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Teen harassment could lead to lower skill development, self-blame

In our prior post we talked about the numerical side of a recent research study that looked into sexual harassment and teenagers in the workplace. What the researchers found was shocking: 54 percent of teenage females and 37 percent of males who participated in the study experienced an incident of sexual harassment in only two years.

While those statistics are shocking enough, parents are likely even more concerned with how the incident or even incidents could affect their child's future. We mentioned in the prior post that teens are less likely to report incidents of harassment for a number of reasons. While researchers did find that those who reported the incident to a parent, counselor or another adult reported overall better well-being, there was a substantial link between sexual harassment and other negative effects.

There was evidence that becoming the victim of sexual harassment at an early age could lead to a lowered job satisfaction and even lowered skill development in the workplace. Females were even more affected in this way than males appeared to be in the study. Many of them even had less of a desire to begin their careers than those who were not harassed.

Not only were there negative symptoms that developed in relation to a professional career, but there were effects that exhibited themselves in school. Some children were found to struggle with absenteeism or tardiness, and even others were found to become more likely involved with a controlled substance. Some internalized the harassment and developed a sense of self-blame for what happened.

Source: Yahoo! News, "Teens More Likely to Face Sexual Harassment on the Job," Chad Brooks, Dec. 26, 2012

If you are a teen or a parent of a teen who has suffered even one incident of unwelcome behavior that occurs because of your gender, our website provides more information about your options.

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