Citation: Faustus. "Not Just for Our Furry Friends: An Experience with Barbiturates - Pentobarbital (Nembutal) (exp68249)". Erowid.org. Sep 5, 2008. erowid.org/exp/68249
I was recently able to experience a brief but intense love affair with pentobarbital (Nembutal), a short-acting barbiturate which was present in a thick, bitter and profoundly distasteful solution. Human availability of pentobarbital is restricted and its use is generally limited to euthanasia of animals. More recently, itís been used in human euthanasia, and Iím thoroughly convinced that death via pentobarbital overdose would be a hell of a way to go. Indulging recreationally with a drug used to kill animals and humans Ė no, the irony had not been lost upon me! I knew that I was walking a precarious tight rope and was fully cognizant of the risks and dangers, but I felt so profoundly miserable, that death, if it did eventually come, wouldnít be too bad a fate anyway.
Pentobarbital, which my fellow fiends and myself affectionately coined Pento, Pentorhythm, Nembsy, Nemo, amongst others, came into abundance for several months. I found that the effects of pento were comparable to other barbiturate-like substances such as carisoprodol, or perhaps even high doses of alcohol, although I initially believed carisoprodol to be the superior drug. Others found pento more akin to opiates such as fentanyl than carisoprodol, although I have no grounds to personally qualify this comparison. Regardless, pento is the foulest and most bitter tasting drug Iíve ever drunk, probably even surpassing the likes of GHB, and the best way to drink it is to quickly chase it with a lemon-flavoured soft drink.
My initial use of pento commenced with daily oral administration of ~150 mg, which I used semi-recreationally as a sleep aid. I say semi-recreationally because although Iíd strictly take it before bed, I would enjoy staying up for an hour or so before nodding off to relish its intoxicating effects. Watching TV, surfing the net, reading, etc. Having become a chronic insomniac and desperately needing to buckle down with study, I had few qualms with developing dependence to it, at least until I had finished with school. In terms of sleep, I found 150 mg wholly adequate to induce sleep within half an hour. And although it only lasts around 4 hours and produces a moderate hangover effect, it was a reliable ally for dealing with insomnia. Whereas benzos such as diazepam might make it easier to fall asleep, itís still entirely possible to toss and turn for hours while on the stuff. With the pento, no such thing: I'm out like a flash, and on the odd occasion that I absolutely-need-to-get-to-sleep, itís a gift from the heavens.
After a month or so of daily oral dosing, I progressed to intramuscular, and then intravenous injection. I had previously shot up ketamine IM, and had little aversion in doing so, although I must note that IM pento is quite painful in comparison to k. Interestingly, the onset of action of IM injections is comparable to oral administration, about 20 minutes. Although I had always promised myself that I would never go IV, a confluence of life factors lead me to justify doing so. Another story, for another time. I guess after x many years trying a wide spectrum of psychoactives, the stigma associated with needles erodes away to leave IV injecting as just another drug experience to cross off the list. I practised for about a week with saline before administering my first dose.
Intravenous pento is by far the superior route of administration, but I guess thatís what any junkie will tell you, regardless of the drug. Granted, Iíve heard wonderful things about rectal pento, though Iíve never indulged. The rancorous taste in the mouth left by oral administration is bypassed, and in its place comes a pleasant albeit slightly bitter taste to the mouth as the pento kicks in within 15 seconds. I always questioned with scepticism reports that you can actually taste an IV injection (e.g. the metallic taste of DMT), but I can attest that this is the case with pento. I came to relish this tasteÖ Just as Iíd pull the needle out of my veins and get myself comfortable, a wave of peace and warmth would overcome me with increasing intensity. I would always taste the pento before it hit me. Within a matter of moments, Iíd be in my pento stupor, calm and relaxed while still retaining most of my mental faculties. I generally took no more than ~175 mg IV, and found this to produce a moderate level of intoxication.
Once Iíd finished with university, my use of pento shifted from being semi-recreational to just plain recreational, and I had no shortage of people willing to indulge, although they declined to partake in injecting. To be sure, the people around me were taking much higher oral doses, and this was characterised by ataxia and embarrassingly high levels of disinhibition. One observation was that at higher doses, people on pento have a tendency to engage in erratic and bizarre behaviour. Think Hunter S. Thompsonís ether binge in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas Ė ďÖthe mind recoils in horror, unable to communicate with the spinal column, which is interesting because you can actually watch yourself behaving in this terrible way, but you canít control it.Ē For instance, a usually placid friend of mine kicked off the side-view mirror of a taxi without any hesitation after a customer left the cab and told him ďThis driver is crazy.Ē After consuming ~650 mg orally I myself became extremely disinhibited, but for the purposes of anonymity will refrain from further detail. I have no memory of the incident except the word of those who witnessed my behaviour, but provided that their account is accurate, Iím quite shocked by the depths of my depravity.
As an aside, a note on vein care: For reasons unknown to me, pento has a tendency to temporarily block my veins. The next day, a small, hard bump or ďknotĒ tends to form in them, despite my not having blown the shot. It takes a few days for the knots to soften, and several weeks to disappear entirely. I suspect it may be due to the sorbitol present in the pento which gives it a viscous consistency, and have noticed that this effect is less prominent when I dilute it with saline. This was a cause of concern, though apparently not enough for me to stop using entirely.
Over the coming weeks, my pento use became somewhat habitual, and although I wouldnít say that I was addicted, I found it difficult to curtail my use. My depression was increasing in severity and I visited my psychiatrist for help. I explained that Iíd taken to injecting pento, but he was quite unsympathetic and told me that itíd eventually kill me. In fact, he was more interested in how itíd gotten access to it than helping me. This was a wake-up call, and shortly thereafter my supply of pento dried up. The situation was double-edged; although Iíd thoroughly enjoyed its effects, it was becoming abundantly clear that my usage was neither sustainable in the long term, nor conducive to any happiness in the meaningful sense of the word.
So it came as just as much a relief as it did a disappointment that I could no longer source the stuff. Iíve since proceeded to shooting up heroin (hey, youíve gotta aim for the stars!), but have found it that it hasnít lived up to its reputation as the destroyer of young brains, minds and foetuses. Itís fallen woefully short of expectations. In fact, Iíve found heroin to be far less addictive in comparison to pento. I guess in a way I was able to use smack to wean myself off the pento, a realisation which is an endless source of amusement for me.
Fast forward a couple weeks, and Iím currently off pento and heroin and intending to stay that way. Although I wasnít addicted to either drug, I was definitely headed in that direction. I often think about shooting up, even if itís just saline. The ritual of injecting itself: preparing the fits; swabbing; tying up with a tourniquet; and, injecting, can all become powerfully addictive in their own right. I intend to get my blood tested for Hepatitis C, and provided that I have a clean bill of health, I canít see myself having any regrets about this brief chapter in my life. After all, the forbidden fruit always tastes twice as sweet, and after a bit of time gathering my senses, I guess Iíll be back doing what any self-respecting psychonaut does best: looking for the next drug to cross off my list.
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