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Understanding the emotional damages of sexual harassment

Dealing with an issue of quid pro quo sexual harassment can be emotionally draining for someone. Often, the person facing the harassment is dealing with demands from someone who is in control in the workplace -- sometimes it is a direct supervisor, but it could also be a manager, executive or another worker who is attempting to blackmail someone into providing sexual behaviors. Simply facing such a situation can be damaging to emotional, physical and mental health, and dealing with reporting the situation and legal matters can cause more damage.

A study from Blackstone indicates depression is a common symptom experienced by those who have dealt with sexual harassment, and that those symptoms can last 10 years or more. In another study, researchers noted that there was a correlation between high blood pressure issues and experience with sexual harassment. The studies show that damages can be both physical and emotional.

Other health issues that have been tied to sexual harassment include post-traumatic stress disorder, sleeping disorders and chronic neck pain. One study even suggested that sexual harassment can increase the likelihood that someone will experience suicidal thoughts or even commit suicide in the future.

All of these are very serious concerns for someone who is facing a sexual harassment situation. While reporting the issue or confronting the harasser through the legal system might seem daunting, it can also be empowering. Understanding that you have rights -- and a way to wield them -- can help you overcome the situation and seek a resolution that allows you to move on with life. Working with a legal professional who can help you throughout the entire process makes it somewhat less daunting and can help you increase the chances of recovering compensation for your damages.

Source: LiveScience, "6 Ways Sexual Harassment Damages Women's Health," Rachael Rettner, accessed March 04, 2016

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