreading inaccurate rumors about her sexual behavior among coworkers and/or colleagues.


I am single and unattached right now. But if I had a wife or girlfriend who did not want me to touch her I would not. If that was a pattern from her, then I would ask her to participate in counseling or I would end the relationship.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:07 PM

23. I don't want to be touched at ALL at work beyond a handshake. Biggest thing.

Because I have always worked around men, mostly young men, mostly men good with computers, often single, and don't believe in relationships with coworkers, it's a line for me.

It freaked me out when a coworker gave me a hug in the parking lot after listening to him vent about stuff. We were off the clock but still on work property -- I asked him not to do that because I didn't want people to get the wrong idea about our friendship.

I also don't want to be propositioned, jokingly or not. I'll usually start showing disinterest with an emulation of Daria getting aroused -- deadpan, totally toneless "Oh, baby. Oh, baby. Oh." Which takes care of the joking comments with a joke back, but clearly shows I'm not impressed.

The one time unwanted attention continued, it was because we were all stuck in a van together to go to a training site. I'd already indicated I was taken, but he wasn't paying attention. He also wanted to torture a young sheltered kid on the rollout -- a homeschooled Mormon. So when we were making good time and there was a sign for a XXX bookstore, he wanted to stop and the rest of the people aside from myself and Mormon Boy said they wanted to as well. The driver stopped.

I could have sat in the car. Could have contacted my supervisor who I was trying to impress with my independence and ability to handle anything. But decided instead to fix the root problem -- these guys obviously perceived me as fun to tease. I also didn't want the Mormon to be the one embarrassed in the store, and they'd have tortured him if he didn't go, and if I didn't go he would be the only target in there.

So I went in, went straight up to the BDSM section, and asked the store associate if I could take a look at their cat-o-nines, talking about this lovely buttery-soft one I'd used before and never been able to find the like (truth, heh). The store associate offered himself for demonstration purposes, though when he started to take off his shirt I said "Nah, it's okay, I'm more wanting to feel the weight, not see the stripes." (Wasn't going to encourage nudity.)

Then said none of them were really what I was looking for... but saw a little toy version, obviously not a real whip... "But I can't leave without buying something."

Bought the toy-sized cat-o--nine, clipped it to my keychain, and then acted like I hadn't thought all this would have created an audience... turned around, saw everyone watching, said, "Oh, you guys ready to go?"

They were. I kept the toy whip attached to my keychain until that guy departed for his route after training, which he seemed to take as a hint.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 01:13 PM

24. I have worked in law offices for nearly 40 years

I never initiate physical contact with anyone. If I'm introduced to someone and she puts out her hand for a handshake, I'll take her hand gently, shake twice, then release. If she doesn't offer her hand, I don't offer mine. Same goes for men. Otherwise, I don't ever touch another person in the office. There's no need to do that under ordinary circumstances, and I've read over too many sexual harassment pleadings and talked to too many litigants to see how banter and touching can appear very different in real life and when recited in the black-and-white of a court complaint.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 02:28 PM

27. Keep your hands to yourself a polite handshake is fine anything else is not

nt

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 02:32 PM

28. Do NOT touch anyone without their approval or permission.

How is this difficult to understand?

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 02:33 PM

29. Any personal physical contact that is not clearly wanted.

If a person doesn't know whether such contact is wanted, assume it is not wanted. That has always been my rule. Most people of the opposite sex will let you know what it OK by initiating some sort of physical contact. If a woman wants to be hugged, she'll probably initiate that hug. If not, assume that a hug is not desired.

The shoulder rubs, arms around, and other stuff like are clearly out of bounds unless there is some sort of relationship established that clearly makes them OK.

It's not rocket science. If you don't know it's OK, it's probably not OK.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 02:35 PM

30. Hands shakes only. Regardless of gender roles.

Hands shakes only. Regardless of any gender roles specific to a given scenario.

Outside of business, I rarely have the relevant knowledge of the closeness or intimacy of anyone engaging in public displays of affection to make any determination of worth.

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Response to tonyt53 (Original post)

Thu Nov 16, 2017, 03:02 PM

31. I am a male attorney that frequently works with female real estate agents

They are my clients, my friends, and my neighbors.

The most I would ever imagine doing would be shaking hands, or a light clap of the shoulder. This would be true of men or women.

I have had incidents where a woman purposely ground her body into mine during an unexpected hug. I am hugely uncomfortable in those situations.

I understand that we are discussing social norms, and I adhere to the notion that less physical contact is preferable in most instances; the sword cuts both ways, though.

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