It had been more than a year since I broke up with my college boyfriend. Now, he was nesting with a pre-law student whose existence he acknowledged in public.
At least, that’s what I called him—he preferred me wordlessly following him up to his bedroom at the end of the evening and never touching him in front of his roommates to official “labels.” I had tried my hardest to steer our hangouts out of the drunken hookup zone and into a real adult relationship—I cooked him a steak, went down on him while he watched sports, and finally demanded that he treat me better or stop sleeping with me. Meanwhile, my personal life consisted of making out with guys who wore cut-off jorts, nodding into PBRs at my friends’ little music shows, and ingesting substances that would finally bury my childhood dream of applying to the FBI.
The hardest thing for me was nightmares,” she said.
Valerie has a full-time job now working at a helpline and is pursuing her passion – singing.
Valerie said she feels the key to helping young people is early prevention, and to not only target girls but boys as well.
Better and earlier sex education in schools and teaching teens what healthy relationships look like from a young age are crucial. They are not risk averse, they are risk inclined they like risk,” she said.
She says money, and the perception it’s “easy money,” is an alluring part of sex trade.
She said she made “preposterous” amounts of money at 17 -- 0 to 0 a night.
And she says teenagers want to hear advice from their peers or people they see as credible, not their parents.
That’s why programs like "Les Survivantes," started by Montreal police and now used by Laval police are so important, she said.
One Saturday night, I gathered all of my change, walked 500 feet from my apartment, and joined my most committed drinking buddy at a Miller High Life happy hour where drinks started at a quarter and climbed 25 cents every half-hour, a new game to help us all get drunk again.
By the time the bottles snuck out of my price range—, maybe—my eyes had fixed permanently on the curly-haired new barback circulating the bar, hooking, twirling, and stacking glasses as he went.
“When I would come home, I would take all my clothes off.