Drugs and Sexual Assault
There are dozens of drugs that people use to make a person an easy target for sexual assault. While these drugs produce different effects, most of them share the following in common:
They make a victim really “out of it”: If you are slipped or take these drugs, you will be nearly helpless. They’ll make you drowsy, can make you weak and cause your muscles to relax, and you may even pass out completely. You’d likely be either completely unconscious, or at least too “out of it” to stop someone from sexually assaulting you. One drug that is used in drug-facilitated sexual assault, Ketamine, can even put you in a strong “trance-like” state, in which you’ll be awake, but almost completely unaware of the people and things going on around you.
They cause memory loss: Most of these drugs, including alcohol, can wipe out several hours of your memory, and make it very difficult for you to remember what happened or if you were assaulted. Even if you do remember having sex with someone, you memory may be too fuzzy to remember if you said “yes” or “no”. And you may be unsure if you should report it. (Remember, the law says that you can be too intoxicated to consent to having sex).
They are difficult to detect: Many of the “date-rape” drugs will pass through your body very quickly, and are very difficult to detect by the police or a doctor. This is why it’s important to report a drug-facilitated sexual assault quickly, as the longer you wait, the more difficult it may be to find proof of a drugging.
They produce effects similar to alcohol’s effects: If you’re slipped one of these “date-rape” drugs, you may just look and act “really drunk”. Some of the drugs may even just make you feel really, really drunk. If you’re drinking with friends, they may not realize that anything’s wrong with you. What’s worse, you may not even realize that anything’s wrong with you. Some of these drugs also have after-effects that feel just like a hangover (including memory loss), so when you wake up the next day you may not recognize that you were drugged at all. But there are some effects that you can look for to help realize that you’ve been drugged.