A mother has shared her anger after a decade since her daughter’s death from a ketamine overdose hasn’t changed.
Vicky Unwin, 65, was devastated when her daughter Louise Cattell died after falling asleep in the bath aged just 21.
She had been taking ketamine with friends to celebrate returning from a six-week trip Australia.
But she was unaware that her tolerance to the drug had decreased after the time she had been off the drug.
After taking more than her body could handle, Louise took a warm bath and fell asleep. She never woke up.
Now her mother Vicky has dedicated her life to the call for change.
But actually she wants to make drugs more accessible – not less.
She told the Sun Online: “If Louise had bought the drugs legally, there would have been more guidance as to how much she was allowed to take.”
“She was 5’1″ and took as much as her 5’1” friends. That was ignorance.”
This comes after the drug was dubbed Britain’s “campus killer” after it was revealed that 41 students have died after taking the drug since 1999, according to the National Substance Abuse Deaths Programme.
Around seven British students died in 2021 alone.
But Vicky says the legalization of ketamine, which is currently sold illegally for around £3 a dose, could change things.
She added, “Students always want to experience something when it’s exciting.”
“The problem is, if it’s illegal, you don’t know what’s actually in what you’re buying.”
Vicky, a board member of drug charity Transform, was left disadvantaged after the death of her only daughter, Louise, in 2011.
Louise was staying at her best friend’s house in Clapton, East Londonwhen the couple started taking the drug on March 2, 2011.
She had taken ketamine a few times before and even weighed the dosage.
When her friend went to bed, she took a warm bath.
But little did she know that a bath during a dissociative aesthetic can be deadly.
She fell asleep and drowned.
Vicky said: “I couldn’t believe it. I had only spoken to her the day before and she seemed so upbeat.”
“We talked about how she just sent in her portfolio to apply for a graphic design degree at Chelsea School of Arts.”
Vicky added that she was relieved that she was able to tell her daughter how proud she was in their recent conversation.
She said: “My husband went over the next day to help her with the gardening.
“The last thing I said to her was ‘I’m so proud of you for taking the portfolio.’ I’m happy about that.”
Louise’s death was “the most terrible shock,” she added.
“You never think it’s going to happen to you or that it’s going to be something so stupid.
“She was a very smart, bright girl. Old and wise for her age.”
“It was just a really stupid mistake. She died of ignorance.”
“No one ever said not to take a bath. That advice just wasn’t available.”
Now, for a decade, Vicky has been campaigning for the legalization of katamin – an opinion that is widely divided.
She said: “It is a very strong drug and should only be used under supervision.”
“That’s why it’s a really good idea to set up university advisory groups to help and advise young people and prevent them from getting into danger.”
“Nothing has been done to remedy this. Both Tory and Labor parties are against legalization and decriminalization.”
“Local police The armed forces turn a blind eye to ownership issues.
“It’s very disappointing. It makes me angry. Alcohol is more dangerous but regulated. The risks are obvious.”
Ketamine is now becoming increasingly popular.
According to adult drug and alcohol treatment service Together, the number of young adults reporting ketamine use has increased by 53 percent since August 2022.
Vicky added: “After 12 years it feels unreal to me. It seems impossible to remember that we had a daughter.”
“It’s hard to wonder what she would have been like. She would be 33 now.
“Would she have children and a partner? What would she do with her life? It would have been amazing whatever it is.”
“Many of her friends had babies and partners. Her life just stopped.”
If you are having trouble taking ketamine and would like more information, please read talktofrank.com/drug/ketamine