I Let a Partner Touch My Boobs. Now What?

February 12, 2010 by  

advice-boobs-featureQ: Before I relay my question, I would just please like to reiterate that I do not believe that I’ve been sexually harassed in any way and I’m not looking to file any sort of claim.  However, I did let a partner, well, feel up my boobs in a momentary lapse of judgment and now I’m completely freaking out.  I’m a third-year associate and he’s a junior partner and it happened at a welcome reception for the new first-year associates.  I actually worked with him on a major white-collar case a few years ago back when he was a senior associate and I always thought there was a little sexual tension but I was a first-year at the time and he was gunning for partner and nothing ever happened.  But after the reception the other night, a few of us all went out and after a while, it was just me and him and a few drinks led to a few more and before I knew it, his hands were heading under my shirt and I fully let it happen (in public, no less) – but did stop right after that and we took separate cabs home.

He’s not married, but I’m pretty sure he’s seeing someone and, well, he’s a partner in my department.  I don’t want to have some sort of an “affair” but I had fun and actually really like this guy and wouldn’t be adverse to a relationship, but I can barely look him in the eye.  Now what?

A:  Oh, “affairs” with “partners.” They’re so “fun” and often lead to “things” like “getting fired.” Child, have you learned NOTHING from this site—specifically, the parade of horribles appearing over here?

OK, look, here’s what I’ve learned from my years as a person who…lives on the Earth: When you let a guy you barely know tap out Stairway to Heaven on your boobs in the middle of a bar before he goes home to his girlfriend, your chances for a “relationship” are pretty well shot. And when this person is also your boss, you might as well just call a headhunter now. See, the morning after your little liaison, you woke up and felt kind of tingly and embarrassed and a little hopeful, and texted four girlfriends and at least one gay about it and made sure to put on lip gloss and wear a cute outfit in case you saw him—and he woke up and made a mental note to avoid you for the next sixteen years. And maybe called a lawyer.

Sorry, but he likely doesn’t think you’re girlfriend material—and his girlfriend probably doesn’t, either. Even if this gropefest did inspire him to pursue a “relationship,” what’s he going to do? Start dating someone he supervises—someone who could, despite her intense reiterations to the contrary, fire off a harassment suit in three seconds if the relationship soured or she got laid off? And what about you? Why would you put yourself in a position where someone who has the power to fire you—or at the very least make your life miserable—be the same guy who sees you naked in your downtime? Everybody loses. There is a reason, after all, why associates date other associates—and why partners just stick to hookers. Or secretaries.

So, calm down—you’re actually not in much of a dilemma. Since a relationship’s totally off the table, the most you can hope for with this guy is a grope in a file room now and then—which, hey, has its place, but will do just as much for your ego as it will for your career. So, just put this little episode behind you, make sure to hold your head high around this  partner, and just move on to more eligible bachelors. And maybe wear a turtleneck from now on around the office.

Good luck.

Need advice? Email our Sweet Hot Counsel at counsel@sweethotjustice.com.

Comments

38 Responses to “I Let a Partner Touch My Boobs. Now What?”

  1. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 7:39 am

    In what sad, sad world do you think letting your supervisor fondle you is not sexual harassment? Your adamant declarations that it is not, not to mention the very fact of this question, prove that you’re already feeling the effects of an uncomfortable work environment brought on by his actions. Wake up girlie.

  2. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 8:15 am

    Now what?

    Next stop: partnership track, obviously!

  3. Enuf on February 12th, 2010 8:29 am

    is there anyone on this site who isn’t a slut or an idiot or both?

  4. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 9:32 am

    sue him. sue the firm.

  5. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 11:04 am

    So you hooked up with some horny guy who happens to work with you. If you need ask what to do about this your going to be single for a while.

  6. Lil frenchie on February 12th, 2010 11:26 am

    Sue him?? Sue the firm???

    Maaaaan, I don’t want to sound all prejudicial, but could you be any more American? It seriously seems to be your only solution, ever.

    Anyway, thanks sweet hot counsel for being both funny AND down-to-earth. You need to write more often: i have zero billing hours this week and am about to shoot myself from boredom.

  7. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 1:30 pm

    Amazing – simply, fucking amazing – someone so dense as to have to ask what she does now is probably billed at $500/hour

    With judgment so poor (not getting felt up, but not knowing what do on the facts she just gave) the malpractice supplement and/or cost in supervisory time for having her around will be pretty steep unless she can figure out answers to questions like hers automatically – and SHC is exactly right, of course

  8. Li Yuan on February 12th, 2010 1:36 pm

    I don’t think this should be a problem. Stay on the job. The last thing you should do is quit. Girl. He has some hidden psychological problems with women.

    He lalso will probably be embarrassed every time he sees you in the hallway for a while. And if you do have to work with him often, just be professional. Don’t go thinking he is boyfriend material just because just because he (and you) got drunk and he felt your boobs. Although he’s an ass and should have kept his hands to himself, he did not. You need not crucify him.

    Just make sure you don’t get caught in a compromising position with him again.

    You may also suggest to the managing director that there be some type of psychological counseling available to all members of the firm, without singling him out.

  9. Hookers? on February 12th, 2010 1:38 pm

    Excuse me, since when are secretaries the same as hookers? This is not the first time I’ve seen this website make that kind of claim.

    No, I’m not a secretary, and no, I’m not a lawyer (thank god), but it’s just in really poor taste and a true insult to the women and men who balance up to 6 or 7 of you lawyers on their desks for less than 1/3 of what you get paid.

    Whether it was meant to be a joke or not, show some respect.

  10. Dick on February 12th, 2010 2:07 pm

    Secretaries make the best hookers. And vice versa.

  11. Anonymous on February 12th, 2010 5:51 pm

    Nice to see the “empowered womyn” parasites slithering out of the woodwork, cheerleading this chick into a money-grab lawsuit. “A mutually consensual sexual contact with a MAN?! Take ’em for all they’re worth, sister!” Give me a break.

  12. E. on February 12th, 2010 8:44 pm

    Hey, I hope it works out for you.

  13. perv on February 12th, 2010 10:55 pm

    All I want to know are how big your boobs are….

  14. perv on February 12th, 2010 10:55 pm

    All I want to know are how big your boobs are….

  15. perv on February 12th, 2010 10:56 pm

    I mean… i hope they are nice for that guys sake because now shit is awkward.

  16. Bill Dugan on February 13th, 2010 9:27 am

    I think it’s beautiful. A broad gets drunk, lets a guy dance close with her, and now HE is in trouble?

    He did not impregnate the dame, nor did he even get close to her HOO-HA. But now he has to worry about this job because a bunch of other dames want to sue him?

    For what? Why isn’t he suing HER for touching HIS body? What is it with a chick and her hooters? Why are hooters the holy friggin’ Grail?

    I say unless a chick gets knocked up against her will, there should be no repercussions whatsoever.

    Hump em and Dump em.

  17. Edward Lunny on February 13th, 2010 9:56 am

    Geez, where to start. Okay, he’s not maybe seeing someone, you know he is, or you wouldn’t have mentioned it. That makes both of you ignorant pigs, he for cheating, you for cheating with him. You have moral/ethical issues, using drinking as an excuse for abhorrant behaviour is cowardice and an excuse,not a reason. You knew what would happen before you started drinking. You don’t want to have a affair, but, apparently a sordid tryst is acceptable ? You should apologise to him, he should also but likely won’t, and then you need to do a serious evaluation of your values system. Do you have a values system ? We have an indication of just how malleable your morals are, you’ve set the price. Perhaps some self examination and redirection can help, only time will tell.

  18. Elvira on February 13th, 2010 12:18 pm

    I think this poster simply needs a good boning. It’s coming up on Valentine’s Day, and she is probably lonely and looking for something other than a banana or cucumber to keep her company.

    Don’t fault the woman for being lonely. Just have someone from this website give her a charity f***ck. Where is the Southern Lawyer when we need him?

  19. Anonymous on February 13th, 2010 4:45 pm

    Secretaries are “women and men who balance up to 6 or 7 of you lawyers on their desks for less than 1/3 of what you get paid.”

    They also balance us on hotel beds and copy machines.

  20. Eileen DeBonis on February 14th, 2010 8:03 am

    A man should not touch our breasts, unless of course we invite him to do so at our apartments, but NEVER in a public place.

    Sad as it seems, the concept of grabbing women’s anatomy in public has taken on secondary meaning, as this was found in today’s newspaper. I think men ought to think twice before doing what this article suggests.

    A smart, handsome and sexy young man dressed in the most sophisticated manner walked into the bar. He noticed a woman staring at him without blinking her eyes with an open mouth. Flattered, he approached the woman and said in his sexiest deep voice – “I’ll do anything you wish, beautiful lady, for just $20 but on one condition.” The woman was trapped in a moment and asked as if in a trance – “What’s your condition?” The young man replied, “Tell me your wish in just three words.” After a long pause, woman opened her purse, counted the money and handed it to the man along with her address. She then looked deeply into his eyes and whispered, “Fondle my crotch.”

  21. VoiceofReason on February 15th, 2010 9:28 am

    “In what sad, sad world do you think letting your supervisor fondle you is not sexual harassment? Your adamant declarations that it is not, not to mention the very fact of this question, prove that you’re already feeling the effects of an uncomfortable work environment brought on by his actions. Wake up girlie.”

    Whoever wrote this, you should be ashamed of yourself. What a self-indulgent and utterly ignorant thing to say. Let me explain something to you. This is a world of adults. What people in this country seem to have forgotten is that we are all responsible for our own actions. Simply because you don’t like the consequences, doesn’t mean you get to 1) sue about it (yeah whoever said that, you should be ashamed too because you’re cancer) and/or 2) deflect your own failures onto someone else. There is no question the Junior Partner’s behavior was inappropriate; however, this is a dual failure with two people equally liable for their conduct and equally responsible for its consequences. Now, your statements are completely indefensible under any logical standard, so I’ll address what your knee-jerk attempt to discredit me will be. Don’t call me sexist, because you’re wrong. You hurt the feminist cause-the true feminist cause-when you make statements like that because no one in their right mind takes you seriously. On the contrary, you undermine women everywhere. If this girl, who made a simple, honest mistake, were to actually listen to the garbage you spew, she’d be in a lot of trouble. If women ever want to be taken seriously in the workplace they need to stop speaking out of both sides of their mouths. Don’t ask for someone to hold the door and treat you like a “lady” then complain about different standards. Don’t whine about not being objectified when you dress suggestively, and don’t expect to be taken seriously when you can’t even accept responsibility for your own actions. This girl made a mistake. She actually realizes that and is mature enough to realize she is equally to blame rather than a “victim.” And you would have her sacrifice that moment of character. Well news flash: Freedom isn’t freedom from responsibility; it is the freedom to choose your responsibilities. As long as you advocate that women victimize themselves as a means of dealing with inadequacy, guilt, or irresponsibility, you will DESTROY all hope of them achieving true equality. Wise up.

  22. RK on February 16th, 2010 6:51 am

    In a perfect workplace world, women could grab men by the balls too, but we’re not there yet, at least not north of the Mason-Dixon Linet. So until a man’s nuts are grabbible, men should not grab woman’s teats either.

  23. Harold on February 18th, 2010 6:37 am

    What is it about women and their boobs? A man don’t care if a woman grabs him by the balls, so why the fuss here?

    If men want to go where the action is, head downstairs. But imagine what a ruckus this woman would raise if the guy had stuck his hand up her dress into her hoo-hah. We’d never hear the end of this.

  24. Anon on February 18th, 2010 9:18 am

    VoiceofReason: touché… couldn’t have put it any better.

  25. rick on February 19th, 2010 10:12 am

    over the bra or under?

  26. Anonymous on February 20th, 2010 8:50 am

    Rick, Over doesn’t even count. That’s like dry humping a broad. All you wind up with is wet underwear.

    This woman should just suck it up and forget about her dopey tits. No one cares.

  27. Boobies? on March 23rd, 2010 12:25 pm

    Why should we care about whether a partner touched your boobies? Isn’t that a matter between you and the partner?

  28. Willa on April 2nd, 2010 5:22 pm

    Boobies? The 0perative word is Breasts or Teats. And I agree, who cares about your teats? Not me. Now if he grabbed you downstairs under your dress, that might be another thing, but touching your teats is NOT news.

  29. Steve on May 28th, 2010 12:55 am

    In a perfect workplace world, women could grab men by the balls too, but we’re not there yet, at least not north of the Mason-Dixon Linet. So until a man’s nuts are grabbible, men should not grab woman’s teats either.

  30. Emily on May 31st, 2010 12:55 pm

    “In what sad, sad world do you think letting your supervisor fondle you is not sexual harassment? Your adamant declarations that it is not, not to mention the very fact of this question, prove that you’re already feeling the effects of an uncomfortable work environment brought on by his actions. Wake up girlie.”

    Whoever wrote this, you should be ashamed of yourself. What a self-indulgent and utterly ignorant thing to say. Let me explain something to you. This is a world of adults. What people in this country seem to have forgotten is that we are all responsible for our own actions. Simply because you don’t like the consequences, doesn’t mean you get to 1) sue about it (yeah whoever said that, you should be ashamed too because you’re cancer) and/or 2) deflect your own failures onto someone else. There is no question the Junior Partner’s behavior was inappropriate; however, this is a dual failure with two people equally liable for their conduct and equally responsible for its consequences. Now, your statements are completely indefensible under any logical standard, so I’ll address what your knee-jerk attempt to discredit me will be. Don’t call me sexist, because you’re wrong. You hurt the feminist cause-the true feminist cause-when you make statements like that because no one in their right mind takes you seriously. On the contrary, you undermine women everywhere. If this girl, who made a simple, honest mistake, were to actually listen to the garbage you spew, she’d be in a lot of trouble. If women ever want to be taken seriously in the workplace they need to stop speaking out of both sides of their mouths. Don’t ask for someone to hold the door and treat you like a “lady” then complain about different standards. Don’t whine about not being objectified when you dress suggestively, and don’t expect to be taken seriously when you can’t even accept responsibility for your own actions. This girl made a mistake. She actually realizes that and is mature enough to realize she is equally to blame rather than a “victim.” And you would have her sacrifice that moment of character. Well news flash: Freedom isn’t freedom from responsibility; it is the freedom to choose your responsibilities. As long as you advocate that women victimize themselves as a means of dealing with inadequacy, guilt, or irresponsibility, you will DESTROY all hope of them achieving true equality. Wise up.

  31. Elena on June 4th, 2010 10:39 am

    “Teats”? What is that?

  32. TrynaCoppaFeel on September 30th, 2010 9:19 pm

    Don’t sweat the patriarchal bullsh*t. ZJ’s for the whole floor!

  33. Anonymous on November 14th, 2010 8:30 am

    You guys are stupid. all of you. esp the person who wrote this. You know what you need to do? Get laid n stop internet blogging. Fuck feminist bitches, fuck secretaries, fuck lawsuits. But hey, at least you’re not black. HAHA just kdding(not really).

  34. Anonymous on November 14th, 2010 8:32 am

    Btw, idc who touched ur boobs, if ur feakin out over that shit, you obviously need to let him do what he wants

  35. Anonymous on November 14th, 2010 10:44 pm

    This last poster seriously needs to figure out his sexuality. He probably is a closet homo.

  36. Anonymous on November 16th, 2010 8:28 pm

    Let’s get some fresh material!

    We’re tired of reading about your sagging boobies. It’s time you pulled your pants down for the camera!

  37. Anonymous on June 29th, 2013 12:47 pm

    Whatever happened to those sweaty teats?

    Do the partner ever come back and fuck her?

  38. Laura on August 9th, 2013 11:02 am

    I resent it when men grab my boobs after a few drinks. The standard line is: I was just checking to be sure they are real.

    What am I supposed to say? Yes, they are, and you can have more of it back in my room? Or, keep your cotton-picking hands off my tits. They’re mine and for my boyfriend only?

    This happens at least 3x a year, often at holiday parties. Help

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