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by Katharine Q. Seelye New York Times, January 21, 2018. 


Drug deaths draw the most notice, but more addicted people live than die. For them and their families, life can be a relentless cycle of worry, hope and chaos.

* * * * *

Even in the cheeriest moments, when Patrick was clean, everyone — including him — seemed to be bracing for the inevitable moment when he would turn back to drugs.

“We are your neighbors,” his mother, Sandy Griffin, said of the many families living with addiction, “and this is the B.S. going on in the house.”

* * * * *

. But the opioid scourge, here and elsewhere, has overwhelmed police and fire departments, hospitals, prosecutors, public defenders, courts, jails and the foster care system.

Most of all, though, it has upended families.

* * * * *

 “It’s a merry-go-round, and he can’t get off,” Sandy said of Patrick and his overdoses. “The first couple of times, I started thinking, ‘At least he’s not dead.’ I still think that. But he’s hurting. He’s sick. He needs to learn to live with the pain of being alive.”

* * * * *

Unlike some of the other parents, Sandy seemed battle hardened, like one who had been immersed in a war for a long time.

“I lost myself 10 years ago,” she told the group. “I couldn’t go to work, I couldn’t get out of bed.” She said she was consumed by codependency, in which “you are addicted to this human being to save them.”

She said she had realized that she had to save herself. 

* * * * *

For drug users and their loved ones, though, the worry never ends. No day can be ordinary. The threat of relapse is constant.

When Patrick recently texted Sandy, saying, “I love you,” her first thought was that he was about to kill himself. She frantically called him back. Patrick told her he was fine, he had just been thinking about her.

For a moment, Sandy caught her breath.

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25 December 2017 By Zawn Villines,  Reviewed by Alan Carter, PharmD

Any drug that alters a person's consciousness in a way that makes self-defense or sound decision-making difficult can be a date rape drug.

Most estimates suggest that at least 25 percent or 1 in 4 of American women have been sexually assaulted or raped. Someone the victim knows, sometimes with the assistance of a date rape drug, commits most rapes.

Knowing the most common date rape drugs, their side effects, and the signs of a perpetrator planning to use one can prevent victimization.

Fast facts on date rape drugs:

  • Many people worry about a perpetrator adding a date rape drug to an alcoholic drink.
  • The primary sign of being drugged is a sudden, unexplained change in consciousness.
  • A person who thinks they may have been drugged should seek safety first and foremost.

Types and their side effects

Alcohol and benzodiazepines are commonly used date rape drugs, as they may cause physical weakness and loss of consciousness.

Date rape drugs make a sexual assault, including rape easier in one or more ways, such as:

  • making a victim more compliant and less able to say no
  • weakening a victim so they are unable to resist or fight back
  • making a victim fully or partially unconscious
  • weakening a victim's inhibitions, so they consent to sexual activity they may otherwise decline

Any drug that changes a potential victim's state of mind, including some prescription drugs, street drugs such as heroin, and popular drugs such as marijuana, can be a date rape drug.

The most common date rape drugs are:

  • Alcohol
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Ketamine
  • GHB
  • Other date rape drugs

Any drug that changes a victim's consciousness can be used to facilitate date rape.

In some cases, the victim might even ingest the drug willingly. A person who uses heroin, for example, may be so intoxicated that they do not realize a perpetrator is attempting to rape them. People who use drugs should, therefore, avoid taking them around certain acquaintances or in settings that might facilitate date rape.

  1. Types
  2. Signs and symptoms
  3. What to do
  4. Protecting yourself
  5. Takeaway

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Pop culture glorifies partying, but a wave of sober stars is pushing back on the status quo

In the fictional world, sober icons are few and far between, but shows depicting the reality of the negative consequences of risky drinking and drug use provide their own kinds of icons. In the most recent season of Showtime’s Shameless, audiences watched as the once self-assured Lip lost his college scholarship and job due to his struggles with alcoholism but then began attending Alcoholics Anonymous. The eighth season of the show, set to premiere in November, promises further exploration of Lip’s recovery. Netflix’s BoJack Horseman has always presented the eponymous main character’s drinking as a coping mechanism for his the lack of fulfillment he finds in his personal and professional lives. But the latest season takes that presentation even further, as BoJack actively begins to question his drinking habits once his mother and alleged daughter come to live with him. As he does when faced with any sort of pressure or show of love, Bojack repeatedly finds himself at his local bar for a quick drink that soon turns into an all-day binge, and then takes an honest look at his drinking habit

Sober public figures and icons send the message that living a happy, interesting, exciting life it is possible without alcohol and drugs. And their visibility offers hope along with other widely reported, promising statistics: Nationwide, neighborhood bars are closingbeer sales are downmarijuana use and binge drinking among teens, particularly for white boys in higher socioeconomic groups, is declining; and there are more and more recovery programs on college campuses. For some millennials, like myself, it may seem like that every year brings more and more sober peers. That impression is only supported by the many recent articles touting the so-called “trendiness” of sobriety.

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More than 2,000 "junior junkie" babies have been born addicted to drugs including heroin, cocaine and cannabis in the past five years, heartbreaking figures reveal.

The shocking scandal of youngsters arriving in the world already hooked on hard drugs is laid bare after an investigation into neonatal abstinence syndrome.

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