In my country, there’s a huge debate right now on College initiation rites. One university has suspended temporally those activities as one student got into a coma as she was forced to drink liters of water. But the authors of this horrible act didn’t get expelled from the university.
On Facebook, I noticed some of my friends posted pictures like this:
There was even one who put a picture of his little daughter wearing that hat on her head.
In my country, if you want to do your College initiation rite, be prepared to be forced to sit naked in your vomit, eat things you won’t eat normally (mostly associated with private parts), to be shouted on, and to be forced to drink a lot of beer, very quickly, among other things very degrading.
Back then, I knew about all of this before going to College. So, I refused to do this when I was a student. For the simple reason that I decide when I want to be naked and I hate to be shouted on without having the possibility to retaliate.
But most of my friends chose to do so, as they were conditioned by their years of scouting. Most of them feared to be excluded from their group of friends if they didn’t do their initiation rite.
It was the case of my BFF. She didn’t want to be excluded.
When we were younger, she asked me to join her scouting team. I accepted, but after six months, I quit as I was disgusted to see how they were organized. There were two girls, who came from a very wealthy and powerful family, who ruled the group. They did nothing except shouting their orders to the other scouts. And they had a scapegoat: my BFF. The other members of their team backed all their decisions. But behind their back, some of them wished they would fail.
Things aren’t very different from this in College circles for those who did their rite. Usually, the president of their circle and those who had authority all came from wealthy and powerful family. And people didn’t get the same treatments during their rite. I remember I saw in the morning some looking really fresh while others were hurt, physically.
Yet, I know some couples formed during those rites. But few lasted.
My former BFF dated for one year one of the guys who shouted at her during her rite. Another friend of mine did that too. She told me she felt protected during her experience.
Is this the price to be in a group? Is this the price to be cool? Is this the price to get successful?