Friday, February 22, 2013

No means No.

Sorry, no kitties on this post.  It's my blog and I'm gonna rant if I want to.

I have a very strong aversion to having my photo taken.  When I see people with a camera I tend to run and hide.  No one around me really understands it, and I can't really explain it, but a good part of it boils down to the fact that I can not stand to see myself in photographs.  Just having a camera go off in my general direction makes me EXTREMELY uncomfortable.

My husband is constantly telling me to relax when family has a camera because they want record of my being around and I won't ever have to see the photos, but inevitably I see them... and I hate it and resent that people don't respect my feelings.

My work is redoing their website.  They took photos of all of us (except me because I refused) last year.  They want to redo them for the new website.  Once again I declined.

Well my boss - the owner of the company - brought his camera in to work today and was taking photos of people.  I hid out of view when I saw that he was pointing it towards me.  Everyone laughed.  Oh silly Connie, she's just silly.  No one seemed to care care that I didn't want my photo taken.

At one point he stood on the far side of the room with his camera, and so I hid.  It was hard to finish up my work (have you ever tried to work while hiding behind your desk?) so I kept peeking to see if he had moved on.  He hadn't.  He sat there waiting.  I told him no.  I told him I would have to leave.  I peeked again and heard the click.

I suppose I should have been a little more forceful in my no.  I should have said things that I would have felt was very rude especially since this man signs my paychecks. But these should haves are akin to 'blaming the victim'.

After I finished up my work I went over to his desk and told him I was extremely uncomfortable with his taking my picture.  He blew it off and said that no one knows who I am because they have never seen me. I told him I like it that way.  I tried explaining that I had been harassed pretty badly online once before and one of the few photos I have shared was brought into it, and he said that someone used his photo to complain about him too and he just blew it off (cause your feelings have anything to do with mine!! grrr and having someone complain about you is NOTHING like the harassment I went through) and so I went back to I am very uncomfortable with my photo being taken and I did not want it going anywhere.

He seemed to tap dance around it... throwing out words that indicated to me he has no intention of deleting the photo.  Not in a mean way, but very much like an adult talking to a child who is asking something silly.

Why can't people accept that no means no.  I don't care if you don't understand why someone is saying no.  I don't care if you think they really mean yes (like when you offer them coffee or something to eat and you fear they are only saying no because they don't want to be a bother - aka "are you sure?"  I'm pretty sure that if someone say no, they knew what they were saying) To continue on with your 'harmless" activity after someone told you no...  is simply wrong.

Please.  The next time someone says no to you, accept it and respect it.  Even if you don't understand it.  Especially if you don't understand it.


  1. As soon as you said the word "uncomfortable" your boss should have deleted the photo. Period. I'd be talking to HR. What he did is wrong.

  2. That wasn't really nice of your boss not to have respected your feelings and request to have the photo of you deleted.
    In today's world, photos are shared way too easily and quickly and subject to being *abused*.

  3. you are absolutely correct....circumstances don't matter - it is about respecting another person enough to LISTEN to them.

  4. I'm with those above, it sounds like your boss violated your boundaries. I have pretty strict boundaries about having any photos of me on the internet, because once they are posted online you lose all control of what happens to them. It's something I'm pretty adamant about. I hope you can revisit that with you boss and share you anger at him for his not honoring of your boundary.

  5. I'm with you girl,Tell the man that he has to remove the photo as he has taken it with out you permission that it is an invasion of your privacy and that he has put you at risk of being stalked again and that you have no wish to be put through that gain just because he thinks you are being silly,you are not being silly stalking and harrasement is no laughing matter.put it in those terms and he will have to delete and remove all photos od you as in the US there are laws about stalking and he will be put him self at risk of legal action and he won't want Strong you can do it if you don't he will keep over stepping your boundaries,xx Rachel

  6. If it's not in your contract and you didn't agree to it, then he should respect your wishes!! There is no argument! What a prat!!

  7. I absolutely agree with you. What your boss did was totally inappropriate and disrespectful from the moment you made him you were uncomfortable.

    I'm not sure how far you want to take it, but I think I'd be having another conversation with him, and I'd be persistent in the request to delete the photo.

    Good luck!

  8. I agree. I hate having my picture taken if work related (they don't really need me in any of the pics as I am not a photo model), and I am usually more comfortable behind the camera. Not accepting other peoples' wishes is beyond disrespectful and your boss should know better.

  9. That's too bad that your boss won't respect your feelings. Especially if it's not needed for work. All our employees have to have their photos taken or they can't work for us. It's for security reasons and the photos aren't public. I agree with comments above. Talk to your HR department if you have one.
    xo Catherine

  10. Anonymous4:13 PM

    I can understand why youre so uncomfortable with taking a picture of you. Especially if they are going to put it online. You might not want your face on the internet, for obvious reasons! And I think that what your boss did is very rude.

  11. Anonymous5:19 PM

    I'm with you. There are any number of 'real' reasons why you might not want your photo out there, quite aside from you just not wanting it out there.

    Under other circumstances, I would suggest turn about. If a bunch of us started editing his photo and posting it online all over the web, maybe he would get the message a little better.


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