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Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by Leehaa, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. Leehaa

    Leehaa Gigabyte Poster

    Something has been bugging me and the more I ponder over it the more I get angry!!

    Last week I went to one of my new customers.

    One of the people from the warehouse below their office popped up to ask someone something and asked what I was doing there. When someone said I was part of the networking team he said "She must be a d**e then" (lesbian)


    I didn't know how to react -pretended not to hear. I mean what are you supposed to say to that?

    The others know I'm married now, and but what if I was one? There is no excuse for that!!

    Would you even associate this field with lesbians anyway? Part of the reason why I chose to work in this field was because I wanted to get away from a women dominated environment - when I worked in beauty there was so much bitching and back-stabbing and I just wanted to get into a chilled environment - and it just happened that I was good with troubleshooting and fixing things...

    Any advice on how I should handle the customer next time? It's put me off going to them!
    Certifications: MCP, MCDST, ITIL v3, MBCS, others...
    WIP: BSc IT & Computing, RHCE
  2. dales

    dales Terabyte Poster

    Can you not talk to your boss about it, perhaps just explain what happened and what is company policy on this sort of problem. Perhaps your boss may send a gentle email to the client saying that inappropriate language will not be tolarated. If that was me I would have challenged the comment and maybe spoke to some manager at the establishment or at least try to think of some witty comment to make the chappie feel embaressed or inadequate.

    Geek jokes we can all handle but this im afraid is totally out of order.
    Certifications: vExpert 2014+2015+2016,VCP-DT,CCE-V, CCE-AD, CCP-AD, CCEE, CCAA XenApp, CCA Netscaler, XenApp 6.5, XenDesktop 5 & Xenserver 6,VCP3+5,VTSP,MCSA MCDST MCP A+ ITIL F
    WIP: Nothing
  3. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

    TBH you get thick-skinned to it. You shouldn't have to, but you do.

    I had this kind of treatment at my old job, and it hasn't really abated in the computing industry.

    Sure, I have the 'stereotypical gay' look down. Apparently. If people want to be that narrow-minded, let them. If I spent my time worrying about every fool that decided I was gay (or male, which has also happened) then I would never get anything done, and I'd be constantly paranoid.

    So what if I like computers? So what if I have short hair? They're just intimidated :tongue I'm comfortable enough in my own sexuality and happy enough with my appearance that such foolish comments have no effect, other than to be a hilarious talking point later in the pub.

    As for handling the situation... if you don't think you will be able to 'let it slide' then you need to let your boss know as soon as possible, otherwise your relationship with the customer will obviously be affected, and this will be reflected whenever you have to work with them which will not be good for you long term, as you are new to the company.

    EDIT: if you want to talk about it off board, I'll PM you my work email addy. I have a lot of experience of mistaken sexuality. lol. Even Pheo's mate at the last GTG couldn't decide whether I was or not, until I started talking about my fella! lol.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  4. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    I suppose when a woman is in a male dominated profession then some people will make comments like that. I know a guy who is a hairdresser and he is married to a woman, but people call him gay because he is a hair dresser.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  5. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    Actually, it would never have occurred to me to make such an assumption, but then, all the women I've ever known who've worked in IT were straight (I know this because they'd talk about their husbands or boyfriends).

    What was said about women in "typical" male professions is probably accurate, though. The guy who made the comment is a jerk and should learn to keep his mouth shut. If this never happens again, then blow it off and move on. If, so some reason, these comments start happening with regularity, go to your HR person and ask what the company's policy is on handling it.

    What's typical in the US is, if a person makes an offensive comment within earshot, you are first obligated to go to them and ask them to stop. If they don't, then you can file a complain with a supervisor and have HR handle it from there.

    Sorry to hear this is happening. Unfortunately, the world is full of loud-mouths.
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  6. Cockles

    Cockles Megabyte Poster

    If you really wante to follow it up, you could potentially get that nimrod into a lot of trouble, especially if the company concerned is in the public eye commercially at all. Companies tend to take a very dim view to comments of that nature (or anything racist, sexist etc).
    Certifications: None
    WIP: Trying to find my car keys
  7. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

    firstly i think there should be more women in IT :)

    secondly TTIUWP :D

    Certifications: Bsc, 70-270, 70-290, 70-291, 70-293, 70-294, 70-298, 70-299, 70-620, 70-649, 70-680
    WIP: 70-646, 70-640
  8. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

    Guy probably felt threatened by a woman who new more about computers than he did.

    He'd have said the same if you had been a car mechanic.

    Or maybe he was just an @ssh0le.
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  9. Tinus1959

    Tinus1959 Gigabyte Poster

    There are several options how to handle with this kind of treatment, but most of them could turn agains you in the end.
    If it was said in a joke like fashion you could try to make a smart remark to. Most of the time this works fabulous. Example: My wife was walking the dogs (you know I have two Irish Wolfhounds) and some guy opened the window of his car and asked her if it was legal to take two cows for a walk. She returned the question and asked him since when it was legal for a mule to drive a car.

    If he meant the remark dead serious a firm kick in the n*ts also works great, but it might get you sacked.

    The easiest way is just pretend you did not hear his stupid remark.

    Personally I would not take it up with my boss. You could end up being called a sissy who can not cope with her problems.

    Hope this helps.
    Good luck.
    Certifications: See my signature
  10. TimoftheC

    TimoftheC Kilobyte Poster

    I'm with Trip - I would never had made an assumption that a women IT Tech had to be gay because she's a women in a male dominated environment.

    I would say that you are always going to meet tossas in whatever environment you work in and this guy would seemed to match that tag. If you are that angry about it then taking it further is one way of dealing with it, although that could lead to other complications and assertions.

    These sorts of things are not easy but I would ask and in no way am I trying to undermine your feelings, but, are you taking this out of proportion, it was your first time there and the guy just might not have developed any social skills yet? Of course, I've never been in that sort of situation so I really have no idea what your feeling.

    Another thing you could try the next time your there is to see if he acts the say way - it might just have been an ignorant attempt at poor humour. However, my response to something like that may well have been "no, I'm not a d*** but looking at you makes me wish I was "

    and again I agree with Trip - the world is full of loud mouths, although I do prefer the term of Tossa.
    Certifications: A+; Network+
    WIP: MCDST???
  11. Leehaa

    Leehaa Gigabyte Poster

    Thanks for all the coments.

    I think it'll probably just be best to leave it, then address it if the issue came back up. Manager knows (made a jokey comment about it earlier, and he was shocked that they'd come out with it too) and has gone to the site today so may bring it up in a jokey way with them but, as i'm quite new here I don't really want to make a fuss out of anything incase they think i'm too much hassle!

    It was just quite shocking. I sometimes have to prepare myself for comments on my colour (which I can handle as they're usually just inquisitive rather than offensive - one cute kid once asked if I was black or white and I had to explain that one parent is black and the other white lol, or people ask about where I come from etc), but this one is new and, I think it's more the fact that it would be extremely offensive to someone if they were gay!

    That "TTIUWP " is that just a joke?

    You can see a piccie in my profile and some peops have me on facebook so can make their own opinion on if I look like one - lol

    Arroyn, that's crazy - looking at the GTG photos It didn't occur to me!
    Certifications: MCP, MCDST, ITIL v3, MBCS, others...
    WIP: BSc IT & Computing, RHCE
  12. Jimbooo

    Jimbooo Nibble Poster

    I think you shouldn't take offence, and you should care less about what people like that say to you. He must be a pillock to have said that for no reason, so don't let it get to you. There are people like that in this world.

    I was walking down the street yesterday and, (I have almost shoulder length hair), some builder covered in cement and stuff shouts out "hey excuse me mate, do you know where the nearest hairdressers is?"... so I turned around and said "No, but I know where the nearest jobcenter is, if you're interested".. wow that look he gave me.. :hahaha
    Certifications: 4 A-Levels
    WIP: BSc (Hons) Computing
  13. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    I wasn't kidding about going to HR if it comes to that. The one "authority" at work responsible for helping out employees, new or not, is the HR department. In most companies, HR is very sensitized to hostility in the workplace of any kind.

    That said, hopefully, the issue is dead and won't resurface.

    Funny you should mention the "colour" thing. Many years ago, I worked with a guy whose Dad was a black American and whose mother was a white German. He was at a friend's house helping him (white family) put in a new thermostat. One of the friend's sons asked about the guy's "tan". The father of the kid got embarrassed and tried to shut the kid up, but my friend just laughed and explained the same thing. Kids aren't trying to be racist, they're just curious.

    Frankly, as adults, we've lost that innocence and try to move in the opposite direction by pretending we don't notice people around us are different at all. It's not racist or sexist or any other "ist" to notice someone is different, become curious, and ask innocent questions. It is "ist", if you decide that those differences make the other person somehow inferior to you.
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  14. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    I'd kick his butt. :kuli

    Actually, I'd have reported him to my manager. Or to his manager.

    Pffft... you need a microscope to see it! :rolleyes:
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  15. Leehaa

    Leehaa Gigabyte Poster

    Well the one on there now is about as close up as you can get lol!

    ...and yes, I am the one on the right :p Not pretty as we were both really hot at that point.
    Certifications: MCP, MCDST, ITIL v3, MBCS, others...
    WIP: BSc IT & Computing, RHCE
  16. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

    Tease. :biggrin
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  17. Mitzs
    Honorary Member

    Mitzs Ducktape Goddess

    I probably would have busted out laughing and said wow, now that is one thing I didn't know about myself. I wonder if my husband knows and has just been afraid to tell me? :biggrin Really Lee, that is just ignorance talking and someone that is not secure in their own maleness. The best way to nip that in the bud if the bloke is stupid enough to open his mouth again is to just laugh at him. You show the others around you, your not taking someone like that serious and not to mention you will make him feel like a real dumbass who most times won't ever say anything rude to you again. You have to let people like that just wash off your back. To many other important things going on in your life to worry about some crumb dumb that has to make others look smaller so he can feel bigger.
    Big Hugs.
    Certifications: Microcomputers and network specialist.
    WIP: Adobe DW, PS
  18. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    No need for the comment but its part of the job unfortunately.

    Like you I support many different companies and when I’m on-site I always have to remember that I don’t work *for* that company, I’m sub-contracted so I don’t get involved in any ‘banter’. As long as their IT works then that’s all I care about.

    Some of the cultures in some companies are an absolute disgrace and many times when I leave a site I feel relieved that I don’t work for them.
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Office 365, Server 2016, CEH
  19. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

    TTIUWP - was a just a natural response from posting on another forum too much :oops:

    should have played along with the whole lesbo thing and wound him up

    Certifications: Bsc, 70-270, 70-290, 70-291, 70-293, 70-294, 70-298, 70-299, 70-620, 70-649, 70-680
    WIP: 70-646, 70-640
  20. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

    I don't think he should have made a comment like that, that guy is clearly an idiot.. though to be honest, i have absolutely no issues with lesbians at all.. in fact i think they are hawt 8) is that bad?
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)

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