Tuesday, April 9, 2013
Adriauna was fourteen years old when she met Ryan. He was a charming boy with gorgeous blue eyes and a knack for persuading girls to do anything he wanted. She fell head over heels for him. They began dating and things moved rather quickly. Five months into the relationship Ryan moved in with Adriauna and her family. In November of 2005 Adriauna found out that she was pregnant. She was fifteen years old and Ryan was sixteen. Instantly she worried. She had always loved kids and been very maternal but would her boyfriend be the same way? All she knew was that she wanted this to work out for them. Then the cheating started. Later came the abuse. Why did she stay? She had convinced herself that her unborn child needed a mother and a father.
On July 2, 2006 Adriauna gave birth to her beautiful son, Houston. His father was distant and he used excuses like: “I don’t know how to be a dad.” But she stuck with him. Finally Ryan got a job and they were doing well. But that only lasted for two months. Then he met friends and started drugs. Life wasn’t good for any of them. So finally when Houston was seven months old they broke up.
Ryan started dating another girl to hurt Adriauna, but that didn’t last long. He got kicked out of where he was staying and then called Adriauna and begged her to take him back. She did. She went right back to acting as if nothing happened. Then Ryan started using drugs again, but harder drugs (meth) this time. He would disappear for weeks on end, and then one day he finally came back and packed his stuff. He had met someone else, and wanted her. But he couldn’t seem to leave Adriauna alone either. When he was lonely there he was knocking at her door. She finally had enough and told him to stop coming around. His response was leaving his hand print on her face. He went to jail that night for domestic violence. He was released three days later and where was Adriauna? Outside the jail waiting for him, and of course she went back to acting as if nothing happened.
In January 2008 she found out she was pregnant yet again. Ryan was still distant in the relationship, still couldn’t hold down a job, and was still into drugs. But a couple of months into the pregnancy he cleaned himself up and got another job. Things were better to an extent mostly because he was working so they had an income, but there were still the drugs and other girls at work. On Houston’s second birthday Adriauna walked into their bedroom to find her boyfriend and her best friend making out. They acted as if she was seeing things and they both left, together. They lied about the affair until they moved to Texas together and then she lost contact with Houston’s and her unborn baby’s father altogether. At the time Adriauna felt this was the worst thing that had happened to her yet.
Adriauna moved to Arizona in August 2008 with her parents for a fresh start. Then things went south between her ex-best friend and her ex-boyfriend. She had gotten pregnant and lost the baby and then Ryan started calling Adriauna again, begging for her to take him back. She was hesitant. But after she gave birth to their second son on September 13, 2008 she had an unbelievable emptiness. So, she took Ryan back again. He moved to Arizona to be with her but the drugs didn’t stop. She was left once again to look for work in order to support her children.
One day Ryan started a fight with Adriauna’s brother, then her step-dad, then her mom. Adriauna, of course, took his side. Things got physical between Adriauna and her mom. She and Ryan packed everything they could into their car and headed to Texas with their two boys and no money. Things were good for a while after that, Ryan had a job and they were actually happy.
Then in April 2009 she found out she was pregnant again. Ryan quit his job and she had to go out and get a job. The abuse started up again and everything went downhill from there. But Adriauna, still desperate to make her family work, convinced him to move back to Nevada with her in July 2009. He met new friends there and got into hardcore drugs, heavily. He did anything illegal for money and avoided Adriauna and their children, out cheating and doing whatever he felt like. They bounced back and forth between houses of family members and weekly motels. She gave birth to their third son on December 7, 2009.
Their family seemed to be complete and happy. Finally Adriauna made the decision to change her life and go to school for a career. Since she was starting school her father and step-mom helped them get into an apartment so that their children had a stable place to live and they could get on their feet. She did everything she could; she went to school and babysat up to ten kids 7 days a week, all hours of the day, just to make ends meet. Eventually her hard work paid off. Adriauna graduated with high honors. Naturally Ryan saw it as a free ride in life, he never got a job. She finally convinced him to try to get into school, but once he enrolled it was all trouble. He met a girl and when she turned him down he came home and beat the crap out of Adriauna in front of their children. He went to jail again that night for domestic violence. When he got out two week later, where was Adriauna? Sitting outside the jail again, waiting to take him back. After everything she still loved him, she felt she was doing everything for their children.
In February 2011, Adriauna got a job and finally didn’t have to stay home anymore. Once she got out and spent time with “normal” people she finally saw that she was beautiful, she was smart. She was finally able to realize that the best decision for her and her children was to leave Ryan. So, in March 2011 she did.
Adriauna met her new boyfriend in May 2011 and they are still together. To her children HE is their daddy. Only Houston remembers Ryan, but to him Ryan is just the other guy they used to live with. Adriauna realizes that she has three beautiful, smart little boys. If she did anything right, she says, it was them. She looks at her story and sees a lot of horrible things, but if she wouldn’t have endured them she wouldn’t have her boys. Even though she became a mother at 15, then 17, and again at 19, she says she wouldn’t change any of it.
Here are some words of experience Adriauna shared with me: “My journey as a teenager and a mother was not one I wanted in my life, and I certainly was not the girl who would end up in that position. Even more so, not the mother of three by the age of nineteen. It’s been a struggle for me and my children, but it’s a struggle that I would never change in a million years. Granted I wish they didn’t have to endure half of what they’ve had to at their young ages, but we all have come out stronger in the end and only continue to get stronger. There is not a second of my life as a teenage mother that I regret, for without my children I would have continued down my path of self-destruction and would not be here today. Houston, to some is a city, but to me, it’s who gave me life.”