Citation: Lekt. "Benzodiazepine Burn: An Experience with Ambien, Alcohol & Caffeine (ID 51051)". Erowid.org. Feb 24, 2008. erowid.org/exp/51051
Just for some context: I have a fairly extensive history of drug experimentation, including many hallucinogens.
I had drunk about seven drinks over the course of a couple hours when someone at a party I was at handed me two 5 mg pills of Ambien. I had only ever taken 2.5 mg of Ambien at a time for sleep, often less, and had felt its effects to be interesting. That said I never had had any interest in abusing them until this drunken moment.
It was already getting late; probably around one o’clock in the morning. I hadn’t slept well the night before, and I was likely only awake because of the 200 mg caffeine pill I had ingested earlier that night. For whatever reason, to me, it was exactly the moment to mess with some sleeping pills. I rushed back to my room with a friend of mine and crushed one up. Previously, I had only ever taken the pills orally, and even then they came on quickly. Yet for some reason I wanted to snort them tonight. I arranged the powder in a line and blew it into my left nostril. There was a pause and then… WHAM!
…and then I blacked out.
It’s not as if I lost all my memory. I have bits and pieces. The rest of this story is a synthesis of what I remember and what people informed me of the day later.
After snorting the pill, I sat down and started talking with my friend, Andy. I had lost all motor function and I was hallucinating heavily. The world possessed an eerie, ethereal quality. I tried to converse with Andy but was blacking out so acutely; on such a short time scale, that I repeated myself over and over, asking him, “How’s it going?” around ten times. After ten minutes he had had enough and as my roommate entered the room, he left.
My roommate could immediately tell I was completely obliterated. I told him I wanted to take my other Ambien, which I did in a strange, slow, drunken manner. Seven drinks is enough to make me pretty drunk and the first pill had increased my inebriation several-fold. Somehow managing to organize the contents of the pill into lines and blow them up my right nostril I informed him I was now off to our resident hipster ‘not-frat’ house. He tried to convince me not to. The house was on the other side of campus and there were blizzard conditions outside. Coming up on even more Ambien, I wouldn’t hear of it, so he had to let me go. I wasn’t violent, belligerent, or mean, just dead set on that course of action. It took me thirty minutes to get ready to leave.
Hunter S. Thomson speaks of ether as the king of depravity. I wonder what his feelings on the combination of Ambien and alcohol would have been. My motor function had left me completely; I lurched from side to side bouncing off walls. I saw people and things not there. Similarly I ignored many very real objects and people. Gravity was no longer a predictable force. Straight lines and right angles bent, breathed and warped chaotically. About fifteen minutes later I had progressed about a tenth of the distance required and had not even left the building.
Suddenly two drunken friends came into view. Together we entered a drowsing friend’s room, and demanded more Ambien. She sleepily gave us four pills. Easily distracted by more drugs, together we sloppily returned to my room. More Ambien was insufflated. Did I do any? At this point I couldn’t tell you. No one remembers much of this part of the night except that it happened and that all the pills were consumed. My room was a complete mess at the end of the night if that elucidates anything.
At some point I found myself at the frat house. I had made it there in driving wind with rising snow already above my ankles. I was no longer with my friends, who had essentially broken into a different house and were depravedly conducting themselves. I hung out there for hours, generally being extremely fucked up and embarrassing myself until, fed up, they called for the campus Safe Ride to take me back to my dorm.
Having slept about 5 hours in total that night, I awoke extremely well-rested, and as aforementioned, completely unaware of most of the evening’s events. In retrospect, the experience was very scary. I only have the vaguest notion of how much of the drug I took, perhaps as much as 20 mg, snorted. The combination of two powerful depressants laid waste to my motor function. I was lucky in that a) I am a guy and not really at risk for rape b) I managed to get away without a dangerous overdose and c) I have good friends who were fantastic enough to take turns making sure I didn’t kill myself by getting in a car or deciding to take a nap in the accumulating ice and snow. Stuff not worth describing has fallen through the cracks. I was extremely open and divulged a lot of very personal stuff to people I otherwise would not have. When I heard what I had done I was mortified. The amnesia that accompanied the drug made any and all of the fun I was clearly having completely irrelevant.
It very much scares me that I could have taken pill after pill without realizing what I was doing to myself. I was not in my right mind while on it, and I feel completely depraved from my experience. Snorting that first pill goes down as one of the worst decisions I have made.
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