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Straight Edge Interview Project: Adriana Jimenez 27, Boca Raton, FL. she/her.

Instagram: Adgeflippinstarr

Tell us about you? What do you do for a living?

I’m a special education teacher for 4th and 5th-grade students with autism. Teaching is a passion! No pets currently. I love going to concerts or karaoke with friends, checking out dessert spots, or shopping. I’m also a huge Disney nerd.

Favorite straight edge (or non-straight edge) bands?

I really need and want to get into more straightedge bands but my punk heart loves A Day to Remember, The Used, New Found Glory, Simple Plan, Blink 182, and plot twist….Ariana Grande!

What is your definition of straight edge?

To me straightedge means living a sober lifestyle, abstaining from drinking, smoking/doing drugs.

Where do you see the straight edge scene today?

There are not many of us.

There’s an ongoing debate on whether one can be straight edge without being a part of the music scene, what are your thoughts on this?

It’s 2021, people can define themselves as they choose.

What are some funny/common misconceptions people have about you being straight edge?

People think straightedges don’t know how to have fun.

What are some challenges you have faced when interacting with other people who are also edge? If you haven’t had any challenges, tell us some challenges you’ve faced when interacting with people who are not edge?

Meeting other straightedge people is although exciting, always a competition. Like, who’s moreeee straightedge?! Meeting non-straightedge people is hard. It’s like coming out. It’s providing an unnecessary justification for my lifestyle choices.

What’s your straight edge story? Was there a key moment that made you realize straight edge is the way you want to live your life? How old were you? How did you find out about straight edge, was there someone in the community that introduced you, or were you introduced to it through people/bands, etc? What drew you to it?

I don’t have a wild story. I’ve been straightedge for as long as I’ve know about it, and I first remember claiming edge in like 6th grade. And even before! I’ve never participated in drugs or alcohol. I’ve seen drugs and alcohol take over the lives of many and end lives. I always wanted to be in control of my body. Although I’m not always a rule follower, I do like knowing that I made choices for myself that society would be proud of.

Define what straight edge means to you? Has this changed over the years?

Straightedge means abstaining from drugs and alcohol. It has not changed for me. There are many terms to straightedge, I don’t claim them all necessarily.

Do you consider yourself an activist? What is/are your cause(s), and how have you been working to advance them?

I’m a big advocate for the LGBT community and for my students with disabilities. I’ve participated in What, if anything, keeps you committed to the straight edge lifestyle?and planned walks, events, and raised $ for the causes closest to my heart. I don’t influence friends to maintain a straightedge lifestyle, but I do enjoy showing them how to have sober fun.

What, if anything, keeps you committed to the straight edge lifestyle?

Personal morals.

What is something you didn’t think you would struggle with by claiming edge?

Making sober friends. Finding sober partners.

What do you do for stress relief instead of drinking/drugs, tips for peer pressure?

Karaoke, shopping, eating. Tips for peer pressure: “Friends” that peer pressure aren’t friends.

If you are in a relationship is your partner straight edge, or have you had a previous relationship with someone who was not straight edge? What, if any, challenges have you faced relating to your lifestyle/choices?

My partner is not straightedge and I’ve actually never dated anyone straightedge. The edge/non edge dating world always brings conflict that can be resolved with communication early on.

Has your family and social life been negatively or positively impacted? Have you faced or are you facing any specific challenges because of your lifestyle choices? If your family/friends are unsupportive, how do you deal?

I feel happy that I’m straightedge and I’m sure my family would agree knowing that I’m safer in my outings. Friends excluding me was a thing at one point.

How do you explain your lifestyle to others outside of the scene? Do you find it difficult? What’s your elevator pitch?

It’s a personal lifestyle choice. I like being in control of my body, that’s it.

Over the past decade or so individuals in recovery have stumbled upon the straight edge lifestyle and it has really spoken to them. Do you feel that the straight edge community has been welcoming to those in recovery? Do you have mixed feelings? Strong Feelings?

This community should accept all willing to claim.

Straight edge and the associated music scene have long been male-dominated. What do you see as a woman/girls role in the scene? How has this role changed since you have been involved and what changes would you like to see?

I’d love to meet more straightedge women.

What if any challenges have you faced that are specifically related to being a female in a male-dominated scene?

No challenges from the scene I’ve surrounded myself with.

Is the scene as inclusive as it likes to think it is? Do you think there’s work to be done? If so, what would you like to see change?

It’s 2021, the scene should welcome all willing to claim with open arms.

Mother, wife, small business owner.

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