Posted by: Take Flight | October 31, 2016

Women Deserve Respect

october-respect-image

The numerous allegations of inappropriate sexual advances toward women made by Trump reminded me of my experience as a young woman advancing in my career. I am speaking out about this in unity with any woman who has been treated like an object by men. Women Deserve Respect.

At 21 I received a promotion from a rep to a sales manager at a hotel in Houston, Texas.My new long-term accounts included relocation guests and airline employees. Perusing through the files, I noted that an airline hadn’t been called on in a long while. They did business with us years before and there had been no follow-up. I contacted the man in charge and he seemed receptive. We met later that week at his office for about two hours to discuss the possibility.

During our meeting the airline director gestured a lot with his hands, occasionally landing one on my shoulder or on top of my hands. Once he brushed his hand against my thigh. Each time I squirmed. He then scooted closer to me. Since he came from another culture, I gave him some slack.

After much negotiation he reached a decision. My heart beat faster as this airline executive agreed to have me draw up a contract. My boss would be thrilled with this sizeable booking so soon after my promotion.

Then he said, “I need to come out to the hotel to see it again. I’ll sign the contract then, over dinner. How about Friday night?” A chill ran through my body yet I nodded. I couldn’t walk away from this huge piece of business.

During dinner the airline executive continually changed the subject to ask me personal questions. Then he refused to sign the agreement. I wanted to walk out at that moment, but my car was in the shop. I told him I needed to call my roommate to pick me up. Unfortunately she didn’t answer the phone. When I returned he asked where I lived and said, “That’s the way I drive home. I can drop you off.”

We pulled up near my apartment and he asked, “Would you mind if I use your bathroom? I still have a long drive from here.”

I froze for a moment and then said, “Okay.” I didn’t think there could be any harm in letting him use my bathroom.

Not long afterward a short, paunchy, naked man walked out of my bathroom. My heart beat so fast I thought it would leap out of my chest as he walked toward me. Then I jumped from the couch screaming and laughing as I ran into the bathroom. Reaching over I scooped up his pile of clothes and with some super human strength tossed him and his clothes out of my apartment.

The entire time he taunted me with, “Don’t you want my business. You’ll never get the business unless you have sex with me. Women always do. What’s wrong with you?” He then called out names of women who had slept with him in the past, “for the business.”

The next day I shared the story with my male boss at work, and a male sales manager. At first they couldn’t stop laughing. Then my boss said, “Oh men will be men. I should have known not to assign you to any of these important accounts. You don’t know how to handle yourself.”

I handed them the file and soon afterward my resignation.

 

 

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