Someone named Hammond Something posted a question about what to do after his boss exposed himself. Early comments indicated that people on this board thought it was a joke.

Perhaps it is difficult for men to believe that this is for real, but women have been putting up with this kind of offensive behavior in the workplace since they joined the workforce, and it is not a joke.

This OP's boss wore no underwear, left his pants unzipped, AND THEN put his foot up on the desk, putting his genitals at eye level. It MAY have been inadvertent, but the coincidences make me think sexual harassment, and we have not even given the question an opportunity for answer, we have given the OP no advice, and we have in fact ridiculed him in our comments and deleted his question.

If you think the question was not properly worded (not an easy situation to describe), could we edit and re-post?

1 Answer 1


Sexual harassment, by and directed at either men or women, is a serious matter. Questions about how to deal with such occurrence in the workplace are solidly on-topic here.

This question...was not that. For background, we've deleted five copies of this question in the last 15 hours or so. The first version (requires 10k rep to see) mocked the boss for the, err, perceived lack of quality of said genitalia, said explicitly that it wasn't seeing the genitalia that bothered him but rather its size, and ended with something like "how can I respect that guy now?". There was no indication that the OP felt harassed, only squicked. This combination of factors led multiple users to conclude that it was an attempt to troll the site, not to solve a problem. Slightly-altered versions of it then kept appearing (as new questions, not edits).

Speaking personally, even if the question is sincere, "how do I overcome my negative feelings from this?" isn't really a question we can answer. That question is more in the realm of psychology. "How do I un-see that?" doesn't really seem like a workplace question to me. If others disagree with this then I will of course defer to the community.

If somebody would like to ask a question about how to respond, in a workplace context, to this kind of situation, feel free. The question should provide a little more detail -- is this a one-time occurrence or part of a pattern? Has the boss had other questionable behavior? Have there been other cases of possible harassment and, if so, what was done about them? Etc.

  • 1
    I was the one who initially deleted the question as it was receiving offensive flags for the community for the reasons that Monica described. The user was not acting in good faith in this case, which is why the content was removed multiple times.
    – jmac
    Jul 5, 2014 at 3:26

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