I finished middle school but I was already four months pregnant with my son when I started high school. It became very difficult to do the activities so I dropped out. We also had to save up for the birth. It cost about 12,000 pesos (US$600), and we had to sell our stove and fridge to get the money.
I have two children now: a baby daughter and a two-year-old son. The boy’s father is dead. Some men came by his house one day looking for one of his friends. The guy wasn’t there, but the men still shot my ex-boyfriend and both his parents before they left.
I now live with my parents. I haven’t worked since my daughter was born and that’s been causing problems. My dad says that since I don’t have a job I need to wash their clothes, cook for all of them, etc. I help them of course but he wants me to do more than I’m able to. My mom defends me. She tells him he can’t talk to me like that, that she’s there to do the things that he’s wanting me to do. In moments like that he talks about kicking us all out. My mom is the one who helps me the most. She even stopped work at the maquiladora (assembly factory) to help me take care of the children.
I’ve worked since I was 14. I started as a waitress, but left because my shifts were ending really late. I then worked at Movistar (a mobile phone provider) for a year, offering promotions and trying to get people to switch. I got fired because of the pandemic, but I really liked that job. I got to be outside and work with a friend. He’s dead too now. He was crossing the street when somebody started shooting at a car. A bullet hit him in the face.
My boyfriend and I would like to get a place, but he doesn’t earn much and we have two children to take care of. He finished high school with an apprenticeship in construction, but right now he’s working as a builder fixing a house. I would like to live on my own and start studying again. I’d like to finish high school, get a job to help my partner, and build something that I can leave for my kids. I don’t want them to struggle like I have.
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