Sh*tposting on LinkedIn

Hi ladies. I was sexually harassed at my first job out of college (and every job before that- just wasn't expecting it in a professional environment). I developed PTSD and left that job with nothing else lined up. And then after that I started trolling on the company LinkedIn page under my real name. And reached out to the C Level I reported under and threatened to sue. Well since then I think I have been blacklisted in the industry (I was always told at my old job that the industry was "small") and I just recently moved to a new city and went on an interview where the person had connections to someone who had worked at my old company. Idk how to handle this and lowkey kind of feel like I ruined my reputation - but the married men who harass new grads never seem to be held accountable or worried about their own reputation or the industry being small. Not to mention other sycophantic employees (male or female) love this man and support him regardless of him trying to sleep w all the girls in the office. Idk what I'm looking for from this post. Maybe just venting. This happened like 2 years ago and I've been in my current job since, in a department with only female leaders.

I'm sorry you faced harassment at all of your jobs. I won't pretend that trolling under your real name made sense, but at least if you had done so with a fake name and appearance, you could have had plausible deniability.White collar work, esp. LinkedIn users, will let alllll manner of bad behavior pass as long as the person makes them money or they're male and or white.
Thanks, but I wanted the people who harassed me to be scared that's why I say it where they could see it 😭 now my brain is fully developed and I'm more mature and I regret it
Eh I think we could use more forthright call outs in our world, but the world doesn't think so.
This happened to me too. It took years of work to get over it. My new manager was amazing and helped me recognize that that kind of trauma was holding me back in my career (aka, being scared to network with men etc) and I eventually got over it. My career has totally taken off because of my mindset shift from all white men are suspicious and evil to hey, I can have great relationships with anyone. (It also helps that my new company has much better culture, HR policies etc) Can’t really comment on the LinkedIn piece, sounds like that was a trauma response from a place of hurt. I would just try to acknowledge that maybe that wasn’t the best move but you learned from it and are moving onto better things now with a great team of supportive women.I’m sorry this happened. It’s not fair and he should be held accountable. I hope you are able to work through this and now have a bomb ass career!
I feel the exact same way, I am incredibly scared to network with men or report to a man ever again. Now I constantly feel like I am being sexualized under the male gaze, or paranoid that when I join a new company they will be taking bets on who can sleep with the new girl first. To top it off I'm Muslim and feel like wearing the hijab would curb some of the harassment (not that it's ever a woman's fault, but I feel like it creates a stricter boundary) but of course that could lead to religious harassment or discrimination as well. It feels like women can never win no matter what.
I'm sorry this happened to you, truly.What makes you say that you've been blacklisted? Did they say something in the interview about your old role or the industry that is giving you pauses? Obviously you can trust your gut on this interaction, though I'd not jump on that conclusion that quickly? You have a long life ahead of you, and things change, the dust will settle :) you've not ruined neither your life not your reputation. However, as someone else commented, yes I'd say you can certainly learn from the experience on posting on LinkedIn and acknowledge that there might be other ways to cope (and it sounds like you already are which is excellent!)
This person that I mentioned in the post promoted me then made a burner account on instagram and sent me NASTY messages about my body and what they'd like to do with it. He was married with kids and ten years older than me. Him and his sycophants would constantly mention how "small the industry was" and when I hinted at it with a female leader she asked me if I "like my job and want to keep it". When I tried to leave I kept getting offers rescinded after I would tell people at the company I worked for that I got them.
Wow... that's absolutely wild :( i agree with one of the advice that maybe you can consult an attorney to know what your rights are.I don't think you should change roles completely but are there adjacents roles you can do? For instance say you're a customer success employee at an ecommerce and that has been your industry for the past several years, can you look at customer success roles in complete different industries eg future of work?My point being, do you have to feel limited in your options? Feel free to share what your industry has been (if you are comfortable, i understand you might not be), and we can also brainstorm on other options you might have
You already took the right first step, which was getting out of that environment ASAP!You'll never know the degree to which you have or have not been blacklisted (it's one of the toughest job markets in history, and there are tons of qualified people not getting job offers after interviews that have nothing to do with sh*tposting on LinkedIn). Also, keep in mind that just because someone is connected to a person on LinkedIn doesn't mean they like them, and the fact that your industry is "small" could mean that it's viciously competitive and people at competitor companies might hate this guy. You just never know.The important thing is to go into every conversation treating it as a clean slate. Understandably it's hard given your experience, but give every person you talk to the benefit-of-the-doubt that they are not a "married man who harasses new grads." I'm sure it's tempting to assume that, but you could overlook some great jobs if you are only willing to consider roles that report to women.(p.s. Are your trolling LinkedIn comments still public, or did you delete them? Also, did you ever consult an attorney about whether you would have a case against your former employer?)
I would post them then delete them after a couple of days when I cooled down. I did not consult an attorney because it would have been a sh*t show and a public record I wasn't sure was worth pursuing because everything was done so stealthily. Thank you for your kind words and advice
I would say that you still should consult an attorney, just to inform yourself if not to actually go through with suing. Most attorneys will do consultations for free, and they are completely confidential and nothing goes into the public record unless you proceed. If anything, LinkedIn is way more of a public record than a lawsuit. The attorney will tell you what type of evidence is needed in a case like this, which could be useful to you in the future. You've said this has happened to you in a lot of jobs, so it could be empowering for you to have the facts and know what types of things can be used as evidence if you encounter this again.You can also figure out what the statute of limitations is and whether it's even still possible to sue your former employer.Before she became the founder of Bumble, Whitney Wolfe Herd successfully sued Tinder for sexual harassment and received a $1 million settlement:
I'm so sorry you dealt with that. The world and professional environments are exhaustingly unfair in this sense—people put up with these gross men, but not with the feelings and needs of the women who (reasonably) react to them. Your frustration feels both personal (you had a terrible experience) and collective (... just like we *all* have these same terrible experiences! ugh!) And honestly, I low key feel like "good for you" for standing up for yourself. It's brave to do that, even if it feels messy and unsure now and even if you might choose to handle it differently in the future. I guess, reading this, I just wanted to say that to you. You are only a couple years out of that experience. As you move through your career, you will continue to gain new and different job experiences, new advocates who can serve as references, and this will fall further and further behind you, I'm sure of it. Pretty soon there will be 10x the people saying great things about you to this 1 LinkedIn thing. AHh, I hope this is helpful in any small way. I am wishing the best for you.
Thank you so much. Your comments are so thoughtful and kind. So grateful to have this community!!