Parties are all fun and games… until they’re not.
Parties (especially where alcohol and drugs are present!) are prime opportunities for sexual assault, sexual violence, and spiked drinks. So, what do you do if you or a friend consumes a spiked drink? The first defense is being prepared. Read on for our guide to drugged drinks, so you can stay safe, stay sexy, and rage on!
So what is a spiked drink? A spiked drink is a beverage that has been drugged or has alcohol added to it without the drinkers’ knowledge. People might spike a drink for seemingly innocent reasons (like a dumb prank) or for more serious reasons, like robbing or sexually assaulting the unsuspecting victim. Drink-spiking happens in bars, at parties, and on dates. It’s scary, but don’t panic, babe. The best thing you can do? Be prepared, stay alert, and watch out for your friends!
Step 1: Recognize The Signs
It’s super important to know the symptoms of consuming a spiked drink so you can recognize the signs in yourself or a friend and get help!
Some symptoms include:
- Feeling suddenly dizzy, faint or sleepy
- Suddenly feeling extremely thirsty
- Feeling like you’re in a dream state, outside your body, or numb
- Slurred speech
- Feeling more drunk or intoxicated than expected for how much you’ve consumed
- Passing out or experiencing blackouts
- Feeling nauseous or sick
- A rapid pulse
- Disorientation or confusion and/or loss of coordination
- Sweating, shallow or slow breathing, and/or tremors
- Cool clammy skin or hot flushed skin
- Visual or auditory hallucinations
First things first, if your friend was drugged, safely remove them from the party or event.
Step 2: Get To A Safe Place
First things first, if your friend was drugged, safely remove them from the party or event. This is crucial, because it protects your friend from the person who spiked their drink in the first place, and can prevent robbery and/or sexual assault. If you’ve been drugged, don’t attempt to drive until after you’ve been cleared by a doctor.
Step 3: Get Trusted Help
Once you or your friend is physically safe, locate people who can provide support, such as trusted friends, parents, bar security or management. Nearby police officers or security guards can also help.
Step 4: Go To The E.R., Stat
Whether the spiked drink was consumed five minutes ago or five hours ago, it’s important to get your friend medical help right away. Going to the E.R. will manage any potential harm caused by the drug(s), and it will allow for testing to determine what substance was used. It will also determine whether other evidence of a physical or sexual assault is present, and help support and provide resources for the survivor to report these events to the police.
Step 5: Call a Babysitter
While you or your friend is detoxing off the substance, they need a trusted babysitter to stay with them at all times to observe their condition and provide emotional support and comfort. Both the physical trauma of being drugged and the realization of what happened (and what could have happened if you hadn’t gotten help!) can have a huge emotional toll on the survivor. Be a friend, pack an overnight bag, set up camp with them on the couch and put on a Friends re-run.
Assault of any kind is never the survivor’s fault, and it should not be the responsibility of survivors to prevent assaults.
Step 6: Get Support
Counseling is sooo important for everyone, especially survivors of drink spiking, assault and/or sexual violence. Untreated, trauma can lead to feelings of depression, anxiety and paranoia. You deserve support and professional help! RAINN provides incredible group support for survivors. For help 24/7 call 800-656-4673 or chat online.
Assault of any kind is never the survivor’s fault, and it should not be the responsibility of survivors to prevent assaults. That being said, here are a few tips to staying safe so you can party on.
- Never drink from a can or bottle you didn’t open yourself
- Don’t drink from a punchbowl or from a container that’s being passed around
- Order your own drink, watch it being poured, and carry it to the table yourself
- Never leave your drink unattended. If you do leave your drink unattended, toss it out and get a new one.
- Notice your drink has a bitter, salty or strange taste? Stop drinking it immediately.
- If your drink looks different (powdery, or there’s a residue on the glass) don’t drink it. Rohypnol tablets will often dye a drink blue, though generic drugs may not have blue dye on their capsules.
- Avoid mixing drugs (recreational or prescription) with alcohol
- Adhere to a buddy system and check in on your friends throughout the night
- Keep an eye out for others, even strangers at the bar. If you notice something fishy, say something.
- If your friend is drugged, don’t leave them alone, even to go get help. Keep your friend by your side at all times, and do your best to keep them awake and alert.
- Trust your gut. If something feels off, don’t second guess yourself. Intuition is a powerful force!
Stay safe out there, Sluts! And always watch out for one another.
This story was originally published on the Slut Blog by Amber Rose with the title, “Party Foul: What To Do If Ur Drink Is Drugged.” As part of our Salty x Slutbox collaboration.