Sexual harassment remains a problem

Dear Editor:

With schools, colleges, and universities beginning the 2021-2022 academic year, I want to let everyone know that there is an organization in existence which focuses their work on trying to stop the social problem of “Sexual Harassment” in all parts of our society including in education.

It is called “Times Up Now.” My own personal story is that I was sexually harassed for six months by a female college professor when I was a 25 year-old college student. She had the power to determine whether or not I would receive my college degree. Also, I was always struck by how many college students would show up at my office door when I myself was a college professor wanting to talk to me about a professor who was sexually harassing her. Most of these students were never in any of my classes.

What I am telling you is that I care very deeply about this social problem and about the victims and survivors. Perhaps the worst part of it for me was that I blamed myelf for it (“self-blame”) for 40 years.

Therefore, the most important thing that I want to say to all victims and survivors is this: “You did not do anything to cause, encourage, or bring about this bad behavior. Nothing.”

My final point is this, if this ever happens to you, report it immediately to those in positions of power and authority at your institution, and then try as hard as you can not to let the evil predator have any power or control over how you feel about yourself.

P.S. By way of background, I am a retired college professor of Sociology and Social Work who taught at West Virginia University, Slippery Rock University, and Keuka College.

I am a new volunteer for and with “The National Eating Disorders Association” known as “NEDA.”

Sincerely,

Stewart B. Epstein Rochester, New York

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