Advice columnist Dear Prudence gave some shaky advice to an alleged rape victim's friend who is conflicted about the victim changing her story of a drunken encounter. Originally the alleged victim said she had a regrettable one-night-stand then later flip-flopped to rape accusation mode after talking to a crisis line.
Dear Prudence and most of the internet is agreeing at this point that personal responsibility trumps the blame game after the fact when it comes to hooking up. Just because you were drunk doesn't mean it's okay to cry rape later. This is very sound advice, but I will tell you, it's possible to not know you have been given the date rape drug for quite some time.
I was "roofied" and didn't figure it out what happened for a year.
One night when I was 24 and living alone, I attended a 60th birthday party for one of my bosses. I wandered into the hotel lobby while talking on my cell phone and this older guy and his three sons I'd never met offered to by me a drink. They seemed like clean cut tourists and even though I was attending an open bar party in the next room, I accepted the drink and chatted with them.
A few sips in, which was only my third drink over the course of the evening, I was unable to stand. It was like I had slugged an entire bottle of liquor. I could barely speak and I was slurring horribly. I called my friend Michelle who said to get in a cab. I was fading fast and by the time I was in the cab, I could barely say my address.
It was only the luck of God that made me realize something was not right when I did. I literally crawled into my apartment and blacked out for 12 hours.
I remember nothing except a hazy pop in consciousness at 4:00AM when the building maintenance people knocked down my door. Apparently I had turned the water on in my bathtub before blacking out and flooding the apartment below me. This caused me to be evicted.
It all seemed so weird at the time. I assumed somehow the 2.5 drinks naturally made me that drunk and I accepted responsibility for my eviction. I was embarrassed about it and took a look at my life and realized I needed to be much safer. Attending parties alone is just not a good idea, even if it's a work function. And I really needed to watch the booze. If just over two beers can do that one night, who knows how my body would react the next time?
Anyway, I was telling a friend this story over a year later and she asked me if I had considered that I may have been drugged. Boom. A light bulb came on. This may seem unlikely coming from someone as opinionated and bristly as me, but I'm actually very sensitive and accept blame and responsibility to a fault. It had never occurred to me that I had been drugged. Didn't "roofies" just exist in the movies and advice columns? Does that happen to real life people?
In short, yes. The date rape drug can come from anyone. Never, ever accept a drink from a stranger. Knowing what I know and having barely escaped a few other terrifying situations, I don't think I can let my daughters out of my sight.
Be safe, Chicago!