THE DATE RAPE DRUGS

“Campus Sexual Assault: A Particular Problem. As noted, 1 in 5 women has been sexually assaulted while in college. The dynamics of college life appear to fuel the problem, as many victims are abused while they’re drunk, under the influence of drugs, passed out, or otherwise incapacitated. Most college victims are assaulted by someone they know – and parties are often the site of these crimes. Notably, campus assailants are often serial offenders: one study found that of the men who admitted to committing rape or attempted rape, some 63% said they committed an average of six rapes each.  College sexual assault survivors suffer from high levels of mental health problems (like depression and PTSD) and drug and alcohol abuse. Reporting rates are also particularly low.” White House Council on Women & Girls, January 2014

Daterape DrPaulCertain drugs have been used in date rape, and your daughter must know about them.  Rohypnol and GHB, are the two used most often and they both render a victim unable to move.

Rohypnol, the most commonly used date rape drug, is a tranquilizer that is sold illegally in the United States.  The white tablets are easily dissolvable in drinks and are undetectable.  Rohypnol is used to commit sexual assaults because it renders the victim incapable of resisting.  The drug creates a high in combination with alcohol, impairs judgment and motor skills, and makes it impossible to prevent a sexual attack.  Also called the “the forget pill” or “the mind eraser,” it causes a blackout so that nothing is remembered.  It starts to work within thirty minutes, and peaks at two hours.  Many victims have trouble speaking or moving.   Their eyes may be wide open and they are able to observe events, but they are unable to move.  Other effects of the drug include dizziness, disorientation, and often nausea.  Afterwards the victim’s memories are cloudy and they can’t recall much of what happened.

Another date rape drug is GHB, gamma hydroxybutrate, which is also called liquid ecstasy or scoop.  According to the Monitoring the Future; National Results on Adolescent Drug Use, GHB is available as an odorless, colorless drug that may be combined with alcohol and given to unsuspecting victims prior to sexual assaults. It may have a soapy or salty taste. Use for sexual assault has resulted in GHB being known as a “date rape” drug. Victims become incapacitated due to the sedative effects of GHB, and they are unable to resist sexual assault. GHB may also induce amnesia in its victim. Common user groups include high school and college students and rave party attendees who use GHB for its intoxicating effects. Overdosing on this drug can be fatal.¹

Women have reported being raped after being given these drugs involuntarily, usually slipped into one of their drinks.  Common sense should prevail.  Girls should be told never to accept drinks from anyone they do not know.  Also, they should not leave their drinks unattended.  They and their group of friends should know the effects of these drugs so that they can recognize if it is given to one of their friends while they are together at a party or other social gathering.

1 Monitoring the Future. National Results on Adolescent Drug Use. Overview of Key Findings 2010. http://monitoringthefuture.org/pubs/monographs/mtf-overview2010.pdf Accessed December 17, 2011
 

DISCLAIMER
Information contained in this blog is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended as medical or psychiatric advice for individual conditions or treatment and does not substitute for a medical or psychiatric examination. A psychiatrist must make a determination about any treatment or prescription. Dr. Paul does not assume any responsibility or risk for the use of any information contained within this blog.