Early marriage is a crime. Stealing a little girl’s childhood, robbing away her innocence. How is that fair? The age, in which she should be playing with her dolls, she is dressed up like a bride, believing her fairy tale day is here. Sadly, she does not know what awaits but the people around are very well aware of what’s going to happen next. The pretty red dress and makeup which she is usually not allowed to wear are good enough to keep her distracted from the unknown.
Pakistan People’s Party Senator Sehar Kamran who has campaigned for the approval of her proposed legislative tool against underage marriages -the Child Marriages Restraint (Amendment) Bill 2017 – after the Senate’s Standing Committee on Interior described it as un-Islamic. The Bill has been passed, but does majority of Pakistani’s public even know child marriage might end them up in lockers?
In the rural areas, people sell their daughters! Yes, you read that right. Young girls who have not even hit puberty are married off and many times to men their dad’s age. The justification given by these family members is, that they cannot feed so many mouths. Her husband will look after her and fulfil all her needs.
Another reason given is so her respect is intact and she does not give in to her sexual desires and defame the family name.
The trauma that little soul will face seems to be no one’s concern.
Mothers don’t even give their daughters the ‘talk’. They really need to understand the girl who has been protected all her life does not know what a husband and wife relation is. Movies surely tell you what romance is but come on, how many of you married women have actually experienced that kind of romance in your life? You need to tell your daughter how the cherry is popped! Otherwise, she’ll be sacred for life.
21% girls are married before they even get their national ID card. Isn’t this unfair?
Families living in the urban, well-educated families sadly also follow the child marriage ritual. Many people get their children engaged in young ages without their consent! Once they’ve reached a certain age they’re married. The two individuals who have to spend their life together have no say in such a huge decision of their life.
A girl who faced certain situation shares ‘I got engaged when I was 14. I didn’t even know. There was news all over the family that my cousin has got engaged, I just like others got all excited but no one would tell me who the girl is. Didn’t know what I’m in for. Ran to my house asking who got engaged with him? Only to hear, ‘You’. So, that is how I found out I’m engaged’.
No, not all marriages are forced. Y shares with us’ I got a proposal within the family. My parents asked me, I left it up to them. Turned 16 and the next month I was a bride. I left my education and still struggling to complete it with my kids. I’m happy but I feel like I had to mature up before time. I was a kid when I had my first child and honestly, I still feel I was not the best mom to my first child’.
Child marriage has many cons, mental, physical, and emotional. It is a sin!
A medical student shares her experience while practicing in the labour room, ‘Barely 16 and gave birth to a child. It was my worst experience we had to cut down there in order for the baby to come out. She was so young and could not push any further’.
In an age when the young flower should be left to bloom, it is plucked only to be dead after some while.
Last year the designer, Ali Xeeshan made a powerful statement at HUM Bridal Couture Week ramp where a young girl wearing school uniform and carrying a bag came on ramp. Conveying the message against child marriages and to educate girls.
This picture by Sanhati Saha and Sampriti Saha, is going viral on social media and it is giving a pretty strong message! Educate your girls do not bound them to something they don’t even know the true meaning of.
Is the public getting the message loud and clear?
Everyone has their own piece of advice.
Contributed by Yaamzadi Jamali