Social Question

Lonelyheart807's avatar

How would you react to this comment?

Asked by Lonelyheart807 (2310points) March 3rd, 2017

Our school just hired a new school nurse. Sadly, she seems to have next to no computer skills/tech skills. Apparently, checking her messages on her phone in her office is going to be a real hardship for her, even after she was walked through the process (most of which is menu prompted once you dial the number.)

This morning when she arrived, she indicated that she was still unable to check her messages. She could not give any details as to what the problem was, so, being very busy myself, I asked her to make the attempt again, and to write down what was happening. She then stated, maybe I’ll just get one of the guys to look at it, as they are better at that type of stuff.

When she said that, I figured I had just misunderstood her, and asked her to explain what she meant. She stated outright that guys are always better at “tech” stuff, and have had more experience with it. I told her I found that statement to be offensive and gender-biased, and she couldn’t understand why.

Are we really still making comments like this? And from another woman no less?

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112 Answers

Dibowac78NN's avatar

Welp anyone can be good at tech stuff, may they be female or male, Techology is something anyone can learn.

03–03-2017

elbanditoroso's avatar

I would get off the gender horse. Think it to yourself, if you want, but that’s not the issue.

You need to tell her “man or woman, you need to learn it, because this is 2017 and if you don’t know it, you’re useless”.

Make the criticism and comment about ability and doing the job. Not about gender or sex roles.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@elbanditoroso…I would, but it is not my job to tell her that, as I am not her supervisor. I do take offence at the remark however, but I am not going to worry about it any further. Next time she needs help, though, I may have to comment that she should probably ask one of the guys. I have learned not to cast my pearls before swine this past year at my job.

Coloma's avatar

Is she an older woman? I agree with @elbanditoroso she does need to learn to do this for her job but the fact is, PC and gender/sex roles aside, there are still some stereotypes that are fairly true. Most men are better at car mechanics , home repairs and other mechanical tasks. Doesn’t mean women can’t do these things equally but it is not all that common in general.

Call me out if you will but facts are facts, especially in my age range, late 50’s to 60’s. My daughter is 29 and is very sex/gender role conscious as well and while I am too, to a large degree, the fact is there are differences between men and women, physically as well as in how our brains function. Most women are not car mechanics and most men still are not taking up interior design, unless they are gay, oh nooo….I’m in deep shit now huh? lol

cinnamonk's avatar

Actually, factually, our genitals do not dictate our mastery of car mechanics, home repairs, mechanical tasks, and computer technology.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

LOL! You all crack me up. She is no older than me, and I am in my late 40’s. I am surrounded by guys (both at work and outside of it) that are about as ignorant about IT stuff as one can get. Unfortunately, I’ll be sending her to them the next time she needs help. I don’t feel like holding her hand and teaching her every little thing she should already know, at any rate.

cinnamonk's avatar

Your coworker’s problem isn’t that she’s a woman, @Lonelyheart807, it’s that she’s an idiot, and there are plenty of those in all gender categories.

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk Really? I never said that, just that there are differences between men and women physically and in their cognitive functions, that is fact as well. I was on the ground floor of the feminist movement and so nobody is teaching me anything new here, however…the fact remains that there simply ARE differences and instead of denying these differences we should be celebrating them. I mean seriously, what’s the ultimate objective here to create an assexual strain of humans?

@Lonelyheart807 I agree she needs to know, but you can’t fault someone for not knowing something, if she needs a little hand holding to build her confidence why not give it?

cinnamonk's avatar

Please, show me the scientific basis for saying that women are inherently inferior to men at replacing sparkplugs and installing drywall.

jca's avatar

I don’t find statements like that offensive. I could get offended that someone would think someone older has trouble figuring out technology but I don’t find that offensive either. Maybe I’m just too easy going.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@Coloma…hmm. Because that’s not actually my role, for one. We have IT people, and my company is responsible for training new people. I am not a trainer, and do not get paid accordingly. Furthermore, I can tell that she is not the quickest at picking stuff up, and I have enough of my own work to do that I don’t really have time to sit for hours and train somebody on something they should know coming into the role. And this is definitely being petty, but…if someone wants to insult me, and then not apologize, I am not going out of my way to help them except as my job requires. Basic behavior management there…you can’t talk to people however you want and then expect they are going to bend over backwards helping you.

cinnamonk's avatar

Honestly, I doubt she even realizes that she was being rude.

cinnamonk's avatar

@jca that video offends me. why would you even post that.

canidmajor's avatar

I would just shrug it off. I wouldn’t get offended, or send her to guys next time she asks for help. This is not a battle worth fighting; a little compassion for her would likely go a long way.
She may have some processing issue with tech, I have met a few who do.

jca's avatar

My guess is that the lady was embarrassed because she still couldn’t figure out how to retrieve the voicemails, even after being shown how to once. Instead of asking @Lonelyheart807 to help her yet again, she figured she’d ask the IT guy.

I also don’t consider showing someone how to retrieve voicemails to be “training,” I just consider it being helpful.

jca's avatar

Hahaha @cinnamonk. I laughed out loud when I first saw that video!

cinnamonk's avatar

that guy’s youtube channel is a goldmine.

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk I never said that, only that it is still not that common and isn’t calling someone an “idiot” just because they don’t know something you think they “should” know just as bad as the horrifying sexist remark you have assigned to her? Pffft!

@Lonelyheart807 I understand, just saying that lending a helping hand is always the nicest thing to do and I agree with @cinnamonk I don’t think she was even aware her comment was insulting to you. How did she get hired if she can’t master a little basic technology is the question, not whether she is right or wrong in her comment or her inability and intimidation at mastering collecting her messages. Fuck, everyone is so sensitive over every-little-thing these days.

canidmajor's avatar

@Coloma, I would guess she got hired for her nursing skills, I doubt the qualifications asked for would include phone skills. :-)

cinnamonk's avatar

She’s an idiot not because she doesn’t know something, but because she’s a mature adult who can’t do things without relying on other people to show her how to do them, and her sexist beliefs about her gender prevent her from even trying.

Coloma's avatar

@canidmajor True, taking for granted that she would, most likely, be able to retrieve her voice mails. haha
@cinnamonk Wow, you’re quick to make such sweeping statements about someone you know nothing about based on YOUR opinions. Needing a little help or guidance does not make someone reliant on others for one, and for two, you can’t fault someone for their programming. There’s a big difference between ignorance and willful ignorance. Labeling a woman an “idiot’ for their subconscious beliefs is every bit as sexist as the original remark you find offensive. You can’t be offended by someone who A. Doesn’t know any better or B. is a victim of their programming.

cinnamonk's avatar

” Labeling a woman an “idiot’ for their subconscious beliefs is every bit as sexist as the original remark you find offensive.”

Please explain this comment.

Also, maybe work on not being offended by everyone who disagrees with you.

cinnamonk's avatar

I would also venture that her beliefs are hardly subconscious since she’s expressed them explicitly.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@cinnamonk…when someone says directly to you that your statement bothered them, would you not try to rectify things?

@jca…not just to show her the voicemail, but to show her Word, Excel, emails, etc…that would not be a quick task.

@canidmajor… using a phone is very necessary as a nurse.

canidmajor's avatar

@Lonelyheart807, really, what a silly thing to say. Read my previous comment. Maybe it’s a new phone to her. Maybe there was a system upgrade.
And maybe, like I said before, a little compassion would be in order.

chyna's avatar

Everyone’s voice message center is different. A little patience with a new employee goes a long way. And you didn’t even mention word and excel in your original question.
Try being nice to other people. Your other questions seem to imply you are not well liked at work. Maybe there’s a reason.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@canidmajor…I have plenty of compassion, but maybe less once you’ve blatantly insulted me and other women, and then don’t even have the good grace to apologize for your remark when told it was offputting. I have compassion that she doesn’t have the skills necessary to make it in this world today, but if that was true of me, I surely would not be irritating the people most likely to be able to help me.

canidmajor's avatar

@Lonelyheart807, well then, enjoy your high horse. You asked how we’d react. Taking offense at such a thing is, in my mind, silly and pointless.
Geez. Done.

cinnamonk's avatar

I would have been irritated by that comment too, @Lonelyheart807, but we all say and do things that are inadvertently irritating, and we all have biases. I think the best thing you can do is just let it go. She meant no harm.

I like @jca‘s evaluation of the situation. Maybe she was just embarrassed since you had already shown her how to use the phone once, and rather than have you show her twice, wanted someone else’s help.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@chyna…I don’t ever recall saying I was not well liked at work. If there are people that don’t like me, I have learned not to lose sleep over it, as not everyone in the world is going to like you. Even my boss likes me, although he might not if he knew how I felt about him.

And I’m sorry if I did not include every little detail in my question. I also spent a good ten minutes showing her how to check her voicemail yesterday, at which time she wrote down the instructions. These instructions literally require you to hit the message button on the phone, enter your pass code (which she wrote down), and hit the pound key. After that the system walks you through everything you need to do through a menu system. She did all that, and still had a problem, but could not in anyway describe to me what the problem was. I simply told her to take note of what the problem was exactly, and get back to me. I didn’t see any point in going back to her office to do the same thing I did yesterday, when that was not an issue then.

While I have compassion for people needing help at work, I also refuse to hold their hand every moment, as they will never learn anything if I do. Planned helplessness seems to be the MO around my workplace, and yet somehow these same people get by when I am off.

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk. You are denigrating a woman for her unconscious beliefs, therefore you are denigrating her based on a very common, and still alive and well, belief system that many carry on an unconscious level. perhaps ‘sexist” was not the correct word, my mistake, lets just call it “bias” as you mention above. You cannot find bias with someone that is unaware that their beliefs are offensive.

@Lonelyheart807, I concur with @canidmajor you seem to be easily offended and don’t forget, just because YOU find something insulting doesn’t mean it was, or was intended to be. This womans remark was not personal, it was not intended to be offensive and quite frankly, you are way over reacting IMO. You have assigned all sorts of negative meanings to something quite mild IMO but yeah, enjoy the view from your Ivory Tower. haha

cinnamonk's avatar

I wonder if you would be so tolerant of her unconscious biases if they were race-based instead of sex-based. Racism is also a very common and still alive-and-well belief system. What if she had rejected Lonelyheart’s help on the basis that she was black, and white people are “always better at ‘tech’ stuff, and have had more experience with it”?

Lonelyheart807's avatar

@canidmajor…I did ask, and you said how you feel, but I don’t have to agree. And I already helped her with something else later today, but you are so convinced that I am going to be on a “high horse” about things. I don’t dwell on things like that. I have better things to do with my time and energy. I asked the question earlier because it was bothering me at the time, and have continued responding to people’s comments because that is part of the enjoyment (usually).

chyna's avatar

Really @Lonelyheart807, would it have hurt you to walk back in her office and gone over it again with her? Maybe you had a crappy tone, because I’m certainly reading one here about a new employee and your behavior and attitude about her already. I refuse to believe you couldn’t spare 10 minutes of your time to help her out and to make her feel welcome.

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk Yes it is, and again, people believe what they believe after years of conditioning and it is always best to gently try and enlighten them rather than slamming down the hammer of judgement.

cinnamonk's avatar

@Coloma, fair enough, point ceded.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

Since you all have now started assuming things about me, I am done with this conversation. One person seems to imply that I would have accepted a racist remark. Another assumes that I reacted to her the same way I have on here. People always assume the worse of others on here, which is one reason why I don’t post much any more. And, I already stated that I had gone out of my way to get something taken care of for her later in the day, not something I would have done if I had been in my ivory tower. The sad fact at my job, not that it seems people on here will listen or care, is that everyone else throws their work in my lap, and I don’t have time to constantly run back and show people things umpteen times over. If she had gotten back to me with what I asked her to find out, I would have gone back there if necessary. Until I had more information, I was not going to go back there and watch her go through the same exact process again…it would serve no purpose.

cinnamonk's avatar

@Lonelyheart807, sorry, I should have tagged @Coloma in that comment, since I meant it for her, not you.

Lonelyheart807's avatar

No problem, @cinnamonk. You know I use this forum to vent sometimes. I was really just more amazed than anything that someone would make such a comment (especially one that included themselves.) By the time everyone finished commenting on here, I actually felt more defensive about the issue than before I posted the question, which is not how it is supposed to work, lol! My reaction on here will always be stronger than what I show the person, as I know how to curb my feelings, and how to get along with people at work, although apparently a lot of people on here think otherwise.

cinnamonk's avatar

I understand. People can get pretty aggressive here and I think this thread showcases that fact well.

chyna's avatar

Maybe by stating “I’ll just have one of the IT guys look at it” was just giving you an out for not helping her. You are already put out by her asking and I bet your tone carried over to her. Think about how you really reacted to her and talked to her. You don’t need to answer me because I’m no longer going to follow this question.

Coloma's avatar

@Lonelyheart807 Hey, no need to go off in a huff, sorry to say but you brought down any criticisms, real and imagined on yourself. You assumed the worse about this woman, so nobody is being harsh here, or at least not any more harsh than you have expressed towards this co-worker, sooo, it’s kind of a “touche” moment. Anytime a pot calls a kettle black , well, that merits some reflection, even if it is uncomfortable.

@cinnamonk Agreed, I think we understand each others sentiments here, nothing to cede, just discussion.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That’s too bad that she actually thinks that way. That’s old generation.
But I have a hard time believing that someone with such limited intelligence and imagination could actually be a trained, professional nurse.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

When boarding a plane recently, I had a female flight attendant look at me and say “Oh Dr xxx, I was expecting a man!”. I politely told her that was extremely sexist. She would have been in her 30s.

I think it’s fair for you to call her out on her attitude. Perhaps at some point in the future, when you and others are having coffee, you can steer the conversation to gender roles/abilities. Perhaps you might be able to enlighten her.

Dutchess_III's avatar

See if you can’t find a moment to walk through checking her voice mails. She’ll be impressed that youse ‘mart as a MAN.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I’m surprised you are taken aback. Since she clearly knows nothing about the field, what evidence would she have to counter what she can readily confirm through her eyes and experience?

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk To address your last couple of comments. I think that becoming defensive over others comments is exactly what this Q. is all about. I never take anything personally here, I see everything as an opportunity to discuss and explore. If it seemed as if I was being defensive over any disagreement, that would not be true, I percieve it to be the exact opposite quite frankly. haha
I take offense at easily offended types.

Much ado about nothing in the grand scheme of things and I do feel that PC is being taken to ridiculous levels these days. Also, this woman saying what she did, said it from a place of unconscious programming. That’s the whole point. parroting your automatic and reflexive programming can never be taken offensively and of course, ones mans offense is another mans belief. This can be said in the realm of sex, politics, religion, on and on.

If I am “offended” because someone believes in some cultish “God”, well, that’s their right to beleive whatever they so choose so if I am offended that is my problem, not theirs.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Goodness, this thread went south didn’t it? I just read back through all the comments. @jca, loved that video. That should be posted here every time someone gets all bent out of shape because someone doesn’t agree with their opinion.

Coloma's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit Yes, loved the video, and well..I’m all about free flowing discussion and expression, what can I say? One thing leads to another and another and another…as it should, most of the time. haha

Lonelyheart807's avatar

Funny how it’s okay to make gender comments based on unconscious programming, but God forbid is someone said something racist, they’d probably be fired (and should be…it’s just that I think women deserve just as much respect as people of other races.)

Dutchess_III's avatar

I think it’s in vogue to be “offended” every day in this society. She honestly thinks men are better at techy stuff. That just means she’s been misled. That’s all.

Coloma's avatar

@Lonelyheart807 I agree but, playing devils advocate, you simply cannot be offended by someone elses conditioning. We find it horrific that certain cultures eat dog meat but how is that their fault and does it make them despicable humans? No, it does not.
We are all products of our eras and environments and even racist remarks are often born from ones conditioning.

Yes, we should all strive for equal respect and treatment regardless, OTOH the whole PC thing has been taken to a whole new level of insanity where taking offense is becoming a past time for many. Tolerance includes being tolerant on many levels including being tolerant of those that seem to be behind the times. I agree with @Dutchess_III The hair trigger of taking offense is out of control and being misled is not the same, again, as being willfully ignorant. Not knowing and not wanting to know.

Mariah's avatar

I’m….....really surprised by these responses. I am also a woman in tech and if someone in my workplace said they doubted my competency because of my gender I would be furious and probably talking to HR. That is Not Cool.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, she didn’t direct the comment to the OP.

Dutchess_III's avatar

How long would it take her to learn to press and hold the 1 key to speed dial her voicemail?

Mariah's avatar

Shit, I just accidentally tapped a button on my phone and moved this question to a different section. Was this in general or social?

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah The workers comment, while biased, was not intended to insinuate anyones lack of competency, clearly it is her programming, and was not a deliberate intent to offend IMO.
@Dutchess_III Well…if nobody is willing to help her out due to petty resistance, a long time. haha
I find the lack of willingness to help her to be more offensive than her remark quite frankly.
Talk about being forever blacklisted over one, off the cuff comment. Fuck, I am so glad I do not have to deal with a bunch of office bullshit.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@Mariah, you probably did that because you’re a woman. Tut! We need only male moderators. They’re much better with this technical stuff. ~

Dutchess_III's avatar

Th OP was busy at the moment. I got no indication from her post that she was unwilling to help. She asked her to write her steps down. That’s not acting unwilling to help.

Mariah's avatar

@Coloma She literally said guys are better at this job than women. How is that not making a competency judgement based on gender?

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, she’s wrong. That’s all. It hinders her, but not you.

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah Yes, it was rather inappropriate but…if she is an older female it is understandable. A lot of middle aged and older people are never going to be 100% PC at all times and old programming dies hard. I believe her remark, while not PC was not delivered with any sort of competency judgement. It was an error but not worthy of being completely blacklisted over.

Coloma's avatar

@Dutchess_III The OP said, very clearly up near the beginning of this thread that she did not ” feel like holding her hand and teaching her things she should already know.” Seems pretty clear that she didn’t want to help. The “not my job” mantra.

cinnamonk's avatar

IDK. I still think that if the woman in OP’s question had been casually racist instead of casually sexist, the responses in this thread would have been much less forgiving of her.

jca's avatar

Maybe I come from an era where we weren’t offended at every little thing but I really am not usually striving to be offended at every little thing. I try to give people the benefit of the doubt. I try to put myself in their place. I’ve had times when I was shown something and then when I actually had to do it, I screwed up and was unsure of what to do, and one minute after being shown, I had to go ask again. I am thankful I wasn’t belittled or shunned. Everyone has had a time when they were “new kid on the block.”

Dutchess_III's avatar

I would get exhausted and frustrated too having to explain to the same person, over and over, how to pull toilet paper off the roll.

jca's avatar

Obviously, if the woman is a nurse, she’s intelligent and also able to do certain hands on tasks, such as giving IV’s, etc.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But she can’t check her voicemail, even though she’s been told how. Geez. Press and hold the 1 key. Check your voicemails.

jca's avatar

@Lonelyheart807: I remember a few months ago you were very unhappy because you got a new boss. I remember you said previously you were the “go to” person at work, helping many others and doing lots of varied tasks. You got the new boss (Principal) and he wanted you to sit at the reception desk all day. How did it go back to doing varied tasks again?

Coloma's avatar

I agree with @jca I am just not easily offended and being an older woman now what offends the younger crowd is just not that offensive to me, I may notice it and acknowledge it but it’s a pretty damn mild mistake. I certainly get it, but the hyper-over reactivity escapes me. Some people are just walking grievances looking for a cause.

@cinnamonk No difference, the principal remains the same. people conditioning is the issue and not a fair estimate of the totality of a person. I don’t understand people that are afraid of bugs and spiders and snakes and are fearful and ignorant about science, nature and animal behavior but I realize it is their false beliefs and programming and not an accurate representation of who they are.

cinnamonk's avatar

Really? I think that if this story was a little bit different – if OP was black and her technical skills had been assumed inadequate on that basis, for example – she would have actually received the validation she sought here, instead of a bunch of people talking about how cool it is they don’t get offended (like her) and how she should get off her race horse and just learn to work with the racist coworker who obviously just needs her patience and understanding.

Idk though. Could be wrong.

snowberry's avatar

I joined the military when I was 20. They gave me an aptitude test and they were blown away because I got 100% on my mechanical ability. They wanted me to go into mechanic school, but I had the idea that it would take a lot of math, and to save my life I cannot remember numbers. The mechanical part was intriguing but I didn’t want to end up doing a lot of math. The more stressed I get, the worse my problem with numbers gets.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

There are two issues in the original question. The first is that the nurse is unable to retrieve messages from the phone, despite receiving training. If events took place as described, it does sound as though the nurse isn’t really attempting to learn how to use the phone. Instead of following the OPs second instructions, to try again and to jot down what happened, she said she’d ask someone else for help. It doesn’t matter how technically savvy you are or are not, you have to at least try to learn. It doesn’t bode well for her future use as an employee if her reaction is ‘I’ll get someone else to do it”.

The second issue was her comments about men being more technically capable than women. I’m not offended by such comments, and the OP didn’t say she was offended. She sounds more surprised that in 2017 a woman is saying this. And it’s not an appropriate comment and the attitude is antiquated. I’m surprised at women here suggesting that such an opinion isn’t a problem. It wasn’t just that she said it, she then couldn’t or wouldn’t see that to judge women incompetent simply because they are women is wrong, would irritate me too. Perhaps male nurses are also more competent than female nurses.

I don’t know why people have gone off-track here and started carrying on about not being offended.

Brian1946's avatar

I’m feeling kinda lethargic and distracted, so I’ll just say that I basically agree with @Lonelyheart807, @cinnamonk, @Mariah, and @Earthbound_Misfit.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Thank you @Brian1946, do you want to go to the arctic circle with me?

Brian1946's avatar

Sure, let’s make it an international date and cross those lines!

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Excellent. Let’s meet in Tromso. I didn’t make it to Tromso when I was over there. I did forget to mention a trip I took right to the tip of Norway. I’m trying to make my Photobucket log in so I can share a photo.

Mariah's avatar

@Coloma I don’t care if her age or whatever is responsible for her regressive gender views; expressing that kind of stuff in the workplace is completely inappropriate no matter the origin of her sexism. That’s not PC, that’s common sense.

cinnamonk's avatar

This is why we need feminism, guys.

Mariah's avatar

I resent that expecting people in the workplace to withhold their views of women as being naturally inferior at certain jobs is being treated as “trying to be offended” or “looking for grievances” by people in this thread. If I came to Fluther with a story about a coworker saying I must be a lesser engineer because I’m a woman would you all really tell me to shrug it off? Those wouldn’t be the responses I would expect at all. This has been strange, to say the least, for me to read through.

cinnamonk's avatar

Dispiriting for me too. I mean, fuck.

LostInParadise's avatar

I am late to this thread, but I would say two things. Firstly, I would say that I can provide the necessary assistance, and secondly I would say that you should judge each individual on their own merits without generalizing to all men or all women.

jca's avatar

@Mariah: I think to say this is the tale of a coworker telling the OP she must be a lesser ____ because she’s a woman” is oversimplifying the situation a bit. There’s more to it that might explain the statement. It’s a new worker, learning a lot of new stuff all at once as new workers do, including new names, procedures (sign in, scheduling, etc.) who made an off -hand comment based on her own inability to learn a simple task. I’m guessing she was very embarrassed at her inability to grasp the simple task, and also didn’t want to bother the OP again.

If I were the OP, I’d give her another chance. As I said above, we’ve all been “new kid on the block.”

Coloma's avatar

Yep, I agree with @jca and as far as the the rest of it goes, we always have a choice in how we assimilate what another says to us. A passing remark of ” men are better at XYZ,” while, clearly, not in line with, and deeply frowned upon, in todays societal and cultural standards of conduct in the workplace or anywhere else is still not such a grave offense as to merit full blown hatred for ever after. Using the racial comparison is an apples and oranges comparison, clearly, what this women said was the much milder of the two and the extreme over reactivity and personalizing her offhand comment to such levels is overkill.

Mariah's avatar

I love being told by people who probably haven’t experienced being a woman in a male dominated field how I should feel about sexism in my workplace.

Code written by women is, on average, rated as being higher quality than code written by men…but only if the raters don’t know it was written by a woman. If they do know, it is rated worse.

People perform worse at tasks after hearing negative stereotypes about their gender or racer’s ability to perform that task.

If you think the constant stream of “off-hand, harmless” comments like the one in the OP isn’t incredibly demoralizing to women already struggling to break into “men’s fields,” that it doesn’t harm these women, that it doesn’t cause thousands of women to give up and leave the industry every year…. well, you’re dead wrong. I don’t know what else to say.

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah As a women pushing 60 in a few years, let me tell you, be grateful that is the worst of things in your generation. I put up with being groped, fondled, leered at and propositioned by male co-workers and bosses and treated like a servant in some of my workplaces over the years. I actually quit several jobs because of lecherous bosses. If this is the worst your generation is having to cope with, the occasional old school, off the cuff sexist remark, well, sorry, while not cool it is hardly earth shattering and it was not delivered with denigrating intent.

Mariah's avatar

That shit still happens too.

Uber engineering

Mariah's avatar

And sorry but “there used to be worse sexism” is not an excuse for current sexism. Women should just roll over and accept continuing inequalities just because we’re not being physically assaulted? I hope you see how harmful that attitude is.

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah I’m not saying that is the case, just that, in this particular situation I do not believe this persons intent was to denigrate. Intention is everything and there is a difference between intentional misconduct vs. unconscious misconduct. This is the only point I have been trying to express. I am not making excuses for this persons lack of diplomacy only stating that I do not believe their intention was intended to be debasing or disrespectful and more a reflection of their old school programming, so, IMO, for what it’s worth, I think the remark made was innocent, even if still offensive. That’s all.

The OP expressed her displeasure at the comment to the worker and that is all you can do, and she did, so I do not think this person should be forever branded as sexist in the bg picture.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mariah No one is saying we should. I don’t know why @Lonelyheart807 would take such personal issue issue. The nurse didn’t say it as in referring to her. In fact @Lonelyheart807 was the first person she approached, but she was unable to help her at the moment.

@cinnamonk I had to think about what you said, if the OP had been black, and the white nurse had made such a ridiculous comment. It’s true we would have felt differently. But what if they both were black? She’d be insulting not just the whole race, but herself as well. Just as she insulted herself, as well as all other women, did with the tech issue. I dated a black guy who actually did think black people were inferior to whites. He was born and raised in Selma, Alabama. He was 10 when the civil rights movement put Selma on the map.
I just feel sorry for the woman.

And she’s awfully dumb.

@snowberry We took aptitude tests in Jr. High. I scored highest in engineering, 98%, than in any other field, although I did well in all of them.
Never heard another word about it. I still wonder why we even took them. I also wonder if I’d been a boy if I would have been pulled aside and encouraged to pursue engineering.

Mariah's avatar

Did we read the same post? The woman said she’d get a guy’s help after OP failed to solve her problem because guys are better at this stuff. The subtext being you failed to help me because you’re not good at this stuff and you aren’t good at this stuff because you’re a woman.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I really think it’s the nurse’s loss. No one elses. Unless she ends up in a position of power, which isn’t likely. She’d hold her self back because, you know, women don’t make good leaders. I just can’t see getting miffed over the fact that someone else is dumb.

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah again, all this implying of what this person was really saying is completely subjective. Saying “guys are better at this” is nothing more than a programmed belief, a slip up, on this womans part IMO. The context you and the OP have assigned is YOUR assumptions that that is really what she was saying/implying when, from my perspective, it was just an innocent, albeit not very smart, thing to say. If I say I don’t really care for dogs, does that imply I am going to kill any dog I come into contact with No, it does not.

That would be over reactive spin. Ah well, bottom line, it is what it s and again, one can choose to either be mortally offended and assign all kinds of hidden agenda to something said or one can choose to let it go and give someone the benefit of the doubt that their intentions were not pure evil. haha

@Dutchess_III We don’t know for a fact she is “dumb”, that is another assumption. Just because someone is slow to learn a new task or makes a moderately off comment does not mean they deserve the “dumb” label. I mean, really, lets look at the big picture here, everyone being so mortally offended at this womens lack of experience with the answering system and her unconscious remark and now SHE is being labeled sexist and stupid. Jeez….what a circle fuck. lol

Dutchess_III's avatar

I just don’t see how someone can fail to grasp the idea of holding a button down until it dials your phone number / voicemail.

Mariah's avatar

And again you’re allowed to hold sexist beliefs if you want but they have no place in the workplace. You don’t have to be a genius or a techie to understand that. I am not in any way judging the woman for being bad at tech, that’s no sin, I don’t give a shit about that. I just think it is wildly inappropriate to not keep your sexist views to yourself in the workplace. I don’t think I’m some kind of overreacting nutcase for thinking women deserve a non-hostile work environment.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But she doesn’t think it’s sexist. She thinks it’s a simple fact of life, and for her, it is.
I also don’t see it as hostile, certainly not based one this one incident. Now if she starts berating your work, telling you a man could do it better, then it becomes hostile and you take it to the boss.

Coloma's avatar

^ Exactly. One incident does not make someone sexist and if that is something she truly believes you can’t argue a right/wrong stance. As far as the failure to learn to hold down one button, well, we don’t know what kind of answering system it is, maybe it is more complicated than that. Who the hell knows, that’s the point, but I am willing to give the woman the benefit of the doubt instead of making her some sort of pariah.

@Mariah isn’t labeling this women stupid and sexist pretty hostile over one remark?
For all we know she may have blurted that out in a moment of not thinking and later regretted it but too late, she has now been deemed the lowliest of the low, no redemption possible. That’s pretty damn hostile.

Mariah's avatar

Jesus I’m not saying she’s an evil person and needs to get fired, but the statement she made was sexist. That doesn’t necessarily mean that she is “a sexist person” or whatever but she can’t be making sexist statements at work. OP even tried to tell her that what she said wasn’t cool but she denied she’d done anything wrong.

Coloma's avatar

@Mariah I get it, peace out. It’s okay, I am not denying it was uncool but I think it is forgivable and the women should be given a second chance and not forever blacklisted over one thoughtless remark. Okay, it’s all been said, time to move on.

cinnamonk's avatar

This is how I read this thread. A woman makes a rude, sexist remark to OP and she feels insulted (which she was). OP wants to know how others would react. Right off the fucking bat, people tell OP to “get off her gender horse” and insinuate that she’s a crybaby for feeling offended (as if there is something wrong with being offended at something offensive?), and the thread evolves in to one big circle jerk about how we’re all better than OP because we don’t get offended ever. We have comments actually affirming the sexist remarks OP felt insulted by because women’s vaginas apparently render them unable to do technical things as well as men (??). And then more people pile onto the gaslighting bandwagon and accuse OP of just generally being a shitty coworker and “having a crappy tone”, as if that excuses the sexist remarks? Followed by an argument about whether people should be judged for airing their bigotry in the workplace (why is this even debatable).

What the fuck, man.

Coloma's avatar

@cinnamonk I said, numerous times, that it was inappropriate, not cool but, that I didn’t think someone should be totally blacklisted over one thoughtless remark, and yes, in the grand scheme of things, sorry, I don’t see it as a major work place deal breaker like a crude sexual or racist remark. It was thoughtless, in other words, without thought, not some premeditated display of disrespect.
It is also true that if that is really how that person feels then, to them, it was not the grave offense and injustice it was perceived to be. Hey, everyone’s free to be as offended as they want, the question is, is it really worth all the drama and the forever after aura of insult?

IMO, no. It’s a pick your battles scenario.
Clearly the OP and a few others do regard this as a major big deal, I don’t. If anything I find it humorous and a bit sad because it is such a passe attitude but certainly not worthy of any ongoing animosity. Fuck, people screw up, so she screwed up in an uber feminist sensitive environment, oh well. I say let-it-go, try to start over and give the woman the benefit of the doubt. If she continues to make offensive remarks then fine, go ahead and hate her into the next century. lol This has been my main point all along.

Dutchess_III's avatar

She asked how we would react to this comment. People responded and gave their reasoning. I wouldn’t have felt insulted, not by one woman who was obviously conditioned to think that way. By an entire office of coworkers who believed that? Yes. I would be insulted.
That’s how I answered her question.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I know! Do you have a female tech you could confide in? Maybe she’d be willing to stop by and fix the lady’s phone issue! And start ending the stereotype. Maybe.

Coloma's avatar

^ Good idea, but no office gossip girl crap, if this is an option it should be requested from a completely unbiased position so as to not set up the person being asked to help with any negative, pre-conceived opinions about the nurse.

Dutchess_III's avatar

OK.

I am so much more technically savvy than my husband. However, I’ve been into computers since the 70’s.
He, on the other hand, has the mechanical skill to make a toaster fly! But he’s been into cars, and mechanics, since the 60’s.
My father was an electrical engineer. He had no sons. However, I have no doubt that if I had been a boy he would have instructed me, as I was growing up, in electrical engineering. But, in the era I grew up in, it was just assumed women weren’t interested in that kind of thing, or didn’t have the intelligence to master it. And it wasn’t just from some occasional source. It was virtually from our entire society. @Coloma knows what I’m talking about. I still have to deal with the BS, especially from older generations, to this day.

Not long ago we had an appraiser come in to appraise our house. He had actually appraised it before I bought it in 1998. He asked what had changed since then. I showed him the bank of shelves I had made, turning a broom closet into a pantry.
He said, “Oh, you made that all by yourself, huh?” snicker snicker.
I stiffened a bit and calmly said, “Yes.”
“Oh so you know how to used a measuring tape and a drill and a saw, huh?” snicker snicker.
“Yes.”
My husband heard him, and bless his heart, he stiffened up too, and calmly said, “She knows how to use every power tool ever invented, and she is more skilled than most of the men I know.”
The guy shut the fuck up.
I loved him so much at that moment! I mean, trust me. I had to do my share of battling his own old, ingrained stereotypes from the pre-women’s lib era.
He usually listens to me now.

Coloma's avatar

@Dutchess_III Yep, I have to cut my elderly neighbors some slack, they are darling people but in their later 80’s and I have heard them make a few pretty racist comments. Nothing completely horrible but references to Asians being bad drivers and mocking the accent of a Japanese neighbor women. Not in a cruel way exactly but in their era and the WWII scene, yep, some definite bias.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yeah. Rick’s dad is almost 94. Stuff comes out of his mouth sometimes that just floors me, but he doesn’t mean any harm.

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