Date Rape Drugs and What They Are

published on 20 March 2021

By Alina Gao

Date rape drugs are drugs used to intoxicate someone so it’s easier to sexually assault them. The perpetrator slips drugs into an unattended drink, drugging their victims upon drinking the substance. 

These drugs include marijuana, cocaine, and over-the-counter drugs like tranquilizers. Someone making your alcohol stronger without your permission and knowledge fits in the same category as date rape drugs. These drugs can look, taste, and smell like nothing. Even though drugs can make your drink darker or cloudier, it’s often hard to see when your drink is a darker shade or you are in a dim-lit room, such as a bar. 

The effects of these drugs can make someone confused, less able to defend themselves, or even pass out. They can even cause loss of memory so that victims do not remember what happened, making it harder to convict the offender. These are other possible effects—dizziness, slurred speech, struggling to control your body, an irregular heartbeat, vomiting, drowsiness, difficulty thinking, having trouble breathing, and passing out. Remember these in case you or your friend start showing symptoms. 

It’s not just Tinder dates who use date rape drugs. Sometimes it’s somebody you think you can trust or someone you recently met. 

Keep these safety tips in mind when drinking at a bar: 

Remember that it is never your fault if you have been assaulted.

If your offender gave you a drug that makes you pass out, it does not mean you gave consent for any sexual activity. Any sexual act without explicit consent is illegal.

Some clues as to whether someone has drugged and raped you are if you feel as if you had sex but can’t remember, your clothing is torn or stained, your clothes have been taken off or are not your own, or your body is bruised and cut. 

If you feel as if you have been drugged, go immediately to a medical center. Do not bathe, eat, drink, urinate, change clothes, or brush your teeth and hair. This may impair any evidence emergency services can gather from your body. Ask the hospital to give you a test to look for traces of drugs in your body, as this will help you find your offender. You may feel guilt, shock, shame, and fear. Remember that you are not at fault, and you deserve to feel safe. If you do not want to tell people you know personally, please call a sexual assault hotline, which is confidential and open 24/7.

Published on February 14.

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