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Why Does Sexual Misconduct Go Unreported?

Why People Choose Not to Tell:

  • Embarrassment.
  • Belief that the behavior will end if ignored.
  • Fear of losing one's status, social options, rank or job.
  • Fear of retaliation.
  • Fear of being blamed for inviting the misconduct.
  • Concern about not being believed.
  • Concern about being labeled a troublemaker.
  • Fear of harmful rumors.
  • Fear of the loss of privacy.
  • Conviction that nothing will be done about the problem.
  • Fear that the complaint process could be worse than the
    misconduct.
  • Fear of ostracism by other people, both male and female.
  • Fear of losing friends.
  • Fear of being called weak, cold, uptight, or prudish.

List adapted from "The Educator's Guide to Controlling Sexual Harassment,"
Thompson Publishing Group