REPRINT from NEWS 12 NJ – The recent sexual assault and harassment allegations against Hollywood movie producer Harvey Weinstein has brought the topic of workplace sexual harassment into focus.
Three women have accused Weinstein of raping them, according to a report in The New Yorker, and others have come forward to report sexual misconduct against the producer.
Relationship and emotional breakthrough expert Lisa Lieberman-Wang says that sexual predators often minimize a victim’s concerns over his or her advances and often make the victim blame and question themselves.
“Your instincts don’t lie. You need to listen to yourself. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t go,” she says.
Lieberman-Wang says that while some women or men may decline inappropriate sexual advances, others often feel as if they can’t say no.
“They are totally ashamed of everything and what they’ve done. They can’t handle it,” she says. “You feel like you totally lose control and look for control in some manner.”
Lieberman-Wang says that some victims may turn to food or abuse alcohol as a way to cope.
“They might go into any other addiction,” she says.
The counselor says that it is important for victims to understand that they matter and don’t have to accept harassment or unwanted advances.
“You don’t have to do something to be important…if you have a talent, the right person will find you,” she says.
Lieberman-Wang says that anyone who finds themselves subjected to sexual harassment or assault in the workplace should go to the human resources department or, in some cases, the police.
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