Sexual Harassment Experiences in the Library
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Talk about where and how you've experienced sexual harassment at your place of employment.
At the desk: a patron who wrote a poem about my breasts and asked me to read it to him, a patron who would corner me and touch me. From faculty: the close hugs and "honeys" and "sweethearts" in a professional setting.
It was always from patrons. At one time, we weren't required to wear name tags, only "staff" identifiers. When I was shelving paperbacks one night, a guy came up and asked for my name. I told him it wasn't any of his business (I was new to the library--later, we had to wear name tags). This guy kept coming in every Thursday night when I worked. The worst was when I was shelf reading and he had come up behind me. I could feel him breathing on me and there was no room to move. When I turned around, he said, 'You get more beautiful every time I come in here.' I told him that was inappropriate and pushed my way back out to the desk.

Lots of male patrons asked me out on dates and didn't want to take no for an answer. One guy who was there working for the U.S. Census bureau asked me, and when I said no, two of my coworkers. He was very angry that we all refused, went and got drunk, called the Census bureau, and was fired in the library.
I was a cataloger but worked on the main circ desk at least once a week. There was one patron who kept asking me if I would go out with him, but I said I wasn't interested and had a girlfriend (I am bi, but was single at the time). He kept asking why not until he eventually left.
A patron started emailing me asking for sexual photos and videos. He also approached me in the library.
A man lurked, stared, and followed me around for two hours of one shift in a part of the library that had no other staff. Another man told me my mole looked like herpes and stalked a teenage patron.
The majority of the harassment I've experienced has been from patrons, including at least two occasions on which a male patron called the library, asked for me to list all the works the library owned by a prolific author (Tom Clancy in one instance) and then, after I'd been speaking for a minute or two, began breathing heavily and grunting. Obviously, there's no way to know, but it sure seemed like these men were masturbating to the sound of my voice. I had one patron who repeatedly hit on me, found my personal facebook account and tried to friend me, and sent emails to my work address that mentioned my looks. When administration finally told him to cut it out or else (my attempts had fallen on deaf ears), he tried to gaslight me by saying that he hadn't been hitting on me, he just wanted to be friends, even though his comments included several references to my looks and he asked if I was married. And, of course, dozens of patrons have touched me without asking permission and told me to smile and told me how pretty I am and called me pet names.
I was 8 months pregnant and working at the reference desk. A patron was touching my stomach and making sexual comments. I smacked his hand away. He called the police that I assaulted him. The police informed him I defended myself and him touching my pregnant belly and making lewd comments was sexual assault and sexual harassment. He was told not to interact with me again but was not banned from the library.
Was repeatedly sexually harassed by a male teacher. He later sexually harassed another female teacher relentlessly.
1) The library branch I worked in at the time had a Homework Help center we would host in our small meeting room, detached from the primary part of the library. One person would usually set up by themselves. I was setting up by myself one afternoon and had the meeting room door propped open. I cannot remember specifically why, perhaps it was right after story time. A regular visitor who I had helped in the past, a younger grandparent of boys who regularly visited, saw me and popped-in to ask me about the Homework help center. It was innocent enough until he said, "instead of a homework help center they need a sex-help center." He must have seen the look on my face (deer in the headlights, anyone?) and sensed the inappropriateness of his comment, as he did apologize and left me to my work. While I am pretty certain the sexual nature of his comment, or I'm sure as he considered it, a "joke", was not aimed at me, it was completely out of line. And the fact that we were alone in a room with no one else around did not escape my notice when this happened and added to my discomfort.

2) Another time, another 'regular' was in the library. I was helping at Circulation, returning materials. The customer started asking a series of slightly bizarre questions. At one point he was asking about his borrowed DVDs and what would happen if he kept them at home and didn't return him. I started explaining the consequences when he asked me, "What if I kidnapped you and took you home and never returned you?" I immediately stopped what I was doing and point-blank told him his comment was seriously inappropriate. I ended the transaction.
The major incident happened early in my career and involved a co-worker cornering me and demanding to know the most intimate details of my private life, preferences, etc. I tried to deflect and ignore, but finally got so flustered I barked out, "James, fuck off and leave me alone. None of this is your business." I have dealt with staff and patrons sexually harassing employees I supervise several times. Hasn't happened yet, but heaven protect the person I supervise who is proven to be a harasser (I actually have someone who was moved into my branch last year, who I know has harassed/stalked women in other branches where he worked. I have my eye on him). I have to deal with inappropriate flirting from patrons on a regular basis, 5 or 6 times a year.
I was regularly sexually harassed at my previous place of employment by multiple staff members, mostly security guards and maintenance staff members. They would routinely comment on my appearance and the way I dressed.

In addition to staff, I was frequently harassed by customers. I have been asked out by numerous customers, who would then get angry that I refused their advances. I remember one customer ask me why I wasn't married yet. I've received notes commenting on my appearance. I've been stared at while shelving library materials.
It’s not so much one big incident as a lot of little ones. Patrons that put their hand on my shoulders when I’m showing them something on the computer, ones that stare a little too long, one that kept trying to add me on Facebook and Instagram. Once, a patron asked for my help with his iPhone and went he handed it to me, there was a graphic porn video playing. He claimed it was an accident. I have doubts
From customers (male) who stalked me and grabbed my behind to male coworkers who tried to manipulate me, corner me, and control me
Was sexually propositioned in person and stalked online.
I have never experienced any harassment at university, school, or public libraries, and have worked for some length of time in all three.
A teen patron would follow me around and trll me about how he was better than my boyfriend, he was going to beat him up, for me to tell him where he lived, all with his hand down his pants.
My male supervisor (50's) got me a birthday present (single mom in 30's). It was an apron, that stated "If I am what I cook... I'm fast, cheap, and easy"
Security guard as an attempt to make me earn protection
Director said he had 2 children, so at least he got laid twice. Followed me to supplies area and I had to ask him to leave door open. After that, my job was on the line. He brought candidates for my job to be introduced to me. Said, you're a competitor for her job.
Worked at the front desk as a circ asst. Custodian frequently flirted and asked if he could kiss him. Would 'playfully' hit and one time, strangle me. Eventually escalated to him grabbing my ass at the front desk during a shift.
Lewd comments ("hey baby, I'd like to check you out" kind of thing).
At the children's desk by a patron who would not stop flirting and making lewd comments
A man approached my desk to ask for help locating a book. While I was looking in our catalog, he noticed I had a picture book on display with a post it saying "Check me out!" on it. He says, "I'd like to check you out." I brush it off and say, it means the book. We go into the stacks to look for his book, he put his hand on my shoulder. I said, sternly, "Please do not touch me." He says something along the lines of "geez, okay, okay," in a tone that I interpreted as "over react, much?" After I pointed to where the book was, I left the area so he could not talk to me again.
Last February a patron quietly - so I could hear him, but no one else could - subjected me to a monologue about all the things he wanted to do to me. It amounted to threatening me with sexual assault.
Being asked out/ flirted with inappropriately. Cornered with no good way to get away. Stalker from years before found me and started showing up at my library. Patrons touching me (back, arm, hand) and making me uncomfortable.
I have had patrons ask me out, make references to my body, or leer at me uncomfortably in an overtly sexual manner. I've had one patron in particular comment on my appearance and ask me out, and when I firmly tried to end the interaction and call for management, would lean over and hang up the phone I was calling on when I was alone in a room with no other staff.
Before I started wearing a fake wedding ring, and before I got married, I would get hit on at the desk or while shelving. Sometimes with such a creepy nature or force that I'd feel uncomfortable leaving for the day or being out on the floor. I was between the ages of 16 and 27 and was hit on by men who were at least 40 years old.
While working the reference desk
A patron, who regularly comments on my looks (as well as other female staff,) commented to me that I was pretty after a long absence from the country. I tend to blush and smile when I’m nervous, but I had worked up the courage to say, “That makes me uncomfortable.” He proceeded to tell me that I don’t know/don’t get told that. And then said if I were on the other side of the counter, he would hug me and I’d probably just melt into him.
men flirting with me, commenting on my appearance, saying "your husband is a lucky man", writing me unsolicited poetry, asking if they can masturbate to my voice on the phone
As a student page, I was pulled into the washroom by a male coworker. As a librarian, a male manager repeatedly made sexual comments directed to me.
Academic: Former Male white boss who discussed to another male white coworker while all three of us were having a discussion how he hates those young girls doing car washes because "I mean they're like 13 but they're all wet and dressed like that and mmmmm". Male white coworker who would only call me "girlie". Public: having multiple male white patrons masterbate and having to approach them.
A university employee who worked in the building next door to the library left lewd, sexual phone messages on my voicemail. I knew it was him by his tone of voice and because he would come into the library and try to flirt with female employees (including me) on a regular basis.
a male computer tech was in my department attempting to repair a public pc and I was standing near him to provide him withdrawn more info about about the problem. As I was standing near him, he would make comments about how he wanted to take me out, tell me what the date would be like and how he thought about giving me foot rubs. Situations liked this happened multiple times.
In the stacks, at meetings, in reviews
In my office by my supervisor. At true circ desk from offensive patrons. Suggestive comments from faculty in many places
Was volunteering at the library foundation's book fair. My library program was funded by the foundation so I felt obligated to participate. I was cashiering. My father also agreed to volunteer with me. The man in charge of the cashiers was a long-time volunteer. I knew him from prior volunteer instances. On this particular occasion he made an inappropriate comment to me. In front of my dad! I don't remember what he said exactly but I remember feeling embarrassed and surprised. Although this guy was frequently being a blowhard so I guess it wasn't that surprising.
I've been called "sweetie," "honey," etc.
A custodian was always trying to kiss me.
A patron asked for help on the computer and when I went to minimize his internet browser to figure out the problem, there was a picture of a half naked woman in Word.
A patron tried to video record up my skorts with his phone as I helped him look for a book.
Being “asked out” while working on the desk. Twice recently with men at least 15 years older than me. I also had a minor stalker where an elderly man I had been helping asked for my email address. When I gave him my business card he said no, he wanted my private address (there was an accent/language barrier that made it unclear what was going on at first). “No, the one they don’t read.” He then emailed me at work a few times talking about my body and how he would treat me.
I've been approached and asked out on dates. I've been catcalled at work. I once told a coughing old man "The water fountain is over there, if you need it" and he responded "I'll tell you what I need..." as I walked past. Men have made kissing noises at me as I sat at the reference desk, been called "Pretty girl" and when I then rolled my eyes he replied, "Oh, you don't like that? You ugly then. You like that better? You so ugly."
My co-worker who sat across from me. He made inappropriate comments, watched pornography, stared at me, and overall made me feel very uneasy.
At the reference desk. A male patron leaned across the desk and said he wanted to "cum in my hair". I was a white, blond woman in a predominantly African American community. My hair was often a topic of conversation.
A colleague told me I was driving him crazy, and that he was off his meds and might “pounce” on me if I whispered in his ear.
A male patron harassed me over several occasions with increasing degrees of malicious intent, following me into the stacks and refusing to leave me alone when I spurned his advances. He then sat at a table and watched me at the service desk through several shifts before approaching me again and when I repeatedly reported him to my supervisor she finally threatened to call the police and he left. I never saw him again.
I've received several harassing comments from patrons while at work.
There is a steady and ongoing relationship with being a woman and interacting with older men while at the reference desk. In general, I have been told that I looked good today,that I should smile more, that my hair, glasses, scarf, shoes must be new because they are different today- told in a number of ways that my appearance is something they have noticed and feel comfortable remarking on. In specific I once answered the reference desk phone and while conducting my reference Interview, was told that the male caller actually needed some help with a survey, which I hestitantly went along with until it became apparent that I was being asked increasingly inappropriate questions: describe you shoes and socks, how long your hair is, do you enjoy talking on the phone, are you smiling, etc.

I have been given unsolicited gifts from a CD of religious songs, 5 months of ongoing handcrafted wooden items, candy from pants pockets, paper cranes, and once, about a pound of some weird coffee flavoring. All of these were gifts from people whom I had answered a single reference questions for, and nothing else. Usually accompanied by a wink, or a "cause your are my favorite."
I went into an elevator with a patron. He mentioned that it was good I had a book cart between us so that he was forced to control himself.
The only thing that comes to mind is people complimenting me - "Oh you look nice in a skirt." One time a man (who had I helped with a computer issue just minutes before) said something like, You've got great legs. I've never felt threatened, just sort of confused/cheapened, like, does this patron recognize that I'm a professional working in a professional capacity, or am a just nice legs in a skirt?
Mostly male patrons commenting on my appearance or my clothes...that I look "lovely" or have "kept myself up well." Another male patron pointed out a photo from a document and commented on how beautiful the woman in the picture was, and said he just loves to look at beautiful women, such as me. Took my picture without my consent. Other times being referred to as "honey" and "Sweetheart." Also a male library security employee continually seeking me out for conversation and asking personal questions, commenting on my hair, clothes, etc., suggesting I shouldn't go sit outside by myself; asked about a medical leave I had taken and tried to press for more personal information (in a flirtatious, aggressive manner)
The most infuriating to me we’re the two times male coworkers harassed me and managers did nothing to help me.
When I was 18 I had a 40 something yr old stalker that would find me in the stacks while I was on the back of the library and talk of tying me up and lighting candles. He would call the library asking for his *insert my name* to get me on the phone. Tried to lure me out to his van from behind the circulation desk. Made inappropriate mix tapes and gave them to me.
I and other co-workers have received comments from men on the collective "shortness" of our skirts (they were not short).

A male patron was filling out a form to use one of our computers and asked if anything interesting was going on. We were slightly confused and commented that it wasn't very busy right then but had been on and off during the day and he responded he meant something interesting behind the desk, like amongst us. I don't remember the precise wording but he made it real obvious that he would like to see some girl on girl librarian action, without using any specifically inappropriate words. This was a patron who had been in and friendly on a regular basis, but never creepy. I brushed it off as a bad joke gone wrong, but he tried it again next time he was in.

We have had a man call a couple times and ask about some obscure book or movie he wants and basically do everything he can to keep us on the phone and talking while it sounds like he is masturbating. The first staff member to get this call was so stunned she didn't think to hang up on him. When I got his call he was asking about execution by electric chait anf got onto the subject of the movie The Green Mile and then said he and his wife had watched it the night before and it really got him going, they had to go have sex afterwards. Then he asked if I thought that was normal. I told him that was not my area and if he had a library related question I could answer that. He asked again if I thought it was normal for a man to get all horny from watching someone get executed in an electric chair and I hung up on him.
Walking outside to get something out of my car before the library opened, was followed to my car and called a "whore" when I told the man the library didn't open until 10:00. (Also have had lots of inappropriate comments like "you look really hot today", "do you have a boyfriend? You probably makeout with him in public all the time right?" etc)
Patrons touching me, making comments about my body (esp when pregnant), assuming I am not the expert on areas of my expertise related to math and science, catcalling whistling etc.
Every library I have worked in for 25 years
It's not something that has happened once, or won't happen again. I'll just hit the highlights: 1: single dad shows up for storytime twice a week; after a month he asks me out. I say thank you but no thank you. Asks again two more times in the next week. Then calls me a cunt. He never showed up again. 2. Referred to as the hair sniffer, he would pass by and take deep sniffs as he passed by. Escalates to stroking as he passes so he was reported. 3. Man comes in requesting a book for his kid, ignores me telling him to wait at the desk while I go into the stacks at night. Asks how many times I've felt like getting freaky back there as I'm cornered. Gets in my space but backs off and leaves his number and tells me he can tell we'd have a good time. 4. References to librarian porn have been made often. 5. A patron came in often and was flirty. It wasn't returned but he wasn't deterred. He would tell me to smile more while I worked on my computer and found out my order at the coffee shop and would leave me coffees with notes like "smile babe!". When I told him it made me uncomfortable I was told I was an idiot and feminist bitches like myself ruin nice guys for everyone.

These are just off the top of my head. I could go on for another hour.
At the front desk. Several creepy patrons coment on my clothes and suggest that I wear shorter skirts. I am continuously asked to “smile”. One patron of extreme ill repute grabbed my wrist and ran his thumb over my knuckles.
Patrons regularly comment on how I look, how I am dressed, ask me out, fish for my relationship status, etc.
Patrons and employees (usually security guards, hired through a contractor and library employees, both) continually making inappropriate comments about my appearance, asking me out, staring, etc.
At the circulation desk. Was commented on how young I looked. Then the person grabbed my hands and touched my tattoos (on my arm). Kept telling them to stop.
A male customer at least 20 years older than me made increasingly inappropriate comments regarding my looks.
Another male customer who was clearly intoxicated made strange comments, was increasingly weird and touched my cheek.
Once a male customer winked at me when I looked his direction. I looked away. Another time I was asked to spell many sexual acts by a man who asked me to look them up for him. Another time I was shelving books and a man asked me for my number or to take his number. I said no thanks. He then yelled at me as I walked away, calling me stuck up, calling me racist.
A man came with me in the elevator and touched my stomach and said I was cute. Prior to this, the man was playing "hide and go seek" with me in the shelves.
My boss leered at me, sat so close he was pressed against me, said inappropriate things
Chief of security had been acting strangely toward me multiple times. I used to listen to music as I shelved, one day he was silently watching me for a time before telling me that I was beautiful and had good taste in music. Another time he grabbed my braid and ran his fingers down along my braid/spine telling me that not only did I have good taste in music, but I had beautiful hair and should never cut it. I cut off two feet of hair not long after that.
Comments from patrons about my physical appearance during reference transactions.
Mostly from patrons, but occasionally from security guards.
I have been harassed over a period of time by a subordinate staff member at my library, by a member of another city department who worked on library facilities, and by patrons in both one-time and ongoing incidents. All of my harassers have been male. With the staff member, it seemed like just excessive friendliness until he started violating my personal space, like standing really close to me, for prolonged times and for no reason, in small spaces when I was getting books from the book drop or cash from the safe. I felt uncomfortable and tried to avoid him. I later found out from colleagues that he has a long workplace history of inappropriate sexual behavior as well as violence. One morning when we were both alone in the branch and it was still closed to the public, he told me he wanted to show me something and played a youtube video of animals having sex. I was upset, felt unsafe, and retreated into the community room, where I could lock the door. I stayed there, under pretense of setting up for a program, until more staff arrived, then reported it to my supervisor. At a different branch, a member of facilities staff repeatedly insisted on reporting progress to me, even though I was not the staff member in charge, and lingered on to make small talk. He began including references to details on on social media that indicated he had looked me up, mentioned that he remembered me from years past when I worked at other locations, and even talked about how he had worked at my high school when I attended it. He concluded by asking me out and giving me his cell phone number. Besides the inappropriate behavior, I felt really uncomfortable about this employee possibly stalking me, online and in person. I have had numerous instances of male patrons behaving normally during a reference interaction, then (usually at the end) suddenly asking me out, propositioning me, giving me their phone numbers, or making inappropriate comments like, "So, librarian, huh--I bet you're really wild outside of work." I had an older male patron, at least twice my age, who came in regularly to order books and liked to chat. Very gradually he began asking me to see him outside the library, to come to lunch with him, to let him treat me to certain foods he liked ("I know a place that makes amazing ___; I really want to take you there"). I tried to shut it down and told him I don't see patrons outside the library, I am not interested, I am only here to help with library business, but he persisted. At one point he asked me to take him home with me for Thanksgiving to meet my family. I started avoiding him and asking other staff to wait on him, and soon after that he cornered me one day in the empty stacks, angry and upset, asking why my behavior had changed and why I was unfriendly to him and avoided him now.
I worked at both the Reference and Circulation desk and regularly got asked out by patrons (usually older white men many of whom didn't like to take "no" for an answer.) One of the worst situations was when I was pregnant. A regular patron who started whispering lewd comments to me and threatened to rape me because he said I liked looking at his butt when he sat at a computer (he always sat with his back to me.) I ended up reporting him to my boss and then to the police, and he was barred from the library for some time.
Multiple times a day.
An older man with special needs used to come in and talk at any staff member who was willing to listen to him. His comments often turned to “do you have a husband” or “you look so great today”; he also used terms of endearment like sweetheart and baby.
A branch manager wrote a letter to the higher ups that it was not fair that I wouldn't marry him. He said that I would make a good wife, but I was living with a man I was not married to. He did not partake in prostitutes, so it was unfair that I would not be his mate. He was entitled to a nice wife like me.
He said that, in Biblical times, women like me got stoned to death. He didn't want to kill me, but approved of that punishment should someone else want to carry it out. There were also anti-Semitic comments, because I am Jewish.
I've had patrons "compliment" my figure, ask for my email address/phone number and get angry when I refuse to give it. Someone proposed to me, obviously joking, but in a way that made me uncomfortable. One Valentine's Day, somebody came in asking after me to give me chocolates. As he didn't know my name, he referred to me as "the one with the big tits". I was occasionally followed through town by patrons, too - not all the way home, thankfully.
Mostly people calling me sweetheart and honey or talking to me like I'm an idiot while I'm trying to help them. The two significant incidents I had were with an older guy who came in and asked for help on the computer. I helped him get logged in and with another issue and other than him being a little prone to leering, I thought it would be a normal incident. Then he asked if I was single. I responded that I don't discuss my personal life with patrons and asked if he needed any more computer help. He said no so I went back to my desk (which is very close to the public computers). After a few minutes, he came over and started asking why I couldn't answer if I was single or not, that he was just trying to be friendly and have a conversation, etc. I kept reiterating that I don't discuss my personal life with patrons and that if he didn't have any library related questions, he needed to step away from my desk. He finally did, after my older female coworker glared the crap out of him from behind me (she wasn't a fan of creepy dudes hitting on us while we're just trying to do our job either). He went back to his computer and finished his session, occasionally glancing over at me and smiling though I refused to make eye contact. He finally left, saying goodbye to me as he passed by the desk while my coworker glared at him again. I wrote down his information in case something else happened later and I had to write an incident report about it. He only came in once after that and other than saying hello he didn't approach me (I kept my resting bitch face in place). The one other incident was when a patron I had asked twice to leave the study rooms so we could lock up before closing starting asking me about my weekend plans and whether I liked barbecue. I tried to be polite but distant and walk away so I could finish closing, but he kept following me and talking. He said he was planning to make some barbecue and I could come over and have some if I liked. I lied and said I had to go home for dinner with my husband (I was single as hell at the time) and he asked if my husband would disapprove of me going over to his house for food or if him talking to me. I laughed and said yeah and that I had to go close the library as we were closing, walking away quickly. After that I didn't have any more incidents with that guy.
I was pushed up against walls, grabbed by my breast and butt
When I was in high school as a page these guys would follow me around and make lewd jokes and try and touch me. When I was in college we had patrons come in and surf porn on the library computers then print it out.
Over 25 years...too much to detail here. Lots of obsessive behavior from male patrons, persistent phone calls, weird "love" letters, sitting and staring etc.
I was 18 at the time. I was on my hands and knees shelving books, and a man came up to me with basically boxer shorts on and stood next to my face. He asked me out on a date. When I told him no, he then told me I should ask my parents for permission to go. I again told him no. This man eventually got himself banned for exposing himself in our children’s library.
A regular, much older male decided we were an item. We were not. He came in to the Library every day and sought me out, refusing to be assisted by anyone else. He followed me at lunchtime. At one point he handed me a long, detailed letter of his intent and a parcel of his toenail clippings.
1) male faculty member asking me to "find the good sex scenes" in a YA book. 2) repeated comments over several months about/offers to "make sure I'm really a lesbian" and maybe "I just hadn't had any good times with men" 3) while I was a nursing/pumping mother, comments about being jealous of my baby "glad someone gets to enjoy those" (this last one enrages me more than the others)
Catcalling and verbal harassment from patrons
As I was opening the door to the conference room for a man in his 70s who had reserved it, he said I looked fine from every angle. I said that I did not think that was appropriate.
I haven't
I've experience sexual harassment by patrons and a co-worker. Most of the patron encounters have always been someone coming up to the desk for help and getting way out of line. Some of the comments or acts that I've received are: "Nice tattoos, I wonder what the ones that I can't see look like" "Yummy! #HowYourPictureMakesMeFeel (this was a patron that found me on Facebook" "Just thought I'd stop by 2 tell u how scrumptious u look!!! Mmm So much I think I'd enjoy the way u taste.. (another one that found me on Facebook)" One man in particular will look me up and down when he comes to the desk and I try to avoid walking by his computer because he will stare at my ass the entire time I'm walking by. My co-worker (who is still employed here after I've complained 4 times) has said inappropriate things to me via email and in person. He will go through all of my pictures and say things that make me uncomfortable. I also follow Tess Holliday (at the time she was using her former name and was doing mostly lingerie shoots.) He would email me and tell me we need to talk about our common interest in Tess and what I think about modeling in lingerie. He also left a picture of Spiderman (of all things?!) with vulgar writing on it under my chair and my CHILD found it and started reading it!
I've experienced numerous occasions of unwelcome touching by patrons, including on the behind. I've been followed by male patrons in a threatening manner. I've been called dirty words aimed at my gender, like "cunt". I've been propositioned inappropriately by patrons while working, including being asked if I want to play footsie. I've had patrons yell propositions at me at my home as I worked out front in the garden. I've been told by male patrons that they've googled me and now know things about my private life. I've had to ask patrons to stop calling me "sweetheart", "gorgeous", "honeypie" and other inappropriate names that they would never call my male coworkers.
From patrons: One wrote me (and several other staff members) violent, sexually explicit letters within the library and hand-delivered them. One would follow me out of the building, asking constantly if he could join me at lunch, if I wanted to go with him to hang out, etc., and for months wouldn't take no for an answer.
From coworkers: A member of the custodial staff (who was special needs, so make it extra sticky), would approach me from behind and wrap his hand around my wrist or place it on the back of my neck "to prove how cold it was." He only did this to younger female staff members.
Working the Circulation/Reference Desk
Working circulation. Inappropriate comments from male patrons, phone call asking what I was wearing.
While at public desk, or walking around library. People make inapproapraite comments about my looks, my marital status, ogle me, tell me about others who are ogling me, ask me out...
Online, a patron contacted me under a pseudonym to say that we had been "flirting" at the checkout desk and asked if I wanted to join his open relationship. He claimed he was married to one of our staff members but wouldn't reveal who.
I had a student who was leaving me love notes under my office door.
Leering, inappropriate comments