Citation: Wingnut. "The Legal Habit: An Experience with Alcohol, Diphenhydramine, Nitrous Oxide, Dimenhydrinate & Diazepam (Valium) (exp31435)". Erowid.org. Apr 30, 2006. erowid.org/exp/31435
Through an online pharmacy based in India, I purchased 100 pills of 10mg diazepam (Valium brand), which arrived about twenty days later. The intention was for an initial foray into the effects of this pharmaceutical, and to keep the remainder as a remedy for relatively drastic psychedelic situations (i.e. as a tranquilizer). This use of diazepam has been well documented.
The afternoon the package arrived, I broke a pill into fourths and ate one of the pieces. Feeling no effects after twenty minutes, and being slightly late for a class, I took the rest of the broken pill. No effects were felt even hours later. Feeling like a sucker for being ripped off by some fraudulant Indian scam operation, I consumed four of the '10mg' diazepam pills, along with two glasses of good Tuscan chianti.
Sitting and watching a movie with friends, I became loose and somewhat numb, as though I had drunk more like six glasses of wine. In other words, the diazepam had a sedative effect very much like alcohol. The main difference was the way in which it affected my thought patterns -- slowing my thoughts and sort of mixing experiential memory with auditory or visual stimulation. That is to say, it sometimes wasn't clear if I had misheard someone, or if I had spoken myself, or if nobody had said anything at all. Regardless, it was difficult to speak, and I found myself forcing the sentences to become structured before they came out of my mouth.
I was very relaxed in both body and mind, like I said, as if I'd had a full bottle of wine or two. Nobody seemed to notice my intoxication, and I enjoyed the experience, so over the following week, I consumed on average three or four 10mg diazepam pills per day, mainly for the calming 'fuzzy' effects. Note, again: THIS WAS NOT MY ORIGINAL INTENTION.
As I said previously, I purchased the valium partly for experimentation, and partly as an 'out' for drasticly bad trips on psychedelics. Diazepam is apparently an extremly addicting drug, and I (who pride myself on being very resistant to addiction of any kind) found myself finding every excuse possible to use it.
One morning I woke up feeling sort of lightheaded and queezy, and remembered drinking quite a bit the night before. My roommates said, 'Well, he's alive -- that's a good sign,' when I came out of my room. I said, 'What's that supposed to mean?' And they recounted how I had been banging on their doors at 5 A.M. asking for 'my CD back... that CD I lent you'. One of my roommates groggily came out of his room and told me to get the fuck to bed. He reported that my legs seemed to be giving out and I had 'trouble finding the direction of the hallway' versus the walls. Halfway to my room I collapsed and nearly smashed my head through the television. I eventually made it to bed. The following morning, when they told me what had happened, I suspected valium had something to do with it. I checked the container, and sure enough I had taken 10 pills, or 100mg of valium, on top of about 12oz. of vodka (measured as taken from a previously unopened bottle), and four sleeping pills (diphenhydramine HCl, about 100mg total). Now, this was probably over the course of about eight hours, but taken at once, it is probably a deadly combination. There was vomit in my bed, on my pillow and on my clothing.
An even more bizarre part of my report comes from the end stages of my diazepam use, when I decided to take a full jar of Dramamine tablets (12 in all). These are motion sickness pills, over the counter. I'd heard they induced hallucinations, and I thought, 'shit, worst case scenario, I'll pop a couple of valiums and settle down'. Wrong. 'Popping a couple of valiums' wouldn't have done any good, as I was already above the threshold of any significant physiological effect (at this point I had consumed probably 70 pills, 10mg each of diazepam, over the course of a week and a half).
I took 12 Dramamine tablets and a couple of sleeping pills just for kicks around 10 PM. About 11 PM, I heard somebody clanking dishes in the kitchen, so I thought I'd go have a chat. When I got there not only was there nobody in the kitchen, the lights were out, and all of my roommates were sound asleep. I thought that was odd, but then heard music coming from outside in our backyard, so I looked out the window -- nobody out there. Opened the door, the music got louder, but now it was coming from BEHIND me. I closed the sliding glass door and turned around, and my roommate was standing next to the sink pouring a glass of water. He was wearing his work-out clothes and running shoes, which was odd considering he's usually in bed by 10PM. He took a swig of water and said, 'What's up man, you pissing outside or something?' I didn't respond, but sat down at the kitchen table and asked him, 'What are you doing up?' He smiled this sort of 'I know something you don't' smile, took another drink and asked me why I was 'doing this' to myself.
I looked down to grab a spoonful of cereal I had been eating, wondering what he meant. When I looked back up to answer, he was gone. I don't mean that he had turned and walked away -- I mean he was not there at all. At that point I realized I was hallucinating and it scared me.
Hallucinating on dimenhydrinate is NOT like hallucinating on mushrooms or LSD. Not at all. My perception of reality can seem perfect, flawless, seemless in every way, and yet it's not happening at all. I remember one time pondering a rock outcrop on the beach at Santa Cruz while on mushrooms, thinking about how nature seems to form things in curious ways that become even more beautiful when I understand them. The rock outcrop suddenly seemed to morph into what looked like Lydia from the movie 'Beetlejuice', and I was instantly laughing hysterically at my hallucination. This sort of shit could never happen on dimenhydrinate. Lydia would be standing there talking to me, until I looked away and she vanished.
Getting back to the story, I realized I was hallucinating and I thought I could hear my other roommates talking in the other room (about me, I presumed) as sounds and shapes fluttered through my cerebrum. I went to put my cereal bowl in the dishwasher, and there was no cereal bowl. Distraught and utterly confused, I stumbled to my room to sit and try to calm down. I had already taken enough valium, so that was out of the question. Just when I thought I was going to lose it and go running down the street, I noticed my third roommate was lying on my futon reading a magazine. 'What's up dude?' he said, putting the magazine on down on his chest and sort of turning toward me. I couldn't quite formulate a sentence, but I said something like, 'I think I should stop taking this stuff.' He replied with some comment that had nothing to do with my drug use -- about the Yankees and Alex Rodriguez or some such thing.
We talked about baseball for what seemed like ten or fifteen minutes (I was completely convinced he was really there), and then I asked him a question, looked up for a response, and there was nobody there. I took two sleeping pills, laid back on my bed and hallucinated myself to sleep.
The scary thing about this stuff (dimenhydrinate) is that the hallucinations for all intents and purposes are completely real. There is NO, and I repeat, NO DIFFERENCE between reality and what my brain manifests in response to this substance. Abusing motion sickness pills is like temporary schizophrenia. At some points I even had attacks of paranoia.
The visual and auditory hallucinations went on for about another day, and included conversations with people who don't even live in the same state.
Also, nitrous oxide (which has been known to produce some of these effects on its own) amplified the hallucinations by a factor of 10. I thought they were gone (it had been two days since), popped a couple of whippits, and suddenly my room was full of kids I hadn't seen since high school. I went to ask one of them a question, and they all just got up and walked out the door.
It has been three days now since I used either diezapam or dimenhydrinate, and I feel no lingering effects (thank god). My memory might be slightly cloudier, but it's hard to say, and I feel better each passing hour. Though I am a bit jittery from the diazepam withdrawl.
Well, I had a fantastic body high, and really didn't give a shit about anything besides my fading grip on reality. The downside is that being so clumsy, I dropped glasses, bowls, plates, flower pots, you name it, in the process, all of which I need to replace; and I now bear the guilt of ruining my roommate's hand painted soup bowl sent from her grandmother in Japan.
Thankfully, one of my roommates confronted me a few days later and said he was concerned about me, and my recent drug abuse. It made me feel really good to know that he had noticed my downward spiral and that he cared about me. Needless to say, I'm not doing that kind of crap anymore.
I needed help. My counseling appointment is for tomorrow. I'm not quitting drugs or alcohol, I just want to figure my shit out enough so I don't abuse them.
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