There’s a new ‘stranger danger’ out there and it’s not the sort that we warn our kids about.  It’s the sort where we adults need to view every person in our surroundings, whether it be in a corporate box at a sporting match, one of Adelaide’s most respected restaurants, or out at a pub, as a potential predator.  I mention some of these places because these are venues where ‘drink spiking’ has taken place.

Only a month ago, one Friday afternoon I met up with a friend, for an after work drink in Hutt Street.  As I sat enjoying literally one drink, a random guy, in a nice suit, plonks himself down, to have a chat.  Not being in the mood to be picked up by the big-noting idiot, we were delighted when a mutual friend wandered past our table and stopped to say hi.  Distracted by our friend for only a minute or so, we realised our annoying ‘suit’  had relocated to a nearby table, where he seemed to be filling in his mates on his attempt at impressing us girls.  Or was he?.  Twenty minutes later, I started feeling really dizzy, and asked my friend to walk me to my car so I could go home.  Moments later, I almost blacked out and vomited.    Within only 2 hours my friend returned home with her husband where from that point, she recalls nothing.  She woke the next day feeling shaky and confused, as did her husband.  What had she done, and what had she said?  That remains between them, but safe to say it took a while for both of them to get over it.

Another friend told how his nurse wife, who works at one of our major hospitals, treated one particular victim of drink spiking who had had her bowel perforated by what they believe was an attack made during her ‘lost hours’.

I stress that these stories come from genuine women, who are not making excuses for bad behaviour, but who remember one minute being ok, and the next waking up in bed, with a gut feeling, and certain evidence, that they may have had sex with a stranger!  These stories are as ugly as it gets.  No sane woman is going to share her story of drink spiking with me, where months later after suffering serious abdominal pain, goes to her GP, only to find that a wine cap has been lodged into her womb.   And that’s after the standard trauma of not knowing if and who you can sex with.  What diseases were they carrying? And can I possibly be pregnant?

Don’t fool yourself that drink spiking applies only to women that may have already had a few and therefore easy targets!  A well known South Aussie basketballer, was rushed to hospital thinking she was dying after one sober night out, only to find after drug tests, that she had been spiked with cocaine.  Apart from the scary factor, her career could have been ruined.

How can we protect ourselves?   We all need to be acutely sensitive to any sudden feelings of nausea while out, or sudden extreme feelings of being drunk or drowsy.  These are the first signs something may be wrong.  Most of the time your predator will be monitoring the sickening progress of your demise, so he can move in for the kill.  This is not just happening at seedy places, it’s everywhere.  We need to spend more time looking out for a mates, or flagging up to our friends that we feel weird, than worrying about entertaining some stranger that may have a more sinister reason for showing us attention!


  1. Amber how scary, three weeks ago I was at my best friends house for an after work drink before heading out to a co-workers farewell party and my drink was spiked. All I can remember is texting my co-worker at 8:50pm telling her that I was just finishing off my drink and I would be right there, that is all that I can remember…I blacked out, vomited and woke up 7 hours later on the floor not knowing what had happened or remembering a single thing. I couldn’t go to work for two day’s as I felt so shakey and disorientated and the nausea was unbelievable. I deleted that friend and all the people that were at his apartment out of my life and I haven’t been able to have an alcoholic drink ever since. Drink spiking is a serious problem that is destroying a lot of innocent lives.

    • Oh my god darling!!!!!! That’s absolutely horrendous. You should maybe even report it just to have it on record. Especially if any of those people are doing it regularly, which let’s face it, I bet they are. I”m so sorry that happened to you.xx

  2. I have worked at the a major nightclub for 10 years back in the late 90’s early naughties. One of my jobs was to tend to the so called drink spiked girls. They all would say my drink was spiked now I am not saying it didn’t happen but these girls looked like they used it as an excuse… At the time the media was beating up drink spiking and eveyone jumps on the band wagon.. A sports player on cocaine, spiked drink… Seriously you have to be kidding me….Who would spike cocaine it does not knock you out and its by far the most expensive drug you could use.

  3. Amber I’m sorry to hear about your experience. Sounds vile! Everyone girl deserves to go out and feel safe.

    I have to agree with Ben here though. I’m a doctor and have spent time working in Adelaide’s Emergency Departments. Sadly in my experience the most common drug used in drink ‘spiking’ is alcohol.

    Drink spiking does happen but sadly overwhelming majority of women pitching up to EDs claiming to have had their drink spiked have nothing in their system other than large amounts alcohol. It’s hard to know what percentage of these girls have just drunk more than they realise (and more quickly!).

    I guess the best advice to all of us girls to keep an eye our drinks – and keep an eye on how much we drink!

  4. Amber, thank you for bringing this to our attention, the general public and females in particular need to know this drink spiking is rife in Adelaide, very unsafe and the effects can be devastating.

    I have been targeted to have my drink spiked on two occasions, once at a Melbourne Cup Lunch event in a North Adelaide Hotel and the second at a club on Gouger St on a Friday evening about 6pm.

    On the first occasion I can remember nothing between 3pm and 11pm, and the night and day after that are a blur. I woke up in a strange office building, my boyfriend was calling, trying to find me and take me home to safety. I kept asking my ‘captor’ what the address was and the accused kept lying, so my boyfriend drove to several addresses and in the end had to give up. I was so disorientated and ‘wired’ at the time, I had no idea how to get out of there and was locked in until about 8am the next morning. This has obviously had dire consequences on my relationship with my boyfriend.

    On the second occasion I was luckier. I managed to make it to a taxi and get home. My female friend with me at the time was not so lucky, she collapsed on the ground and an ambulance was called and she went to hospital and had her stomach pumped.

    Both times this has been with drinks bought for me by men. I know these men, they are high profile Adelaide men. On both occasions I had medical examinations that confirmed traces of rohypnol. I made reports to the police but the accused denied the allegations.

    Psychologically you feel ‘raped’ and the worst thing is that you don’t know whether you have been physically.

    You have no knowledge of what you said, what you did or where you were and you hurt a lot of people.

    Now I am very careful, I changed my life around. I rarely go out, I am no longer the Adelaide socialite, I look out for myself and all my friends, I never accept drinks from anyone and my levels of trust are low.

    I hope this never happens to you or anyone else ever again, but unfortunately it will.

    Thanks again for sharing your story, hopefully me sharing mine will help others.

  5. I’m a guy, and I’ve been spiked – I was at table with 2 girls, went off to the toilet and came back and two bogan/gangster guys had joined them. I remember being taken aback as to why the girls were indulging them. One girl took a sip of her drink, decided she didnt like it, gave it to the other girl I was with, who had a few sips, and decided the same thing. So I downed the rest of it.

    The rest of the night turned STRANGE, and becomes very blurry. The few days all three of us had a persistent nausea.

    A mate of mine left his only drink of the night unattended while he played some Daytona. 40 minutes later he could barely stand and was taken home by his girlfriend – where he was bed ridden for 3 days.

    My advice, as useless as it is – is stay away from douchebags and dipshits.

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  8. I find it really dirnusbitg to come across an article such as this after being hospitalized just last week from being roofied. I know what my tolerance levels are when it comes to drinking, and considering I was only through one drink and was blacked-out really unnerves me to think that someone could simply say that oh she just had too much to drink and is just claiming to be roofied to protect her reputation. There are side-effects to date-rape drugs that are more serious than simply forgetting what happened or having a bad hang-over the next day. I was carried into the hospital by friends after I had trouble breathing and was in extreme abdominal pain. After being admitted, an EKG test showed that I was tacacardic (high heart rate that causes heart attacks). All this stress on my body due to rufilin caused a pre-diagnosed ovarian cyst to burst, which added to my pain. This is all in addition to the hours of vomiting, heartburn after eating for a week, and constant shaking that lasted two days. After going through all that, missing a midterm exam and having to catch a 5 hour flight two days after that ordeal, I am angered to hear that people may still believe I had simply had too much to drink. .. or even that it was my fault for not completely covering my drink the whole night or for even drinking at all or even for just being a girl! Which brings me to the question- if people, especially men as it seems to be after reading the above comments, start to attribute side-effects of being drugged while drinking to just simply having too much to drink, then at what point will people realize the difference between being intoxicated and having been slipped something in their drink? The effects that date-rape drugs have (and yes there are multiple types that have different side effects) on a person no matter how much they have had to drink are very serious and can lead to organ failures and death. So please for the sake of people’s HEALTH and SAFETY.. next time you want to assume that a girl, especially someone you know well, is just completely intoxicated by her own means, think twice because they could be in more danger than you can imagine.

    • Oh my god, that’s really horrific. The sad issue in society, apart from nutcases spiking drinks is our society has become so desensitized to seeing people out in public very very drunk that too many people make the assumptions that someone clearly ‘not right’ must just be drunk. The other sad thing is that there aren’t as many real gentlemen out there that might just naturally jump to the aid of a woman who might need help. Not that I mean we need a man to help us out but the values of people just aren’t there as much as they probably would have been a few decades ago. We shouldn’t have to be out there covering our drinks because it’s just a given that there are bad people out there praying on others. It should be a huge incident report tackled by the hotel owners because they should be responsible to make sure this sort of thing doesn’t go on in there establishments. I know plenty of people that have had their drinks spiked and you’re right, it’s not just always a case of a bad turn, vomiting and losing your memory, it could be fatal. I hope you are ok now, and we should both continue to spread the word.x

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