Dominique: My father and my auntie were on drugs. Now my father is a preacher. They are both clean. I guess it’s just a test that the Lord sends us through. I know if my auntie and father can overcome it, I will too.

I’ve been on the street since I was 12 and I’ve been on drugs since I was 14. I’m 28 now. 

BW: Why were you out of the house when you were 12?

Dominique: I was getting molested by my step daddy from the time I was 10-11. My grandma looked in my eyes and she knew that something was wrong. I kept denying it. She kept asking me and I started crying. She asked, “has that man done anything to you?” I kept denying it but I ended up telling her the truth.

My mama was standing there and my mama asked me again. My grandma threatened her. She said, “either you get him locked up or I’m gonna get both of y'all locked up.” She ended up getting him locked up and he’s still in prison to this day.

 I took it out on my mama. I felt like she was against me cause I was the baby girl. She didn’t believe me. Now that I’m older, I’m like, why would a child lie to you about something like that?

We were staying in the hood. I used to see girls walk by wearing heels and stuff with short pants or whatever. I got introduced to it [prostitution], so I ran away.

They [tricks] used to ask me how old I was, when I was 12, and I would lie and say that I was 18 years old. 

BW: So, you’ve been a prostitute since you were 12?

Dominique: Yeah. Metropolitan, Stewart Avenue, Chocolate City. 

BW: Damn… 

What would you like to do if you could do anything?

Dominique: I like to sing.

BW: You should sing me something. 

Dominique: OK

Listen to Dominique’s song

Part of these collections: Sex Work