According to Broadly, a study from the University of South Carolina took a stab at the "urban legend" of drink spiking to see if there was any real truth behind the myth. Calling it an urban legend prior to this study wasn't far from the truth either, as very few studies had been conducted prior and those who hadn't ever had their drink drugged brushed it off as a warning your parents tell you to keep you on your toes at parties.
In fact, what sparked the study was a simple question that left lead author Suzanne C. Swan's mind buzzing after she learned nearly one-third of her class had experience with someone spiking their drink.
"I had no idea [it] was happening until students started bringing it up from time to time," said Swan, who teaches psychology and women's studies. "Since there's hardly any research in this area, I decided to get some data and figure out what was going on.
8% of the 6,000 surveyed said that they had had their drinks drugged before. While it seems like a small number, that totals to nearly 462 students. Add in the fact that the study only covered three universities in the United States and you've got yourself a major problem, especially when you hear the reasons why drinks are spiked.
"[It]s] to rape us," wrote one anonymous respondent. "Myself and the other girl I was out with were drugged, and then confronted behind the bar on the patio and one of the three men said 'I'm going to get in your pants tonight.'"
The study also revealed that men often are subjected to spiked drinks as well. However, it is under the guise that they want to have fun or loosen up, which Swan noted can be just as dangerous.
"Even if a person is drugging someone else simply 'for fun' with no intent of taking advantage of the drugged person, the drugger is still putting a drug in someone else's body without their consent," said Swan to the Daily Mail. "This is coercive and controlling behavior."