Review Erowid at
Help us be a 2021 "Top Rated Nonprofit", and spread accurate info
about psychoactive drugs, health, culture, & policies.
("Share Your Story" link. Needs quick account creation but doesn't verify contact info)
This Is Not What 'Recreational' Means
by benakill
Citation:   benakill. "This Is Not What 'Recreational' Means: An Experience with Diphenhydramine (exp115319)". Mar 30, 2021.

390 - 420 mg oral Diphenhydramine (liquid)
    repeated oral Diphenhydramine (liquid)
    oral Benzodiazepines  
    oral Pharmaceuticals (daily)


Please do not do what I did. Learn from my mistakes instead of making your own.

I just got done with a four-day DPH binge. Today is the fifth day and even the thought of it makes me want to punch a wall. I've done drugs before, some of which had bad side-effects but at least there was SOME fun involved. Not only was DPH terrible in every respect, I cannot for my life understand why I spent four days doing it. I can be stupid at times but this binge was baffling. Sheer idiocy.

I am 30, stable job, loving family and girlfriend, lots of friends, and bad depression and anxiety. I have issues with alcohol addiction (I do not get drunk anymore and just pass out or sleep off before feeling any pleasure, yet I drink alone and cannot kick the habit), and I am prescribed SNRIs for my bipolar. I also have to use benzos to deal with my anxiety.
I am prescribed SNRIs for my bipolar. I also have to use benzos to deal with my anxiety.
While the benzos have not messed me up in any way even at recreational doses, I want to taper myself off them because they have become a rather quick fix for life's problems instead of dealing with them head on. I use modafinil on occasion without side effects. I have used opiate painkillers before although I gave up because I saw a couple of friends ruin themselves with them. I do not have an inflated sense of self-control, on the contrary, I am quite aware that I have an addictive personality and a propensity to do stupid things. I also smoke weed whenever it is around, and that has made me decide not to have it around. If I am in a house with alcohol or weed, I will polish them off. The weed doesn't cause much in the way of harm except for wasting my time but the alcohol has a grip on my life I need to get help for.

Anyway, let's start FOUR days ago. I was feeling alright, except for a bit of the usual anxiety, and for some reason decided to try DPH. I got a brand without acetaminophen and looked around for an appropriate dosage. 5mL of this syrup had 14ish mg of DPH. I began with 150mL since I have a high threshold for most drugs. For a while nothing happened, then about 30 minutes later I started seeing dark floaters in my peripheral vision, which are not fun in any way. It just felt like there was stuff in my eyes. Who the fuck wants to see spiders? Then I started seeing patterns on the wall opposite me which was also unremarkable. But I did feel intoxicated, which was a slightly enjoyable feeling. As it began to wear off, I finished off the rest of the bottle. It made me sleepy and made music sound annoying which never happens to me; in fact, I need music around to help me concentrate. Everything felt incredibly boring and soon I slept off, all the while being woken up by a restless leg.

The next day I woke up completely unable to swallow, it was as if my throat had been paralysed. My mouth felt dry like sandpaper. I had not had any fluids or eaten anything, I just didn't feel like it. I should have stopped here but in my infinite wisdom I repeated this dosage in the morning, and the night. Again, the experience was irritating. This time my skin felt like it was crawling and I couldn't tell whether I was hot or cold. Somehow I was able to fall asleep using benzos (please note that mixing depressants can be deadly). I wished I could cut my leg off, it was so restless and torturous.

The next morning I felt even worse. Now you may ask, why would anyone have more of this stuff? I guess it took my mind off the problems I was facing in life (by adding more problems) so I had another bottle. I went to the bathroom to pee and saw that my urine was very dark yellow, since I had not had even a sip of water in like three days. I also had not eaten anything in these three days. I couldn't bear the thought of eating - I couldn't even eat pizza, and I like pizza.

I wish I could say that I stopped here but I had some more the next morning. This time, I threw up. And out came just a bit of water. There was nothing to throw up. I was cleaning the bathroom when I realised that I had not eaten for THREE days now, and not had water either. I looked in the mirror and my eyes had sunken in so deep it looked like I had lost a boxing match. I had also not taken a shit in three days. In a moment of clarity, I poured the rest of the bottles down the drain and somehow fell back onto my bed and slept. Several times I woke to realising that I was not breathing consciously. The night was hell, I could not tell if I had had conversations with people over text so I had to check my phone. I realised I could not focus my eyes at all so I couldn't read. I could not swallow. I was not panicking but I certainly felt disgusted with myself. I was also irritable and argumentative and did not respond to work calls or texts from my mom.

After twelve hours of sleep I woke up feeling like death, and looking like it too. I had to meet a friend at night so I somehow made it to the cafe but all the while I felt like I was going to faint. My body kept shaking so badly they asked if I was okay. I said it was just weakness. Thankfully by now my throat had started working again so I ordered coffee and tore open a pack of sugar and ate it so that I would not faint out of low blood pressure. The conversation with my friend was an ordeal. I could not even see the numbers on my watch dial. I felt confused like you do when you have that first sniff of poppers. The coffee somehow carried me through and I deliberately had to speak loudly and hold my limbs so as not to alarm my friend. I told them at the end that I was feeling very weak and confused so they dropped me home, making me promise I would eat something. I ordered food right away and and forced myself to drink water. I was still not mentally okay but eventually my brain regained most of its function. I drank a lot of water, took a small shit, and peed painfully. Then I took my benzos and collapsed on the bed, sweating. Eventually my body felt better and I was able to get some sleep.

It has been over 24 hours since I finished the last bottle and I still have a dry mouth and trouble focusing my eyes. I am sipping water as I type this. I also got breakfast and was able to eat it with some difficulty. My face still looks gaunt, I feel emotionally destroyed, and I have flu-like symptoms. I have also lost my sense of taste and smell though it is slowly returning. I missed two days of work and I will have to miss today's work again. I think I will tell my co-workers that I had a nervous breakdown or something.

What did I get out of it? Some stupid patterns on a wall that you can get by rubbing your eyes, some auditory hallucinations that were really not fun, some bullshit floaters in my vision, and mild psychosis. My body feels destroyed and it will take another day for it to recover. I feel no joy whatsoever. I know I will recover but this is NOT a place I wanted to be in. I decided that I need to fix my life and my issues before I do something even more stupid so I will see my therapist this week. I feel ashamed but it is not a good idea to lie to doctors, besides, I did not do anything illegal. Stupidity isn't a crime in law.

If you're hoping to get some fun out of DPH, forget about it. It's not one of those drugs which are so much fun that they get you addicted, it is a drug which is NO fun at all. The only positive to have come out of this is the fact that lying in bed in agony made me decide to try and fix the bigger issues that make me do such things.
The only positive to have come out of this is the fact that lying in bed in agony made me decide to try and fix the bigger issues that make me do such things.

The very sight or thought of the taste of the syrup makes me retch. I will not even take it for a cold now. I'd rather die coughing. I feel so cheated, I lost three days of my life for absolutely zero fun in return.

Fuck this drug.

Exp Year: 2021ExpID: 115319
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: 30 
Published: Mar 30, 2021Views: 301
[ View as PDF (for printing) ] [ View as LaTeX (for geeks) ] [ Switch Colors ]
Diphenhydramine (109) : Combinations (3), Depression (15), Multi-Day Experience (13), Difficult Experiences (5), Alone (16)

COPYRIGHTS: All reports are copyright Erowid and you agree not to download or analyze the report data without contacting Erowid Center and receiving permission first.
Experience Reports are the writings and opinions of the individual authors who submit them.
Some of the activities described are dangerous and/or illegal and none are recommended by Erowid Center.

Experience Vaults Index Full List of Substances Search Submit Report User Settings About Main Psychoactive Vaults