The Company She Kept

As a teenager, Sabrina overcame the challenges of bouncing around numerous foster and group homes, frequently being rejected for her sexuality. She emancipated from the system and prepared herself to start school. The company she kept, unfortunately, led her down a dark path instead.

The young woman with whom Sabrina had a relationship since the age of 15 was a drug addict. She used meth on a regular basis and tried to convince Sabrina to join her. Sabrina wasn’t interested. As a matter of fact, she argued with her girlfriend time and again begging her not to use. But, ultimately, there came a time when Sabrina lost that argument and was persuaded to try using meth herself.

She was living in a group home in Pasadena when it happened. Sabrina said, “I can’t count how many group homes and foster homes I had lived in.” Her girlfriend and roommate surprised her by using meth in her room while she was in the shower. She said, “I was scared of meth. I wouldn’t touch it.” When she entered the room and saw that they were using, they fought for a long time before her girlfriend finally said, “If you love me, you’ll try it.” And that was the final straw. 

Shortly after that first experience with meth, Sabrina and her girlfriend, both addicted, were kicked out of the group home. She was homeless, hadn’t started school and was barely getting by with cash aid and food stamps. Even at times when Sabrina wasn’t interested in getting high, her girlfriend would manipulate her into using. 

Sabrina lived under a bridge on a binge in Pomona for three years. During that time, she met up with an old boyfriend which led to an unexpected pregnancy. She said, “I didn’t even know I was pregnant until I went into labor. I was so high and so skinny.” 

The paramedics immediately took the baby girl away, but that was a turning point for Sabrina.

“I fought tooth and nail to get her back.” 

Her social worker asked if she would be willing to go to rehab in order to gain custody of the baby, and Sabrina wholeheartedly agreed. She called everyday to inquire about getting into a residential program. In March 2018, she was admitted to the Maple House program. She simply wasn’t ready. During her stay at Maple House, she was rude, disobedient and angry. By May she had made very little progress, and her behavior led to her dismissal from the program.

A few months later, she entered another rehab program where she served as kitchen coordinator and began to make some progress toward sobriety. She got in trouble there for breaking rules and was dismissed from that program as well. Next, she tried an outpatient program and continued staying clean and sober. She moved into a sober living facility. When one of her drug tests came out questionable, she had to leave that home, too. 

“I ended up losing my home and losing faith again. I went back to the streets in Pomona.”

On February 21, 2019, her social worker managed to get her back into the treatment program at Maple House. This time she was ready. She loved her counselors and learned so much from them. 

“They really helped me through it. Rosanna opened my mind. Rita taught me to cook and gave great advice. They were always there to listen, and they motivated me to do good. I could talk to them instead of getting angry.”

At Maple House, Sabrina learned the importance of surrounding herself with kind-hearted people who not only care about her, but also continuously build her up to be the woman she was born to be.  She has been sober for nearly two years and is the proud mother of two young girls.

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