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Feeling uncomfortable, don’t know how to react.

I’m a non-Jewish person, who is a gardener at a company, and I have a client who is Orthodox. During the day she will have many people popping in and out of her house, and sometimes there are groups of men who stop by. Today I had a pretty uncomfortable interaction with them.

As I was minding my own business, using a hedge trimmer on some shrubs, these men who are standing by the front door/lawn just stare at me and my co-worker (another woman). We were only about 10-15 feet away from them, and it was obvious we could tell. Then, while I was cleaning up, I overheard them having a hushed conversation, and one of them goes, “It is a lady”. They were there for about 30 minutes total.

I don’t want to sound ignorant or rude by talking about this, but I really didn’t like the way I was looked at, and then talked about, like I couldn’t hear them. I really wanted to say something, but I was also upset, and didn’t want to offend. Should I have just reacted how I wanted to? Cause my response to being stared at is usually to stare right back and make them uncomfortable. And if I heard anyone else saying something weird about me, I would have probably went, “Sorry, I didn’t catch that. Did you have a question?”. But I didn’t do that in this case, cause I wasn’t sure if their behaviours were related to their upbringing/beliefs.

I’ve passed by other male Orthodox clients before, and treated them the same as I do all people. Which is usually an awkward smile, head nod, and “Hello”. I usually get a small “Hi” back, and then they run away. It’s only the men that ever do this. Most of the Orthodox women clients I do the same thing to are much more casual and happy to see us at their property. Sometimes starting small talk. It’s like that will all my other non-Jewish clients as well.

I suppose the solution could have been me stopping what I was doing, and going to the backyard…? But it’s a real inconvenience to stop in a middle of a task (especially pruning), and go start something else in a new area. And I shouldn’t have to run away cause someone else is making me feel weird. Especially at work.

submitted by /u/ShesAaRebel
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Source: Reditt