Rosa pauses in front of the bathroom mirror to study the results of her evening makeup ritual: Bangs, resembling peacock feathers, shoot stylishly three inches above her forehead; frosted lids highlight thickly lined eyes; cheeks have been brushed with a burning rouge hue. And that will make him angry. She is used to that, but shouts anyway at her best friend, Monique, to hurry up. She checks a 12th and final time in the mirror then heads for the door. The two young women could be the girlfriends of any gang member in any predominantly Latino neighborhood of Orange County.
I always call them, " she says.
She now laughs at his demands for her not to wear her trademark dark lipstick and not to dress in miniskirts, in fear that other guys would go after her. They say they like being with someone who always wants them within eyesight.
They are moved by the crazy, romantic passion of a gangster who would literally kill for his woman. They proudly exchange stories of jealous boyfriends and ones who slap them around, just as their gangsters tell tales of fighting a rival gang or fending off the police. But while they half-seriously, half-jokingly complain about their gangsters, most would not have it any other way.
She unhesitatingly says that she will always date gangsters.
They say they like being at the hub of gang life. They like knowing what is going on in different gangs and being welcome at the houses where gang members congregate.
Most say they would not feel safe in some neighborhoods if they were not hanging out with or dating a gangster. Most of them are looking for cocaine, and when they figure out which guy has it, they flirt with him until they get it.
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Guys want information or sex, and girls want a line of coke. In fact, many of the Latinas interviewed stare blankly when asked what type of contraceptives they use, and most laugh at the idea of their boyfriends using a condom.
However, most of the girls who date gang members do not use contraceptives and have no idea what safe sex is about, says Estela Martinez, director of education at Planned Parenthood in Santa Ana, which covers Orange and San Bernardino counties. Because they often ditch classes or simply never go to school, many of the women who date gangsters do not receive adequate sex education, she says.
Most of the young women say their pregnant friends tend to keep their babies. Because most Latinas come from Roman Catholic homes, they say abortion is rare.
Also, most of the women do not have the money to pay for an abortion. And, they say, most of the men will not help.
Having a pregnant girlfriend has its benefits for a gangster.
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Fathering children by different women is something of a status symbol among some of the more irresponsible men. But more than status, the responsibility of a pregnant girlfriend or wife is a legitimate way for members to ease out of active gang participation. Colleene Hodges, supervisor of the gang-suppression unit for the county Probation Department, says a gangster can tell his homeboys that his girlfriend wants him at home more often.
Or he can say he needs to spend more time with his children. But the members respect that. They leave him alone. Hodges adds that many gangsters see their girlfriend as the only person in their life who can help them.
Feb 19, One ex-gang member describes how her life was taken over by a boyfriend, and how the cycle begins at school Ben Ferguson and Matthew Taylor Sun . Dec 24, Anyways, dating a gang member is a bad idea. A weta dating a gang member who is Latino that belongs to a racist Latino gang is a really bad idea. 0 1 0. Login to reply the answers Post; Anonymous. 1 decade ago. When you are in doubt yourself about your riskily dating, why you are banking upon the answers. We the people can suggest you without. In true gang culture you become a gang member YOURE not just dating. GUESS what innitation entails for a female gang member? As part of this you will have many of thier trade secrets. So once you're in your in. And there's only one way out. As a.
When they find a woman who plays a rescuer role, she says, they do what they can to keep her-even if that means purposely getting her pregnant. For most of the women who date gang members, marriage is the end goal. Many do not have high school diplomas and most do not work.
Gangsters they hang out with-whether a current boyfriend, a former boyfriend or just a gangster she is dating-financially provide for them, although most of the women are too proud to admit to their dependence on boyfriends. Younger women say they save their lunch money to afford weekend nights out.
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But older ones do not think they can ask their parents for spending money, especially because many-such as Monique and Rosa-live in single-parent households where money is tight. Marriage offers the perfect transition into adulthood and the perfect solution to surviving in life.
When it comes to school, most of the women say they plan to finish high school and apply for college. Others are certain that they will soon return and take the remaining classes they need for high school diplomas.
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She says she was recently in an auto accident and is taking time off from school and work. She talks of eventually going to college and taking business courses. Monique says she had been attending a local community college, but the inconvenience of not having a car and relying on buses finally wore down her academic enthusiasm. Diane was looking for a job, but the appointment interview conflicted with a court date on a curfew violation, so she canceled it.
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Their high aspirations are not surprising, says Martinez of MANA: They are strong, intelligent and passionate young women, but they lack the skills and direction to fulfill their goals. And they lack alternatives.
Monique mourns the sudden end to a relationship she wanted to last. She had given up seeing other gangsters to make a particular romance work. He left her for another woman. Rosa comforts her friend. Things will be all right. If I got caught [with the gun] I would have said no comment and took the bird with me. The relationship with Jerome continued as she was drawn deeper into gang life.
You don't love him but you're made to believe you do. It's all very fiction, but it's not real love you don't realise how deep you're in until it's too late. As she got to know more people in the gang she realised everyone - boys and girls - had a different role. As Lisa became more embroiled with the gang her life became more dangerous.
I couldn't go to my mum's house and when I did see her she had to meet me somewhere. If I was seen by myself something would have happened to me. When Lisa turned 17 her endless nights spent in the "traphouse" began to take their toll.
I didn't want to do it towards the end. But I was more scared because that's when people turn against you. You know everything in the area.
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Who's selling drugs, who's got firearms. Lisa began to realise the extent of the violence and criminality she had witnessed over two years. Boys would get a pitbull and train it to bite, they'd batter people, rob them for their watches. Instead she tried to slowly extricate herself from the gang. He'd tell me I wasn't being a good girlfriend. You feel obliged.
Dating A Gang Member - If you are looking for the love of your life then our online dating services has tons of eligible singles with one that might just be perfect. Diane says one F-Troop gang member she knows is notorious for the number of babies he has fathered: "That guy, I guess he thinks he's big because he's got a lot of girls pregnant.". Jul 19, Often times dating a gang member can lead to gang membership, gang involvement, and abuse. According to a recent study by researchers at RTI International, teenage girls whose boyfriends are gang members are nearly twice as likely to have unwanted pregnancies as those not dating boys involved with gangs.
Some people have a breaking point, others don't. Then she became pregnant. When Lisa went for her abortion two weeks later she had already miscarried. I was with him for another three months and he kept hitting me and throwing stuff at me. Lisa was certain she was not about to make the same mistake as her mum, who had put up with domestic violence for 10 years.
By now Jerome had moved away London after getting shot. She moved into his new house but realised she had reached her breaking point.
She left clothes and other belongings there to avoid suspicion and walked away, changing her mobile number and deleting her Facebook account.
The pair have not met for two years but Lisa says that her old life still catches up with her. I had his friends coming up to me saying if I opened my mouth I knew the deal.
People telling me where my mum lives. Two years later it's still there. Lisa believes that university will be her ticket to freedom. With areas of London still off limits and people she cannot talk to, "it's always going to be like this unless I move out. But it's a hard one. If you get out you consider yourself lucky. This article is more than 8 years old.