Love Island star Jessie Wynter reveals she was hospitalised after her drink was spiked

‘It was such an awful and scary situation to be in,’ she wrote on Instagram

Amber Raiken
New York
Tuesday 20 June 2023 19:23 BST
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Love Island star Jessie Wynter has revealed that she was recently “rushed to the hospital” after her drink was spiked.

The 26-year-old took to Instagram on Tuesday to share pictures of herself in the hospital, as she revealed in the caption that she required medical attention after consuming a drink that had been tampered with. As noted by Boston University, drink spiking refers to the placing of drugs in someone’s beverage without them knowing “with the intent of rendering them temporarily incapacited”.

“I wasn’t sure if I should post this as I felt so embarrassed but the other night I was unfortunately rushed to hospital after my drink was spiked,” Wynter wrote.

She went on to express her gratitude for her partner, Will Young, who she met on Love Island, as he “looked after [her] throughout the whole time”. In the candid post, Wynter also reflected on the “scary” experience while sending a message to her followers about keeping an eye on their drinks.

“It was such an awful and scary situation to be in and it breaks my heart that this is something people need to look out for,” she wrote. “If you’re out drinking please always make sure you’re with someone who you trust and please be careful when setting your drinks down or accepting drinks off others. It’s so sad that this even has to be a reminder but unfortunately it’s the harsh reality.”

Wynter, who was on season nine of Love Island UK and season two of Love Island AU, then reflected on her time in the hospital, with the reality star claiming others were also hospitalised “in the exact same condition” at the same time as her.

“I’m so grateful to have been around so many supportive people who got me safely to hospital,” she continued. “It was so scary, in the hospital there were other girls arriving in the exact same condition I was in and the nurses said we had all tested with the same thing in our system.”

In the candid post, Wynter also revealed that she’d initally been “embarrassed” about the experience, before realising that she didn’t have anything to feel “ashamed” of. She also sent a message to others in similar situations who’ve felt like it’s their “fault”.

“I felt so embarrassed that this had happened to me and felt like this was all my fault and I can imagine others who have been in the same position may feel the same, but this is your reminder that this is not at all your fault and it’s nothing to be embarrassed about,” she wrote. “The people that should feel embarrassed and ashamed are the awful people who choose to spike other peoples’ drinks, not the victim.”

She concluded her message by thanking her fans and loved ones, writing: “Thanks for all the lovely messages and I pray that this doesn’t happen to any of you out there. I also send love to anyone else who has been put in the same or worse situations.”

In response to Wynter’s post, fellow reality stars and fans have taken to the comments to send messages of support.

“Please don’t feel embarrassed, it’s not your fault!” reality star Sharon Gaffka wrote. “The only person who should feel embarrassed is the person who did this to you! Sending you a big hug and I’m always here if you need me.”

“Nothing to be embarrassed about Jessie, it’s happened to me before & it’s extremely scary! Sending you love,” Love Island season nine star Zara Deniz added.

Wynter’s boyfriend wrote: “I love you so much!! Nothing to be embarrassed or scared to speak up about - I got you xx.”

In January 2023, Sharon Gaffka, who also appeared on Love Island UK, published an essay in Glamour UK detailing how she’d lost consciousness and required hospitalisation after her drink was spiked.

In the essay, she revealed that there were things she couldn’t remember from before she’d woken up in the hospital, and that she’d realised her drink had been spiked after a conversation with a friend.

“When I was discharged, one of my friends in the waiting room was hysterical - no one had told her where I was or what had happened,” she wrote. “It wasn’t until the next morning, over breakfast, when my friend described witnessing my body lying on the bathroom floor, eyes rolling into the back of my head, struggling to breathe, that I knew I had been spiked.”

She said that the “aftermath” of the experience, which occurred in July 2020, was “horrible”.

“I didn’t want to go out, and I didn’t want to talk to anyone. When I did speak to a friend or family member, I felt like I was being interrogated. ‘Did you take a drink from a stranger?’ ‘Where were you?’ - as if somehow that would’ve made it my fault. I know it came from a place of concern, but subconsciously I felt like I was being judged,” she wrote.

Gaffka, who has led campaigns about the dangers of drink spiking, also hit back at some of the assumptions people made about her during nights out. She then sent a reminder to women whose drinks have been spiked that they are not at fault.

“We all bear some individual responsibility to ensure that we are safe when we are out. But why do women always have to defend themselves? It makes me sad to know that the conversation is still ‘What were you wearing?’ and ‘Did you cover your drink?’” she wrote. “Despite the trolling and the shaming I face daily as a result of being a spokesperson for victims, I know that it is not my fault, and it will never be my fault. I just wish that I had realised sooner.”

Studies have been conducted to examine the prevalence of drink spiking in the United States. In a 2016 study, a research team led by Suzanne C Swan, a professor at the University of South Carolina, looked at survey data from 6,064 students at three universities and found that “462 students reported 539 incidents in which they said they had been drugged,” while 83 students said “either they had drugged someone, or they knew someone who had drugged another person”.

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