When I met Kiana, she was panhandling in Davis, FL. She told me she'd been clean for about 3 months and was determined to stay that way.
Kiana: Growing up I was told I had ADHD, type two bipolar, schizophrenia, borderline dyslexic... Pretty much any mental thing you can label a child with. So I've been on all different types of medications.
When I was 16. My mother gave me up to the state. After my mom gave me up, I hit rock bottom and got really bad on drugs. I started shooting heroin, coke, pills, alcohol, whatever I could get my hands on. I moved to South Beach and I was raped and beaten almost everyday for two months.
BW: By who?
Kiana: A guy I met in South Beach. I had a job, under the table, at this little bar called The Rock Shop. I met him while I was working. I was sleeping on the beach, so I had nowhere to go. He offered me a place to stay. He was nice at first and then a week or two later his true colors came out. I guess that's what drugs do to people. They change you.
He tried to prostitute me. I wrote a letter and sent it to an old teacher of mine and she sent it to the police. It was a cry for help. The FBI ended up taking the case. They took pictures of the scars. He would put cigarettes out on me, my jaw is all fucked up, I had bruises all over my arms and face.
BW: What happened after that?
Kiana: We [her and her child's father] met a few months after all of this happened. June 14th, 2012 we started dating. In November, a few months before my 17th birthday, we found out I was pregnant with my daughter. My daughter was born in July of 2013 and then my son was born in August of 2014. We had an apartment on the East Side of Hollywood, FL. Everything was good, then the drugs came around again.
BW: I noticed your sign. Are you pregnant right now?
Kiana: Yes, 1 month.
BW: Does anybody ever offer you any work?
Kiana: You know what kind of work I get offered? "Hey, you want to suck my dick for money?"