What are the Consequences of being Hazed?

Nearly three-quarters of the high school students who reported they were hazed said they had one or more negative consequences.

Percent of Students Hazed Who Suffered Negative Consequences
Consequences % Consequences %
Got into a fight 24 Committed a crime 16
Was injured 23 Considered suicide 15
Fought with my parents 22 Got sick 12
Did poorly in school work 21 Quit going out with friends 11
Missed school, practice, work, meeting 19 Got in trouble with police 10
Hurt someone else 20 Was convicted of a crime 4
Had difficulty eating, sleeping, concentrating 18 One or more negative consequence 71

Twelve percent (n=32) reported "other" consequences, including:
  • Negative consequences: was depressed, cried all the time, was completely miserable, fought with my family, was uncomfortable, was tormented throughout high school, "was made fun of-but who cares?", suffered low self-esteem, was insulted, had an emotional break down, or sustained internal bruising (41%).
  • Positive consequences: gained valuable life experiences, matured, really woke up, or experienced joy/elation/satisfaction, natural high, found it challenging, had fun (31%).
  • Relief: was relieved or glad to know others had done it too (29%).

Among the students who reported being hazed, their feelings were split between negative and positive. Many reported both. Thirteen percent wanted revenge, but reported few other feelings.

Students' Feelings about Being Hazed
Negative Feelings % Positive Feelings %
Angry 35 Part of the group 43
Embarrassed 28 Proud 30
Confused 25 Strong 27
Guilty 23 Trusted 18
Regretful 21 Total 59
Sad 20 Other Feelings  
Total 59 Wanted Revenge 13
Categories of Feelings %    
Negative Feelings 27    
Both Negative and Positive 32    
Positive Feelings 27    
Revenge 14    
Seventeen percent marked "other" feelings (n=44). Interestingly, the respondents divided evenly among the three categories:
  • Negative feelings: felt hurt, betrayed ("those people were supposed to be my friends"), used, lonely ("I was lonely and would have done anything. That's stupid."), unintelligent, dirty, dishonored, worthless, degraded (sic), hatred, afraid or "guilty after I returned my meanness," had fun, was excited, happy, real, alive, felt good about myself, cool, confident, strong, and like a family.
  • Neutral feelings: normal, relieved, glad it was over, or indifferent. (One student said, "It was fun, but I was angry because there's no choice.")

Students who thought hazing was a problem felt isolated from adults. Forty percent of the students said they wouldn't report hazing. When asked why they would not report hazing, 36 percent replied: "There's no one to tell. Who could I tell?" Twenty-seven percent said "Adults would not know how to handle it" and 28 percent said, "It's not a problem. Sometimes accidents happen." Peer pressure seemed less of a factor in not reporting hazing. Twenty-four percent said "Other kids would make my life miserable," and 16 percent said "I just wouldn't tell on my friends, no matter what."

Percent of Students Who Would Not Report Hazing and Why Not
Student Reporting of Hazing %
Would you report hazing? No 40
If not, why not (mark all that apply)  
There's no one to tell. Who could I tell? 36
It's not a problem. Sometimes accidents happen. 28
Adults wouldn't know how to handle it right. 27
Other kids would make my life miserable. 24
I just wouldn't tell on my friends no matter what. 16