BY: Michelle Liew
Sexual harassment is not a trivial issue, instead it causes emotional and psychological trauma. Actress Julia Farhana Marin, 27, explained that verbal harassment is not to be excluded when it comes to defining what constitutes sexual harassment.
Julia stated that the entertainment industry in Malaysia is male-dominated and as such, can often be uncomfortable.
“I was never touched, but verbal sexual harassment was also severe as a result. It made me feel like I had no self -esteem and dwarfed.
“I have tried to retaliate and defend myself, however, my actions have had a negative effect. I am an
She highlighted the severity of such unwanted ‘jokes’ by explaining if one does not want their own mother, sister or family member to face such issues, then such ‘jokes’ should not be made in the first place.
The Malay-Italian actress eventually learnt to deal with issue maturely and started to defend herself.
“Over time, I learned to practice physical prison and socialize healthily. I learned to deal with sexual harassment well. It’s just that, sadly, most married and mature men who are supposed to protect women love to make unsolicited sexual jokes.
“Still, I don’t point fingers at all men. I’ve been hit a few times, so it had such a big impact that I feel sorry for choosing a career as an actor.
“I feel people have no respect for actors. But, on second thought, sexual harassment can happen anywhere,” she added.
“Sexual harassment can’t be habituated because it’s not a funny joke.
“My advice, please speak up if faced with sexual harassment. Do not let this situation plague your emotions and life,” she said.
Recently, the government acknowledged the severity of this issue by urging the public to take it more seriously. Just last month, Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa informed that the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) should take further action if there are complaints of sexual harassment in the country’s entertainment industry.