The Hell Behind Cough Gels

Oh the fun of having the common cold. The stuffy nose, lack of appetite, the cough attacks, oh boy those cough attacks. You know what helps with those cough attacks? Some good ol’ Robitussin Dextromethorphan gel caps. Pop one or two of those and you’re good
to go. But did you know that cough gels can be abused? Unfortunately I became an abuser of cough gels, and I am very ashamed of it, because to this day I suffer damage from misusing this drug. This damage will not go away either, it will stay with me for the rest of my life.

I first found out that you could abuse cough gels when I found out a few friends had tried it. I’ll admit, I was curious. I wanted to try it and see what it was like. If any of my friends that have taken them are reading this, I don’t blame you at all. This was completely my choice and my fault. It sounded like it was fun so I wanted to try it, and I got carried away, it turned into an addiction, and I’m sorry you had to see me go through it. I’m so sorry to anyone who had to watch me go through this addiction, but I’m thankful for the people who stuck with me during this difficult time in my life.

Now you’re probably wondering, how do you even abuse cough gels? Well, instead of taking the recommended dosage like you’re supposed to, you take the entire bottle, and you MUST have an empty stomach. That comes out to around 300mg of Dextromethorphan. After you take the bottle, it takes approximately 3 hours to kick in. Once it begins to kick in you begin to get a drunk feeling. Then it becomes difficult to walk. It’s not anything like a drunk type of walk either, it’s a stiff zombie type walk. If anyone were to see you walking they would know you were on something because you’re walking is so stiff and messed up. Overall the trick is not to EVER walk once the cough gels have kicked in.

Let’s get to the point. You’re probably wondering why I even bothered taking these in the first place. Well, they make you hallucinate. You lay in bed, listen to soothing music and see the craziest things. I remember one time my light bulb turned into a colorful turtle with wings and started flying around my room. Pinwheels would fly around on my ceiling. The desktop wallpaper on my PC would become a motion picture. My bedroom would turn into a castle, I would enter a whole new world while on the drug, it was amazing. It was an escape from my depressing life. The most amazing thing about it was that the hallucinations would change depending on the music I was listening to. The trip would last around 5 hours.

I am in no way trying to make this drug sound awesome. DON’T go out and try this I repeat DO NOT go out and try this.

What turned into a once a month night of recreation rapidly turned into a once a week night of recreation. Soon I was taking them every night. Your tolerance builds fast too, so not only was I taking one bottle, but I was taking two bottles, then three bottles. That comes out to 900mg of Dextromethorphan, which is an extremely high and almost lethal dose. It was a big problem for me. Keep in mind like I said before you have to have an empty stomach, so since I was taking them so often I was starving all of the time.

After just one month of use I had to start going to different locations that sold cough gels so that the employees wouldn’t get suspicious that I was abusing them. I started noticing that I was having trouble remembering things. Small things, like what I had just got done doing or where I put my keys. I was forgetting things that I’d usually always remember. I became tired all of the time. I’m sure that not eating wasn’t helping at all either.

Two months in I became sluggish, I could barely stay awake. I slept ALL THE TIME. It was just sleep, cough gels, sleep, cough gels, and so on. My memory continued to deteriorate. I couldn’t remember if I had gotten the groceries the day before, or if I had scheduled my doctor’s appointment. If I had a full stomach I would throw up so that I could take the cough gels and experience their full effect.

Three months in and the cough gels began to turn against me. I started getting stomach aches so bad during my trips that I would purposefully make myself throw up just to get the pills out of my system. The aches were so terrible I felt like dying. They were the worst pains I’ve ever had in my life. That’s not an exaggeration either. This is when I finally decided to lay off the pills, but unfortunately I wasn’t done with them. Even with all of the terrible things the cough gels were doing to me I just couldn’t stop.

Four months in and I decided to take the pills again. It had been a week or two since my last dose. So I took two bottles instead of three. That’s 600mg of Dextromethorphan. I didn’t have the stomach pains this time and I had what I thought was a pretty great trip. The next morning I woke up to go to the bathroom. I noticed there was blood on my underwear and I was not due for my period. I kept bleeding for the rest of the day and then it stopped. I thought it was weird and part of me knew it was because of the cough gels. You’re probably thinking I stopped doing them there right? Sadly no, stupid me did them one last time a week later. Boy did I regret that. Not only did I have the stomach pain again, but for the life of me I could not throw up the pills. That meant I was stuck with the horrible pain. How long was I stuck with that pain? Four very, very, long hours. Once again in the morning I woke up with blood on my underwear. It was that day I knew I had to stop.

For a month or two, even after what I experienced, I still felt like taking cough gels but I didn’t because I knew what they would do to me. I didn’t want to fall back into the hole that I was in. Spending my nights looking at my ceiling, looking at things that weren’t really there. Throwing up my food just so I could take some drug that would make me see stupid things that don’t exist. Feeling hungry all of the time, it felt terrible. I just couldn’t go back to that.

An addiction to Dextromethorphan is mental, not physical, so to keep my mind off of the drug, exercise helped me a lot. Hanging out with friends was also a big help. Make sure you have at least one or two supportive people in your life who can help you overcome the habit. This really helps with confidence to overcome your addiction. Overall the main key is to distract yourself.  

Now that some time has passed I have found that I absolutely despise the drug. I now suffer from permanent memory damage because of my former addiction. For awhile I couldn’t even remember a girl’s name I used to date. The worst thing is her name is my middle name. I will walk in and out of the same room four or five times and continue to forget why I went into the room in the first place. I’ll forget people’s names that I’ve known for months. It’s a terrible feeling and I’ll have to live with it for the rest of my life. Please never abuse cough gels, no matter how curious you are, it’s just not worth all of the hell you’ll go through.

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