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What Are Date Rape Drugs?

Date rape drugs. | Image: The Blue Diamond Gallery

Date rape drugs have been in the news again and, as always, a tool of danger. However, given the information, personal conversations with some people revealed that they were not aware of the existence of such and how it can be used as a tool.

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What are Date Rape Drugs?
Date rape drugs are those substances that make it easier for someone to rape or sexually assault another. They are also known as drugs or alcohol that are used to make rape or sexual assault easier.

Substances like alcohol and some medications are being used and the person being attacked might become confused, have trouble defending his or herself or not even remember what happened later. As the name implies, it doesn’t usually happen on a date, the attacker could be someone you met or someone known for a while.

The most common date rape drugs are Gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), Rohypnol (Flunitrazepam), Ketamine and Alcohol. These drugs when taken by the victims, can affect them quickly, cause them to become weak, confused and even pass out. These drugs may come as pills, liquids or powder and victims may not remember what happened while drugged. Sometimes, it leads to seizures and death.

Drinks. Image: Getty Images

More often than not, persons who commit this crime or act is someone known to the victim or at the club where strangers want a quick fix. Most of these drugs especially club drugs go by nicknames which changes over time in different areas or countries.

Because of its form, date rape drugs such as Rohypnol, GHB, GBL and Ketamine come in the form of regular pills, liquids or powders and they often have no colour, no smell and no taste.

Date rape drugs can be combined with other drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, prescription, antidepressants, tranquillizers or sleeping aids to overpower the victim.

The length of time the effects of date rape drugs last in the body system varies, largely depending on how much of it is in the body. Substances like alcohol can make the effects stronger and can pose serious health problems.

People who use this method use it in such a way to make their potential victims drunk and unable to consent, understand what is happening or even remember it at all. They may also take the advantage of someone who has already been drinking by pressuring them to drink more than they might normally drink, or they may use drugs to increase and boost the effects of the alcohol.

Date rape drugs affect one’s memory thereby making it difficult to tell if one were drugged and raped. One can always find out when he or she does not know why the clothes are on the wrong side or torn, stained, or you wake up without clothes and don’t remember taking them off.

One can also know if the body feels like they had sex but can’t remember it, when you have unexpected bruises, bleeding, pain, scrapes or cuts, especially waking up after a date, party or other social events.

What To Do
However, if you feel any of these situations or signs, there is a need for you to get medical attention immediately. Have a trusted friend to help take you to a hospital emergency room so that evidence of the assault can be taken. A urine sample test will also be needed to ascertain whether date rape drugs are in your system because if delayed, it may be difficult to prove that drugs were involved. Above all, to tell a doctor or nurse what happened and that you might have been drugged so that they can test for the right drugs.

In order to avoid date rape drugs in a social situations, it is advisable that you open your drinks yourself and keep control of it at all times. Do not drink anything that smells strange and don’t drink more than you want to just because someone else wants you to.

Get help right away if you feel drunk and if you feel like the effects of drinking alcohol are stronger than it used to be.

Beware of drinks in Punchbowls or other containers that can be easily be spiked and don’t accept drinks from other people.

Sexual assaults linked to date rape drugs are among the most under-reported cases in the country, therefore, there is a need for appropriate assistant to be made available to victims and as well support and encouragement should be given them.

Above all, it important to tell a doctor or nurse what happened and that you might have been drugged so that they can test for the right drugs. Research shows that 3 out of 4 date rape drug-related cases, the attackers have been drinking alcohol when they sexually assaulted their victim and also about half of the victims had been drinking.

However, this does not mean that any assault on the victim is the victim’s fault. This is because, without consent, any sexual activity is illegal, no matter how much drinks one has had, drugs taken or the age.

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