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I am working in an environment where very few women are present. Personally, I am in a team with 4 male co-workers.

Every now and then they make sexist and stereotypical remarks about women (or gay people) and I'm not always able to ignore them and calm down. I'm not a very talkative person and my way of coping with this is not commenting most of the time (increase the volume of headphones, leaving the office for a little while), so I will not show I am irritated and in that way trying not to reinforce this behavior. I know that it may be a little 'childish' of me to pay attention and be annoyed by these things and not just joke about them, but they sometimes distract and offend me.

Note that they behave this way to other women that occasionally come to the office (to have lunch with us and chat) and it seems as these female colleagues need to justify themselves for whatever 'womanly behavior' they are imparted with. Well, it is always in the form of teasing and joking when this interaction takes place, but I have no doubt that they actually believe the things they say.

Of course I've told them that they shouldn't discuss such things (and other topics such as political or religious matters) at least not in front of me, but they don't seem to be affected by it. Is there anything else I could do in order to stop them?

EDIT :

The country is not worth mentioning, it's a developed country with no - formal - gender inequalities.

The company is international and has an HR department, but if I were to complain they would consider it a minor problem and probably would not take any action. Also, I don't want to accuse my co-workers, because except from this problem we are 'getting along'.

I am not new to the company, I work with these guys for 3+ years, although not in the same office as we are now. We've been working in the same room (separate from the other teams' offices) for about a year.

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    What country? Do you have an HR department? How large is the company? Is this open-floor plan or cubicle-based? Does this happen in front of other colleagues or clients? Is your manager aware? Are you new to the company/team? Consider adding this information to your post with an edit. – Lilienthal Jun 30 '16 at 7:56
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  • @guestF, there is a pending edit from user funnyjava which appears to be from you. To make edits to your question, you most log in with the account you used to create the question. If you need to merge multiple accounts, see our Help Center. – David K Jun 30 '16 at 12:36
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    "The country is not worth mentioning" I strongly disagree. – Lightness Races in Orbit Jun 30 '16 at 13:32
  • I hope the country strongly disagrees :-) – gnasher729 Nov 27 '16 at 20:01
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Is there anything else I could do in order to stop them?

Have you had a private conversation with your HR rep yet? If not, you should.

They are trained in assessing and dealing with these situations. They can advise you on how you can personally deal with them, and can take further actions if warranted.

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I know that it may be a little 'childish' of me to pay attention and be annoyed by these things and not just joke about them, but they sometimes distract and offend me.

No, it is not. They are plainly disrespecting you, they are the ones being childish. I would slam the door on the way out.

I'm not a very talkative person and my way of coping with this is not commenting most of the time (increase the volume of headphones, leaving the office for a little while),

Dont increase the volume of your headphones, it isnt an solution and will at most just hurt your ears.

Note that they behave this way to other women that occasionally come to the office (to have lunch with us and chat) and it seems as these female colleagues need to justify themselves for whatever 'womanly behavior' they are imparted with.

That makes me feel like they Need a cursus on interaction with the other sex at work.
I dont know of any womanly behavior has to be justifyed, if you or they are, please stop doing so.

What you could do is:

If you havent already make a formal complaint about them to your Manager and hr.

Ask the other woman if it bothers them and ask them if they can mention it to your Manager/hr.
With a message such as: "They are being Sexist and don't stop when asked to. I am suprised that (you) is able to work with These men."

Now you might not be confortable with this, but this is an serious workplace issue and should be addressed as such. Don't think that These Actions are overreactions, because they simply are not.

  • @Jashaszun well, I really dont do that without a reason. When you have to leave the room because of such childish remarks. Just slam the door. Either someone says something about it and you say why and that Person takes Action or the People will be maybe we did go to far. – Raoul Mensink Jul 1 '16 at 10:10
  • all about sending an clear message and I feel People smashing a door is a message. Depending on the Situation it is childish. – Raoul Mensink Jul 1 '16 at 10:12
  • @RaoulMensink Don't hurt the door, it didn't do anything to deserve it. If people are making such remarks just say to them immediately and without hesitation: "do you REALLY think it's appropriate to say that?" and then specify that whatever it was they said was prejudiced and ignorant, and if clients overhear such things it could ruin the company's reputation by creating the impression it is full of bigoted idiots. That could cost the company money, or them their jobs. They wouldn't like to be belittled and stereotyped either. – inappropriateCode Jul 1 '16 at 16:21

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