Maria Delgado

 

 

Maria Delgado is a 15-year-old Hispanic teenager, who got pregnant by her 24-year-old boyfriend.Terrified of what her parentsí reaction would be, Maria sought an abortion.When she learned that she would have to have parental consent, even at a low-income clinic, Maria decided to try to abort the baby herself.She had some friends who knew how to attempt to do this, so she contacted them and performed the painful procedure.

 

Although the fetus was successfully aborted, Maria had complications.Her parents eventually found out about the abortion.Mariaís father, a devout Catholic, became enraged and beat Maria.He was angry both about the abortion and about the age of the father.

 

Suffering a broken rib from her fatherís beating and, still suffering from complications from the abortion, Maria ran away from home and moved in with her boyfriend, an alcoholic who was clean and sober at the time.He had a good job selling newspaper advertising.He supported Maria and helped her recover from her physical ailments.However, 10 months after Maria moved in with him, he began drinking again.During his drinking episodes, he would beat Maria.During one of his drinking binges, he quit his job and kicked Maria out of their apartment.

 

Maria had nowhere to go.Her parents (especially her father) still would not speak to her or take her back in.She has little ability to work, and is now living on the street in downtown Portland, spending days in Pioneer Square and evenings wherever she can.She has recently met some other girls her age who have been urging her to try prostitution.She has been considering this, but has not yet done anything.However, she is increasingly concerned about how she will continue to live.She doesnít know about any resources there might be for kids her age on the street.